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Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Homeschoolers No More: Part I

For ten years.  For ten years we have spent day in and day out together.  We have sipped hot tea and read amazing stories.  We've made salt dough maps and gone to the grocery store any time that we pleased.  We cried in frustration and we've cried in comical hysterics.  We have each grown and changed and learned.  Homeschooling is who we were.

If I were honest I'd say that we began homeschooling because we had no other choice.  We lived in an urban neighborhood with an inner city school system that did not inspire the confidence to convince us to send our children everyday.  Oh how thankful I am that we chose to homeschool.  If you've never done it, please let me share this with you.......teaching someone to read is simply the most fulfilling experience I have ever known.  Add to that the fact the students are your own children and, well, it's epic.

Our days and weeks and months and years were constantly evolving.  My goal was always to customize our curriculum and plans around the kids and their learning styles.  That worked perfectly for the elementary years.  Past that, I began to find planning difficult, and the children's love of learning began to ebb.  Suddenly my voracious readers became lazy learners, not finding the interest and passion in our time together as they once did.  Still living in the same place and situation, I felt trapped in homeschooling.  Not just in the act of homeschooling, but in the pride of homeschooling.

What do I mean "..in the pride of homeschooling"?  Homeschooling became my idol.  I was a martyr to the act of homeschooling.  I had sacrificed myself on the altar of my children's education.  What would people think of me if I quit?  What would people think of my children?  What would my identity be if not as a homeschooling mom?  Haven't I been told that my children would only suffer if they weren't home with me?

I began to comprehend that my children WERE suffering........with me! And I began to realize a change was in order........so I began to pray.

Stay tuned for Part 2......my prayers are answered!

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