I recently started reading this book:
It is designed for parents who want to homeschool their children using the classical method. I always thought homeschoolers were wierdos, and I have met quite a few of them since I went to Christian college. I have come to the conclusion that if your parents are wierdos, you will probably be a wierdo as well, whether you are homeschooled or not.
Anyway, I never thought I would even consider homeschooling for two reasons. First, as I said before, I thought homeschooled kids were wierd and, second, I work. In the past couple years, I’ve heard horror stories from my friends whose children are in traditional school. Political correctness has taken the place of common sense, and government control has become too strong for my tastes. I totally get why people homeschool their kids! Public school is fundamentally a government organization and as such is often mismanaged. Please let it be clear that I am NOT knocking teachers. Teachers work hard for crap money, but they are forced to work within the confines of a broken system. Standardized testing and regulations from bureaucrats who are far removed from a classroom make their jobs far more difficult than they need to be.
With all the problems in the public schools, I decided to do a little reading about homeschool. The book above is the first I read and I fell in love with the method. The only problem is, I love working outside the home and honestly don’t want to give that up. I don’t think my husband would want to give up my income either, so homeschooling is probably not going to happen for my family.
Even if I choose not to homeschool, this book has given me a lot of confidence in my ability to educate my children at home. I’ve also become convinced that it is MY responsibility to educate my children, not the school system. That may sound odd, but I think a big part of the problem with public schooling is that parents write off responsibility for educating their own children. Like, “I don’t have to teach my kid to read; that’s what school is for.” Reading “The Well Trained Mind” has convinced me that I need to work with my children at home and not rely on the school system to do it for me.
“The Well Trained Mind” uses the Classical Method of education, which is not used in public schools. Great emphasis is placed on reading and writing because, if a child can read and write, she will be able to teach herself anything she wants to learn. Math, science and history are emphasized next, with greater emphasis as a child ages. I love the way they teach history chronologically so that each period builds on the next in a natural progression. I am just very, very impressed with the method and I plan to supplement my children’s traditional school with our own projects at home using this method.
With all this in mind, I have decided I want to teach Elle to read before she starts kindergarten at age 5. Before she starts preschool in August, I want her to know her entire alphabet with the sounds each letter makes, how to write her name and how to count to at least twenty. This will be our project for the summer. In my next post, I’ll tell you how I’m doing it and what’s working for us…