Now that you know my story, and how our family came to homeschooling, you may be asking yourself this question.
What IS homeschooling, anyway?
Trust me, anyone who has ever considered taking this faith leap has asked themselves that question! The answer can be simple or quite complicated, and it depends on many things.
Are you new to homeschooling?
How many children are you homeschooling?
In which state are you living?
Is this a permanent decision, year-by-year, or definitely temporary?
What is your teaching and learning style?
What is your child’s learning style?
Does your child have a great interest in a certain topic or activity?
Are you ready for the basic, simple definition of homeschooling?
Homeschooling is the educating of a child by his or her parents.
Ready for the more complicated answer?
Reading, baking, singing, playing, writing, building, creating, resting, thinking, gardening, swinging, digging, swimming, changing, committing, adjusting, listening, praying, following, obeying….to name just a few verbs. Notice how it is an active, living thing?
I posed this question in a couple Facebook groups of which I’m a part, as well. Below are some of the answers I received from mamas who are currently in the trenches of homeschooling!
“A learning lifestyle” ~ Inger from Hiding the Peas
“taking personal responsibility for their [your child’s] educational outcome” ~ Amber from Adventure Hollow
“Living and learning WITH your children.” ~ Heather from Upside Down Homeschooling
“We think of homeschooling as learning together as a family, doing our best to equip and prepare our children for what God calls them to in career, family, and Great Commission.” ~ Tauna Meyer from Proverbial Homemaker
“Homeschooling is a lifestyle. It is not school at home, but rather a way we choose to live our life.” ~ Stephanie from Multi Taskin’ Mom
It is simply choosing to raise our children ourselves.” Cindy from Get Along Home
“It’s doing life together! Pouring the love of Jesus into them every moment and making him the center of all we do! “~ Jennifer from Godly Glimpses
“Homeschooling is the gift of nurturing relationships with your children, crafting learning opportunities to meet their needs, and blending life and learning together. ~ Anne from learning table
An opportunity for parents to be at the helm of providing intellectual, moral, social and spiritual instruction to their children by choosing to guide them through learning outside of traditional public, private and charter schools. ~ Martianne from Training Happy Hearts
“Homeschooling is about discipling our children the same way Jesus discipled his apostles — by being with them every day, talking with them, teaching, training, and setting the example.” ~ Marcy from Ben and Me
Here are some quotes from a few unschoolers, too:
“….my definition of homeschooling has grown over the years. I believe it is the original design for families. Children learn naturally from their parents through daily interaction, guidance, participation in the community in meaningful ways, and working through issues.” ~ Aadel from These Temporary Tents
“For our family, homeschooling is not defined as what we do. It’s just that we keep our kids home from school. I actually had a “Yes!” moment recently as I was flipping through David Guterson’s “Family Matters” and that he had written something very similar to the above sentiment. I had finally found something that made sense. What unites all homeschoolers, regardless of their educational philosophy, is that they have traded in the ideal of public education to keep their kids home and to educate them in a way that seems natural and makes sense to them. Homeschooling is about choosing something different for your family.” ~ Rebecca from Raven Threads
“I believe that parents owe it to our children to step out of that world and seek first, God and then seek freedom. Freedom to think for themselves without fear of rejection, freedom to learn the world outside the textbooks, freedom to feel the world…not just read about it. Freedom to become discovers again! ~ Margret
Tabitha, over at Meet Penny, also helped me out by polling her readers. Here are some of the answers she received:
“A method of educating the whole child.”
“Homeschooling is a lifestyle.”
“Homeschooling is providing my children with the best education I can for them to become happy, intelligent adults.”
“I am heart-schooling!”
Personally, I love that last one.
I may need to begin describing our homeschool that way. After all, it is the reason I began homeschooling. To capture their hearts, direct them toward Him!
Did these quotes give you a good picture of what homeschooling is? Of what it can be?
I look forward to digging deeper next week with Why would ANYONE choose to homeschool? I hope you’ll join me!