I was a public school teacher for six years before having my own children and becoming a stay at home mom.
I taught middle school special education. Yeah…it was a tough, but very rewarding job.
I even earned the title of “Teacher of the Year” for one school year.
I always knew that we would homeschool our children.
I was called to it before we had children and once we had them that calling was confirmed many times over.
One thing I’ve heard from friends and family members is the assumption that because I was a public school teacher that I would be great as a homeschool mom.
I’ve even defended myself against non-homeschoolers with the statement that I was am a former public school teacher. Once that statement is out in the open, possible nay-sayers are somewhat pacified.
But with each passing day, I am discovering that this assumption and defense is completely off-base and not true.
Being a former public school teacher does not give me an advantage as a homeschool mom.
The one thing that I constantly battle to overcome in becoming a better homeschool mom is my background as a public school teacher.
There are days when I find myself frustrated because my children are not sitting in a desk from 8-2, dutifully filling out worksheets and working towards meeting some high and lofty “standards”.
Yet, at the same time, that is the beauty of homeschool. My children are not bound to a desk. They are not ordered to “sit down and be quiet” for long, boring hours at the time.
They get to enjoy learning alongside their brothers and sisters.
They can do jumping jacks as they recite their math facts and sound out words standing on one foot if they need to.
They can take nature walks.
They can read chapter books on the couch or in a comfy chair…books that may be way beyond or even below their grade level.
Homeschool is not just doing public school inside the four walls of a home.
No…it is much, much more!
Homeschool is cultivating relationships before achieving academic goals.
Homeschool is experiencing life together as a family.
Homeschool is being free to discover and learn at your own pace.
Homeschool is meeting the individual needs of the children that you know and love.
A teaching certificate and college education did not qualify me to be a homeschool mom…being a mom who loves and wants the best for her children is the only qualification that I need.
Some of the best homeschool moms I know did not have a background in education that somehow magically qualified them to teach their children at home. They are just mothers who are loving on their children and doing their very best to give them a quality, enriching education.
I have to fight the public school voices in my head in order to truly enjoy being a teacher to my own children.
It is a battle that I intend to win with purpose, peace and freedom.