Sunday, April 28, 2013

We Are a Homeschooling Family

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.  These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts.  Impress them on your children.  Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.  Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.  Write them on the doorframes of your houses and your gates."  Deuteronomy 6:5-9

6 years ago, my oldest daughter was 4 years old.  She was very bright and very eager to learn.  I always thought that we would send our children to school.  I grew up in a very small school district, and it was a wonderful experience.  We currently live in the same school district that I went to, and I was excited about sending my children to the same school.  That was until it was time for kindergarten registration.  Something in me felt the urge to want to homeschool my children.  I had never really thought about it before.  Before I had children, I was an elementary school teacher for 5 years.  So, I knew that I was capable of doing it, but never had really given it a second thought.  Until that day 6 years ago. 
That day sparked something in me as a mom. I really wanted to be involved in the teaching of my children.  I wanted to help them grow and learn academically and spiritually at the level they were ready for.  I wanted to teach them life skills and "the facts of life" on my schedule, not the school district's.   I began looking through several curriculum companies that I was familiar with from having taught in a Christian school.  If I was going to homeschool my children, I wanted the curriculum to be firmly grounded in the word of God.  That was of extreme importance to me.  I began that year with a curriculum company I was familiar with.  It worked well for that kindergarten year, but the next year I felt the need to change.  Something just didn't work well for us, and so we tried another curriculum.  We plugged through that first grade year, but I knew this was not the curriculum for us.  Finally, in my daughter's second grade year, we discovered Bob Jones University curriculum.  And this scripture from Deuteronomy kept echoing in my head.  The thing I absolutely love about this curriculum is the word of God is infused into every subject.  It's wonderful.  A perfect fit for our family.

Since that day 6 years ago, we have added two more girls to our family.  We are just finishing up our 2012-2013 school year.  My oldest is finishing up 5th grade and my middle child with 1st grade.  In the fall, my youngest will start pre-kindergarten with me.  I really am so glad that I started homeschooling 6 years ago.  I love the flexibility of it.  My oldest is usually done with her school work in about 3 hours or so, and my middle child in about 1 1/2 hours.  If something happens and we need to be gone for a day or two, we can pack up our school work and take it with us.  We also start our school year before the schools in our area do, and thus we are finished before the schools are.  I also love it because I can challenge my girls in ways that they cannot be challenged in a classroom.  And the main reason I love homeschooling is because my girls are also getting a biblical education alongside their academic education.  As I said before, our curriculum is infused with scripture.  We are always looking up scripture to answer questions, make crafts to help us remember verses, and talking about what we are learning in God's word.  As the Deuteronomy scripture says, God's word is being impressed on my girls' hearts.  They are talking about it when we are at home, when we go for walks, when they go to bed and when they wake up.  We tie God's word on our hands and foreheads (often with glitter and/or stickers).  We write God's word and tape the girls' masterpieces to the door of our house.  We are a homeschooling family, and I am so glad that we are!

Lisa Powell

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