Susan W. is a homemaking mom to 3 children. She began home education 18 years ago having successfully graduated 2 of her children. While the third child, age 10, has several years remaining in their family school. When asked what it was that led her to homeschool, the answer might be kind of surprising.
“I used to teach in public school. I spent time in K and in third grade. I loved my time there, and LOVED seeing the light bulbs turn on over kids’ heads as they caught a concept. I wanted to be the one having all that fun with my own children.”
Susan’s husband, John, is a military man, when he has been deployed she has found that homeschooling life can be a bit lonely. Even though he works in the military, they don’t live near his military co-workers. Additionally, their extended family doesn’t live nearby so she has learned to draw closer to her church family for familial support.
Yet, being in an area that has quite a large homeschooling presence there are several Christian-based co-ops to choose from so they do have opportunity to connect with other homeschool moms and children. She shared with me that about once a month she’ll join in a mom’s night out with no real agenda other than fun and fellowship. In her down-time, she enjoys reading for relaxation.
She has two boys, Bryan age 23 and JT age 19. Both boys are currently in college. JT was able to utilize state grants to complete an autoCAD certification through their local community college earning collegiate credits while completing his high school education. Don’t you think that is an excellent example of a homeschool superhero mom researching and learning what’s available to extend the learning for her student.
Please do not pin or share this family photo.
Her third child, Luci, is all over the educational map with what level she’s on. She is utilizing first grade materials for reading, K for math, and 8th grade for reasoning skills (she is able to discuss CS Lewis works!). For Susan, she finds homeschool to be “total freedom” because in a homeschool setting each child can have an education tailored to meet their unique needs and abilities.
In my opinion, that is one of the best things about home education, being able to truly customize an education for a child. I see that Luci, has some asynchronous development. But the reality is, most children don’t fit the standard curriculum box. So home education offers a solution that public schools simply can’t.
This is, at this time, the biggest worry Susan has, her youngest child’s learning disabilities. She’s also concerned that as this little one grows up, they are growing older as well. She thoughtfully shared:
“We are older now…I worry that we won’t be there when she is older and still needs us.”
Susan has leaned toward the Charlotte Mason approach to education, but has discovered that the classical approach works well with her youngest. Utilizing a co-op with a classical approach their lessons include the weekly requirements. Then, they work on learning math and reading. Allowing her daughter to have a lot of freedom for interest-led learning she’s currently working on learning to cook and sew fashion dog clothes.
In their homeschool you are most likely to find Susan and Luci schooling around the kitchen table. Her goal is to have the table cleaned up in time to server supper. It’s around that table that dad jumps in whenever needed to do science, especially experiments, which she, Susan, doesn’t like. John, isn’t afraid to get messy with experiments and hands-on activities and whenever he’s needed he takes on the role of educational disciplinarian. He is the one to take on a stubborn child who is not respecting mama.
Of her husband as educator Susan states:
“He’ll work on studies with that child until the child wants to be back with mom. John is great that way!”
Sounds to me like he’s a great support for her.
Looking ahead her concern for homeschooling lies outside her domain. It lies with those who make laws that govern education.
“I am concerned that homeschooling may not be as free in future years as it is now—that we (all homeschoolers) will be saddled with onerus laws.”
Her favorite resources for homeschooling are found on the internet. Of course, with free downloads, unit studies, videos, search engines and more the possibilites are truly limitless. So you can see why it’s her go to resource. For hands-on activities her family dives into board games. So many skills can be learned through those games, don’t you think?
Here’s why Susan is a real life superhero homeschool mom; because her primary reason for beginning the homeschool path was to see the spark of light click as learning happened with her own children. Too often, we think others are better suited to teach our children, but once you discover the joy in their eyes, you understand that home is the right place for children to learn and grow alongside their moms and dads as well.
Can you relate to Susan’s homeschool experience? If so, share why in comments.