Begin Homeschooling

Begin Homeschooling | Begin homeschooling for the first time or consider it for the future, but there is no time like the present to discuss the joys of homeschooling. In this podcast, Felice Gerwitz, veteran homeschool mom of over thirty years, shares her insider tips. #podcast #homeschoolpodcast #howtohomeschool #homeschoolingBegin Homeschooling ~ Episode 485

Begin homeschooling for the first time or consider it for the future, but there is no time like the present to discuss the joys of homeschooling. In this podcast, Felice Gerwitz, veteran homeschool mom of over thirty years, shares her insider tips.

Check out the great books and classes on the Media Angels website and especially the self-paced set, “How-to-Homeschool Blueprint.”

My thoughts about homeschooling have changed over the years. I began homeschooling as an alternative to a pricey private school that was not filling my son’s needs. Homeschooling was a challenge my husband gave me as well as a six-month trial period; if we failed, I would place my son in another private school. In the meantime, my daughter attended a morning program at a preschool.

Not only did my son flourish and accomplish so much more than he had in school, but we also decided to homeschool my daughter. We spent many happy years homeschooling and attending field trips, and our focus was academic but faith-based. I found myself writing a curriculum to fit my children’s needs and, years later (in 1994), started a publishing company, Media Angels, focusing on curriculum with families in mind.

I homeschooled my five children and graduated with my last child in 2017 after thirty-one years of homeschooling. Three of the five children went on to college, and all graduated with high honors. The other two are highly successful in their chosen professions.

Why did my focus on homeschooling change from pure academics to faith focus? I figured anyone could learn reading and math, history, and science, but what would be the foundation I wanted for my children as they grew older? What was the legacy I wanted to leave? What was my hope for the next generation?

My thoughts about who should begin homeschooling have taken on a more serious direction in light of the craziness plaguing our educational system. When I was in college, my major was Elementary Education, with certifications in Early Childhood Education and Specific Learning Disabilities. I taught for two years and quickly learned I would not return due to many things that have just escalated in today’s world. For one thing, the administrators make unilateral decisions without any care for the parents or their input. For another, the treatment of the children in the schools as a commodity, a number to service rather than the people behind the name.

I’m not putting down all teachers; I was a teacher that was my major in college, my daughter is a teacher, and my sisters-in-law, in fact, two of them, one retired, were teachers. It is not the teachers it is the system in public education.

Now I believe that it is every parent’s duty to consider homeschooling their children today. If you can not physically teach them everything, your focus needs to be on what you can provide for them when you have them at home. Secondly, if your child is in school, you must know what the school is teaching your children.

Years ago, a friend of ours, who is a successful attorney, obtained copies of the novels the children were required to read for literature class. It turned out that this Christian school was requiring that the children be open to ideas that most parents would not approve of – and my friend was, of course, mortified. It turns out that that same novel required reading in my daughter’s secular university, and it was so offensive to her that she decided to drop out of the class. She was a communication major and needed the literature credit but opted to take another professor. My homeschooled graduated daughter knew when to draw the line.

Our children in the educational system today are like the frog in a pot of lukewarm water over the stove, slowly being boiled to death. They do not realize the issues because it is very slow information filtering. If you disagree, you are canceled or told you are intolerant by the people who preach tolerance.

So, why should you homeschool? This is a question that only you and your husband can ask, but the focus is again on what you want your children to take with them into their future? Do you want them to believe everything that some outside entity tells them? In college (in the late ’70s), we were told to forget everything our parents taught us. This is supposed to make the students feel like they are adults and have the ability to make up their own minds. And our kids should, especially if they have a grounding in faith and morals.

Make a list:

Why begin homeschooling?

  1. Faith focused
  2. Become a close-knit family.
  3. Be in charge of your curriculum.
  4. Know what your children learn.
  5. Teach your personal worldview

Your list may have many more items, which is as it should be, focusing on what you want your children to learn. We are a faith-filled, close-knit family. While the kids are grown, and some live out of town or even state, we hear from them often and catch up on what is happening in their lives. They come home for the holidays, and we rejoice when we are all together. My kids also talk to each other regularly, which makes me happy.

Our kids’ education was enhanced by incorporating field trips and hands-on learning. Our children visited various states, added to their collections, and learned about the world around them in more than just books. Their education was well-rounded. Three of my children were gifted in sports and played with teams throughout the state. One of my children wrote a series of books with me. They are still in print. Check out the Truth Seekers Mystery Series, a well-loved action-adventure set with a wholesome theme.

I believe that homeschooling should focus on academics, yes but also on your children’s interests. I’ve talked to children at homeschool conferences who act bored with life, and when I ask them if they have interests or a hobby, they look at me blankly. One of the gifts of homeschooling is allowing your child time to think. I believe in our overstimulated world; our kids are distracted by the latest and greatest shiny object without thinking about what they want to do with their lives. Having a focus on learning and allowing your child to explore interests of their own is a significant first step to lifelong learning. bout

What is lifelong learning? It is the drive and the desire to look things up, search for answers, and challenge yourself to be the best you can be. It is looking at defeat as an opportunity to learn and move forward. When do kids in the typical school system have the ability or opportunity to do this? They don’t.

I put together a set for you to download – it is the Homeschool Blueprint and available on the Media Angels website under self-paced learning. Give it a try and see what you think. It includes many of the forms I’ve used throughout my homeschool journey.

The most wonderful tool that is my legacy to all of you is this Ultimate Homeschool Podcast Network and all of the broadcasts from homeschool parents. These podcasts come to you for free, and I hope you can subscribe to these shows on your favorite podcast app – Vintage Homeschool Moms is heading toward year ten, and it has been a delight to serve all of you.

 

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