This week I am participating in the Schoolhouse Review Crew's five day blog hop. I chose to do my series for the brand new homeschooling family, or the family who wants to homeschool, but doesn't know where to start. If you missed my intro post, be sure to go and check it out here.
My very first post is one, specifically, for those of you who are on the fence about homeschooling. I'd like to make my case for why you should go ahead and take that step and begin your journey. My opinion on why you should homeschool.
So, yes, I said it, I think that families everywhere should homeschool. And, before you go thinking I am including the parents who neglect their kids and don't care about them, let's be honest, those people aren't reading blogs about how to be a good parent...so I'm not talking to them. Everyone else, I am talking to you.
And, no, I'm not going to give you a laundry list of things that are wrong with the public school system. Nor am I going to give you all the awesome statistics for how some homeschool students performed against some schooled children on a test. I'm not even going to promise you that your children are going to turn out to be perfect saints that behave 100 times better then all the rest of the neighborhood, because they don't go to school all day.
Why not? Because, honestly, I'm not a statics kinda girl. I really don't pay attention to all the articles. And, because my children are not perfect saints (though I'd like to tell you they are). But, mostly, it's not about that. It's about you, your family, your children, and your future.
I want to take a step back to the birth of my first daughter, Mustang. From day one, I was drilled in that 'breast is best.' Yes, I ignored them and gave her formula and went back to work...so lets fast forward to Mini Cooper. With Mini Cooper I was now a stay at home mom. I was able to breastfeed her and did so until she was 18 months old. I was always hearing how nursing her was the BEST option out there for my babies. It didn't mean I would be a horrible mom for using formula, but if given the choice I should breastfeed since God had given me the perfect mix of all the good things she needed to grow.
When she was born, and as she grew through the toddler years, it was accepted that the BEST option for her care was to stay home with me-her mom. Lots of babies have to go to daycare (I sent my first two until Mustang was 3 years old), and it doesn't make you a bad mom if you have to send them, but if given the choice, people will generally say that a baby's mother is the BEST caretaker for her child. This is because she is the one who cares about the baby the most, she knows her child better then anyone else, the stable environment is good for the child, and overall mom is best.
So, now mom has FED the child, she has taught the baby to WALK, to TALK, to USE THE TOILET, you know some of the most important building blocks the child will need in life. She has created a solid foundation of trust and routine for the child, and produced the best 3 year old that she can...
But, now that the child is 3 (or maybe 4 or 5 depending on where you live)...all of a sudden Mom, you are no longer good enough. NOPE, you are not educated enough to teach your child their shapes, colors, and ABC's. Really? Now, some communities are much more supportive of moms, but the concept of preschool being there to help your child to 'get ready' to go to school always baffles me! First of all it IS school, it isn't helping your child get ready for school, it is putting them in school. But, secondly, why can't mom 'help' her child get ready for school?
Now, as I mentioned before, this is NOT a public school bashing post. This is, however, a post that will hopefully make you rethink the roll the public school should have in our society and in your home. Just like breast milk is BEST and formula is the back-up plan, and just like Mom caring for the child is best and daycare is the back-up plan...Mom should be the first option for helping her child get ready for school and preschool should be the BACK-UP plan.
And, YES, I feel this goes beyond preschool. Mom (or Dad), you are given the right skill set to teach your child. You know your child more then any teacher ever will. You know how to encourage your child, what their interests are. You know what will make them shut-down. You know what they look like when they are not paying attention, and you care enough to work past their major academic challenges.
I totally get that there are going to be some areas that scare you about teaching your child. I know that one is how to teach your child to read. Some claim they don't know anything about math, or they hated science. Keep in mind that primary school teachers have strengths and weaknesses, too. They still have to teach all the subjects, even the ones that scare them (except maybe Art and PE, if your school has separate classes for those). What the teachers have done is to look for extra resources to help teach subjects that are challenging for them. They have stuck straight to a curriculum, or taken extra classes on how to teach that subject. But, these are things you can do, too.
When teaching your child, all you have to do is stay ONE DAY ahead of your child. This is easier in the younger grades, but if you have a subject that scares you, you will just need to find a curriculum that works for you and then be sure and understand the lesson you are to teach the day before you are to teach it. So, as long as you have the drive to figure it out, can read, and are willing to push yourself to find out answers you don't understand, you can certainly stay ahead of your child's learning.
Our general society today believes that teachers and schools are better equipped to teach students how to become useful adults then their parents are. This is interesting because, they do not trust the students they turned out to then teach a new set of students to be a useful adult. This school system TAUGHT YOU, and if they did their job, then you CAN teach your child. If you add that ability to the love, respect, and dedication that parents have for their children, you now have the perfect combination for the BEST teacher for your child.
So, that's why I think you should homeschool. Not because the public school is going to teach your child to hate your religion, or because I think that they won't learn anything if they go there. Public school is a GREAT option for your child. But, it should be just that...an option. The back-up plan. Because there is no place BETTER then home.
I'm so glad you stopped by! I hope you will come by to checkout the rest of my series. Tomorrow, I will be going over the 'new homeschooler's checklist.' And, no, it's not a list of things to buy :).
Also, be sure to check out the other 89 blogs that are participating in this blog hop!! That should keep you busy all the way until tomorrow! You get to them by clicking the banner below.