Today’s post is written by a former kindergarten teacher who fully expected to put her own children in public kindergarten once they were old enough. She realized, though, that all-day kindergarten was not really what very young children need. They need to be with their parents and be encouraged to learn and explore. They need to be allowed to be children–to run and play and have fun! In this post, Amy tells her story.
The teacher who wants to have control over her own child’s education
Teaching full day kindergarten showed me that young children should not be in a classroom all day, five days a week. Children should be playing, exploring, being kids. Unfortunately, with the now state-funded preschool day-care, full-day preschool and kindergarten have become the norm with the false message of a “Head Start in Learning.” Being in a full day classroom with 24 children in an urban environment was taxing on me and my students’ diverse learning needs. I was unable to give them the education that each of them deserved. I encouraged parental involvement, but parents were simply not as involved as their children so obviously needed.
I always knew I wanted to be a stay at home mom. I thought I would homeschool my kids for their first years or so, and I figured I’d have the perfect working schedule once my kids went to school. Now, after researching homeschool curriculum and realizing how much fun I have learning alongside my son in our at-home preschool, I know that homeschooling is right for our family. I want to influence my children morally and Biblically. I pray for the Godly wisdom to set boundaries and put them in the “protective bubble” that the anti-homeschooling crowd looks down upon. Yes, I can and I will shield my children from vulgar books, videos, media, and bus conversations. They can be socialized in so many more ways than sitting in a classroom and wasting their precious time sitting at a desk for 8 hours every day.
I encourage any mom who has ever considered teaching her own children to seek it out. Research the laws of your state and look for free and inexpensive curriculums online. I am only at the beginning, but I’d rather be teaching them than allow a complete stranger, un-chosen by me, to teach and educate and shape them. I believe in hands-on learning and teaching every student at the level of that student’s individual needs and learning styles.
The more and more I read other blogging moms and talk to homeschooling parents, I am drawn to Classical education and how it edifies the whole child. I want my children to have strong grammar and phonics foundations. I want them to learn Latin, Hebrew, great works of art, and read brilliant and timeless literature. I want to challenge and edify them. I know that my child would not be wholly served, educationally and behaviorally, in a public school setting. My son is very rambunctious. Would he be labeled as “that kid who is too loud or active in class”? My daughter is quiet and submissive. Would she be ignored and unchallenged, as she passed through her classes, quietly and non-energetically? I saw both situations happen in my short time as a public school teacher. I know my children best and I am blessed beyond belief that God has entrusted their lives and education to me.
Amy, M.Ed, at Wildflower Ramblings is a former kindergarten teacher. She homeschools her 3 1/2 year old son as her 18 month old daughter tags along.