Thursday, January 28, 2010

Meet a Canadian Home School Graduate

Amy Jo Smith comes from a family of seven. She has three older brothers and one younger sister, and a mom and dad who took on the task of homeschooling from Grade6  through high school.  She lives in Ottawa, Canada, and enjoys the beauty of each different season and the new activities each brings, whether it's skating, skiing, camping under the stars, or enjoying a hike in the colorful fall maples. She also loves to travel and visit new places...some of her favorites are Teton National Park in Wyoming,  Mexico, Ecuador, and the Dominican Republic. She says she’s blessed to work every day with little people that keep her learning and often make her laugh!

Homeschool Soul Mates: Would you ever consider homeschooling your own children someday?

Amy Jo: Yes!! I would definitely consider homeschooling my own children!  I am appreciating more and more the time and energy my mom put into teaching me, not only planning my curriculum and patiently helping me when I had challenges, but also in using every opportunity to help shape my character and my faith. As a homeschooling mom, she was able to make the most of many 'teachable moments' in and out of the classroom. Although I didn't always appreciate her being in 'teacher' mode (even when we were driving across the US on vacation and had to read 'brochures' on all the historical sites!) I really think that it brought a richness to my education and life experiences.

Also, I think I would enjoy learning along with my kids too much to send them off to school! I love watching children explore the world that God has created for us, and to see their excitement in learning and mastering new concepts. And from my observations, it seems like parents already have a head start on being the best ones to educate their children. They know their children better than anyone else;  their strengths and weaknesses, learning styles, and interests. Add to that a love for their children, a desire to see them succeed, and most importantly, a desire to see them 'grow in grace' and be strengthened in their faith. However, I wouldn't rule out sending my children to public education if I was able to be very involved in the school, and would give the decision lots of prayer and careful consideration.

Homeschool Soul Mates: How did homeschooling shape you as a person?

Amy Jo: I attended public school until grade 5, and was homeschooled from Grade 6 on. I am so thankful in looking back, to see all of the opportunities the Lord allowed me to have as a homeschooler that I wouldn't have had in the classrooms and halls of a public school. One of those opportunities was to meet many Christian families, from different backgrounds and denominations, and to see the common thread of love for the Lord and commitment to teaching their children bring them together. I was able to see God working to provide unity and a desire to share each others gifts with one another.

I think that homeschooling gave me a broader perspective of the body of Christ, and an appreciation for different personalities and perspectives. I also had the opportunity to have a Biblical perspective woven throughout many of my textbooks, and throughout my school days that started with prayer and Bible reading. As a result of the many hours of prayer I know my mom and dad put into teaching me, I grew in my desire to know the Lord and seek His will for my life, and in the knowledge that He loves me and has a perfect plan for my life. I also grew in my love for my family, and appreciation for all the times spent with my siblings...even if I didn't always appreciate it at the time, when we were arguing over who would ready the biology lesson, or frustrated with trying to concentrate in a busy house!

Homeschool Soul Mates: We have lots more that Amy Jo shared with us, but we’ll save it for another day since this is already getting long! Praise God for such an articulate young lady!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing AJ. Your the bestest!!! ;o)