Gaining Confidence to Teach

Day #2 of the Southeastern Homeschool Expo. today - and I was so fortunate to hear two wonderful speakers: Michele Helms and Debbie Strayer. I was furiously taking notes during Debbie Strayer's presentation, "Gaining Confidence to Teach", and I was laughing and crying all at the same time. (I also loved Michele Helms, but for some reason, Debbie Strayer spoke to my heart today) She was such a funny, inspiring, empowering, and engaging speaker. I gained so much from her, and I wanted to share just a few things with you. If you ever get the chance to hear her speak, take advantage of the opportunity!

"Faithful is He who calls you; He will bring it to pass."
1 Thessalonians 5:24

Wow. This verse was repeated over and over by Debbie today. Our children are homeschooled by us, and we are homeschooled by God. Wow. Her whole talk was actually just a huge pep talk, which I really needed to hear today.

  • Do your children know each and every day that there is no place you (the homeschooling mom) would rather be than with them? I'm sure there are several days when my kids think I'd rather be reading my book, writing on my blog, or scrapbooking. Ouch.
  • Homeschooling isn't about MY skill, it is about God's provision on me. Who cares what education degrees I have and how many years I taught - God takes care of what my kids will need. It's not up to me. Ouch.
  • Don't hold up the world's standard as your goal -- she spoke about this in the context of people who feel they need to send their children to public high school because education at that point is getting too important and they need some help. Won't God provide what our children need? Why should we stress over high school transcripts, etc.... God provides what we need.
  • One dedicated parent for a lifetime is more effective than an army of the best teachers. Think about that.
  • I love this one: The world will deal with your children if you choose not to. This really made me stop and think. I have a huge responsibility with my children. If I let others deal with them I must accept those consequences.
  • We, as homeschooling parents, are God's merciful agents of change.
  • We are the authority on our children's lives. This does not change based on what the neighbors or extended family think!
  • Commitment is not about how you feel. Teach your children this.
I know I probably didn't do her workshop much justice, but her words really had an impact on me. So often I rely on myself and my supposed "educational wisdom".... I've been relying on the wrong person for the past year, and I want to make a change in that starting today. Oh, every now and then I give God the credit for this amazing journey we are on, but I think I don't stop enough to think that these children of mine are precious gifts God has given me to train in His ways and to one day do His work.

After a weekend full of homeschool knowledge and an exhibit hall full of curriculum and beautiful books, what good is it all if we aren't all putting God first?

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