Why Do I Homeschool?
Why do I homeschool? You'll ask yourself this question all through your teaching years... sometimes when you're on the brink of quitting... sometimes when you genuinely need to re-think your reasons in order to regain your focus or find a new direction.
It's an important question... so I've dedicated this page to sharing answers that other moms have reached in order to help you think through your own.
Why do you homeschool? On this page, there are no right or wrong answers to the question. So read the answers others have given and feel free to take a moment to add your own... Just use the form below.
On a forum, I found Elizabeth's answer to the question, "What does it mean when someone says they 'homeschool because of God?'" I think she has done a beautiful job of responding to that question. She has graciously allowed me to share her answer here...
I can see how the statement "I homeschool because of God" could be confusing. Are they saying that they homeschool because God told them to, or because they think God wants them to, or because God likes them to, or because their religion requires it, or what?
Saying "I homeschool because of God" is a lot like saying "I homeschool because of my husband". Are they saying they homeschool because their husband wants them to, or because of their husband's job, or because of his schedule, or because he makes you, or what?
I, like you, homeschool for many reasons. I am firmly convinced that homeschooling is highly superior educationally, both in academics and in social and spiritual training. I love homeschooling, for its flexibility, practicality, and its sincere joy. I have tasted the best in the world and could never settle for less!
But with that being said, philosophically at least, my reasons for homeschooling are more about God than anything else, and I think I can speak for a lot of Christian parents when I explain why.
For one, homeschooling is clearly commanded in the scriptures. A much used reference is Deuteronomy 6:5-7, which says:
And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.
All throughout the Bible, there are hundreds of specific and clear commands for parents to teach their children. Of all the passages about children, not one of them mentions teachers.
The Bible gives extremely detailed instructions for the building and running of the temple, the responsibilities of priests, and the function of the Israelite government, but no where does it give a single instruction for the running of a school - that is, for the raising up the next generation through the means of community education.
Schools are not part of God's plan for educating children. Parents, not priests, not scribes, not pastors, not villages, and certainly not the state, are God's chosen teachers according to the scriptures.
So when someone says that they homeschool "because of God", it probably has something to do with their conviction that the scriptures teach that this is part of God's plan, and their belief that the scriptures are indeed the word of God and should be followed as such.
The other aspect that effects the conviction of many parents to homeschool is the aspect of their worldview, or more specifically, the age-old question of, 'Who do children belong to: parents or the state?'
It is a good question. The state believes that it is its right and responsibility to oversee and dictate the upbringing of children. Many people knowingly or sometimes subconsciously believe this (for many, it is all they have ever known so they accept it without conscious thought).
Others - specifically the parents I am referring to - believe that children are the property of God and the responsibility of parents (as parents are the ones to whom God gives his children to raise).
Most people still believe that the reason we have (so-called) "community" school is to make sure that all of our citizens know how to read and add sums. But when you consider that after thirteen years and thousands of hours and dollars later, a huge majority of its graduates can do neither, you begin to wonder what the true goal is.
Government schools are not about academics (they fail horribly at this) for if they were, they could accomplish such simple tasks in all the time and money that they're given. You can easily teach a child (who is eager to learn) to read and do basic arithmetic in about 100 hours. Many private tutoring businesses regularly take government school failures and teach them to read in 72 hours better than the school did in 12 years. Schools are not about teaching the three R's - their primary function, purpose, and goal is to create a loyal and dependent workforce, not well-rounded or well-learned people.
The goal, purpose, and function of educating my child is to raise a knowledgeable, competent, wise, God-serving entrepreneur. This is basically the goal of most parents, but the government school's goal is at total odds with this goal.
For one, they are not about creating knowledgeable, creative thinkers - they are by function about creating conformists (you have to naturally conform when you're in a room full of 20 other kids and one teacher dictating how you spend every minute of your day. You have to be a conformist thinker because creative thinking is looked down upon - what they want is right answers, not creative inquiries).
By function, the school is set up in a 'fools teaching fools' (peer group) environment, which is the exact opposite of a breeding ground for wisdom.
By function the school is about creating citizens who are dependent (dependent on Washington rather than living off the land, for example).
And lastly and most importantly, the school is by function designed to produce loyal servants of the state (good, reliable wage-earners) rather than loyal servants of God.
There is no such thing as a neutral education.
Education is, by definition, hopelessly religious. In our schools today, God is not ignored, he is adamantly opposed.
How? It is not through teachers preaching from the pulpit that God is not real, that religion is poison, etc. But more so, it is through the entire curriculum.
A curriculum CANNOT be neutral - it will either exalt man or exalt God. The latter is a Christian worldview (exalting God in all things). The former is a humanistic worldview (exalting man in all things) and it is the religion of our schools.
The entire curriculum from reading to art to physical education focuses on the central point of the superiority of man in all things.
So when parents are convicted to homeschool their children and give them a Christian education, it is not about including daily devotions or religious studies in their curriculum - it is an entire worldview that they are imparting to their children, about the things that are important in life, what the whole meaning of life is, and how they are to live in light of this revelation.
So I certainly can't speak for all parents, but I think that most Christian homeschoolers who say that they homeschool "because of God" are basing their convictions off of one or both of these lines of thought - that is, 1) The commands of God to do so, and 2) The basic worldview that is incompatible with the state's worldview.
I don't think that parents being "afraid" of bad influences is the underlying reason for most homeschoolers, although that may be part of it.
It's not that they believe that God is somehow "incapable" of protecting their children if that is truly His will for them, nor do I think that it will suffice to simply send our kids off with a wish and a prayer and hope that God will protect them from seven hours a day of bad influences and humanistic indoctrination.
If you lived in Nazi Germany, you certainly wouldn't send your six-year-old off to the Hitler-run schools and expect him to graduate a stronger Christian. You wouldn't send your child off to a Muslim school in the Middle East and expect the same, either.
But we think we can send our children off to a state-run, humanistic institution and expect him to graduate untainted?
I think that most of us were so unaware of the indoctrination we received in public school that we don't even begin to realize how powerful it was, even though it was, to us, "subtle".Hope this answers your question - although it is just my take on it, my two cents, but I hope it was helpful.
This space is waiting for your comments...
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