Growing up, homeschooling was our way of life. It was part of every job, every fishing trip, and everything we did as a family. Most of the time we did not realize that we were learning. The way we were homeschooled was not an eight o’clock to three o’clock book time. It was learning wisdom, life, and practical thinking as a family. Within every recipe there is a math lesson of fractions and reading. Inside every fishing trip there was a lesson of news, politics, and history. Around every dinner table we learned the human body—mostly because Mom and my sister Shalom plastered the table in muscle, bone, and nerve posters, covering it with a clear plastic tablecloth. It kept things funny (or gross) with every bite! No matter what we were doing, we were learning. At the time I did not see what, how, and why Mom and Dad did it this way, but looking back I am so incredibly thankful. Both of my parents taught me that you can never learn everything, but they communicated the fun of always searching to learn more. They gave me a burning desire to better myself and to help everyone else who wanted to learn. They taught me to stand for truth and let the pieces fall where they may.
Thankfully, I am still learning, but I am also teaching, training, and homeschooling my two little people. Most of what I learned was observation; it was when they did not even realize it that they were teaching me. It was how my dad loved my mom when she was not perfect. It was how my mom honored my dad when he deserved a good kick. It was how they loved us and poured their lives into ours. It was how they loved our neighbors by sharing the gospel, giving, and helping those in need. I learned by example.
I now stop and look in the mirror. Who am I as a mother, wife, friend, and Christian? What will my children learn from me? I tremble in fear as I consider the importance of my job. It is a matter of their life or death. I have to train them to be careful, yet to live life fully. It is a matter of their joy or sadness. Being thankful for what they have, and thriving in whatever environment they find themselves. I want to see my children and my children’s children soar. Being a mother is the best job in the world; it is also the most important one. This is part of homeschooling; it is life schooling.
When it first came out, I was reading though my mom’s new book, The BIG Book of Homeschooling. When I got to the bottom of page 87, I told her, “Mom, you should have used this as the intro of your book. This is how you and Dad raised us. Trained us! Imparted wisdom to us! Homeschooled us!” She gave me a pleased look. “Go put that on your Facebook,” she said. Apparently, I still have not learned the obedience thing yet, because…I forgot!
The BIG Book of Homeschooling is something you should check out! It shows the fun of homeschooling. The fun of learning. Once you make learning fun, you’ll never want to stop.