In the nine years that we've been homeschooling, we have found that homeschooling allows and offers so many opportunities and blessings. As our children do not have to be glued to a desk or even to bookwork all day long, they have more time to explore other things. We are normally finished with school by lunchtime and they have the rest of the day to go out and explore the back yard, shoot some basketball, kick the soccer ball, or any of many other activities. They also have the opportunity to pursue their interests. They play in organized sports with a homeschool group we are a part of, and I mean, they even play games against other homeschool group teams or Christian school teams. They take music lessons: our oldest takes piano lessons and he's taken a couple of years of mandolin lessons (most kids don't even know what a mandolin is). Our middle son takes drum lessons and our youngest has just begun piano lessons. We regularly attend church, and they are active in our church. Our two oldest boys play their instruments for worship services and our oldest has taught a Sunday school lesson or two. We've participated in serving our community through donating items or donating our time to help at a local center that packs health kits, school kits and some other things to send to needy people in other countries. They've attended a couple of summer camps.
Our oldest just graduated high school this year, and he has had an amazing year. Last summer he had the Lamplighter Guild, which you can find more about here. He came back with a new focus, and he had grown spiritually. He was so impressed and inspired by the Lamplighter Guild that he wanted to get more involved in Lamplighter, so he contacted Mr. Mark Hamby and became an intern/apprentice with Lamplighter Ministries. After about four months, he had the opportunity to go to London, England with Lamplighter for the recording of one of their audio dramas. It was on this trip that he also became an actual part-time employee of Lamplighter Ministries. He's been reading excellent quality literature, studying his Bible, and he has helped Mr. Hamby with research for his dissertation, and he has done some writing and editing for Lamplighter Ministries. He has made phone calls for Lamplighter Ministries, and last month, he went to Florida to help at the Lamplighter booth at a homeschool conference, as well as helping to hand out some items for Mr. Hamby's seminars. Now he is preparing to go to this year's Lamplighter Guild, which takes place next month, and this year, he will not only go as a student but as an employee.
Our oldest son has also almost completed his sophomore of college already. He is taking the College Plus program online, which is a money-saving way to receive a bachelor's degree in two years. He is studying Humanities and will be taking online classes through Thomas Edison College. He is on target to graduate college in October of 2013, and then he plans to work full-time for Lamplighter Ministries. He hopes to have a long career with Lamplighter Ministries.
Our middle son is interested in architecture and building, so this past school year, he was able to take a class at our homeschool co-op that taught Home Repair and Maintenance. He also has interest in maybe becoming a pastor, so this coming school year, I will help him with speech to work on his presentation skills. We will also work on bettering his writing skills.
Our little guy simply loves all kinds of things at this point, so I simply plan to have fun with him this year reading great books, taking fun field trips and doing fun and some messy art projects.
We simply have the freedom and time to truly pursue their interests, which leads to valuable opportunities that allow them to grow healthy physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. We are truly blessed through our choice to homeschool.