A lot has been happening in the background of the Crisp family (all good), hence, it’s been around two weeks since my last post. After much contemplation, my wife and I finally have decided that we will begin to home school our children at the start of the New Year 2014. We did not come to this decision lightly by any means, but feel that it is imperative for the following reasons:
+ Dissatisfaction with the education system
Even though our children are above the national average, we feel that our children do not get a holistic education. Naturally, this is hard when you’re attempting to educate a whole class of children throughout the day, week, months and year. But the education system is propelled merely by statistics and attendance and punctuation targets. We’d rather start the day with stretches and meditation rolling into self-led study projects.
We also feel that our children’s interests and talents are not been fully developed at school. Not once has a teacher ever asked ‘What does your child like to do and how can we further develop that at school?!’ The education system as it stands for us is quite outdated, and we feel that a more balanced and individual focused home education is both ideal and imperative for our children. Looking at the future of the world and its societies, an individual needs to be more adaptable, freely creative, culturally sensitive, multi-skilled, resilient, and have a range of life skills. Unfortunately, we don’t feel the education system currently attends these needs.
We want our children to pursue their own interests in a free environment not bound by time restraints, freedom with permission, or following the buzzer/chime. A child’s mind is free and expansive where their bodies want to move, climb trees and be free. We simply no longer feel that having them sit at a desk all day with very short P.E. sessions are an ideal way for our children to be educated and positively active.
We will aim for a more holistic home education which fully integrates well-being and creativity at its core driven by our children’s interests.
+ A desire to have an even closer relationship with our children
Despite the fact that I work from home I still feel that I don’t get to spend enough time with my children. Yes, we spend breakfasts, dinners, the trips to clubs, weekends and school holidays together, but this still isn’t enough for me. In a modern world where time is so precious, we feel that we can better nurture our children by spending more time together and learning together. My wife especially has grown tired of rushing the kids to school in the morning, picking them up, taking them to training, and then trying to condense the things we want to do with them in the weekend. Rather than we trying to fit into the time frame of the education system, we wish to be more free and flexible in how we use our time with our children. After all, they are our responsibility. The time we spend together is very precious and we wish to treasure every moment.
+ What our children think about home education
We broke the idea to our children over breakfast recently. We were totally unsure of what they would say and at the same time being mindful of their wishes. After all, we’re not ones to force our children to do something they wish not to. It doesn’t really set a good example in itself. However, our children’s faces lit up and they said immediately they would like to do it. The first thing my son said was ‘I go can to the science museum more often to study and learn.’ And my daughter said ‘great, I can do arts and crafts at the park’. They were very thoughtful about it. We weighed up the things that would change, i.e. play time with friends at school, etc… but they were not necessarily bothered about it. Later that day they both asked have we made a decision. We replied it was up to them, and they reaffirmed their desire to study at home. My son even wanted to start the next day!
+ Next steps
Our next steps are to inform the school and local education authority and to prepare for this new chapter in our lives. We’re so excited at the prospect of taking our children’s education in our own hands and look forward to exploring how far our imaginations and creativity can go.
Some may think this is a brave turn of events, but we believe having children full-stop is brave. We will take the road less traveled and see what becomes of it.