Our Decision to Homeschool

We have made the decision to homeschool our children. Like every other family in America, school is going to look different for us this year. However, our switch to homeschooling was not a reaction to the Coronavirus. Homeschooling has been on and off our hearts since forever. When we lived in the south, I had many friends who homeschooled (how many times do you think I will type this world out in this post? haha!). I was so intrigued by it. But my oldest is an extrovert, and I felt like our personalities clashed often when I would try to teach her things or switch to “school mode” at home. So, I doubted myself. I doubted my ability, even though I taught preschool before kids.

But Then Things Changed

Fast forward a couple of years, and our kids were thriving in their preschools. They were learning, having fun, and I was enjoying those few hours of separation (having littles is tough, guys). Every time homeschooling started to creep back into my mind, I would push it out with all these positives. Then came Kindergarten for my oldest. I was dreading it. It was SUCH a long day, and I knew a lot of that time was filler. She wouldn’t get home until about 4:00 and would be utterly exhausted. And that’s exactly what happened. I really felt like the long school day was stealing our family time. Because my husband works in ministry, our weekends are often busy. Homeschooling, again, started to weigh on me, but I put a pin in it.

Then came first grade. We loved her teacher, but the school wasn’t meeting some specific needs my child had. When I would bring this up (over and over again), I was met with a lot of explanations but also a lot of resistance. My middle was in pre-k, and the thought of her having to deal with the long day of public school kindergarten made my brain hurt. And so in January of 2020, we once and for all decided that public school was not working for our family. We knew then that we would be homeschooling the following year. We told the kids our decision (they were so excited!), and I started dabbling in researching homeschool methods and curriculums (curricula?).

The World Came Crashing Down

And then the world as we knew it came crashing down. When schools closed in March of 2020, my oldest was sent assignments to do at home, and she would upload her work for her teacher to see. It was here that I got a really good sense of how she was being taught, and I was like no wonder! Neither of us had much fun with this e-learning. It was a chore. I had already ordered some homeschool materials, so we withdrew our oldest 2 kids from their perspective schools and started our homeschool journey right then and there.

It was so great! Even with having to take breaks as I recovered from Covid, the kids really learned a lot. Best of all, we saw them grow closer as siblings and have FUN with school. We did school until the end of May and took a break in June to enjoy the summer. It was really nice to have those weeks to slowly ease into what homeschool would look like for our family.

Looking Ahead

The week after the Forth of July, we officially started our new homeschool year. I have a second grader, a Kindergartener, and a toddler (who will still attend preschool two mornings a week). We are about three weeks in, and so far so good….I think. Just kidding! It’s good. We are learning new rhythms and routines. Learning to give and receive grace. Learning when to push through and when to take it slow. Learning how to balance all the things and not feel stressed or overwhelmed. I’ve loved all of it. I love seeing my kids learn new things and know that I was a part of that.

School is going to be different for everyone this year. Some families are making the decision to homeschool, some are choosing virtual school, some are choosing in person school (as much as the districts will allow). There are no easy or clear answers for any of us. I am here for you. I support you. I’m actually going to be sending my youngest to preschool! What works for our family might not work for your family, and that’s ok! Share with me what you and your family will be doing this fall in the comments.

5 thoughts on “Our Decision to Homeschool

  1. I have a question for those entering the new era of education, for we believe even after the current “crisis” in over, online teaching will be part of schools, perhaps as a form for students and parents to review lessons previously taught. What kind of education will the students receive? Most teachers, and certainly good ones, know that teaching is a challenging career, but one well-worth the time if young people are prepared for the future, teaching them to venture forth without fear, but with energy, preparations, and joy for opportunities. Will teachers be able to interact with their students? Will they be able to think outside the box? Will they be able to supplement lessons and create innovative projects? And as each day passes, with thousands, even millions of words being spoken, will they feel comfortable knowing every parent, every adult, every administrator, every agency, will forever have access to every word spoken for it will forever be in computer land. And knowing this, as the years pass and some teachers are fired for something they said once, years ago, how will other teachers feel about the profession and their ability to be a positive example in young people’s lives. Or are we all going to experience a sterile environment, realizing every word spoken will be scrutinized, up for debate, and many will have to go to education camps if they want to keep their jobs. What will the future look like? **Home schooling is real: as real as it gets. And together, parents and their children can pave the way to understanding, education with no boundaries, projects, and preparation for real jobs and careers. As I once told a sibling, you can teach young people some things in college, the parts that prepare for the future. Cooking, small businesses, science experiments, and more.

    1. These are all such important things to think about moving forward. I do really think that traditional “school” as we knew it will be a thing of the past for quite some time. Families will have to weigh many options and factors for determining what is best for their own children. That might look different for each family, and that’s ok.

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