Homeschool is increasing as a choice for parents. Homeschool student population is up 54% between 2003 and 2012, the most recent year data is available. For those families that can coordinate their schedules around the opportunity, homeschool can solve many of the assembly-line and luck-based education challenges of other options.
Leaders in Education
An herein is my greatest challenge. If I were determining how to destroy education and create a populace that I could control, I would surely begin with the educational system. I would provide a modicum of opportunity but within a limited universe of options. I would structure the system to reward false humility and a meekness that served to keep the students sitting still, quiet and unquestioning, and resistant to initiative awaiting my instructions. I would celebrate those who follow the rules as leaders, redefining the core tenets of leadership. And, as my final stroke of diabolical brilliance, I would isolate students from each other suggesting that this is independence. The only time they are encouraged to collaborate is to gang up in one voice to require more of the status quo if ever they feel it is threatened. After two generations of this training, the system would perpetuate itself. Those, who challenge the status quo will be pushed out. Those who rise within the system will have a vested interest in maintaining it and a lack of perspective, creativity, and questioning of another option. Even those questioning the status quo would only question to securing their place within the dominant hierarchy. Their intention, no matter their influence, is not to change the system. They never feel that their power and influence is enough.
Emphasizing the Foundational Truth
But, I am not including this option to champion and promote homeschool. I am writing to emphasize the foundational truth that is the foundation of HomeSchool HEALS: no matter where your child receives an education outside the home, make sure that the education inside the home builds ethical, wise, well-adjusted leaders—even captains. Do this by integrating the cycle listed earlier.
- Encourage ambiguous exploration: Allow you kids to get bored and come up with their own methods to pass the time. Lead them through materials and conversations toward creative exploration.
- Identify passionate interest: Know what your kids are into. Nurture it through purchases, experiences, and intentional interactions.
- Emphasize inductive research: emphasize problem-solving and decision making by having your children solve age-appropriate challenges that they face. Allow them to live with the consequences of choices. Allow them to struggle with some safe and age-appropriate tasks like ordering at a restaurant. If the full experience is too dangerous, engage them in conversation about what they would do in the situation.
- Support a collaborative team development: Allow your kids to experiment and call others (even you) to their task with defined roles. Encourage their outline, articulation, and resourcing of roles and responsibilities.
- Reinforce value through expansion of team: Initiate the discussion about leadership, followers, and value. Make the distinction with your child between numbers of followers and teams built to engage in creative work. Rather than allowing them to fall prey to social media like seeking, encourage them to build high-functioning teams.