I have two preschool boys and I have decided to educate them at home. Even though I’ve been around home schooling families for nearly 20 years now, this wasn’t an easy decision. I’m not anti-school. I personally know and trust many of the teachers in our local public schools. Here’s the reason:
I believe every parent is responsible for their own child’s education.
Whether you choose private, public, or educate at home, you’re still responsible for your child’s education. Every parent has to carry that burden. You can’t assume that someone else has it under control. You have to stay involved. You need to have a vision for the kind of adult you want your child to become, and ensure that his education will lead him to that destination. Its your job.
So for me, education at home appeals to me for two reasons:
I want to keep their curiosity alive. I want to inspire in them a love of learning that serves them throughout their lives. I want to fuel it. I want to stop my life and explore every “why” question when its asked. There are no final answers. There is always more to learn for all of us in every single subject.
I want to keep their creativity alive. Just like curiosity, creativity is the next best thing I can develop in them. I want them to learn to discover life on their own. Solve real problems and think outside the box. The ability to find your own creative solution is better than the answer to any problem, and will serve them well in any field they choose as men.
I’m not trying to say that children are starved of curiosity and creativity in traditional school, but in a home education environment there is complete flexibility, allowing for options that just can’t exist in a classroom. Your children are your only students, and you can tailor the lessons and experiences to their needs and follow their pace. If they are struggling with something, you can approach the same problem from ten different directions, no matter how much time it takes. If they have a particular aptitude or interest, you can use that as a vehicle for understanding other things.
I intend for my kids to keep pace with current educational standards, but I want to go about it in a much more hands-on way. It fits who I am, and who I hope for them to be. So far, in all the home schooling families I’ve known I haven’t met many who have similar vision and ideas, so I’m going to share the process as I go through it. Maybe my experiences will help others starting this process, and maybe you can share your thoughts with me as well.