Thursday, September 9, 2010

Homeschooling with Joy

"I have told you this so that my joy might be in you and your joy might be complete" John 15:11

I am writing this as a reminder to myself...

Last spring when I attended the Midwest Homeschool Conference, a speaker mentioned something about home education being a sacrifice on the part of the mother.  She said that she went to a home education graduation event, and each graduate spoke of how much his or her mother sacrificed to home educate.  The speaker made an excellent point, she said she didn't want her children to view her in that light, she wanted her children to see that she had great joy in walking the education path along with them.

After I spent some time pondering that idea, I really had to agree.  I want my kids to remember our homeschooling journey as one that we took together.  I want them to know that I am grateful for every minute that we are together, even those minutes when I am quite positive my head is going to explode!  My prayer is that when our children look back on their time at home, learning and living together, that they remember a joyful mother, not a mom adding education as another item on the to do list for the day.

It is so easy to fall into the "I do so much around here for you and you aren't one bit grateful!" {Not that I have ever said that, of course ;)}   And adding the task of education on top of all the other things that moms are responsible for is a heavy load.  Whether we are moms with a small family, large family, working mom family, whatever - moms are busy!

If, I am constantly reminding myself, and all those around me, what I am "giving up" to educate my children, then frankly, maybe my children would be better off in a different learning environment.  I am not a more dedicated or devoted mom because I happen to homeschool, God has chosen a different path for our family and I need to remember to embrace this difference with JOY!  It is a privilege to be able to take a walk on a windy afternoon with all my children, as the school bus rumbles by filled with kids on their way home from their first day of school.

Life is busy, filled with chaos, and a long list of "to-do's"  However, guiding my children on their walk with the Lord, as well as their educational path is not one of drudgery and sacrifice, but one filled with joy.


Jill said...

Amen, sister!

Tracy said...

Hi Jen!
Thanks for this great post! I need this reminder of educating with JOY every minute of every day! I know you were not posting this specifically for me, but you might as well have been since I fall into the "homeschooling is just something else to check off the to do list" rather than homeschooling is a joyful calling to journey with my children. Ahhh, yes joyful homeschooling is something I will continue to work on today, tomorrow and always!

Thanks for the reminder!
Have a blessed day!
Tracy at A Slice of Smith Life

Gardenia said...

Our Lord has graced you with this special mission and has given you the graces needed to carry it out. and oh the blessings that come from it...... have a great day.

Patty said...

You are so right! I have to remember this more often. Thanks for posting this one.

Elizabeth said...


Amen! Due to some economic circumstances I recently had to use my college degree for the first time and start work as a speech pathologist assistant. It's temporary, hopefully for a year but no more than 2. 2 years! My heart cries! My daughter is still at home as Grandma looks after both of our children so I can pay off our massive student loans. I want soooooo much to be back at home with my children enjoying our lives together ALL the time. By God's grace I've still managed to incorporate relaxed learning into our daily life and it's my favorite times of the day. It fuels me up. And as for the job? This homeschooling mom is even more convinced than ever of more delight-directed, project-based methods of learning. I'm counting down the days I can forever say goodbye to my professional job and get back to where my heart AND joy is!

Spesamor Academy said...

Good point! I don't want to sacrifice, I want to enjoy! :)

Lori said...

Great thoughts on homeschooling. My favorite line is "embrace this difference with JOY"- I need to hear that. :) Thank you for sharing!!

Jen said...

Thanks for all of your comments :)

Tracy-I need this reminder all the time too!

Elizabeth-praying you get those student loans paid off asap :)

Robin said...

The love and passion you have for your family is so heart warming. What an awesome perspective, that is so easy to forget at times. Great post!

Lori said...

I did a post linking this post- if you are in any way unhappy with it, please let me know and I will change it!

kari l b said...

I love this post! Such a wonderful reminder that home schooling is a blessing and not a burden. One time a friend of mine told me she did not look at the things she had to "give up" as a stay-at-home mother as a sacrifice but as a donation. She was donating her time, her money, her gifts to raising her children rather than giving up all those things. It makes all the difference how we look at all we do as mothers. How blessed your beautiful children are!

The Mommy said...

Thank you for posting this! It really meant a lot to me as I've been struggling with this. I'm visiting from the Hip Homeschool Hop and I'm so glad I stumbled onto your blog!!! <3

Kristin said...

Great post! Came over from the Hip Homeschool Hop and am now following you. Blessings!

Ashley Pichea said...

So true! I want my kids to love homeschooling as much as I do - and I want them to know how much I love it!

Stopping by to say "Hi" from the Hip Homeschool Hop!
I just wanted to introduce myself as the newest member of the HHM team - I'm looking forward to getting to know you!

- Ashley Pichea


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