wether your kids attend private, public or charter schools, are homeschooled, unschooled, etc, all parents have a common goal: to provide our children with the best education possible. let me preface this post by saying that paul and i do not view our educational choices for our family as superior to anyone else's choices for their family. we do what works for us and others do what works for them. we are constantly praying, researching and taking in as much information possible to ensure that we continue to make the right decisions about our kids' learning. i do feel very strongly about learning outside of school and i plan to share in a series of posts about what we do and how we do it. i think it would be best to start with why we do it.
at our first parent teacher meeting, her teacher let us know that madi was excelling in phonics and reading. her two biggest criticisms were that madi drew with too much detail, thus running out of time on a project and that she was always talking to the other kids. ironically, we sat there listening to her teacher negatively categorize two of the things we loved about our daughter the most: her love and creativity in art and her love and passion for others. we smiled, thanked the teacher for her time and walked to our car frustrated nearly to tears. we realized then that we needed to take a second look at our decision to put our kids in public school. we talked about our goals for our kids' learning experience and mapped out what kind of time, energy, resources and environment it would take to achieve those. below is our list of goals and we have since decided that our kids will be learning without school.
our desires for our kids' life of learning:
- to nurture and encourage their love of learning.
- to allow them the freedom to learn their own way, in their own time and according to their interests.
- to expose them to as many rich experiences as possible. art, music, travel, language, etc.
- to focus on their individual strengths, not dwell on their weaknesses.
- to prioritize character development before academic achievement.
- to set a foundation of learning by modeling and inspiring them by pursuing our own passions and interests.
- to guide them in discovering their passions in life and becoming equipped to achieve them.
- to build strong, healthy relationships.
- to provide an atmosphere of love and trust where learning can thrive.
- to remind them that they are fearfully and wonderfully made and that they are a gift from God.
i have so much more to share but, for now i hope this will express our heart for our kids' learning adventure. more to come soon.
"All your children shall be taught by the Lord, and great shall be the peace of your children."