Wednesday, December 14, 2016

6 Ways to Help a Homeschool Family

Here is the second, of three, homeschool specific posts on the blog this month.

This week I want to introduce six ways to help a homeschool family in your life.

1. Pray.
Please pray for the homeschool family in your life. Pray that they would continue to seek God's wisdom in the training of their children. Pray that the parents are able to meet all of the needs of their children. If your own heart is hardened to homeschooling, please consider praying that God would soften it.

2. Ask Questions, Seek to Understand
Maybe you went to brick-and-mortar schools and also sent your children to them. Maybe you have never known a homeschooler and do not understand part, or all, of homeschooling. Ask questions!

3. Give Educational Gifts
Homeschool families are 100% financially responsible for their children's education. We do not have grants or vouchers* to help cover the cost of schoolbooks, building our own libraries, or for school supplies. We LOVE when our family gifts our children art supplies, books, and puzzles. We have been really blessed as our families have helped supply our schoolroom through creative giving to the kids on their birthdays and Christmas.

4. Give Experiences
A lot of learning, for all children, happens outside of the classroom thus the giving of experiences are great gifts! Mark's parents enjoy taking our children to the zoo and to musicals. My parents love going to museums and parks with our children. We love taking field trips with the kids' cousins. We are so thankful for each of these gifts!

5. Offer to Watch the Children
This would be a huge blessing for any parent but especially for a full-time-stay-at-home-homeschooling parent. While my friends' children attend school for hours each day, my children are home full time with me. I spend at least 84 waking hours with my children each week. That is a lot of hours - the hours of two full time jobs! That means some time off would be a great gift!

6. Share your gifts and talents by teaching
Just as any classroom teacher, or any school for that matter, cannot meet all the needs of their students homeschool families are the same way. For example, Annabeth has been asking to learn to crochet, a skill that I do not know how to do. We will be asking her Nana to help her learn when she is a bit older. In that same way, I enjoy watching Mark teach the children to build things, to use tools, and nature skills. We enjoy watching the grandparents share their stories and knowledge with our children as well. We welcome all teachers in our home!

Annabeth loves to bake and cook! 
She has enjoyed baking with me at home and has also enjoyed baking and cooking with her grandparents. 

We are so thankful for our families who have been so supportive of our homeschooling journey.

*Our state government, as well as it seems the national government, is discussing giving homeschoolers vouchers. The vast majority of homeschoolers, including our family, do not want government funds. Government funds will mean government oversight. One of the many reasons we love to homeschool is that we, in Indiana at least, have the freedom to choose how, what, and when to teach our children all subjects. Our family is so thankful for this freedom. We also understand, that not wanting vouchers, means we will continue to fund our homeschool 100% on our own and we are prepared to do so in order to protect our Homeschool Freedom. 

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