Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Dangers of Homeschooling {repost} 
Posted: 30 Aug 2012 07:55 AM PDT
I love homeschooling. I think it is the best choice that is out there for most children in today’s culture. However, having grown up in the homeschooling community from a young child on up, there are a few things that concern me about the homeschooling enviroment. We try to keep a close watch on these things within our own family, trying to stand guard against them.
Here are a few things that our family watches for.
1. The danger of burning out and giving up. 
Over the years I have seen this happen time and time again. If we are not careful to stand guard against this, as mother’s we can quickly become burnt out and give up. Our children are then sent off to private or public school, and our vision we had for why we were keeping our children home becomes lost in the relief that they are gone.
Ways to guard against this: 
Spend time in prayer with God constantly asking for strength.
Try to surround yourself with encouraging friends or mentors.
Give yourself breaks. Don’t expect perfection, and don’t be too hard on yourself if you take a day off now and then.
2. The danger of assuming that your children will turn out alright because you are homeschooling. 
I hear more and more stories of homeschooling students who rebel (as do public school students, so I don’t blame it on the homeschooling!). My own brother does not follow the Lord now and he was homeschooled almost all his life. The pulls and temptations of the world are still present for homeschooling students, even though they are at home more.
Ways to guard against this:
Don’t grow lax in trying to reach their hearts, and win them to the Lord simply because you homeschool and are with them all day long.
As they become teenagers, don’t let your guard down and suddenly let them become absorbed with the things of the world. Just because you turn that “magical” number ( I.E. 13 or 16) does not mean that the child might be ready for a part time job, or a smart phone, or your complete trust. Stand guard against the world’s influence until you truly see their heart is won over to the Lord. For some they might be in the Lord’s army, devoted and ready to serve Him when they are 16. Most will still need your support as they battle through the world’s charms.
3. Watch out for prideful attitudes in your children. 
This is something that is not talked about very often, but it’s something that concerns my husband and I. We have recognized that homeschooling children can become self absorbed easily, and even become a little proud of their lifestyle as they are different than other people. If you try to walk a different path than the Lord through convictions or just lifestyle preferences (you might be walking a different path if you homeschool, believe in courtship, you don’t have a tv in your home, you home church or go to a family integrated church, you give birth at home, you are convicted on modesty, some might wear head coverings. The list could go on…). Our children start realizing that they walk a different path, and they might start mocking others who do not believe like they do. As homeschooling families it’s easy to feel alone. We don’t want our children to grow up thinking because your family stands alone in many beliefs that it means they are holier and more righteous than everyone else. It’s a dangerous attitude that is oftentimes very hard to recognize, and once recognized it’s very hard to correct.
Ways to guard against this:
Teach your children to have a heart for others. If they have compassion on the weak, the sickly, and the poor, then they will not be so quick to mock the people who do not follow the Lord like they should.
It’s not all about your child. Don’t raise them to be so self absorbed that they can’t see other people’s cares and burdens. Try to go beyond just your immediate family and reach out to others. At Christmas time my sister and her husband take my children shopping for the Operation Christmas Shoebox project. My children are very excited to pick out gifts for little children they have never met, and we talk throughout the year about what those children might be doing with the things they received. We also have befriended a widow down the street from us, and try to visit her once in a while on Sunday evenings. Our children are the only grandchildren on both sides of the family, so it’s easy for them to have that “I’m special” attitude, but we do recognize it and are trying very hard to fight against it.
Talk to them about humbleness, and read them scriptures about being humble. Remind them that without the Lord they are nothing, and they constantly need His spirit and strength to make it in this life.
Homeschooling is a great blessing, and one that we should not take lightly. Raising children is a huge job, and when you add homeschooling it is an even bigger job! It is only through the Lord’s help that we can successfully raise godly young people that are desiring to follow God. It is my prayer that we all will persevere and fight the good fight!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Your comment is awaiting moderation. Thanks for your patience!