People around us would usually say a myriad different things about homeschooling.
“What will you teach the child?”
“How about socialization?”
“Have you gone insane?”
“Do you still have money?”
“Won’t they turn into aliens?”
My personal favorite is:
“Is that legal? When will you put them back to normal school?
Totally legitimate concerns, I just find them all cool, and totally appreciate our loved ones’ genuine concern. Homeschooling in the Philippines is pretty new, only gaining traction in the year 2000s, give or take a decade or two(shall I say?). That’s totally debatable.
All that said we pressed on, as we have already decided long ago that we will homeschool as the Lord enables us to be faithful.
Nursery, and Kinder passed by, it was a thoroughly enjoyable roller coaster ride indeed, especially for me as the beginner homeschooling mom! Now where was that trending meme we have about the homeschooling moms being Amazonian warriors?!
I’m sure I’ve driven one or both of my kids crazy one time or another.
Biblically, there isn’t any direct recommendation to do modern homeschooling, with complete curriculum and all; especially since what we know as “traditional school” today vastly differed from back then.
There is no surefire formula that if you homeschool, your children will turn up as perfect believers with no trace of sinful or rebellious nature whatsoever. All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. The truth about this life is that sin abounds at every turn.
Only Jesus can thaw a frozen heart. Only Jesus can save, and turn that heart of stone into a heart of flesh.
It is in fact pretty disheartening, some biblical examples of parents messing up in parenting their children, think of Eli’s sons, and even David with Absalom; but that surely makes them a tad bit more relatable, isn’t it?
Here are a few of our personal reasons for choosing to homeschool:
It allows for customization.
We have already done tons of poetry, some basic chemistry and biology, will teach Shakespeare narratives by first grade, and will include Latin by second grade, all by going crazy everyday doing it. (Seriously! Nah just kidding, they love it!) God has given me 2 incredibly curious kids. (But aren’t they all?)
The oportunity to nurture that curiosity in ways interesting to their specific desires is such a pleasure and gift.
It is a fantastic way to mold the head, heart, and mind during the formative years.
We knew we wanted to be the primary influence to our children, instill in them biblical principles and by faith, model it to them too.
We wanted to instill in them the Christian worldview hands-on and not relegate it to others, taking care of them as little ships to send out, arrows in our quiver, so they can shoot at God’s purpose for them knowing we have equipped them well.
It allows for us to spend less time getting out, and more time enjoying their company at home (a pre-pandemic choice that proved pretty useful).
At home, we can definitely compose and sing as many silly songs as we can, make as many arts & crafts as their tiny hands can handle, and try as many explosive experiments as we can muster (to clean up later), all the while enjoying each other’s company.
Growing up in Manila traffic definitely made this an easy decision for me.
It brings much character molding for us parents.
Seriously, I haven’t met any homeschooling parent who go “I’ve completely got this!,” we do ask the Lord daily for patience, endurance, and loving discipline, and entrust to Him the results of our efforts.
It is ‘portable’.
Being in the ministry, we have fun opportunities to travel, we love homeschool’s portability. We bring some material, then it’s basically a school anywhere, as opposed to just the 4 walls of a classroom. We have surely taught anywhere we can, organized fun homeschoolers meetups (pre-pandemic), and teach life lessons everywhere during travel.
It has a small teacher-student ratio.
The smaller this ratio is, the higher the quality of instruction can be. For us, it’s 1 is to 2. I am able to focus on each of my children’s respective needs and unique interests more, as opposed to a traditional 1 is to 30 or 1 is to 40 classroom setting.
It helps a lot in the ultimate why of life.
Finally, beneath all our whys for homeschooling is what Scriptures teach as the chief end of mankind, including children: To glorify God and enjoy Him forever.
For me and my husband, given all its above-mentioned benefits, homeschooling simply offers the best avenue for parents to raise kids for and to that very end.
Surely when they go into puberty, we still would want to be their primary influence and guide as they navigate that season, as opposed to being in a traditional school all day.
The Bible does tell us to teach our children, to teach them the ways of the Lord. As He was taking Israel out of the wildrness, and preparing to make them a strong nation, conquering pagan nations and entering the land flowing with milk and honey, He encouraged them to obey His commandments and set them apart from other neighboring pagan nations.
Deuteronomy 6 does tell us parents to teach God’s commandments diligently to our children, and to talk of them when we sit in our house, when we walk by the way, when we lie down, and when we rise.
That compels me to teach about the Lord practically anywhere.
It is very helpful to know our whys as it gets us back on track as the days get tough sometimes.