I’m going to share a little secret with you – I was homeschooled, Now, many years later, I have my own kids and I choose not to homeschool them. I know, shocker – huh?! Most people are really surprised when they hear I was homeschooled (maybe it’s my hair – I’m not sure – cool people do homeschool or were homeschooled – just saying). I’ll give you the simple answer now of why I don’t homeschool – here it is – God said No.
A lot of you can stop reading right now – as that’s a good enough answer, but I know a lot of you will want a much deeper explanation of why I don’t homeschool, because I know the homeschool question can be a dicey topic to discuss.
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I’ll share my viewpoint on the issue, and I hope it will give some of you a sense of peace if you are having trouble deciding for yourself if you should homeschool. Or maybe you are struggling with feeling guilty about not homeschooling? Please keep reading, I hope to give encouragement to all of you who are wrestling with this topic.
My Personal Homeschool Experience:
From 4th grade through 9th grade I was homeschooled along with my older brother. Those five years were wonderful! You see, when I was beginning 4th grade my family moved to a new neighborhood, in a new school district, and there was only one choice for a school to attend that was near our new house.
We enrolled in this new school and by Christmas break my mom knew it was not going to work for us. She disagreed with several of the core values of the school and next thing I knew I was being homeschooled. As a fourth grader who just started a new school, I didn’t really care that we were being pulled out because I had struggled to fit in with this whole new set of kids.
I was 9 when we started homeschooling and my big brother had just turned 10. Being homeschooled was a wonderful experience! I loved everything about it. If my memory serves me correctly, we only ‘went to school’ for a few hours a day – usually most of the morning. By lunchtime we were free to do whatever we wanted.
I spent a ton of time hanging out with my mom – we crafted, cooked, baked, and went shopping. My brother loved it as well – he was a very outdoorsy kid who would spend as much of his day outside in the dirt that he could. He hunted, hiked, trapped animals, built tree forts, etc. He thrived being homeschooled!
Overall, we spent dedicated time learning the things we were interested in and and when we didn’t understand a basic school subject (like math – I’ve always had the worst time with math) my mom would hire a tutor or would spend extra time working with us on that skill.
We were homeschooled for 5 years and it truly was marvelous. We participated in sports and I even played basketball for a local school. We got together with other homeschool kids and did special events with them all year long.
The Day I Went Back To School
By the time I was starting 10th grade, a brand-new high school was being built in our district and my parents decided we both should consider going to back to school because a lot of the subjects were becoming hard for my mom to teach us.
At first, I was beyond upset. No part of me wanted to go back to school. I’ll let you in on a little secret about me, I HATE change. With every fiber of my being I hate it. I run from it at all costs. Most people, once they meet me, can’t believe that I’m so scared of change. Afterall, I can talk to anyone and am super outgoing. I’m here to tell you that being outgoing and loving change do not go hand in hand (at least not for me). I’m the biggest wimp you will ever meet!
When my first day of sophmore year began I cried all the way there and even more on the way home. I put on a brave face during school, but inside I hated every second of it. I didn’t know a soul, I had never used a locker, I had never heard of a ‘block schedule’ or had multiple teachers and classes all at once. It was torture for me to get used to – because it was new – it required me to change.
I Begged My Parents To Homeschool Me Again:
I begged my parents daily to let me homeschool again. When I questioned them about why they made me go to ‘real school’ I got the same answer every time – “God told us to send you to school.” I loathed that answer.
It angered me for the first few months because I had prayed about the decision too. God had not told me that I should go to school, and trust me, I asked Him a million times. I wasn’t listening, though. My anger turned to consideration by fall break and my prayers were no longer filled with despair, but more accepting of the situation.
The Day Going To School Was Ok:
When Christmas break came, I was finally ok with being at my new school. I remember walking into my keyboarding class (yep the class where they teach you to type on a computer keyboard) and discovering that my favorite teacher was a Christian. It changed everything for me.
She crossed that line of being just another new teacher, into a friend, and somehow it made everything ok. I felt God tell me that day that I was meant to be there. A peace settled over my soul and in the days to follow I saw God work in small ways to reaffirm that I was supposed to be there. Thank goodness I was finally listening instead of crying out in despair.
It was then that I started to flourish at my new school. In fact, over the next 3 years I LOVED it! I’m so thankful now that I surrendered control and let God work in my life. It was then that I was able to finally accept the decision my parents made. High school ended up being amazing and I’m very glad that I went!
Why I Don’t Homeschool My Own Kids:
So, the real question now is, why don’t I homeschool my own kids? I have a very simple answer for you – God didn’t tell me to. That’s it. I’m a Christian – have been since I was 5.
I made a decision to follow Jesus with my life and I look to Him daily to make little and big decisions. Sometimes His answers are quick and easy to recognize, and other times, His answers are whispers that keep me waiting.
When I had kids, I debated the idea of homeschooling my oldest son. I prayed a lot about it and ultimately my decision to send him to Kindergarten was made with 1 day to spare. True story, school was beginning on Monday and I was still on the fence if I was going to send him or homeschool the weekend before.I worried I was going to ruin my son by sending him to school to be influenced by others – instead of homeschooling. Click To Tweet
I fretted about the decision. Worried I was going to ruin him by sending him to school for other people to influence his thinking. I was concerned he would make poor choices on friendships. I also didn’t want to let my own mom down, who was in support of me homeschooling (because after all, she homeschooled me).
In the end, I sent him to school feeling a peace that he was supposed to be there. It wasn’t a simple decision, but I was sure that God did not want me to homeschool him – He simply said no. And that’s it. That’s why I don’t homeschool. It’s not what God wants for my family.
Being Ok With My Decision Not To Homeschool:
My oldest son is almost a teenager now and I’m still very happy with my decision not to homeschool. My son loved going to school from day one. He made friends, good friends. His teachers, although not all of them were my favorite, were still a great influence for him. He has thrived and I’m soo proud of him.
I have two other kids in school and I’ve never given it a second thought, as they enjoy school too! I’m open to the idea of homeschooling should the need arise, but for now I feel confident in my choice and I’m thankful for it. Should God direct me differently in the future, I’ll adjust.
“God, teach me lessons for living so I can stay the course. Give me insight so I can do what you tell me— my whole life one long, obedient response.” – Psalm 119:33
Homeschooling is Not God’s Plan For My Family:
I don’t homeschool simply because it’s not God’s plan for my family. I’m not against homeschooling, not in the least, nor am I against public school. I think they both are positive. The real issue comes down to what is best for your family. It’s as simple as that. Whatever you choose is your choice and I’m here for you either way!I don't homeschool my kids simply because it's not God's plan for my family at this time. Click To Tweet
How do you feel about homeschooling? What’s been your experience? How did you make your decision either to homeschool or not? Are you happy with your decision? I’d love to know how you feel – leave me a comment below and let’s chat.
Pray About Your Decision:
If you are really wrestling with your decision to homeschool or not to homeschool, I’d suggest praying about it first. Then, seek some wise counsel from people you trust, get their advice and see if they can help.
After that, I’d make a list of the pros and cons, and then pray about it some more. Talk to other friends that already homeschool and ask them all sorts of questions about their experience. Do some online research and read as much as you can about homeschooling.If you are wrestling with your decision to homeschool or not to homeschool – pray about it! Click To Tweet
If you are really struggling with your decision and want prayer about your situation, please visit my prayer page as I will be happy to join you in prayer over your circumstances.