Sunday, July 26, 2015

Mission and Vision - Why We Homechool

Each month Mother Goose Time has us Blog Ambassadors think about a focus topic and write about it from our perspective.  It's been fun and challenging.  This months topic is Professionalism.  Many of the questions we are prompted with apply to in home care providers or preschool teachers.  But I think there are some great prompts for homeschooling families to think about as well.

One of the questions falls under mission and vision.  They asked us, why have you decided to dedicate your time and energy to teaching young children?  My answer is pretty simple, because I gave birth to them.  But obviously the choice to homeschool is not that simple.  I often have conversations with people on this topic because it comes up.  But I have never sat down to put it into words.  Honestly the list could go on forever, but this should be a good start.
But before I get started I have to quickly say, that I don't think it's possible to make a "why we homeschool" list with it also sounding like a "why I would never send my child to traditional school, and if you do you are wrong" list.  I, above all else, believe that the decision of how to school your child rests in the hands of the parents.  I also believe that for each child and each new school year the decision should be prayed about and pondered on.  Lastly, I am fully aware that we are blessed to have the choice to homeschool and the opportunity too.  My husband has been sick for the past 2 and a half years making it hard for him to get to work and put in the hours needed to make ends meet.  In all honesty, we are blessed that he still has a job.  In this way we have been made even more aware of how blessed we are for being able to continue schooling at home because if his health at any point makes a turn for the worse I would be going back to work and our homeschooling journey would most likely come to an end.  We do hope and pray that we can continue teaching our children at home, but I know that we would find many blessings, from the teachers to the peers, if we needed to place our children in the public school system.  So with that said, I will continue with my list of why we choose to homeschool.  

The number one reason we want to homeschool is to instill in our boys a firm foundation in their family.  We sort of accidentally fell into homeschooling.  When my oldest son turned three and all of his peers were packing up and heading out to preschool, I just couldn't imagine doing the same.  Lachlan was not ready, he wouldn't even let me leave him in nursery at church for an hour, and I wasn't ready.  He was three for goodness sake, three!  Do we really want to take authority away from the parents and put it in the hands of someone else, at three!  I know many teachers, they are amazing and loving people.  I mean no disrespect to them AT ALL.  But they are not Mom and Dad.  A three year old should know with out any doubt, that Mom and Dad are the ones to go to with questions.  That they love them and are the two people that will be there for them no matter what.  Not only are the parents important but also their siblings.  I am not sure Peter could make it through a day with out his big brother.  And isn't that how it's suppose to be?  FAMILY.
Second, my hope for my children is that they find a love of learning.  One of my good friends often says that the job her husband has now did not exist as of 10 years ago.  In our world, our children can't necessarily prepare for the job they will have when they grow up, because it is likely that job does not exist yet.  If we establish a love of learning but also a knowledge and foundation of how to learn, they can be successful adults in this ever changing world.

The third reason I can think of is that we don't want our sons to feel unnecessary pressure from peers or from schools trying to meet certain testing standards.  Especially at young ages.  I don't want their self confidence to be forever scarred by feeling like they aren't good enough because they aren't meeting the class standard.  I would prefer for them to learn to push themselves.  To find passion in something and go for it.

Fourth, I love being there for the moments when they learn something new.  I can't imagine missing those light bulb moments and the sparkle in their eye as they beam with pride.  I would say, this is one of my most selfish reasons.  But it is there none the less.


Lastly, I am a Christian, so of course part of our decision to homeschool is based on wanting to instill in them our faith so that one day they will also choose to believe and live for Jesus.  I strive to be an example for them each and every day and on many days I miserably fail as I lose my temper and scream.  But hopefully they see me reach for Jesus as I strive to do better the next day. 

I am thankful everyday that we found Mother Goose Time.  The activities and lessons in Mother Goose Time have brought us together as a family and helped us to fulfill the mission and vision that we had for our family.  My boys were not the sit down and read a book kind of kids.  They have recently started to really enjoy this.  But not until the last few months.  So before then, if I wanted quality time with my children, we could play with toys, or snuggle and watch a show.  MGT opened the door to learning through play.  We have had cherished moments together because of MGT.  I call them Mother Goose Moments.  I have asked them questions and gotten answers to things I would never have thought of asking because of MGT.  I have seen creativity in my sons more than I ever would have imagined possible because of MGT.  I have been able to offer crafts that I would have never had the time to offer them with out MGT.  I have watched them find answers to questions by investigation because of MGT.

All of that, while learning their ABCs and 123s with no pressure and a lot of fun!

What I also love about Mother Goose Time and the path that it has set me on, is that it continues to challenge me.  There is so much offered as part of the Mother Goose Time curriculum.  All of their lessons are founded on research.  That research is available to you in their Research Foundation book.  You can understand better where you child is at in the learning processes by taking a closer look at the Developmental Continuum of Skills.  I have used Mother Goose Time for 2 and a half years now and I continue to find new tools and resources that I can use to push myself and challenge myself as an educator.  I am an educator.  I still kind of question that when I say it, but it's true.  I want to continue to learn and grow everyday, just as I did in my previous career. 

So to end this post I have to ask, if you homeschool, do you have a mission statement?  I want to write something out, maybe something we could hang on the wall, that reflects our goals as a homeschool family or just simply as a family.  I will, of course, start searching the Pinterest world.  But I would love to hear from you!

5 comments:

  1. You should have a million comments on this, such good stuff! I need to do this too!

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    1. It was so nice to sit down and write this out. Especially coming into the new school year. It's something I can come back to when I need a reminder. Now I need to see if I can make this even more concise and get it down to a sentence or two for a mission statement. I would love to have something posted or written in my planner.

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  2. I really admire the work you do educating your boys - because it truly is that- another "job," & one of the most important ones there is! Obviously I don't homeschool, but the 2 thoughts I have from reading your post is the importance of the love of learning, & creating lifetime learners. The world is fascinating & a lot of people miss that. Also just the extra time & interaction with your boys gives them the foundation to be strong, confident people as they interact with others. Not that parents who don't homeschool don't try, but you just can't replace all those teaching moments that you can do as a parent because you are the one there (if that makes sense!)

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    1. Thank you Kathy! That means a lot.

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  3. I really admire the work you do educating your boys - because it truly is that- another "job," & one of the most important ones there is! Obviously I don't homeschool, but the 2 thoughts I have from reading your post is the importance of the love of learning, & creating lifetime learners. The world is fascinating & a lot of people miss that. Also just the extra time & interaction with your boys gives them the foundation to be strong, confident people as they interact with others. Not that parents who don't homeschool don't try, but you just can't replace all those teaching moments that you can do as a parent because you are the one there (if that makes sense!)

    ReplyDelete