Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Back to {Home} School 2010

Another school year is upon us, and I couldn't be more excited! This year I have two in school. And by school, I do mean homeschooling at our dining room table. {Watch out, because in a few months, when we've moved into our new house, we're actually going to have a homeschool room. Whoa.}

I haven't talked much about our homeschooling journey. I suppose that the decision to homeschool can be a touchy subject, so I've stayed away from it. But no longer, friends. One of the things I love most about blogging, and meeting new blog friends, is that we are all so diverse. Some of us work at home, some of us work outside the home as well. Some of us have homeschooling children, some of us have children who attend private schools, or public schools. And some have babies that are too young to be attending any kind of school ;) My point is that we're all so different, and I love that! Unique, just as God made us. So, I'm about to do a little more talking about our homeschool journey. Simply because it is such a big part of our lives, and that's what this blog/journal is all about. I recognize that the choices we make for our family may very well work wonderfully for us, but would not work at all for you. I just wanted to put that out there because I am so passionate about homeschooling for us, but understand fully that it is not for everyone. Okay then.

Our story.

Once upon a time, in a kingdom far far away {that's how my dad started every story he ever told me}, there lived a little family of four {this is pre-Kam, don'tcha know}. A Mama, Daddy, and two beautiful girls ~ aged nearly 5 and 2. Okay, enough with the fairytale. Funny enough, I had no idea that I desired to homeschool our children. None. Actually, it would have been so much easier if I had. At least Jeremy would have been clued in ahead of time ;)
In May of 2007 we excitedly attended Kindergarten round-up, filled out all of the proper forms, and were preparing for our oldest to start Kindergarten several months later. But then, something happened. Word got out that the Kindergarten classes were changing from 2 days a week to full day/everyday. I started feeling uneasy about sending her to school. Thoughts of homeschooling started creeping in. I spoke with Jeremy about it. He was not . . . thrilled. The school we were about to send Sierra to, it was the same school Jeremy attended from Kindergarten on up. The same school I attended, for that matter. The same school system in which his mom had served on the school board. The same district in which his grandpa was a teacher. The same physical class room in which I spent my 6th grade year. The same class in which Sierra's cousin, Kolby, would be in. Get this, the same teacher that Jeremy had when he was in school. Yeah, I know. I was going against the grain, I guess you could say.
To say I was an emotional mess during the weeks leading up to the start of school, would be a major understatement. Major. Jeremy at least wanted us to give school a shot. So I reluctantly went out and bought all the school supplies on the list, and we prepared to send our barely five year old off to school. And I couldn't turn off the millions of thoughts floating around in my head. What if she gets hungry in the middle of the day? What if she needs to go to the bathroom, and is afraid to ask?
Looking back, I know without a doubt that homeschooling was God's calling for us. Isn't it funny how God's voice is so loud and clear after the fact? I always seem to doubt if it's "really" Him while I'm in the thick of it. I'll spare the millions of other details. Some I want to keep as private memories for myself, anyway. We did send Sierra off to Kindergarten. She made it through her first day. And the second, and third. But it didn't seem to get easier. In fact, there were more tears shed as each day passed. That weekend we took a quick trip to the beach, and so enjoyed our time together. When Monday rolled around there was a meltdown. Apparently Sierra had thought that once she had gone to school for the week, she was done. Sigh. I took her back to her classroom, crying and clinging. And vowed I wouldn't do it again. We didn't.
We've been homeschooling ever since. Jeremy was hesitant, and I'll admit that the first year was difficult as we all came to terms with our new normal. There were a lot of dreams, goals, and expectations of the future that changed when we decided to embrace God's calling on our lives. But now, we could not be happier. We love this journey, and are so blessed to be taking it together.
Thanks for letting me share! Hope y'all have a fabulous school year ~ wherever it may be!
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Colleen said...

I think the fact that you were not homeschooled and did not plan on homeschooling was hard for you but will make for such balanced children.

I should tell our story about school choice as well, but I'm a bit afraid of offending anyone (mainly my mother in law). Hmm, will have to pray about that one.

You are such a great mom, and I give all homeschoolers all the respect in the world. What a hard job! But you're doing awesome so far :)

Jenny said...

Thank you for sharing your story! I was always curious if it was something you had planned or how it happened. Everyone's story is so different!

I can't believe they made such a drastic change from 2 days to every day, full days!

I know people do it, but I don't know how I would be able to drop off my baby (5 is a baby to me still) in a building to be cared for strangers all day!

Abby is 6 and even when homeschooling gets tough here, I still can't imagine sending her to public school.

I can't wait to see your homeschool room in the new house! Do you think you all will be in before Christmas still?

shortmama said...

Im so jealous that you are going to have a homeschool room!! Cant wait to see it!

I get all giddy just thinking about Rhiannon getting to be at home with us every day come October!

Busy Bee Suz said...

Kudos to you for taking this on...and mostly for listening to your inner voice. (and listening to God's voice!)
I have always threatened my girls with 'homeschooling'....they always begged me: NOOoooooo. :)
See, we are all different, but want the best for our kids. I hope the girls have a great school year!

MomBrose said...

A whole homeschool room?!!! That's awesome! See,that's the best part of designing your own home. You get to put personal touches in there like that.
Can't wait to hear how the first week goes! :D

Becca said...

What a wonderful story!! Now I want to hear how you schedule your days....that is what seems so hard to me. And what do you do with sweet Kam while the older two are learning???


Becca said...
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Rhonda said...

That is awesome that you are following God's plan. It makes me sad though. I have a little Spanish girl that told her mom, well that was a fun week, now I'm done. Awwww, I really don't want her mom to take her out, to give it a chance. I'm sure Sierra's teacher felt the same. This hasn't even been brought up. I just want this little girl to be happy and LOVE school. That is my goal.

I love that you followed God's leading. Did I know you homeschooled?? I don't think so!

I'm so excited for you all! Moving in your new home in a couple of months!! AWESOME!

Kelly @ Blessed Mommy, Blessed Wife said...

I really loved hearing your story.

I feel so torn about the decision to homeschool or not. Our son loooooves going to school! Always has, even if it was just a Mother's Day Out program when he was 2. I just feel this tugging at my heart to consider it as an option for us. I am praying really hard about it and I love hearing about how others came to the decision to homeschool. So, thank you for sharing!

Hope today was a great one :) I'm especially curious how you balance having a little one running around too - maybe you'll share at some point!

Connie W said...

That's how I feel about sending my kids off to kindergarden. However, my husband is not interested in homeschooling....at all.

Kelli said...

I'm late reading this, but what a wonderful story. I'm glad that you feel better about being open about something so meaningful to your family.


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