Some people are apprehensive of homeschooling their own kids because they say they don’t know enough. I usually respond by telling them about the study (Home Education Across the United States by Dr. Brian Ray, 1997) that shows no difference between kids’ testing results whether they are taught by college graduate parents or parents without a high school diploma. Or, I point out the multitude of great curriculum options – many of which lay out everything for you. But perhaps I should instead expound on how much the parents themselves can learn from homeschooling their children. I’ve learned quite a bit myself.
Some of you will be amazed at how little I knew before. I’ve learned more about:
– Animals: Did you know a panda isn’t a type of bear? I didn’t.
– History: I can name many of the seven wonders of the ancient world now. Names of people, places, and civilizations have images and stories to go with them, not just dates on a time line or dots on a map.
– Astronomy : I didn’t know Neptune had rings. Now, I can even identify several stars by name and I’m more aware of Venus’s bright light in the beautiful night sky.
– Math: Because I wanted to be able to check my oldest when doing oral math drills, I had to learn a lot more of my addition and subtraction facts by heart instead of working them out in my head.
– Spelling: I finally learned a good set of rules to use when trying to decide if I should drop or keep a silent final ‘e’ when adding a suffix. One of these days, I’ll even learn to use proper grammar.
– My Own Faith: I have learned several Bible verses and prayers by heart and can now name the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit. Most importantly, I’ve realized that knowing something with your head doesn’t translate to knowing it with your heart. Jesus was right that we should all be like little children when it comes to knowing, loving, and serving Him.
My children amaze me each week not only with their incredible memories (they don’t remember to brush their teeth, but they remember the words of a poem from three years ago), but also their capacity to love (whether an animal, a friend, or God).
God has taught me that it doesn’t matter what I already know, it matters how much I’m willing to learn.