Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Top Ten Tuesdays--Reasons We Are Homeschooling (well, trying, anyway!)

Thanks, again, to Ann of More Questions Than Answers for hosting Top Ten Tuesdays!
10. We can go to school in our jammies if we want.
9. I get to spend all day with my girls, watching God's world unfold in front of them.
8. I have hundreds of daily opportunities to weave the Word of God into my girls' lives.
7. No long bus rides, brown bag lunches, heavy back packs, or school yard bullies!
6. Each of my children can learn at their own pace. We can slow down or speed up whenever we want and explore topics of interest exhaustively.
5. My girls are learning moral values based on Biblical truth, not cultural norms.
4. We have lots of opportunities to serve others as a family through our school--babysitting, cooking, visiting the elderly, etc.
3. "Extras" like music, art, drama are always in the budget!
2. My kids can be kids much longer--not "mini-adults."
1. Homeschooling is an issue of obedience, and choosing to do so makes us obedient unto the Lord.

Lord, Thanks for this list. Most days, I really don't want to obey. I whine like a little child being forced to do something that is ultimately for my own good and the good of others. Give me the desire to be obedient. Help me to remember that this is YOUR plan and Your ways are not my ways, Your thoughts are high above my thoughts. Give me a peace that surpasses any feeble understanding I might have. Thank You for having a plan for me, a plan that will ultimately lead me and my family closer to You. In Jesus' name, Amen.


I wonder.... said...

Hi Jen -

Your list was great. I'm wrapping up a bachelor's degree at a public university after being home-schooled all the way through, and everything you said is “spot on”. You’re doing the very best thing that you can possibly do for your kids. Here are a few of the benefits you can hope to reap from your list (corresponding to the number)

8. If they attend a university or college, get a job or stop by Starbucks they’re going to be presented with entire worldviews based off of secular humanism, spiritualism, Marxism or the “buffet style”. Every action, word and deed that they run into will be based off of core beliefs about the universe, God, mankind, knowledge etc. that will be in direct contradiction to theirs. By grounding their education and life in God’s Word you are protecting them from being sucked into spiritual, relational and intellectual vacuums, teaching them to glorify God in every aspect of their lives and preparing them to be effective ambassadors for our Lord.

7. Especially the “bullies” part. You’re protecting your kids from developing the habit of deriving their identity from what their peers say about them (peer-pressure). They are learning what it means to be a woman of God from you, not a teacher or fellow-student. They are learning how to relate to others who are older or younger than themselves. There is a huge difference between the homeschooled and Christian/public schooled students here on campus in this respect.

6. Learning at own pace/slowing down for interesting things. Out of all the students I have tutored over the past two years (nearly 120) and those I share classes with, the homeschooled students are by far the most curious and best learners. Since most of their parents gave them the freedom to discover how much fun it is to learn, they know that even if the subject is difficult rewards are sure to come. Most of them have a stronger academic foundation as well, since they didn’t get left behind in a class of 30 when they ran into something that didn’t make sense.

5. Morals: amen, amen, amen. It’s relativism all the way down here, and anything goes. “Don’t do bad things because you might get caught”, “it’s OK as long as you don’t hurt anybody” and “what’s true for you isn’t necessarily true for me” are our creed. Easily defeated in a debate and having a horrible track record, but rampant nonetheless.

4. Opportunities to serve others as a family: The vast majority of my fellow-classmates come from shattered homes so they have shattered ideas of what a family is supposed to look like. Saying God is our Father or that the church is the bride of Christ doesn’t convey anything except bad experiences. Many young ladies are hurt from not having fathers who loved them so they cling to any male willing to give them attention, and then guys don’t know how to be men so they view the young women as bodies. Your girls will have a huge head start by just being emotionally intact.

Serving others also plays a huge part, but I commend you for being willing to be a mom.

3. Now that we know that science doesn’t have all of the answers (they could have asked the Christians) our culture is turning to the arts to enrich our lives. Learning how to express yourself, create beauty and convey a biblical message through the arts will help your girls with outreach, relating to others and “wholeness”.

2. Don’t even get me started on this.

If I may give you a bit of advice:
1. Keep teaching your girls to love the Lord. Even if they end up working at McDonalds (which they won’t) this is what matters more than anything else. You’re giving them a very firm foundation by just allowing them to enjoy the learning process and adapting to their learning style so they’re probably going to outperform all other groups on campus (which we statistically do).
2. Teach them about the different worldviews, and why Christians believe what they believe about biblical manhood and womanhood. I’ve seen too many “Christians” walk away from the faith since they didn’t know how to engage the culture and academia for Christ.

Thanks for being willing to obey our Lord and prepare the next generation of bondservants.



Ann said...

Awesome list!!! The last one is probably the toughest one :)

JAN said...

Hi Jen!
You and Ben took the words right out of my mouth!
I have all these "feelings" about homeschooling and how and why etc. but when it comes time to clarify my thoughts I splutter and stutter.
Anyway-don't lose your list. And keep adding to it. I have a notebook with all kinds of things like your list and Ben's comments-that way when I feel like throwing in the towel I can look back at my notebook and remember why on earth I do what I do!
(Ben's mom :-))

Wani said...

I found your list from Jan's meandering blog. I am the oldest of five - all of which were homeschooled and I plan on homeschooling my children someday. I was in a private Catholic school until third grade. I was challenged with being dyslexic and having teachers who weren't sympathetic to my learning needs. My mom got tired of doing homework with me all evening long - she figured if she's going to teach me why bother sending me to school. While not all of my siblings would have the same appreciation for my mom's work in homeschooling as I do (none of them have kids yet - much appreciation for my parents has come from being married and having kids of my own), I am so thankful for the sacrifices that were made by my parents but especially my mom. I remember reading being such a struggle and I hated school because I couldn't concentrate to complete tasks in the time frames given and then I'd have to miss recess to finish my work, etc. Because of being homeschooled I was able to overcome dyslexia and develop a love for reading and writing stories of my own. I took the GED and passed in the top 5%. I initially did not intend on going to college as I wanted to get married and have a family. But I did end up going to Vincennes University and earned an Associates Degree. I was on the Dean's List every semester and graduated Magna Cum Laude. I say all this to encourage you to persevere even when its so tempting to give up. The time and effort that you are investing now will someday pay off - unfortunately its so hard to wait to see the results of your labor! Keep up the good work!

Jen said...

Wani--thanks for stopping by! I appreciate your comment. It does seem as if our parents become geniuses when we get married and have our own children, doesn't it?