Note: In lieu of my regular gratitude posts for the next several weeks, I am going to join with The Pelsers for the 7 Tools for Cultivating Your Child’s Potential book club. This week we’re discussing the introduction and appendix of the book.
In the introduction of 7 Tools for Cultivating Your Child’s Potential, Zan writes about (among other things) how she was called to homeschool her children. She titled the introduction “The Stirring of God.” I immediately connected there, because our family began homeschooling because of what you can only call a “stirring.”
When I met my husband, I was a classroom teacher. Both my family and my husband’s family are full of public school employees—either active or retired. Some of the titles held by these relatives include administrator, classroom teacher, paraprofessional (teacher’s aide), and school counselor. My husband and I both attended public schools and graduated from high school in the top of our respective classes.
I resigned from my teaching job when we got married. We bought a house in an older neighborhood with an elementary school (and the high school) nearby, within walking distance. Shortly before our second anniversary, we welcomed BookGirl to our family. Before our fourth anniversary, Princess Roo was born. My mind was full of scenes of Princess and I walking BookGirl to school in nice weather, and then walking back to get her in the afternoons, enjoying her tales of the day on the way home.
Then, when BookGirl was 3 and Princess Roo was 1, I began having second thoughts. I couldn’t understand why. We had the perfect setup. “Homeschooling” kept coming into my mind, which really disturbed me because I had serious misconceptions about homeschooling. Finally, one night, I confided my “silly” thoughts to my husband, and he told me that he was thinking about homeschooling too!
At that point, I knew we were in trouble. We decided to pray about it until we had clear direction about the girls’ school situation. (I realize we pretty much had it already, but we were in denial.) Finally, we determined that preschool would be our “trial” year of homeschooling. If all went well, we would keep BookGirl home for kindergarten.
As cliched as it may sound, the rest is history. We started homeschooling BookGirl when she was four, and we haven’t stopped. It has turned out to be one of the best decisions we’ve made for our family for so many reasons.
When I read about Zan’s “stirring,” I knew that’s what we had experienced. We were reluctant too, but it has been a wonderful experience. (I’m not saying we don’t have those days. Everyone does!)
As I read the appendix, I was grateful all over again for those who have paved the way for the freedoms we enjoy in this country, including the freedom to homeschool. I have become more politically active than I ever dreamed of being, and I’m not doing much more than making phone calls and sending e-mails. I am very concerned about the assault on parental rights in this country, and I urge you to visit parentalrights.org and hslda.org to find out how you can help. There are hearings going on THIS MONTH. Please don’t delay. Check out the issues for yourself and call your Senators to urge them to oppose these measures.
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