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Day 18: I Don’t HAVE to… Homeschool My Children

31 Days of NOT Having It All Banner

Ah, the ever divisive topic of educating our children…

I said I would never homeschool my children. Six months later, God steered us right on to the path of homeschooling and we’re journeying that path for the third year now.

It took me quite a while to swallow my pride on that one. I really thought I knew the best way to do things, even if it was just for our family, but when God finally had His say {or I actually prayed about!}, He showed us something totally different.

People ask us all the time if we will homeschool through high school. I have no idea. We are just taking it one year at a time. And that is because I do not believe homeschool is the automatic answer to, “How should we educate our children?”

Homeschool Children

You do not HAVE to homeschool your children for them to succeed in life. You do not HAVE to homeschool your children for them to become “good Christians.” You do not HAVE to homeschool your children in order to be a good parent. You do not HAVE to homeschool your children to be following God’s calling.

The same could be said for other education choices as well. While homeschool is the hot topic, I know there are some who believe private school is the only way to go. And some believe all children should go to public school.

Education is not a one-size-fits-all for every child or every family. There are children’s learning styles and personalities to consider. Family schedules and priorities must be factored in. And parents must be willing to follow where God leads.

See that note? Where GOD leads. Not peer pressure or guilt or shame or even fear. Acting upon those feelings will almost always lead to disappointment or failure. But God. He knows. And He equips for wherever He may lead us and whatever He may want us to do.

The very vocal online homeschool community is a great support to those who have decided to homeschool, but it can feel like major peer pressure for those who don’t. Although a few homeschool bloggers are trying to prove that homeschool is the only way to go, most are just trying to support fellow homeschoolers with resources and such. If you don’t feel led by God to homeschool your children, then don’t let the posts and tweets of homeschoolers lead you off His path for your family.

There are a few HAVE-tos related to our children and education…

  • We HAVE to do what is best for each child and the family as a whole.
  • We HAVE to give the education decision over to God and let Him lead.
  • We HAVE to avoid making education decisions based on fear, guilt, shame, or peer pressure.

I have seen all three educational choices done VERY well and I have seen all done poorly, too. There is no one way we HAVE to educate our children, except what God shows us is right for our family right now.

Have you ever felt pressure from yourself or someone else to make a particular educational decision for your child?

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Comments

  1. THANK YOU for posting this! I never wanted to homeschool, but again, that is where God lead us to this season of life. I get tired of the debate both ways, when parents are prideful their kids lose, that’s plain and simple. Great post!
    Kate recently posted..Living In Grace {Day 21}

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  2. Totally agree! We’ve done both and are doing a combo right now. Homeschooling is not for everyone. And one or the other doesn’t make a better mama. It’s a hard decision. One we didn’t make lightly, as most parents.
    Mel @ Trailing After God recently posted..Forgiveness, When You Really Want to Flip Them The Bird

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  3. I can’t thank you enough for this post. My husband and I were just talking about this the other night as we were discussing the options for our daughter and kindergarten next year. Homeschooling is a wonderful option but it’s not right for every family. No one should feel shame over choosing what they feel is best for their family and children. Thank you for your open-mindedness.

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  4. Thanks! This is so true. It won’t be the same for every family and it won’t be the same every year for one family.
    SaraR recently posted..bird is the word

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  5. Thank you for posting this! We have received pressure from all sides on the education issue, and ultimately felt Gid calling us to keep our kids in public school (because we believe that bible-reading God-living kids need to be sharing God’s live in public schools, too), but we absolutely discuss their work and lessons at home,and find activities to challenge them if need be. But we continue to pray about what God is calling us to do. Kudos to parents who make education choices that are best for their families and in response to God’s leading.

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  6. I feel pressure to homeschool. Not that I’m not open to it; I am! But I have a few homeschool friends who believe THAT is THE way God wants us to educate our children, but I believe like you, that it’s different for each family and each child. We’ve prayed about it the last few years and really felt like the public school in our town has been the path for us so far. But we’ll continue to pray and try to listen only to God.
    Randi recently posted..Moms, please read

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  7. I wish more people understood this. I grew up in public school, went to a Christian college, taught public school, and did preschool at home with my oldest only to confirm I didn’t care for homeschooling. We are blessed to have options. I hate when my friends feel guilty for their choices.

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  8. Thank you so much for this! I have 2 boys in public school. That seems to be where God wants us right now, and we want what God wants for us. I have many friends who home school, and I often feel guilty that we don’t, especially when I come across their posts about it on facebook. I am grateful that we have options in this area and that God leads us patiently in those decisions!

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  9. LeAnn Tinsley says:

    Here’s a great, meaty article that has kind of a crazy title that makes it seem that I’m against homeschooling, or that the author it; but really its just a great, meaty article about Christian parenting.

    http://www.familyministries.com/HS_Crisis.htm “Solving the Homeschool Blindspots”

    For what its worth, I hope you all take a chance to read a superbly written article.

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  10. I know this post is a bit old, but i just found your blog and wanted to thank you for saying what many homeschoolers dont believe– that there is not one right way to homeschool. It took me many years to admit that. God really broke my pride. After homeschooling for 19 years, all of my remaining children at home will be in school.
    llmom recently posted..Reasons people quit homeschooling: Financial reasons

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