31 Days to Raise ‘Em Right: School Them

I’ll start with a fast confession. I have never been one of those moms who lets her kids win. I know I confessed this yesterday, but I felt I needed to get that off my chest. That and one time I shoved my son out of the way when he was going to beat me in basketball. It was important. We were playing horse and he’s so tall!! Anyway. This isn’t the type of schooling I mean.

image-1-5What I mean is, if you want to raise your kids right, you need to choose the right school setting for them. These days, there are a lot of options.

The three bigs are homeschooling, public schooling, and private schooling.

First. Pray about it. We don’t do this. Ok, well, I didn’t do this. I sought opportunity and make-sense. I know what you’re thinking. What a weirdo. I agree. I was a total weirdo. But seriously, there are at least 27 other things in my life I probably should be praying about, and it doesn’t even occur to me! I have no valid reasons. I am a work in progress.

I have worked in each school setting. I have sent my kids in each school setting. Ask me any questions you have about them. Want to homeschool? I can help get you started in the right direction. Seriously. Message me. I would love to. Leave a comment. I know things.

Here’s what I know in a skinny nutshell.

Public School Pros:

usually convenient to household, kids can be a light to the others, you get to decide which parts of school to be involved (aka you can have some space to do what you gotta do and also shower), teachers on the whole care about kids and like their jobs (this blanket statement maybe doesn’t always apply to middle school. It’s a strange land), and there are services here that we can not provide (aka special education teachers) for kids who need them most.

Public School Cons:

People, feeling of loss of input with our kids, really “awesome” programs like the SHARE program that teach super ridiculous things at super ridiculous ages, cost (yes you heard me), time (way too much time taken in the transition and homework and extra curricular activities and and and. It begins to feel endless. You really have to be committed), and the education the kids receive can seriously vary from year to year even within the same building.

Private  School Pros:

often based on your faith or some other commonality, usually smaller in size than public schools and they can have more of a family feel to them, education level may be higher because of what they can offer, can be good for a kid who needs to be a big fish in a little pond or needs a heavy dose of accountability

Private School Cons:

cost, transportation, uniforms (don’t get me started), sometimes they can have the bubble effect (problems here seem a lot bigger because they aren’t used to student behavior problems when really there are way more important things to worry about like children being trafficked and starving to death), many assuming private school kids don’t have serious sadness or trauma so it’s overlooked (usually more at the high school level-kids cut, kids do drugs. Their school is irrelevant), and sometimes private schools can get it in their minds that being ahead is the only way (one of my children went to a private school for kindergarten for a few months. They wouldn’t stop telling me how advanced they were because all of their kindergarteners were doing first grade work. oh. OK, but when are they going to learn the kindergarten work? You can’t just skip it.)

Homeschool Pros:

You. Your kids get you. Never underestimate this. Each other. My kids’ relationships are so close, and I really think it’s because they were a tribe for many years-just them. Time saver (it took me four hours a day with zero homework later in the day to homeschool five kids), flexible, and easy to do on the go, your kids can still participate in sports and such at their zoned schools, you get time to create a strong foundation for those little lights before sending them out, and you get to set the tone for their learning, colleges don’t discriminate against homeschool kids like back in the day-some even seek them out-like Stanford.

Homeschool Cons:

You (HA! but really, maybe you don’t have a clue how to teach or you don’t have the temperament for it), kids can have a tough time when transitioning into school if you don’t keep pace with each grade level, can be tricky to recognize gaps in their learning, can be even trickier to know what to do about that, you have to be wicked organized, you are on the hook for all of it, lesson planning for days, some parents get a little sideways and forget to teach the vitals (like sitting in a chair properly or tying shoes-I had this kid. He could tell me what a pistil was on a flower but her couldn’t tie his shoes. He was in 3rd grade), the temptation to skip your kids ahead in grades is real and really big (it’s easy to get caught up and think fast paced schooling is fine as long as our kids know the information, but there is something to spending more time and going deeper in learning rather than going shallow and fast. Plus, once you skip your kid, they are skipped forever. Even when they are 14 and finished with high school. What then? Just be sure to think it through and decide based on all the knowledge)

I am passionate about school. I am a teacher by day. I homeschooled for years, and I would only change one thing about that- I would have homeschooled longer. I love that my kids are in public school right now. They are ruling at life with it all. I loved our time at private school and the hearts that poured into our kids. They still have those relationships.

You get to decide what is right for you and your kids. And maybe one schooling style is right for one of tour kids and not the others. Be willing to individualize, but don’t make yourself insane. That can take on a life of its own.

Be confident that you are the right one to make this choice for your family. And whatever you decide, go with God.

Thanks for being here to celebrate my birthday month! #shes40 I am posting everyday of October for the 31 day blogging challenge and giving you all the presents! Share a post on Facebook, and your name gets entered in to the mix for a prize- you won’t want to miss these! Share one post, you get entered into the drawing once. Share each of the 31 days, and you have 31 chances to win one of many goodies. Be sure to tag me in the post, so your entry does’t get lost in the algorithm vortex. Some affiliate links may be used.

See you tomorrow.