If you haven’t read about what led me to homeschool my son Kaleb, please refer to the previous blog Post: The Journey To Homeschooling. Hopefully at this point, you have signed up for my email list, read several of my previous blog posts, and have a pretty good understanding of what seriously led me to reconsider public school. In addition to my child’s behavioral issues, there was one woman, a friend from college, whose words really made me look at homeschooling in a new light. I distinctly remember the ideas that Aisha shared with me during the conversation that changed my thoughts about homeschooling.
Aisha, a former public-school educator shared what she calls her “Nappy Thoughts:”
Teachers are humans too: Teachers are humans just like you and I. They have their own problems, their own children and their own lives. Combine that fact with the sad reality that they work for much less money than they are worth; most teachers want their students to be well-behaved, ask the “right” amount of easily answered questions, and do their work until class is over. Most teachers simply don’t want to deal with your “bad”, active, inquisitive child.
Anything free from the government sucks!: After she explained, I fully understood what she meant. She got my mind thinking about government insurance, government housing, and government education. Aside from me thinking food stamps probably would be pretty awesome, I otherwise agreed. This was the first time someone really made me think about the quality of public school.
If you don’t invest in your child, who will?: This idea really made me stop in my tracks. I went mute when she said that. I was lost in thought. All these years I’d expected the teachers to do a better job at educating and caring for my child than I would. She also made me realize that most parents use school as a daycare, and most teachers know that. I really began to evaluate my trepidations about homeschooling at that point. Was I one of those parents who wouldn’t give up my free-time during the day, even if it meant giving my child the best opportunity? Of course not! Yet I still felt like **** for never considering homeschooling as a viable option.
In that moment, she brought to life the benefits of what homeschooling could do for both me and my child. She continued to explain the bond that would grow between me and my firstborn. She went on to tell me that my story was very similar to hers. I was shocked to learn that her brilliant, well-rounded, teenager had once been labeled a problem child. I her story seemed too good to be true. I still wasn’t completely sold on homeschooling. I felt inadequate. That feeling of inadequacy was something that I would have to overcome on my own.
My friend did, however, spark my interest in homeschool, an interest that died since that conversation. Since then I have joined the local homeschool facebook group and monitored their wall to learn about these brave moms. I have sat in on the once a week Friday co-op where homeschool kids gather for class with their peers. I have contact various people, some I knew and some who were strangers, and I’ve asked one simple question: How does homeschooling work. I’ve learned lots of varied information. I’ve been told about many, many different options available to me. I have even learned about different textbooks and the pros and cons of different curricula.
What I have realized is that when you are diligently searching for knowledge, you ironically draw that knowledge to you even when you aren’t expecting it. So many times over the past year, different people have come to me in the course of regular conversation and stated that they’ve homeschooled their children. Aisha’s brutal honesty, the information I’d sought, and the information which had come to me without solicitation had all given me a solid foundation to make an informed decision to homeschool Kaleb. Who am I to break from tradition and question convention? IAmKineski, and I’m on my way to becoming a homeschooling parent.