Over the last 12-18 months, we've been faced with a difficult decision... what to do about our children's schooling next year. For no less than a dozen reasons, many of which I listed here, homeschooling has been the right choice for our family up to this point. So, when we heard that we were going to be living in a city that had a school for TCKs and encouraged to consider it as a schooling option, we were in a little bit of a quandry about what we should do.
The bottom line is, I need to learn the language. It is an expectation of my job and I want to be properly prepared for our ministry here. We sort of decided that we would send the kids to the school here for one year and see how it went. Then, after my formal language learning, we could decide whether we wanted to bring them home again or not. We left North America with that expectation in mind. We didn't have complete peace about it, but it made the most sense.
Then, we got here and began to get settled. We had multiple opportunities to visit the school and spend time with several of the families who send their children there. We could see that it's a good school which is a great fit for many of the families here. But, it became increasingly obvious that it's not the best fit for our family. We wrestled and prayed and discussed and we couldn't get a peace about sending them.
It's not that there is a problem with the school or the kids there. But, sending 5 kids to school means juggling 5 sets of homework, extra curricular activities, curriculum concerns, picture days, field trips, volunteer opportunities, etc. Realistically, we just didn't see how it would really free me up that much. Plus, we didn't see how our kids would have a chance to be involved in our ministry here, which is really important to us. Quite frankly, we just like the dynamics that homeschooling brings to our family.
So, with much fear and trembling, we announced to the powers that be that we could not, in good conscience, send them to school next year. We shouldn't have worried, everyone was supportive and affirmed our decision. We felt complete peace with our decision, as soon as we settled on it. It will make language learning a bit more challenging and it may slow me down a bit. However, I don't think that in the long run that will make much difference.
I'm excited as I look ahead to next year. The Lord provided 3 different volunteer teams who are each willing to bring in bits and pieces of our curriculums, so I should have it all by early July. The kids have mixed emotions about the decision. I have a couple who couldn't be more relieved and a couple that are a little disappointed. We covet your prayers as we juggle the demands of homeschooling as well as the demands of language learning.
And now, here are a few pics from our school since we arrived here...
Here's Isaac doing math with the puppy's help.
One day recently, Abe and I were working on the letter M. We were reading about monsters and decided to make a clay one. The older kids decided to join in the fun. As you can see, Lizzy covered her grammar book with crafting materials. When I finally convinced them to clean up, we had quite the monster family.
Here are the girls baking lamingtons as we studied Australia.
Here is the explosion of the "volcano" the kids crafted as they were studying the Pacific Rim.