37. Why We Stopped Homeschooling (an interview with our kids)

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On August 16, 2016,  I posted the above picture on Instagram with this caption:

Today is a bittersweet day. After many years of homeschooling, I just dropped the kids off at the new Classical School they are attending this year.

I’m so grateful for those sweet years I had to be a homeschool mom. I’m also grateful for God’s direction this year (for a long list of reasons) that a different schooling option is best for our family and our kids.

I won’t pretend it’s been an easy decision. It’s one that we made with a tremendous amount of thought, prayer, discussion, and tears.

Ultimately, we have so much peace as we walk into this new season. There will be new challenges and new opportunities and I’m excited to see what God has in store as we trust Him to lead one step at a time.

Since posting that Instagram post almost three years ago, we’ve gotten a lot of questions about why we stopped homeschooling and how we knew it was the right decision for our family.

I know that schooling choices and decisions are incredibly personal and can be somewhat controversial, so I wasn’t sure that I ever wanted to broach this topic publicly… and I really haven’t for 3 years.

But then, we got many requests to interview our kids on the podcast. We decided to move forward with this and I asked you all on Instagram to submit questions you’d like for us to ask them on their podcast interview.

To our surprise, there were SO many questions begging us to talk about the transition from homeschooling to private school and how it was for our kids. We asked the kids if they’d be willing to share — and they were.

So, enjoy this very honest family conversation around why we stopped homeschooling, how we came to this decision, how it’s been for our kids (one child was very, very angry about it!), and the best things and hard things about switching from homeschool to private school.

Ultimately, I hope that this conversation inspires you to be intentional in how you approach schooling choices (and other choices!) for your kids. And that our journey and honesty might be helpful or encouraging to you as you parent your own kids.

In This Episode:

[01:08] – Jesse and I have so much to share with you today — including some fun adventures from our recent trips to Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa.

[08:18] – I share a fun email we received from a listener that proves Jesse is right when he used the word “confluence” in a previous episode and promised that some people use it regularly. (You guys aren’t helping me out much!!)

[09:05] – My mobile hotspot and the ability to work on the road is what is saving my life this week!

[11:06] – I started reading The Day the World Came to Town: 9/11 in Gander, Newfoundland by Jim DeFede and the story was insightful and impactful. You can get the book for free right now by signing up for Kindle Unlimited

[14:21] – Today we’re joined by our kids — Kathrynne, Kaitlynn, and Silas — and we’ll be discussing a much-requested topic: why we stopped homeschooling. 

[16:57] – We never expected to stop homeschooling. In fact, we had always planned to homeschool through high school. Then, we started realizing that Kathrynne needed a change.

[17:59] – Kathrynne shares how she felt about her social life and gets really honest about her struggles with social anxiety and awkwardness.

[21:29] – We were so excited to find a school that felt like a great fit — but we were also scared to announce the change to Kathrynne.

[23:32] – We expected Kathrynne to not be happy about the news, but we were shocked that she was as upset as she was. We ask Kaitlynn and Silas about their reaction to the news that they were starting school as well.

[26:46] – The kids talk about what their first day and first weeks of school were like for them given their homeschool background.

[30:52] – We’ve loved watching our kids really blossom and come alive in unexpected ways the last three years!

[37:02] – The kids share the harder aspects of going to school like getting up early and having to be away from home all day.

[39:26] – Jesse shares his thoughts on the transition and how it affected our identity as parents. We also discuss our process for evaluating each year and what is best for each child.


Links and Resources

The podcast is available on iTunesAndroidStitcher, and Spotify. You can listen online through the direct player we’ll include in the show notes of each episode. OR, a much easier way to listen is by subscribing to the podcast through a free podcast app on your phone. (Find instructions for how to subscribe to a podcast here.)

Ready to dive in and listen? Hit the player above or search for “The Crystal Paine Show” on your favorite podcast app.

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