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One Step to "Homeschooler Freedom"

>> 3.11.2012

"Good start in school...good start in life!"  "Unlock the Love of Learning"  "Make Learning EASIER This Year!"

I am SO in the thick of it right now-- and so are many of you.  As homeschool conventions begin their new spring/ summer season and curricula begin to be discounted for the Spring months, all those voices that you usually hear at least once a week are now louder than ever and you hear them almost daily (if not several times a day)!  They say things like, "are you SURE you have the right materials?"  "What about THIS study?"  "Traditional schooling is best"  "No, Classical is the best!"  As I think through where my children will be when we start up school again and what they need the most, I find myself swimming in an ocean of voices almost drowning unable to focus on any one particular direction in which to travel to get to "dry land".  "Dry land" is my phrase for "what best fits my family, children, and their specific needs."  (For awhile now I've actually been mentally fighting myself over choosing a particular activity that is needed for one of my children just because it doesn't align with the philosophy of homeschooling I've been holding to up until now.  How ridiculous, really!  If he needs something, then isn't that WHY I homeschool?  To have the freedom to choose that?)

So, as much as I needed this, I thought maybe some of you might too.  Here is a bit of an article written by Melanie Hexter found in the magazine Home School Enrichment (Issue #56). (Which, just so happened to show up in my mailbox completely unsolicited by me-- but I really don't mind!  This was the first piece of mail that I welcomed even if I hadn't pursued it!)  Melanie says that there are two reasons she believes in dispelling the myth that there is "one best way to homeschool".  She shares her first reason, but it was reason number two that caused me to understand my own difficulty in being bound to my own philosophies.

" There is a second reason that it's a myth to think there's just one best book, curriculum, or homeschool philosophy...If there was only one best way...we wouldn't need to rely on the Lord for our daily provision.  I don't know the best way to teach my kids, so I must turn to Him often and regularly for His leadership...While I can explain to others what has worked well in homeschool, to impose our family's style and preferences on someone else doesn't leave room for the Lord to direct their steps."

Then she asks a series of powerful (for me, anyway) questions.

"Are you willing to abandon a teaching method, a specific publisher, or what you've always done to follow the Lord?  Are you willing to listen to his instructions for your family, your homeschool, and each of your individual children?...What if He tells you to use no formal curriculum for awhile?  Are you okay with that?  Are you willing to follow Jesus like the disciples did, not knowing the route or the eventual destination, but committed to being with Him in your homeschool no matter what?  When it comes to the best way to homeschool, it's really a matter of refining our listening skills.  To whose input am I going to listen?..."

And so that's the question I'll leave you with:  "To whose input are you going to listen?"

I know I'm going to need to do some real hard praying and seeking that which IS the best for my children:  The LORD'S answer!  Can't wait to hear what He has to say!

1 comments:

Linda March 11, 2012 at 4:28 PM  

Thank you for reminding me that I need to be flexible. Sometimes I get in such a rut that I have trouble recognizing that I need to change something in our homeschool. In fact, I have been really resistant lately. Maybe I should be less stubborn! I needed this reminder. Great timing.
Linda
Trying to make learning fun using games, manipulatives, and free online puzzles!

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