Read the entire “Why We Homeschool” series by scrolling to the bottom of this post.
In the seventh and final installment of the series, you’ll get to know my family’s reasons for homeschooling. I’ll take you back to the very beginning of our journey, then fast forward to today where our reasons for homeschooling have continued to not only inspire us, but were the catalyst for creating the series you’re reading right now.
Here’s our story.
Our homeschooling journey began on a late night in 2013. I was on Facebook and came across a video of the story of the Henderson’s, a Black family from Denver, CO who homeschooled their seven children. Their home and family emanated harmony and connection, but also placed a strong emphasis on academics, while still encouraging their children to follow their passions. As a mom of a then five and one year old, I was so inspired and intrigued by their family’s synchronicity and by how they chose to educate their children. I’d never seen or heard of homeschooling, and from there I began to research and seek out what exactly it was, how to do it, and who else was doing it, particularly other mothers who looked like me.
Before seeing the Henderson’s story, I’d never even thought about what educational philosophy I had or what the best way to educate my children should be. I only thought that I should find the “best school” for them to attend and that the bulk of their education rested on the shoulders of their teachers. The more I looked into homeschooling and educational pedagogy in general, the more I knew that the best school and education could be found here at home. And so, that fall, we decided to give homeschooling a try. I recorded a video of our reasons for homeschooling back in 2013. As I watched it recently, I was struck with just how much those reasons still ring true today, however I can also see how we’ve become even more clear on our “why” and continue to do so the longer we homeschool.
If I had to sum up our reasons for homeschooling today, I’d say they boil down to three things: Family, Fun, and Freedom.
- Family — We are all about family, and homeschooling is another way to live that out. We live life and learn together everyday, myself included. We have good and bad days, and the children are able to navigate it all in a safe, loving, nurturing, and close-knit environment where learning happens all day long. Their father and I are their biggest influencers, and we take their interests, temperaments, and developmental stages to heart and use them as a big part of their learning process.
- Fun — I firmly believe that learning doesn’t have to be boring or monotonous. It can be engaging, entertaining, and, dare I say it, fun! I’ve found that my children learn best through hand-on projects and going on field trips, so I do them as much as possible. Finding a way to bring fun into our learning process isn’t always easy (thanks compulsory school thinking! 😦 ), but I do my best to keep things as enjoyable as possible. Yes, even math. 😉
- Freedom — One of the main reasons we homeschool is for the freedom to live and learn as we wish. There’s no morning school rush, no homework, no vacationing only on school breaks, and no wondering what my children do all day while they’re away from me. We control our time and spend that time doing what we think is important and what fits our family’s values. As a Black family in America, we know how radical it is for our children to have this type of lifestyle, free from much of the indoctrination and conditioning most children face on a daily basis. We are privileged to be able to show our children a different way of living, and love that they indeed know that they can do anything they put their minds to. Not just because we tell them, but because they get to do it every single day. Isn’t that the point of education? Freedom is a cornerstone of empowerment, and with that, you can do anything.
I want to send a big thank you to the families who participated in this series, as well as everyone who read, watched, and shared it. I hope our stories can inform, inspire, and encourage others along their own homeschooling journey.
It takes a village to raise a child, and our homeschooling village is here and thriving. And amen. ❤