Supporting Your Kids’ Passions When They Differ from Your Own
This may be a universal fear among homeschooling moms: “With all of my shortcomings, how can I prepare my children for further academic and career success?” If this sounds like you, then I can relate! I am a history and geography teacher, and my sons are now in college majoring in engineering. How did this happen?!
Somewhat jokingly, I refer to this as a “homeschool miracle,” although I do acknowledge God’s hand at work in our homeschooling. This leads me to my first suggestion for how to support your kids’ passions when they are not your own.
Supporting Your Kids’ Passions : Three Suggestions
First of all, trust in the truth of God’s Word. 2 Corinthians 12:9 says, “’My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.” When God calls you to homeschool, He will equip you for this task. He may guide you to teach something that you never thought you could, or He may lead you to other options for your family. Ask for His wisdom and equipping.
2. Outside resources
You don’t have to do this alone! There are many resources available to assist you in your homeschool journey. Online education, like the classes offered through Excelsior Classes, can give your child access to knowledgeable, gifted teachers who will partner with you in teaching those subjects that you may not feel comfortable teaching yourself. Another option is to find local classes through a co-op, educational “clubs,” or simply sharing teaching responsibilities with another homeschool mom. First Lego League was wonderful for this non-technically-minded mom! If you aren’t sure where to start looking for local classes or co-ops, HSLDA has provided links to support groups around the country.
3. Embrace lifelong learning
One of the beautiful things about homeschooling is that the parent can learn right along with his or her child! You don’t have to be an “expert” in a subject to teach it. Explore an unfamiliar subject with your child. When you run into questions, think about where to go to find the answers. Libraries are wonderful places, and the internet can provide access to many answers. (Of course, always approach online research with caution – not all sites are reputable, accurate, or appropriate.) Watching you continue to learn, even after you are all grown up, is a great example for your children and an encouragement for them to become lifelong learners.
There is no doubt that homeschooling your children is a great responsibility. But it really isn’t that difficult to support your children’s passions, even when you do not share them. Don’t be afraid – you can do this!
About the Author
Susan Eggers holds a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s degree in Russian history. She has completed coursework toward her Ph. D. and has conducted research in libraries and archives in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Her first teaching position was at the college level, and after she started homeschooling her three children in 2003, she began teaching history and geography online. She and her family live in upstate South Carolina, where they enjoy reading, gardening, and playing with their two large dogs.