Thursday, July 9, 2015

Three on Thursday: Why We Homeschool

I am in the thick of homeschool planning for next year, so it's time for this year's "Why We Homeschool" post. Before I begin, let me say that I believe every family is called to make their own "right" decision. I greatly enjoyed my time in the public school system and agree that it was right for me. I believe in and enjoy watching my nephew in a wonderful private school. We believe God has provided us the opportunity to homeschool. There is no single right choice.

Most homeschooler's have a school "name", how they identify their home education program if they're not under an umbrella school. Two years ago my husband and I settled on the name "Foundation Christian Academy", focusing on three "Foundations". In order, our homeschool priorities are to teach:

  1. Foundation in Christ - Ultimately, whether my kiddos grow up to be veterinarians, teachers, stay-at-home parents, or wanderers, the ONLY prayer we have is that they know WHO they are in Christ, that they love their Jesus, and that they walk with Him as their life. That is one hundred percent NUMBER ONE in our homeschool plan. If we don't so much as open a math book because we are focusing together on working through a struggle, then so be it. We were created to be loved and to love and to experience life with Christ. That is what we pray our kids will take away as their foundation.
    Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christaccording to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.
    Ephesians 1:3-10

     According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it. Let each one take care how he builds upon it. For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
    1 Corinthians 3:10-11

    The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
    John 10:10

    I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God,who loved me and gave himself for me.
    Galatians 2:20
  2. Focus on Foundation of Country - My husband and I strongly believe in the passion our founding fathers had. We believe in raising patriots in a nation that is quickly losing the motivation to do so. We believe in educating our children on the greatness of our nation. We believe in teaching that we are one nation under God. 

    "...that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. Such has been the patient sufferance of these colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former systems of government."
    -From the Declaration of Independence (seriously consider THAT level of passion)

    Every child in America should be acquainted with his own country. He should read books that furnish him with ideas that will be useful to him in life and practice. As soon as he opens his lips, he should rehearse the history of his own country.
    -Noah Webster, On the Education of Youth in America, 1788

    To sit back hoping that someday, some way, someone will make things right is to go on feeding the crocodile, hoping he will eat you last -- but eat you he will.-Ronald Reagan 

  3. Foundation of lifelong learning - When we really sit and think about all of life's curveballs that have gotten us to where we are today, we find that most often it is the ability to accept and learn from life's lessons that keeps us going. I want my kids to know HOW to learn. I don't know, in this moment, if they will ever need to know botany. I wont know 5 years from now for whom calculus or trigonometry will be most useful. I could spend hours each day teaching a child about the English language only to turn around and find that child living in South America, never needing to speak English again. But what I DO know now is that every day of their lives, information will be useful. The attitude and ability to accept the need for new information and the desire to grow in knowledge and wisdom day by day is what we create for our children as educators. Do our children need to know how to label the parts of a butterfly? Maybe not. But they are learning to ask questions, seek answers, search for the "more" that is all around them. THAT is what they will need every day of their lives starting the moment they realize they don't always have to do something because Mom and Dad said so. The goal of our homeschool is not to train our children to be "educated" to the same level as their peers in a variety of subjects, but rather to learn how to learn so that they can excel in whatever it is that God calls them to, whether they discover what that is at 18 or 38. 

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