The holidays are coming, and with them family gatherings. It can be hard knowing the right way to explain to family and friends your schooling choice. What will you say?
Whether it’s a stranger, family member, or a prospective homeschooler, questions about your educational choice can catch you off guard or even leave you feeling defensive.
As our family began the schooling at home lifestyle, this sudden interest in our educational choice for our children was rather shocking, it made me nervous and anxious, and I started to question our decision. While my children were in public school, no one ever asked about our choice to attend school. Why now? Over the years, I became very used to this scenario. I knew at every family gathering, birthday party, shopping trip with school age children in tow, I would most likely be stopped and asked about schooling my kids at home.
I know this may seem surprising but I have heard it all…
- “What about socialization?”
- “How will they ever make friends?”
- “Are you even qualified to do this?”
- “You received a public education, and you turned out fine. Are you saying I failed you as a parent?”
- “So, they just sit in front of a screen all day with no activity, no friends and no schedule. How can this be good for them?”
- “Are you sure your child is learning what they are supposed to be?”
As the holidays are approaching, chances are you will be visiting family and friends and attending holiday parties, and while you may have loved ones who support your choice of online learning you might also run into those who have questions or who do not understand your homeschooling lifestyle. What will you say when asked?
We know it’s well worth taking the time to prepare a holiday budget and plan seasonal activities ahead of time, but have you ever prepared yourself to talk about online schooling at home over the holidays? Besides being positive, mentioning the fun you have, the freedom by setting our own schedule, and the friends you meet;
It can feel like you’re in a “pickle,” when these situations come up, so use that as a way to remember P – C – L: Prepared, Confident, & Loving
Think about some of the common questions ahead of time and develop your answers. You’ll likely be asked some of these questions:
- Why did you choose this route?
- What are your top 3 reasons for choosing an online education?
- As a family, you are all in this together. What does your home feel like now?
- How is your child benefiting?
- What do you see when learning is happening?
- What are you learning about your child?
Confidence makes a difference. Be sure of yourself with a steady dose of humility. You are a great parent and are making the best decisions you know how to make in the present moment; speak from that place. As parents, we are charged in scripture to train our children (Proverbs 22:6) and to be doing so all the time (Deuteronomy 6:6-7). If you feel called to train your children using an online, Christian education, be confident in that calling. You’re obeying the Lord!
Listen with Love
Some people don’t understand your decision and are genuinely concerned about your education choice. To some, not using the school that has been associated with your family in the past feels like betrayal. Others feel uncomfortable when your schooling choice is outside their usual comfort zone. Let them share their concerns. Listen with love. Repeat back to them their concerns.
For example, if they say that they feel like an online school is risky, respond and say, “I hear your concern. You believe that we are choosing something that is risky for our child. Is that correct?” When they affirm that concern, they know that you understand and have heard them. Sometimes it is best not to respond in a defensive manner, and to just let them process the information you present to them.
Over time, through your loving response and the progress that they see in your child, they may come to appreciate the decision you have made. Regardless of their approval, you’ve shown love to them as you’ve listened to their concerns.
We’ve created a guide for parents who are trying to discern the best path for their child’s education. The tips inside the e-book might also provide some additional help when you’re faced with questions from others who don’t yet understand your decision. Download your own copy today.
Finding the right online middle school
No one knows your child better than you do. Download our parent guide and learn more about what online middle school looks like at Lenawee Christian Academy, and if it’s a good fit for your student. Click below to get your free guide.
A Tuition Discount is available for a limited time! Enroll your student by February 15, 2021 and get 1/2-off the tuition for the 2021-22 school year. Use promo code LCA1231# when you apply.
This offer is extended to families with incoming 6th or 7th graders. This offer is not available to current students enrolled at Lenawee Christian School or families who reside within 30 miles of the LCS campus in Adrian, MI.