I have not really spoken here about my family life. We’re a large family and we homeschool our children. In about 4th grade, we then have used a public school virtual curriculum, so technically we are teaching at home but not pure homeschooling. Well, my husband has been wanting to get our oldest son out into the public school. Mostly, it’s because he fights me on every turn with instruction. He wants to learn, he just doesn’t like me to teach him. And he doesn’t want to do his Algebra at all and only finishes because I push him to do so. He also seems bored and sort of picks at his siblings around here. My husband believes that if he’s gone, I’ll be less distracted with the behavior and will be able to teach the other kids more effectively.
Also, our son is always at home performing for me. He’s often worried about pleasing us as parents, and never is free to just work without worrying. He tells me everything he does, he shows me every lego set, drawing, and all. At some point, he needs to shift away from pleasing mom with everything. We began to notice that he gets compliments when away from us. We’re always told he’s helpful and is a great kid. He shines when he’s not worried what we think of him as parents. He performs well at home, so maybe without the pressure of every math problem being observed by Mom or Dad, he’d be free to fail and learn?
We know our oldest son is very strong in his belief in Christ. He’s willing to share, and unwilling to compromise at this point. He expressed a real fear of straying, that was one of the things on his “con” list. He also is worried he’ll argue with teachers about truth because he knows they are not going to be teaching from a Christian perspective. I agree, he might actually get into some discussions. He’s sort of strong willed and zealous on many points. It might get him into trouble.
So, we’ve decided to send him out. We do not have the money to put him in the private school (run by a reformed Presbyterian church). Even with scholarships, it’s a budget buster for us. I cannot really work that much with six children at home, so public school it is.
My problem is that I feel I’m personally letting my son down, sending him away. I also think homeschooling is superior in most cases. Sure, being there for your kids no matter what helps a lot. Teaching them to follow Christ and teaching them the bible is important and will help, but they can be tempted, they can be abused.
What gets me too are all the comments that he’ll learn some lessons he needs to learn out there. Really? It’s almost like people really believe a child must be in the public classroom to function. They must have these other teachers, these run ins with other students to succeed in life. I fear that what we will be doing is baking the cake to almost done, and then will just expect it to finish on the top of the stove while it’s cooling down.
My main problem is that my husband is not really strong on what he wants to do. I want them home until they graduate, and then want to be very careful about where they get their college education. We don’t have the money to just do whatever we want. My husband wants the problems at home to end, wants the boy to move on and do something different. He’s not on the same page as me. My husband does want our kids to be Christians, he wants them to have a good education, but he also wants me to be happy. So much of this is on me, and I haven’t always been the best organizer or doer in this house, so if my husband really wants our son to go, I feel I should honor his wish.
So, I sit here, enrollment is on Thursday, and it’s taking all of me to not get upset.