Homeschooling our three children has been challenging! Well, I recently read about a homeschooling family of seven. We have been homeschooling roughly four years, this family has been homeschooling 21 years! We have a lot to learn, but we also have a lot to look forward to.
Veteran homeschooling parents
Wayde and Janelle Henderson, the parents of Jayde, Jeven, Jhia, Jarec, Jake, Jenna, and Jordan are definitely what you call veteran homeschool parents. They have this homeschooling thing down to a science. And they aren’t just getting by.
If you homeschool your kids, you understand what I mean by that. There are stretches where you feel like all you can do is the basics and you are not doing your children any better than the public school system. Other days, homeschooling is everything you dreamed it to be.
Great homeschooling results
The Hendersons have a pretty good system, and a system that works. Their kids are self-sufficient, eager learners, who graduate at the age of 16 and go onto college. Yep, homeschooling is producing college students at age 16 for them.
That is impressive, but more impressive is how they function as a family, the family business they run, and the fact that the parents look so young and vibrant! There has to be something to learn from their story. Here is a link to their story. Below are the lessons I learned from them.
7 Lessons Learned from a Homeschooling Family of 7
- Education is priority and a love of learning is the driver behind it. One of the children spoke of how they have been excited to attend college since the age of three or four. This is something their parents instilled in the kids. it was also something they live out, as mom is not only playing the role of mo and teacher, but graduate student (working on her mechanical engineering masters degree).
- Preparation for life is just as important as learning to read, write, and add. All the Henderson children are taught life skills at home. For example everyone is required to know how to cook. Their college plans include a stop at the community college prior to a four-year school to help them adjust from homeschooling to the “real” world while still learning. This is two-fold as it shows them the value of a dollar and how to save lots of them. Hundreds of thousands according to Janelle.
- Family bonding is very important. When you watch the video one of the children mentions how being with their family makes them feel stronger. Their is a bond there, which encourages them and inspires them. One that the children feels makes them even better. They even have a family business (a music band), which every family member plays a part.
- Have a sense of humor, and don’t take themselves too seriously. During the interview Janelle is very lighthearted, and playful. Her kids are laughing while she is answering some of the interview questions. Apparently they all have fun with each other, and probably at the expense of one another. When you have a strong family bond, you can do that and the bond not be broken.
- Planning and organization is important. Our schedules get pretty hectic, so I know the Henderson’s schedule is more than hectic. Even so, Janelle seems to have it all together. Although each kid may be in a different place at any given time, Janelle can tell you where, or at least look at the calendar she keeps on her computer. Fail to plan, plan to fail.
- Being passionate is a must when taking on any challenge. When you take 100% responsibility of your children’s education you have to go all in. If you go half you know what, you will only be hurting yourself, and your kids. Janelle Henderson is passionate, her kids are passionate, and this passion drives them.
- Set your own course and don’t let anyone deter you. Other people who aren’t willing, don’t understand, or wish they were bold enough to do something different seem to come around when don’t do what every else does. Janelle doesn’t let it discourage her family one bit, saying, “what ppl say is impossible really isn’t.” That mindset is important in anything you do with your family.
If you homeschool let this family of seven be an encouragement to you. Learn from them and other families that have more homeschooling experience. Take the homeschooling in your family to a new level, and then begin to help other families do the same.
Question: Have you considered homeschooling for your family? If so, does this story give you encouragement that you can do it?