So, the article that I linked to got me thinking. I totally agree with the author, one of the reason's I want to homeschool is that I DON'T want my children to assimilate and be the same as everyone elses children. While sharing the article on facebook I started to type..."I don't want my children to be like everyone elses... I want them to be better." I quickly changed my wording though, because I realized that sounded condescending. But, I would like to elaborate on that idea.
I don't mean better in the sense that it's a competition and oh "my kid is better than yours" and that type of thing...but more so that I want my children to be better educated, better informed, better influenced, better "fed", and even "better" socialized. I don't want them in an environment where God is removed even though he created everything they are learning about. I don't want them in an environment where approval from the opposite sex is a driving factor and "relationships" start way too early often times. I don't want them being pressured to be something they are not, or feel like they have to impress or win the approval of others that really don't matter. I also want them to learn how to treat others as Jesus instructed us to, with love, and help those in need, and that doesn't happen often in a out of home, school, environment. I also don't want my children to feel that all of their self worth lies in what kind of grades they get, or how well they do in certain extracurricular activities...these things are for LEARNING and building self confidence, not tearing it down.
I think some healthy competition is good, but I know many children who feel awful if they don't get good grades even though they try hard, or who may not make a team because they are not the best, or even who do make the team, but don't get as much play time because they are of average ability. I think extra curricular activities are great, and I know my kids will still make PLENTY of friends. We attend church, our daughter takes dance lessons, and our eldest son played soccer this past Fall. In January our son will probably take swim lessons again, and our daughter might too, and then come spring our eldest son will probably play soccer again. We also feel it is important for our children to be well rounded, so our eldest will most likely start some kind of music lesson's in the next year or two, as we feel that is important. There are also homeschool co-ops, groups, field trips, play dates, and other functions, where our kids can make lots of friends, so I am not worried in the least about that.
I want our kids to have friends, but I want them to have family time too. I think family time is totally under valued, while remaining a VERY important factor in raising successful, healthy, God-minded children. Those are just SOME of the reason's that we like the idea of homeschooling, and why we are going to try it, there are many others. So are my children "better" than yours that are schooled out of the home? No, but I feel they are better off. ;)
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