Is it wrong to wish my boys were just a *little bit* older? I know the general consensus is that I’ll miss this age some day. I get that – sometime when my boys have grown, I’ll reflect on a time when they were both still just learning the things about the world that we generally take for granted. I do enjoy the discoveries, the occasional exclamation of joy at something incredibly simple, the toddler using a curse word perfectly in context, even though he has no clue what it means (yes, I have a bit of a potty mouth sometimes, and my toddler has picked it up – I’m working on it). I get that these moments are precious, and only come around once. I try to stay in the moment and absorb them. I do.
But there’s something left to be desired for me. I want cognitive exploration. I want “why”. I realize that some day I’m probably going to regret having said that, but oh, what fun teaching my children bigger things than just how to get dressed and feed themselves. (Not that those are bad things – I’m glad my kids are learning those things, trust me. I’m just not so excited about them as some parents seem to be.)
My husband and I have decided that if I can manage it, home schooling is going to be the best option for our boys. There are a couple of main reasons: Since we are a military family, it will be easier to keep them on an even schedule from year to year as we move from place to place. We won’t have to worry about finding a good school district on top of all of the other issues (like finding a house in general) that come along when we’re about to move. And yes, to me it is a plus that our boys won’t have to deal with the peer-pressure, ignorance and bullying that seems to have become a very normal thing in schools these days. Teachers are taxed with too many children – their attention and abilities are spread too thin.
At home the boys will have the benefit of one-on-one teaching, learning to think for themselves and explore their ideas more thoroughly with a little guidance from myself. We’ll be able to adjust their schedules to work with them instead of against them. They won’t have to get up at some god-awful hour in the morning to catch the bus. They’ll have food prepared by me (and eventually themselves) that is *usually* nutritious (you gotta splurge once in a while, right?). They will be able to explore topics that interest them more deeply, instead of being pushed onto the next thing right away.
The first thing that is generally worried about when home schooling is brought up is socialization. I worried about that, too. But it turns out, it’s really a non-issue. There are plenty of opportunities for children to socialize. There are communities everywhere that get home schooling kids together for field trips and just social events. There are community sports and music options. There are even events like home school proms and graduations becoming more popular. The home schooling community is larger than you’d expect. And I’m glad that this is the time we’re doing it (rather than twenty or thirty years ago, when it was non-existent, and there was no support).
So, really, to sum it all up – I can’t wait to start school again! Because this will be a learning process as much for me as it is for my boys, and I’m immensely excited to share that with them.