Saturday, February 16, 2013

The JOYS of Homeschooling

This month I am going to give my readers a behind the scene look at homeschooling in our family. Through these posts I will be sharing the JOYS, and yes the challenges of teaching your kids.

 My hope is that this series will encourage anyone out there potentially thinking of joining our 'ranks', either one day soon, or sometime in the future.

You will be able to hear from a Mom who:

-has had our four children in school full-time, up until this past September
-who has THREE very energetic boys, along with our daughter
-who is teaching/leading both elementary and middle school curriculum
-who knew NOTHING much about homeschooling up until this past year year...asides from occasional media reports and selective magazine articles :)
-who is planning on homeschooling for the next year, but is balanced enough to understand that we will have to re-exam our family's needs each school year

So for today, I want to focus in on the JOYS I have found along our homeschool journey....

One of the most amazing aspects I have enjoyed about homeschooling is the closeness it has produced in our family. Especially among our four children...

Our children have always been fairly close, I don't mean to imply that they weren't. However, being around each other all day, as opposed to being separated in various classrooms,I believe has produced this deeper bond.
I have often found the older siblings helping the younger ones with their work, unprompted, when Mommy has had to momentarily step aside to answer an important phone call, or even just get a meal on the table.

I have even walked into the room to find the older siblings working together on their assignments, and my heart melts as I hear a child who has already mastered a particular concept passing on the same principle to another who is struggling.

The kindness I have watched develop in my children, particularly our older two boys, hasn't been limited in only being demonstrated to their siblings. Nope, as a Mom I have been in awe as I have witnessed firsthand the compassion I have 'caught' showing someone around them.

Again, I don't want to give the impression that our kids are perfect! They are not.

They still fight.
They still argue.
I'm still working on teaching them to do their work cheerfully and with a thankful heart...

However, I can't negate the positive improvements I have seen this past school year. I can't deny the feedback I am receiving from others when we are out in public settings, or even just around close friends.

Homeschooling has also improved many of their academic skills. I guess this may be a given for those more experienced homeschoolers, who KNOW from first-hand experience that when you devote one-on-one time with ANY child the result will be more confidence in school work.

One of our children was struggling with reading last year. So much so that the teacher was giving extra help, sending home extra work, etc. She was an awesome teacher and I appreciated all of her hard work. It certainly did help.

Part of the answer may have been maturity, but I have noticed that reading has come much more readily this school year. A big leap in school work has been demonstrated overall with this child. I am proud to say this one is now reading us stories, and constantly learning new words.

Another one of our children has always struggled with math assignments. I have spent hours this school year reviewing the questions and formulas over and over. I can't say we are acing all of our tests, but that said, we have seen much improvement in recognition of formulas, and in the area of logic and problem solving.

Another JOY that homeschooling has brought to our family is an increase in creativity!

One of my children is an entrepreneur at heart. He is always trying to sell, sell and keep selling! This year, due to the flexibility our schedule, he has been able to start his own small business: making cupcakes. While this is something we certainly don't want to consume all of his spare time, we are delighted he is learning practical ways to: make a living, interact with people, and to work hard!

Another area of creativity exploration has been in the arena of writing. My two eldest children and I have been going through a writing skills book together. We read the assignments and then work as a group on the practical applications given. It has even helped me to expand my vocabulary!

And what homeschooling experience would be complete without arts and crafts?!

Physical education!

Or how can I fail to mention our extra time for music, friends, social events, and day trips!

Yes, homeschooling has brought many benefits to our family this year. The above mentioned, and even more....

Next blog I will share a few of the CHALLENGES we have gone through, and what I have been learning through each of them...Stay tuned!!!

***Below: please feel free to comment about the joys YOUR FAMILY has found through homeschooling!
And don't forget to post your Mama's blog so everyone can see who you are :)


  1. I am a grandmother who is always looking for creative things to do with my 5 (soon to be 6!) grandchildren. You have a very appealing site and I think you have a lot to offer those who want to help children succeed. I didn't homeschool, but I have tremendous respect for those who do. I really think it is the ideal way to educate!

  2. Thanks for the positive feedback and for visiting the site! I know, homeschooling isn't for everyone but thanks for your encouragement. It has certainly been a journey for our family :)

  3. Hi Rach! I absolutely loved reading about your new homeschool journey and all the benefits that you already see. :) Many blessings!

    1. Thanks!! It has definitely been quite the journey, as I am sure you can relate to.
      Glad we can connect on here :)

  4. reading things like this makes me want to homeschool my children but i fear i would just fail at it! haha

    1. I hear you!
      I never would have thought I'd EVER homeschool, but circumstances change.
      If you ever change your mind just take the time to research it. I realize this choice is not for everyone, but you'd probably do better than you think :)

  5. Hi there!
    I am a mom of 5 beautiful children ages 18 (soon to graduate this June), 13, 9, 7, and 3. I never thought I would have a homeschool graduate...but my and my daughter's time is here...
    I have been homeschooling for 11 years and on my worst days I still Praise the Lord for His grace and mercy in helping me to do it. This is the first year my husband has been able to take part in our homeschooling journey. My strength has been in my Lord...He is the only one who can sustain you. Word of advice: when the day is not going how you have planned...take a field trip...we love to go to the library once a week!

    1. Woooow! I am always so inspired hearing stories like this. I am planning to take it year by year (more than that overwhelms me right now) but I've had an overall great experience :)
      Thanks for sharing!!

      PS idea about the field trip: we totally have done that at times!

  6. Lovely post. Very inspiring for all Moms who choose this route.
    Blessings to you.
    Linking in from I Choose Joy,

    1. Thanks Janis for stopping by and your encouragement!!

  7. You have a lovely blog Rach. And this was such a inspiring story. Thanks for sharing

  8. Hi! I'm visiting from Friendship Friday :-) I hope you'll also join me for my Friday Flash Blog on The Jenny Evolution ( Happy weekend!

    1. Thanks Jennifer! On to check out your site :)

  9. Visiting with Friendship Fridays. I signed up for Lovin the #'s Blog Hop. I didn't find a HTML tag though. Did I miss it. I follow you on GFC.


    1. There were some issues when I first posted the hop...should be all fixed up now.

  10. Homeschooling can be a double edged sword. Some days it is hard not to get bogged down in the daily drudgery, but instead to see all the wonderful things it brings! :) Thanks for linking up with us here at NOBH!



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