Before you jump into purchasing expensive packaged curriculum, or signing your child into centers that claim to do the homeschooling for you, STOP to think about why you wish to homeschool your child.
Do you feel that:
A. The schooling system sucks, hence the need to search for a better system?
B. Your child is too fast/too slow/too hyperactive/too bullied/too bored etc… in school?
C. You have a strong desire to spend your child’s first 10-12 schooling years learning and growing together because that feels like the most natural thing to do?
If your answer is A. You might need to rethink your decision because homeschooling is not another “system” to replace a bad system.
Homeschooling is a way of life that goes against the currents of conventional schooling. It is an approach to learning and living that brings out the natural potentials of the child by being gentle, loving and patient.
If your answer is B. you have valid reason to homeschool, but do look at the bigger picture too. Learning is not separate from life. Examine the reasons behind your child’s condition. The answers might surprise you!
If your answer is C. What are you waiting for? Jump right in!
Step #1: Have your BELIEF SYSTEM in place:
- BELIEVE that children are NATURAL LEARNERS – give them the freedom to think, to explore and to question, and they shall learn!
- BELIEVE in the importance of PLAY – unstructured, uninterrupted, uninhibited play – playing for its own sake.
“Success springs from a mixture of natural talent and opportunities to release it – opportunities that first arise through the messy, first-hand, unsystemised joy of child’s play…. If, we close close down children’s opportunities to play freely, we cut off their potential for genius.” (Sue Palmer, author of Toxic Childhood, Detoxing Childhood & 21st Century Boys).
- BELIEVE in cultivating NATURE, NURTURE & CULTURE in children to bring out their true potentials as life-long learners. Children are by nature inquisitive (nature). When we allow them space and freedom to explore, express and experiment (nurture) we are nurturing that natural learning into something higher – the experience and understanding of their world. When we support and encourage these kinds of learning consistently as a family and a community, we are creating a culture for natural lifelong passionate learners!
- BELIEVE that you as a PARENT should be the PRIMARY EDUCATOR of your child during the first 10-12 years of his/her developmental years. Because you love and understand your children best and you are genuinely motivated to impart your best skills, knowledge and life experiences to them.
- BELIEVE that education should encompass the knowledge, the practice and the understanding of the following:
- the PHYSICAL – food & nutrition, sports and recreation, the arts and self-expressions;
- the MENTAL – literary skills in thinking, questioning, reading, writing and counting;
- the ENVIRONMENTAL – awareness of one’s social and environmental responsibilities;
- the SOCIAL – skills in interpersonal relationships; e. the SPIRITUAL- the understanding that there is more to life than one’s ego and there is a higher purpose to life than one’s mere existence or indulgence.
How do we impart these knowledge? By our own example.
We parents need to adopt good values and adapt our lifestyles to one that is more healthy, happy and harmonious for ourselves, our family and our community. Because children learn by the examples shown by the adults, and adults need to teach by their own examples.
(End of part 1)