This year my daughter Sabrina finishes off her Grade 6. As I was busy doing the admin work of homeschooling, It dawned on me it has been 6 years of homeschooling my daughter. Has it been that long? It always feels like its only been a year, a month – a day ago. You see there has never been a moment that I felt I was an “expert” in the field of homeschooling. Just when I thought I have mastered it, they grow a year older. New lessons are to be taught and they too change in behavior and go through stages in their life. But today, I am celebrating because this year, I will have my very own grade school graduate! So allow me to emote a bit because this was not an easy journey but it was all worth it.
People ask me why I chose to homeschool and how did I start?
The truth is there was no outside force that pushed me to homeschool. My kids were not bullied, they excelled in pre-school, financially we could afford and I was a busy career woman. But it was when I surrendered my life to Jesus that God started speaking to me of UNDOING ME. This was part of the UNDO. In a retreat, God gave me a special revelation of his plan of restoring my family. I did not understand how but I trusted and believed that He would do what He declared in his Word. While writing in my journal, the Lord impressed in my heart the word: HOME SCHOOL. I remember crying out because I was wrestling with God. I made all the excuses: Lord I am too busy. There is so much going on in my career. I don’t know how to homeschool. I don’t have degree in Education. My life is still in chaos. But as soon as I left that retreat, that following Sunday, I got a flyer for a homeschool conference. I cried again because this was for me a clearer sign to move to that direction. I still struggled. I said to myself, I will attend as a critic but I am still not sold to doing it. When I attended that homeschool conference I saw lives of children and parents change. Their kids were holistically excellent. Their confidence and social interaction skills were that of adults and they were naturally brilliant. In short, the Lord softened my heart.
I took that leap of faith. I signed up to homeschool Sabrina. Of course, you will have your fair share of critics and persecution from all sides.
“Kawawa naman anak mo, walang social interaction.”
“Why homeschool? Wala ka naman oras.”,
“You are gambling the life of your child here.”
HOME SCHOOLING did not come natural to me. I still had some traditional ways I implemented and my expectations were way off the roof. But God wanted me to eat as much humble pie as I could get. The Lord revealed how crooked and wicked my heart was. When I saw how other parents presented their kids portfolio my competitive nature came out. Sabrina was then 6 years old, I already was forcing her to put all her output work in PowerPoint and video. Our first year was a terrible start. Many times God asked me: Who are you trying to impress? Who ultimately is the great teacher of your kids? Why are you angry, burnt out and stressed? God showed me how selfish I was and that my motives were wrong. I was a monster MOM!
God in his grace taught me to UNDO even my ways with my kids. It was something not magically changed over night, I learned over time. I attended parenting seminars and studied God’s design to parenting. I learned to be an intentional parent to my daughter. Together with my small group of young parents, we are gearing up our ways to intentionally disciple our kids with the right perspective and getting them ready to make a stand and face the world they will walk upon. I changed my teaching style from traditional School to Life on Life. I enjoy sharing real life truths to my kids and showing how the Bible is the source of truth, direction, destiny and destination. I listen more and ask questions to verify their thoughts and lead them to a clearer understanding.
In her last portfolio presentation she decided she was going to share her thoughts on her Family Consumer Science Class – it’s a Home Economics elective. Its curriculum included sewing, cooking, interior decorating, manners and then the last part talked about relationships. This is a portion of what she presented:
Looking back… I did a “Counterflow”. When I decided to deny my wants and follow Jesus, with all my heart including the tears and hardwork, I know that my daughter is in that direction of being fully equip to handle the challenges and rise above it in today’s world.
On another note, I want to personally invite you to start being intentional in your parenting. Join me and invest in a one-day parenting conference this October 25, 2014 and learn how to counterflow and raise successful kids in today’s world. This radically changed me. It will radically change you too.