YOU Are the Best Teacher


How many of you have had to answer the question, “How do you know that you’re teaching them the same thing they’d be learning in public school?”

I’ve got to admit that, not only have I had to answer this question, but I used to ask it, too. I was an elementary education major in college when I first met a homeschool family and I cringe now at how I absolutely grilled that mom.

As a general rule, I’d say that people really don’t realize what an offensive question that is. (I certainly didn’t.) They have been indoctrinated with the idea that some decision-maker in the educational system knows what is grade-appropriate for every child, and that all children/schools should basically follow that course.

But we know better. Just as children potty train at different ages, we know that they can learn different skills at different times. As far as I’ve been able to tell, nowhere in Scripture did the Lord ordain that all children should learn cursive handwriting in third grade or state history in fourth.

Whenever someone questions you about what your child is learning as compared to their child in public school or the cousins or whomever, just smile sweetly and tell them that you all are focused on another topic/skill at this time, but that you’ll definitely be covering that.

Homeschooling gives us the freedom to individualize our children’s educations, so don’t be intimidated into following the public school’s agenda. (It’s not that great a model.) YOU are your child’s first and best teacher. God gave those children to YOU to train up in the way that they should go–even according to their bent.

Comparisons are normal, I suppose, even if they aren’t always beneficial. But if nothing else, I hope they make us thankful for the freedom to do what’s best for our children rather than just lumping them in with a group. Check out the article called Escaping The Homeschool Matrix. It gets right to the heart of the matter!

Biographical Information

Copyright, 2009. All rights reserved by author below. Content provided by The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC.

Nancy Carter is happy to call herself a relaxed homeschooler. After years of teaching in the public school system, she cherishes being able to learn together with her own children. She and her husband Tony have three sons and are learning all kinds of new things together on their farm. You can read more of her family’s Lessons Learned on the Farm at www.HomeschoolBlogger.com/tn3jcarter or you can email her at tn3jcarter@wildblue.net.