Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Glance At The Past and The Start of Homeschooling

My story might be a little different from the average homeschooling mother. I was a single mom for a long time, having gotten pregnant at 16 years old. Homeschooling was never an option during those days. I raised my son as best I could while working full time. I can not say that I am proud of many of the choices I made back then. There are so many things I would do differently if I could. Mainly spending more quality time with my son rather than focusing on pure survival (how I would have done that though, I don't know). I was young and I left all schooling responsibilities to the public system and his teachers. I assumed they new more than I did and for years I considered myself intellectually inferior to everyone else. I did whatever I could to avoid helping with reading, math, science, etc. My son learned not to ask me for help with school work.

It breaks my heart to think back on those days. The truth is I loved my son with all my heart, but I just didn't know how to be a better mother. I was foolish to think that loving someone is enough. Those were hard times and a huge part of me just wanted to find a good man, settle down, get married and have more children. All I wanted was to be a stay at home mom and take care of my kids. I hated working full time and I hated that I felt that way. Society had drilled it into my head that it was wrong to want to be a stay at home mom.

Eventually I met my husband Jeremy. We had one child before making the decision to move from Wisconsin to my home state of Washington. For me it was important to start over and do things the 'right' way. Jeremy and I lived apart for 2 months after moving to Washington, then we were married. For me it was a chance to  re-dedicate my life to God and work on being the best mother and wife I could be. One concern of mine was that we would never be able to afford for me to stay at home with the kids. But as luck (or God) would have it, we couldn't afford for me to work! The cost of daycare, gas, and all the other expenses that go with full time work (such as more meals out and more boxed foods because you don't have the time to cook from scratch), etc would have just been too much. So I became a stay at home.

Over the next two years my oldest son Kyle was placed into two different Christian schools for 7th and 8th grade. As 9th grade approached I realized that the Christian High School options were few and far between. There just weren't any options I liked, nor could we afford any of the options. Public school was definatly NOT an option any longer. So that left homeschooling.

We have been homeschooling for 1 1/2 years and I still consider myself to be a new homeschooling mom. I feel like I will never have it all figured out. There are so many types of curriculum available to choose from, let alone all the different styles of homeschooling. We have sort of settled into the 'eclectic' field though, leaning towards Charlotte Mason style. At least thats what I like to think. I find reading to my kids is so important. Do I do it as often as I feel I should? Certainly not. But they get on average 30-60 minutes of reading a day. Also, I encourage everyone in the family (my husband and my 16 year old son) to read to the younger two as much as possible.

This is a photo of my husband, my middle child Kaleb and I in 2007.

No comments:

Post a Comment