Nobody Told Me That I’d Get the Independent Kids I Wanted, and I Wouldn’t Always Like It!

I first learned about homeschooling from reading Home-Grown Kids by Dr. Raymond and Dorothy Moore. That was when I was a new parent, so I had time to do some research before making the decision to homeschool. I did a lot of reading; one of my prime influences was John Holt.

Holt was a teacher whose school experiences taught him that when given freedom to make choices and explore their world, children learn on their own. Reading his books was an eye-opening experience for me. It helped me assess my own childhood school years and why I’d been so dissatisfied with them.

For many years, John Holt published a wonderful newsletter called “Growing Without Schooling” that was a great encouragement to homeschooling parents. I inhaled each issue, and decided that encouraging my children’s desire for independent learning would be part of their home education.

This was fine in theory. Continue reading

Nobody Told Me That Homeschooling Would Create So Much Clutter!

I first heard about homeschooling when our eldest was a newborn and our child-related clutter was limited to a diaper bag, a playpen and a few baby toys and stuffed animals.

Fast-forward 26 years…..after two moves in two years, we continue to fight the paring- down battle of stuff even though two children have left home and two remain. In one box I find old bottles of tempera paints that are easy to pitch because they’re all dried up. In another I find a set of rubber stamps that bring back memories of my children stamping out their names in ink and coloring in the letters. Still perfectly good and made much sturdier than what can be found in stores today, they’re not so easy to give up because of their condition and the fact that they bring back so many memories. Multiply that by many boxes’ worth of art supplies, books, drawings, book reports, educational games, hobby supplies and small craft projects (at least I didn’t keep the big ones!), and you can understand why it’s taking us so long to go through everything. Continue reading

Nobody Told Me That I Would Meet So Many Great People Through Homeschooling

Happy Mother's Day, Mother in Garden with Baby

When I was homeschooling, one of my goals was for my kids to find really nice friends. I’d had the experience of dealing with mean kids at school, and didn’t want my kids to have to go through it. And while we did have some great neighbors, I wanted my kids to have good friends in addition to their neighborhood friends.

They did make some really nice friends, which was great. But what I didn’t realize was that these kids would have nice moms, too. What a pleasure it was to hang out with people who understood exactly what my life was like! When we started homeschooling, many people thought it was weird. Some of my mom friends thought I’d lost my marbles because I wanted to have my kids home all day. But the homeschool moms understood completely.

Over the years, I’ve met many more homeschool moms through support group meetings, convention booths and workshops, and the Internet (especially my blogs). I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you all! I think homeschool moms are the smartest, nicest and just plain coolest moms there are  :)

I want to wish all of you a blessed Mother’s Day and also tell you how much I appreciate your friendship. I do think socialization is one of the best things about homeschooling, for kids and their moms. Don’t you?  ;)

Nobody Told Me That My Homeschooled Kids Would Learn So Much On Their Own

When I first began homeschooling, I focused heavily on the books we used. There wasn’t nearly as much good curriculum available as there is now, but I studied up on what there was, and once I made my purchases, I followed the directions in the teacher’s guides word for word….at first. Continue reading

Nobody Told Me That Homeschooling Would Change My Husband and Me

Like most homeschooling parents, my husband and I chose homeschooling because we thought it would be good for our kids. We had no idea what an impact it would have on us.

We grew up in the public schools. We were both good students and obedient kids who didn’t really question why we were there until we got older. I can’t speak for my husband*, but my thought was that school was deadly boring but utterly unavoidable. If there was anyone homeschooling in the 1960s, we sure didn’t know about it. Continue reading