Monday, May 21, 2012

Every weekday morning, around 8am, I watch and wave to Hannah as she rides away on the big yellow school bus. And each time I do, a special piece of my heart breaks all over again. I am not sad that she is growing up, becoming more mature and confident, or learning new things. I appreciate those changes. It is because she is doing it away from me, our home, our family... during the week, she spends about five times more time sitting in school as she does playing at home.

I wish with all my heart that I could homeschool her. She would learn things much more quickly. She could have many many more hours with her parents, siblings and friends. We would have so many more opportunities for field trips and fun days and playtime and family time.

Last summer I was struggling with the decision to put her in public school. It hasn't been the ideal educational experience, but I know she has changed and grown a lot. I love seeing that she is more confident, less shy, more sure of herself. Now that we are moving next month, I have to decide on the best school for her in Orange County. The options are limited.

Last week I toured our new neighborhood's public school. The building itself was pretty nice, but the school receptionist couldn't tell me a lot of specifics about the student body, the way a typical student's day goes, the school's philosophy of learning. She basically just gave me a tour of the physical building, and vaguely answered some (not all) of my questions. It's kind of like taking a tour of a church building. You can look at bricks, mortar, and stained glass windows all day long, but it won't help you learn about the community of people, the atmosphere of worship, the ways God is working in their lives, or the reasoning behind why they do what they do.

All that being said, I am saddened at the prospect of continuing to send Hannah away for her education. I've always thought that learning should begin at home - why not just keep it there? My husband doesn't see it this way. He thinks homeschool is more trouble than it's worth, that it would be too much of an extra burden for me with three, possibly four children at home. I am not nagging or continuing to argue with him. Instead, I am coming up with a plan of action to convince him that we should give it another trial run later this summer. I am still formulating my plan, and everyday I pray that God will give me wisdom and clarity about this decision. If I'm not meant to homeschool at this time, I will honor that, but I want it to be made clear to us.

No comments: