Disclaimer: Intentional Living is not meant to judge, persuade, condemn or change. It is merely a sharing of ideas, thoughts and decisions.

intentionalliving

Oh, homeschooling.  Where to begin?

I prayed long and hard about how I would present this decision because like so many other parenting issues, the choice to homeschool (or not) is so very touchy.  When we tell others that we’ve chosen Option A, it comes across as a bashing of Option B.  People become defensive.  The word “judgment” is thrown around.  It’s amazing how quickly someone can become offended when another hasn’t chosen an identical path.

To be quite honest, our decision to homeschool really has nothing to do with you (unless you are my child reading this post, in which case, you are very smart to be reading so early and must have a rockstar teacher).  It’s simply an educated choice that our family has made with regard to how we spend our day.  I’m sharing it on the blog because I feel as though many young families are seeking alternatives to traditional schooling.  Homeschooling is certainly an alternative option.

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First, a bit of history:

I was raised in public school.  My parents both worked and my sister and I went to school during the day.  I excelled at school, even receiving college credits for a couple of AP classes I took.  I had some stellar teachers and some not-so-bright ones.  I LOVED playing school sports and competing against other schools.  I had many friends, some of which I still keep in contact with to this day.  Public school served me well!

Travis was raised in a homeschooling family.  His father worked and his mother stayed home and schooled the children (at the time, there were nine!).  He excelled at school, even receiving college credits during his high school years at the local community college.  Travis played soccer competitively up until he attended college.  He received a scholarship to UNC (where we met!)!  He’s a bit of a genius but still has the ability to interact beautifully in any social setting.  Homeschool served him well!

As you can see, the paths were different but the results similar.

Stick to the positives!

The negatives about public school really didn’t play into my decision to homeschool.  (read that again – it is KEY!  Because golly jeepers, I can’t think of a worse way to present this discussion – or any discussion for that matter, than by focusing on negatives!)

Rather, our decision was based on all the POSITIVES we saw associated with homeschooling.

  • I get to stay home with my children.
  • I get to teach them!  I get to experience their firsts!
  • I get to learn about the way they learn.  Are they more auditory??  More visual??
  • I get to choose the curriculum.
  • I can talk about God freely and without restriction.  I can make “Bible Study” an actual class!!
  • And my kids?….they get to spend the day with their mama.  They have a say in what we’ll learn about this week or next (I prescribe the fundamentals and they choose everything else based on what they want to learn about.  It’s HONEYBEES this week btw.).  They have flexibility written into their day.  AND they could (but we rarely do) spend the entire day with bedhead and pajama bottoms. Smile

All great things!

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Some days are easy.  Some are hard. 

Some days I question myself and my parenting.

Sometimes I want to run away and escape. 

Some days I wonder what it would be like to send them off and go to work.  

Some months it would be nice to have that extra income.

Sometimes I wonder if they’ll succeed later on.  Be “social awkward?”  Smart enough? 

But then I straighten up, stop questioning myself, and find comfort in the fact that most mamas feel this way about their kids, homeschoolers or not.  We all just want the BEST.  What does that look like exactly?  The definition varies from family to family.

As for the Wright family, we’re aiming to raise loving, ambitious, independent children who run after God and HIS plans…His heart.  We’re taking it one day at a time.  We’re covering this decision in prayer.  We’re being intentional about it.  And that’s the best we can do.

splendid…lindsay

**If there is interest, I’d love to write more about the day-to-day logistics, curriculum, our co-op, etc.  Please let me know if these topics interest you!!**

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More “Intentional Living” posts

An Introduction

Faith Based Living

  1. Amanda @ Diary of a Semi-Health Nut says:

    I’m not even a parent and I see all of the crazy parenting fights/disagreements everywhere so good work on formatting this post in a non-judgemental yet open format!

    I go back and forth whether or not I’d be able to stay home with the kiddos. Whether I could talk to kids all day long or if I could go all day without seeing my littles. Again, not even a parent yet, but these kinds of posts get me thinking! Can’t wait to be a mamma!

    Thank you for sharing this, Lindsay! I’d certainly be interested in “a day in the life” of teaching! Especially after seeing that small clip on Facebook of Clara singing and Henry reading haha

  2. Brooke says:

    Well, you know how I feel about this! ;) We start next week, and are so excited. Just got our curriculum (we’re doing “My Father’s World” as a base) and trying to read through it in the midst of unpacking the house! I would loooove to read more about things from your perspective and what you all are doing for school!

  3. char eats greens says:

    I LOVE everything about your approach in this post. And, I loved reading about your different upbringings. That really is fascinating!! I think organized sports definitely help with socialization for home schooled kids, for sure! I think I’m on the fence about what we’ll do in the future – luckily my little one is only 13 months, so we have some time to decide :).

  4. Kate @KateMovingForward says:

    Love how you’ve focused on the positives for YOUR family! I was homeschooled (K-12) by an amazing mom and my husband went primarily to public school, but that doesn’t mean there is an automatic right choice for us. Thanks goodness we have awhile to decide (first bebe due in 6 weeks)! Also, aside from a brief stint with permed bangs (what?!) and jumpers, I turned out pretty normal. ;)

  5. Julie says:

    Interesting topic! I really like how you showed both sides of the spectrum, and it seems like it’s working well for you all.

    I was homeschooled, along with my 3 sisters, through 5th grade. At that point, my mom put us all into school, the older two (myself and my sister) into public school and the younger two into private christian school. From my now adult POV, I would say that homeschooling for our family wasn’t the best. Two of my sisters had reading disabilities, which were corrected, but very stressful and hard for my mom. The stress from all this was felt throughout, and the other two of us, I think suffered at times because we didn’t have the attention that was needed. We had a pretty good childhood, but also some not so great memories, because I think it was too much for my mom and she felt a lot of pressure from the homeschooling community to meet certain standards that were hard for her to me in the circumstances she was dealt.

    We were involved in lots of sports, homeschool groups, church groups, etc., and through those I did see some families that excelled in homeschooling, so I know it can be done well. I just hope that if parents feel like it’s not working for them that it is OK to figure out a school setting that would help both parents & child. I think had my mom not felt so much pressure, mixed with two kids who needed extra attention, that had she put us into school, our childhood would have been a little happier and less stressful.

    It’s interesting being an adult now, and I feel sorry for my mom that she felt so much pressure and couldn’t do what would have helped her sanity some! There is no right or wrong, and I think each family should do what works for them. Also agree that if kids are sent to school, it’s still the parents jobs to help educate the kids! Good topic :)

  6. Christine @ Oatmeal Bowl says:

    Love you are following what is right for your family! So many of my friends, like at this moment, are switching their kids to homeschooling for many different reasons. And its nice that school districts and the like are making ‘alternative’ schooling more accessible.

  7. Leigh Ann @ Intentional By Grace says:

    I got a google alert for someone writing about “intentional living.” I’m glad I did. This post was so encouraging to me! I love how you approached this topic. I agree with the focus on the positives. And now that I’ve found you, I’d totally read about your homeschool routines, curriculums, etc. :)

  8. Allison says:

    First LOVED the way you approached this topic! Great job in writing about it :)! We don’t have kids yet but I would kill to homeschool them. So we will have to think about that someday- not worried about the kids but man I’m not sure I could do math past 3rd grade…. :)

  9. Heather @ Fit Mama Real Food says:

    I love the way you share this! Parenting can be so judgy, no matter what it’s about. I was homeschooled from K-5 and think there are so many benefits, but I do think going to public schooled helped me be less socially awkward… so ya there are benefits to both. I know homeschooling will be something we consider in the next few years for our kiddosI’d love to hear what your day is like! Pre-k will be homeschooled no doubt by this mama. :)

  10. Kristina says:

    You ROCK! Thanks for being such an inspiration. :)
    My husband and I intend on homeschooling as well. We see so many positives from it.

  11. Emily says:

    Loved this post and the emphasis on keeping it positive, Lindsay! I would LOVE to see more posts about homeschooling and teaching activities. I’ve never known anyone who has home-schooled their kiddos or who has been home-schooled, and I think it seems like such a great alternative to public schooling!.

    … and as someone who works with education on a national level all day and sees the positives AND extreme negatives of our education system, the whole thing is fascinating to me!

  12. Tina @ Best Body Fitness says:

    I love how you presented this. I know that homeschooling isn’t the right fit for us but have some friends who do so and I highly respect their decisions. Every family needs to determine what is right for them and then show love and support to other families doing what is right for them.

  13. Natalie @ Free Range Human says:

    Very interesting! My husband and I don’t think we are having children, but we’ve recently discussed the possibility of homeschooling if we change our minds. I’m curious if you’ve considered what you might do when they get a little older and start getting into more intense subject matter. I know my strengths do not lie with math so the idea of having to teach Alg. 1 terrifies me a little!

  14. Carrie @Shrinkingcarrie says:

    I would LOVE to hear more about what you are doing! I am planning on putting my girls in public school because I’m afraid I lack the structure to keep them on track, but we live in a rural area where the school system is lacking. I would love to add to what she is learning at pre-school and find some fun ways to help her learn at home!

  15. Kelly says:

    This was a very well written and thoughtful post. I’m a second grade public elementary school teacher and I’ll admit that before I had Trey I simply did not understand homeschooling. I looked as it as a direct bash against public educators. Now that I’ve become a mom I’ve changed my tune on a number of preconceived notions I had; homeschooling being one of them. I can see how spending the day with your child and teaching them, learning with and about them, and allowing then to take ownership of their learning is powerful. I have to go back to work in 2 weeks and it is breaking my heart. Trey is staying with a nanny and while I like her I still don’t think she can do as good of a job as I can simply (and only) because I’m HIS mom. So homeschooling? I get it. Totally.

  16. Jessica says:

    First, I love this post. I kind of thought I was going to be upset by it when I saw it in my feedly. My father and sister are public school teachers, and I was raised in public schools. So many times homeschooling families come at this topic from the negatives. They trash the schooling system as a reason for homeschooling. In my community, the homeschooling families discuss their choice in terms of the dangers of public schools – it’s offensive! Like those who choose public schooling are putting their kids at risk.

    I love how you approach this topic. I agree 100% – stick to the positives! You make homeschooling sound like a gift for your kids from you (which it is!). I think if more families approached the discussion this way, people would be more open to homeschooling or at least discussing it. By coming at the discussion this way, the pro-public schoolers don’t have to be defensive and we can actually talk and share ideas. Thank you for sharing this Lindsay!

  17. Katie says:

    Ugh, I love it so much. This was the perfect way to present it! I am so excited to start more formal schooling with Adrienne…I’m thinking next fall when she’s 3 1/2. I would love, love, love a day-to-day logistics post!

  18. Nikki says:

    I love this! I live in Raleigh, and We sent our son off to kindergarten this past fall with heavy hearts. I desperately want to homeschool, but my husband and I are trying to figure out the logistics of it, as we both work FT (normal 8-5 hours) and money is tight. We can’t afford to pay someone to be home with my son during the day while we work.

    I’m searching in my heart to figure out what is best – staying in our comfortable house and neighborhood (where my quiet son has flourished amongst our neighbor friends and kids), or downsize in house/neighborhood so that we can afford for one of us to stay home.

    I’m hoping we can figure it out – I want to homeschool for all the reasons you listed above!

    Keep up the great work – I think we’d all definitely love to hear more details about your HS!

  19. Colleen @ The Lunchbox Diaries says:

    I love this post, Lindsay! I went to a small, Catholic school from grades 1 – 8, and went to public high school. I much preferred the smaller school and being raised in the church. We don’t even have kids, and I’m already wondering what we’ll do about school when we DO have them. I’d love if you wrote more about this!

  20. Shawnna says:

    We’ve talked about this before so you know I’m all about soaking up any info you’re willing to divulge on the day to day, curriculum, and basic how the heck is it going today! And thanks for this!! I’m still not there yet but still praying and taking any info I can get!!

  21. Allison says:

    I would love for you to write more on this topic!! We are beginning to consider homeschooling our 6 month old in the future :)

  22. Presley @ Run Pretty says:

    I teach at a public school and I *still* sometimes question homeschooling in the future if I were to take some time off. I think the main reason we probably won’t consider it is because Maddux might be an only child for a while and I can’t see that being as beneficial to him.

    I think the main thing to remind ALL parents is that we should ALL be homeschooling, no matter where our children actually attend school. So many parents rely on “school” to teach their children everything and that is such a painful thing to witness. Parents are teachers whether they want to be or not. ;)

  23. Brittany (Healthy Slice of Life) says:

    Wonderful post and I’d really like to know more. For example, where did you start when you became interested in homeschooling? I’m in NC too and just for research sake at this point, I’d love to know where I could begin learning more about the homeschooling option. I have so many questions!

    I’d love a genuine perspective on how tough the days are. What are the pros and cons? Is it hard teaching two different ages? How do you manage your time? What will you do when baby boy arrives? Do you ever feel like you need some time away? What will the kids do to ensure social development?

    Whew, sorry for drilling you! It’s a topic that David and I have talked about, but we both (obviously ;)) have a lot of questions. If you could point me to a resource, I’d greatly appreciate it!

    • lindsaymwright says:

      Great questions! I’ll try to answer all of them as best I can.
      First, in NC, the only two requirements for homeschooling is that you 1) submit an end of year attendance record (kinda funny) and 2) you give a standardized, proctored test at the end of the year. You don’t have to start submitting any of this to the state until the child’s 7th birthday. NCHE.com is a great resource for all this! I also use friends and family who homeschool as my resources.

      Since Henry is in K/1st grade and Clara doing PreK, the days are super easy. We school for about 2 hours a day but it’s broken up into 15-30 minute sessions (primarily focusing on reading, spelling, phonics and math). When the baby comes, we’ll just work around his nap schedule. Henry and I school during Clara’s afternoon nap. To socialize, we’re part of a homeschool co-op that meets once a week and has extra activities. Plus church, small group, sports and theater.
      Hope all that helps! Email me if you have more questions!

  24. Linz @ Itz Linz says:

    i LOVE how you identified that you and travis BOTH had positive schooling experiences, though different! right now, do you plan on homeschooling all the way through like travis had growing up?

  25. Katie says:

    You give me so many great ideas to improve my “mothering”! :) I would be interested in some more information about it! I might not home school but I’m always up for ideas on daily activities and educating my little guy!!!

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