I had not heard much about home schooling during my own school years. My college roommate, though, was a homeschool graduate. She, like the few other homeschoolers I had met, seemed perfectly normal (!!), with above average intelligence and a well-rounded resume. So I never really understood the concern about the "stereotypical" homeschooled child.
During my student teaching semester, winter of 1997, I lived off campus with a homeschooling family. Even though I was gone during the hours Laurie, the mom, was actually doing school work with her children, I truly owe much of my foundational commitment to homeschooling to her and her family. Laurie was an example to me of what a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom might look like. I had never really put much thought into it previously, but at this point I was newly engaged, and thoughts of marriage and family occupied my mind as never before.
So my time with Laurie and her family was probably the single most influential aspect in what I have come to view as my calling as a homeschool mother. Meanwhile, my husband Ted was attending Bible studies while at the Air Force Academy, being mentored by a captain who was a father of four children, all homeschooled. Our letters (yes, old-fashioned, handwritten letters!!!) discussed our ideas about homeschooling, so the idea was germinating.
Fast forward to early 2004. We began "homeschooling" Charis, our firstborn, when she was about 3 1/2. I thought I would try a pre-school workbook from Sam's Club, and as it turned out, she loved doing her pages and begged for them every day. We continued doing easy, fun workbooks and reading tons of books from the library. During this time we had a military move from Ohio to Maryland, and I planned to spend our one-year assignment there digging into this homeschool thing and learning all I could. I joined a Christian homeschool group and became friends with several ladies who graciously mentored me during that year, answering the bazillion questions I kept throwing at them.
Before we knew it another military move loomed, this time from Maryland to Nevada. By the time we got settled into our new home in August 2005, I knew what I'd be ordering from the Sonlight and Math-U-See catalogs. We joined a new homeschool support group, and before we knew it, were were officially a HOMESCHOOLING FAMILY!
Are you a homeschooling mama? How and when did you begin this journey?
Pic: Arden (2), Charis (5), and Tobin (3 1/2) play with the Math-U-See blocks at our kitchen table.