Homeschooling is a method of passing values, character and knowledge on to children, in which parents assume the primary role in their child’s total development as a unique person created in the image of God. In homeschooling, a child’s relationship with his parent is elevated above all outside relationships. Parents direct their children’s educational achievement, stimulate their creativity and individuality, and cultivate their character growth towards maturity and godliness.
This does not require super parents—only parents who care and are committed enough to make an effort. Studies have shown that there is no relationship between the educational level of parents and the academic achievement of the children they are teaching. Because of the great variety of educational materials available and the wide range of children’s learning styles, there is not a ‘best’ way to home educate. You have the opportunity to tailor-make a unique program of study for each of your children according to their individual needs.
Homeschooling is an adventure similar to mountain climbing. There are times along the trail that you can pause to enjoy the beautiful view and appreciate the sense of accomplishment. But there are also times when you become tired and discouraged, the trail becomes more difficult and your goal becomes obscured. Ensuring you connect with other homeschooling families will bring encouragement, edification, support and greater success.
Many prefer the term home education rather than homeschooling because homeschooling conjures up ideas of doing school at home. School as most of us know it is opposite of home education in many ways: group vs. individual learning; fitting into a mold vs. encouraging creativity; value-free knowledge vs. building Christian values; an academics only approach vs. learning through work, service and study.
Pray for direction, wisdom, and search scripture. He will answer!
Learn about home education by reading (online resources, newsletters, magazines, books, etc.) and by spending time with those already home educating their children. Understand the basic approaches to home education: traditional, classical, unit studies and combination of approaches. Establish your own philosophy of education.
Listing these reasons will be a tremendous benefit later if you need to re-focus on why you are teaching your children at home. You will probably add to this list as you gain experience. Also write down Bible verses that help you make your decision. Because of the commitment needed from the entire family, we strongly encourage both parents to develop this list.
Write out goals (spiritual, character, academic, physical) for each of your children.
You may wish to consider naming your school and designing letterhead for your school correspondence. This is highly beneficial to receive teacher discounts and promotional items.
Based on your educational philosophy and goals for your children, select the curriculum and materials you feel are best for your children.
Set aside time to plan your week. Begin a journal or plan book to record your school’s activities. This can include daily assignments and activities.
Equip your home for study with dictionaries, an encyclopedia set, computer, etc. Don’t have some of these tools... don’t forget your local library has them.
Keep updated medical records for each of your children.
Prepare yourself to answer questions and address concerns from others.
Character training at home is necessary if we desire our children to make progress in their studies and is important for their success as adults.
Actively involve your children in helping with household chores. This is a must! You will not have time to clean your house like you once had. Besides your children need to learn to work and master domestic duties.
Take care of yourself physically, emotionally, and spiritually. See Mom’s Encouragement list! Mom, determine what it is you need that will help you persevere in the home-education lifestyle and then give yourself permission to have it! Do not feel guilty about helping yourself, especially if it makes you feel more effective as a homeschool mother!
Connect to your local home education community to benefit yourself, your family and others.