I can vividly remember the moment when I first seriously considered homeschooling my children. I actually only had one child at the time. Tanner was around a year old. There were so many emotions filling my brain. I was scared to go back to work, and leave my baby with someone I didn’t know. I was looking to the future trying to figure out how we would handle certain situations. Who would take our kids to their after school activities if I was working 12-13 hour shifts at the hospital and Nick was flying, or deployed? Who would take care of the kids if they were sick, in those same situations? As a nurse, I couldn’t just leave patients at the hospital to go get a sick kid from school. Especially if we were short staffed. My husband is in the Air Force. We do not live near family, so asking parents to help just isn’t in the equation, either. These were the reasons my Nick and I agreed that I would stay home with the kids until they were at least school aged.
While I was enjoying my time at home with Tanner, I started looking online for ideas of things to do with him during the day. Fun activities that could help him learn his shapes and colors. That’s when I found Carisa’s blog, 1+1+1=1, and learned all about tot-school. I spent every nap time reading about tot-school; how to set it up, materials to use, and how long to spend working with your little one. The most important thing was to make sure it was all play based. There is absolutely no need to do anything structured at such a young age. I waited until Tanner was 1.5-2 years old to start. It was during that time, as I was watching my son learn and grasp certain concepts, that I fell deeply in love with teaching him. Maybe I could actually do this!
That was the beginning reason for me. I just loved being able to witness his learning, and tailoring activities better to how he learned. It wasn’t until he got a little older, when we had Wesley, and moved to Florida that my reasons started changing. I did not like the schools in our area, and I didn’t like how the public school system was changing into something unrecognizable, compared to back when I was in school. I could go into detail here, but if you are reading my blog and are considering homeschooling your own kids, I’m sure you have an idea of what I’m talking about.
A small, but very important reason why we homeschool is because we move a lot. It would save us a lot of hassle pulling the boys out of school and reenrolling them into a new school every few years. Who knows what they could miss in between moves, as well.
I also want my boys to grow up with a strong Christian background, and I love the fact that I can incorporate that into their everyday learning. I can honestly say this is a calling from God. There were several months where Nick and I were on the fence about homeschooling. I had the fears that I wouldn’t be able to do it and that I would fail my children. But I can remember three very distinct moments, where it was like God shook me and said, “You need to do this!”. Once I realized this is what He wants me to do, my fears started melting away. Of course, I still have quite a few fears, and worries, but I’m working on them. I believe it’s absolutely normal to have those feelings.
Please understand that I know there are people out there who would trade anything to be able to stay home with their kids and do this, but can’t for any number of reasons. I promise I don’t take this blessing lightly. I thank God and my husband often for this opportunity.