Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Finished another year...

So we've finished another school year and just wrapped up another convention season for my business.  Summer can now truly begin!

Capitol day 08, look how they've grown up!
Reflecting though, it is hard to believe this once "couldn't do that" homeschool mom has now homeschooled for over 15 years!  We've graduated two and have two to go.  The girls will be in 10th and 11th grades next year (if we have to give them grade levels.)  So that means I've got 2-3 years left and done.  Well, done at least till grand-kids, which will be awhile!

How things have changed both personally and globally for the homeschool community.

Personally we've gone from grabbing a few workbooks from the local teacher store (that was the plan the year we pulled our oldest) to much more homeschool geared curricula sometimes written by me.  We have come a long way!

We've gone from a table in our living room, to the dinning room table, to desks, to couches and coffee tables and laptops wherever.  

We have come to realize the important thing to us is to teach our children to learn.  THIS IS HUGE!  Unfortunately textbooks don't do this, in fact they encourage students to focus on the opposite.  This was a game changer for us and I don't regret the results for one minute.  Our kids continue to do things differently than the crowd and continue to ask "why".  They got it, even a little too well sometimes!

The homeschool movement in the past 15 years has certainly changed too.  This could be an article on to itself, but suffice it to say we have better curriculum choices now written for the home environment by homeschool parents who get it.  What a blessing.  These resources were fewer, even 15 years ago.  Some of the changes may not be as good.

We have in many cases more restrictions than we did 15 years ago and I hope more are not coming but I fear they are.  If you go back 20 years or so till maybe the last 5, homeschooling was generally more "free" but in the last 5-10 years many states are giving back ground to the government.  Homeschoolers in general now are not as diligent as the first homeschoolers were.  Those first homeschoolers experienced fathers being put in jail, the restrictions were real.  Sadly, we've forgotten that our freedom from restriction is important.  I pray we wake up before it becomes impossible for my grandchildren to homeschool without government control.

The internet has changed homeschooling over the last 15 years as well.  Does anyone remember dial up?  15 years ago we could not have had the number of laptops all surfing information and doing online programs at the same time as we do now (we often have 4 going at once!)  And that doesn't even mention the number of resources that are out there for free that weren't 15 years ago.

So, I thank God for changing my thinking.  My children and family would not be what they are today if God hadn't worked on me.  I pray for the future that homeschooling will remain free and I try to do my little part in my circle of influence to educate other homeschoolers (or potential homeschoolers) to free themselves from the erroneous thinking they may have inherited or gleaned along the way.  I plant seeds and trust God will open minds in his time.

Remember, your children are a gift from God on loan to you.  They belong to God, not the government.

Psalms 127:3  Behold, children are a gift of the LORD, the fruit of the womb is a reward. (NAS)

Mark 12:17 Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s. (NAS)

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