Thursday, February 10, 2011

Why We Homeschool: Reason Number 2

This morning for tot-school Alexa was doing a matching color game. She was doing pretty well, so I ran upstairs to grab the video camera so that I could share it with Daddy later. While I was away, Treyton stepped up and continued to review her colors with her. It was a proud moment for me to watch the two of them interact and I realized yet another reason why I love that we homeschool.

For us, education is not just about teaching our kids what to learn, it’s about instilling a lifestyle of learning and teaching. 

After posting a recent video of the kids each saying the pledge of allegiance, we received a lot of comments about how surprising it was that Treyton didn’t yell at Lexie while she was obviously intruding on his “pledge time”. And to be honest, I was a little surprised myself. But the truth is, he tends to be very patient with her during school, wanting to teach her and allowing her to get away with things he wouldn’t otherwise.

I don’t want to paint an unrealistic picture, so let me clarify by saying: our life isn’t perfect, and sibling-teaching/learning doesn’t always go smoothly, in fact I hear the two of them “going at it” as I type this. Treyton is not always patient and understanding with his sister and Alexa does not always take kindly to Treyton’s attempts to help. But it is something that happens on a fairly regular basis. And I believe that the primary reason it happens is because we are deliberate about encouraging it.

The chance for them to learn from and to teach one another (and eventually other’s in their lives) is an ability that is naturally promoted during the process of homeschooling. When your home is the classroom, you’re children can’t help but to be a part of one another’s schooling.

Since our children were very young we have done whatever we could to create a love of learning, and one effective way we’ve done this is to create an environment where they are not only able to, but encouraged to, share what they’ve learned with one another and to use their special gifts and abilities to teach each other. A regular part of their day (including play) is side-by-side learning and teaching. It’s not uncommon to find the two older kids playing school down stairs, reading stories to one another on their beds or working on songs/verses together, without any parental interference. They have at their disposable more than enough resources to play with, use and teach with, even when we’re not technically logging “school hours”, and they take pride in doing these things together.

IMG_0062Treyton takes as much pride in what Alexa is learning as Alexa does, and that’s because he realizes he’s a part of it. And vice-versa, when Treyton says the pledge, or a verse or where he’s from, Alexa joins in, because she’s a part of what he’s learning. Her presence and desire to be a part of Treyton’s school pushes Treyton to do better.

Just another small huge reason, I love homeschooling!

1 comment:

Jessica-MomForHim said...

Both of the reasons you have posted so far, I have found myself nodding along in agreement! These are also reasons WE homeschool--Amen, sister! Well said! :-)