What can I say? I never thought I’d be a homeschool mom. I thought the kids would go to school and I would volunteer at school and have time to keep my house clean and grocery shop by myself. We were on that track, but last year about this time we decided to bring our daughter home for 3rd grade. When we first started talking about it, I fought it but once the decision was made, I had total peace and started to get excited.
So, now that this first year is under our belt, am I still excited? Oh yes! This has been an incredible experience! I am excited to be planning for next year! People ask me what made this year so good. I have lots of answers for them. It depends on when they catch me. I’ll share a few of them with you.
I have a closer relationship with my daughter. My daughter just turned 9. She and her friends are on the border of being the tweens. This is an odd age where they are not teenagers, but they are almost being forced by media and social pressure to act and look like teens or even young adults. Hormones are already starting to churn. Moodiness and drama are becoming the norm. This is the time when foundations of character need to be laid. This is the time when I need to be close to my daughter to make sure I don’t lose her in the future.
I’m learning so much! I have to admit, teaching is a lot more fun when you enjoy the subject. I try to chose topics and books that we both like so we don’t get bored to death! In doing so, I am learning right along with her. It is great!
I can choose who influences her. In almost every conversation I have with people who are new to homeschooling, they bring up the same question. “What do you do to make sure she is getting enough socialization?” Seriously? My answer generally is “Why would l want to send her to school to learn social skills from a bunch of 3rd graders? Have you spent much time around the average 3rd grader?” I really don’t want my daughter being influenced by kids I don’t even know. Now, she does spend time with friends her own age, but I get to choose which friends and the amount of time. We also make sure she spends time with people she can really look up to. We have friends of great moral character that make great role models. This year, my daughter has been introduced to artists, businessmen and women, missionaries, horticulturists, doctors, dentists, and other adults while learning what they do and how they do it. She is learning to communicate with them and learn from them. Can’t do that in a classroom.
Freedom. We can do school whenever and wherever we choose. Sometimes, we pack up our laptop and books and head to a local coffee shop or park. The change of scenery is good. We can study what we want in whatever way we want to. If we start studying a topic and it just doesn’t hold our interest, we breeze through that and get to something that does. If we find something that fascinates us, we can dive in as deep as we want.
Those are just a couple of the many reasons our first year of homeschool was so exciting. I am looking forward to next year. I have the curriculum picked out and some of it is ordered. Should be another great year!