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Thursday, June 23, 2011

.Our Homeschool Philosophy.

When I was in college studying Elementary Education, I was required to write a paper on my philosophy of education. I was struck with the fact that I had never done that for homeschooling. So I have been thinking through my philosophy of homeschooling. I know a philosophy will help me evaluate our purpose in homeschooling and decipher our core values as we implement the education of our children into our life. I hope to be able to use this as a filter for our curriculum, our days, our community groups, etc. Because I am an imperfect person, no philosophy that I ever come up with will be perfect, so it, as well as everything in my life, will always be filtered through the Word of God, and is therefore subject to change as I grow in my faith and in wisdom.


This homeschool philosophy is deeply personal and will not resonate with everyone. However, I wanted to share it in case it gave another family a starting point for developing their own philosophy or something to think and discuss in their own endeavors to homeschool. By developing a philosophy you can choose the path that your family will take. No two families will be alike. A philosophy will make researching and purchasing curricula and resources and deciding on methodology and style easier as you have a guideline that you will want them to match up with. A homeschool philosophy should support every area of your homeschool and not undermine it. So pave your path first, and then buy your curriculum. This is what I came up with for our homeschool philosophy.

And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with your entire being and with all your might. These words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. Deuteronomy 6:6-7

We believe that God has placed the responsibility of our children's education - specifically training them to love God with their entire being- on our shoulders - their parents. Because we take very seriously this responsibility we feel it is in our family's best interest to be educated at home by Mom and Dad.

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness. 2 Timothy 3:16

The Bible permeates every area of our life and is what we base our life upon - including the education of our children.

We believe that the purpose of education is to give us a better understanding of God and His desires for our life, that we may grow in our love for Him and for His world and as a result that we would spread His love and redemptive story to every person in our path.

We are educating our children for life. We are not focusing on a specific career or college, but on life as a whole. Homeschooling for us is a lifestyle, while we do incorporate schedules and curricula, we are not dictated by such - we will allow life to happen.

Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little.
Isaiah 28:9-1o

A love for learning and an internal motivation to learn is very important. We will use resources that will excite and delight our children and that point back to their fascinating Creator and His creation. We understand that a child's mind is fertile soil, and we will capitalize on this while they are young and moldable. We will implement memorization and emphasize fundamentals during the early years, and later we will build upon these fundamentals and provide our children with the ability to evaluate, analyze and critically think through all they will encounter in our world and in turn be able to communicate their beliefs effectively with the world.

Each of our children will be treated as an individual, and we will work to foster their specific strengths and build up their weaknesses. We will not focus on comparing our children with each other or with children outside of our family, but rather we will encourage our children to learn and grow in the special way that God created them to.

We will make our home a peaceful, loving, Christ-focused environment where our children can thrive and grow. We will teach our children godly character traits and how to live a disciplined life. We agree with Charlotte Mason that education is indeed "an Atmosphere, a Discipline, a Life.”


If you homeschool (or even if you don't) do you have a philosophy of education?

In my next homeschooling post I will share specifically the resources and curricula that we will be using for this fall.
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