6 Lies Homeschoolers Believe—Do You Believe Them?

Screen shot 2014-03-30 at 6.10.03 PMI’ve been participating in multiple homeschooling discussion groups lately, and I can see that there are so many homeschooling parents, along with those considering homeschooling, who are very serious about their children’s education. Their honest concerns lead them to ask a huge variety of questions of the general homeschooling community that come across my computer screen each day. They’re hoping that someone out there has the answers to their questions and concerns.

Unfortunately most of the questions being asked and the answers being given are based on some underlying assumptions and beliefs that very, very few are questioning. I can see that these precious moms don’t realize that 99% of the questions they’re asking, and almost all the answers they’re getting, are based upon assumptions and beliefs that are actually untrue. If they knew the truth, they would be asking a completely different set of questions.

The underlying ideas for these beliefs and assumptions about education were new around the turn of the 20th century. Through my own study, I learned that the people who introduced these ideas knew them to be lies. They set out to purposefully deceive parents into believing them in order to suit their own purposes. Coupled with simple observation of how reality actually works, I’ve decided to call these six beliefs “lies”.

Those who purposefully lied to parents are long dead and so are the parents they lied to, but generation after generation continues to be unknowingly deceived. These lies have become so ingrained in our culture that most homeschooling parents believe them without giving them a single thought. Some believe these ideas so strongly, they will read this article and become angry that I’m calling them lies.

As you’re reading through these lies, you might think you don’t believe them, but don’t forget to consider that deep down, your actions may be sponsored by or justified by some of these six lies, even if you think you don’t believe them the way they’re stated.

I know I believed these lies myself for years and years. When I was a new homeschooling mom, these lies led me to spend lots of money on things I didn’t need, although I thought I needed them. These lies led me to put inappropriate pressure on my precious children causing us all a measure of unnecessary heartache and internal distress. They led us to spend countless hours doing things we didn’t need to do, and they were the sponsor of bad attitudes and ugly behavior for both myself and my children.

I’d like to expose these six lies to you and reveal the actions and serious consequences sponsored by believing them. I’m hoping you will be drawn to consider a different way of educating your family, so that you can experience the wonderful treasure of being free to educate them according to God’s specific and individual plan for you!….

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  1. pj adams
    Posted May 30, 2013 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    Where were you in the 80’s when I made all those mistakes? :-(

    • BarbiePoling
      Posted May 30, 2013 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

      Dear Pj,
      In the 80’s I was in high school :-)
      I’ve been so blessed with learning from Marilyn Howshall who was forming the Lifestyle of Learning™ message around that time!

  2. MichelleG
    Posted May 30, 2013 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

    Thank you, Barbie, I love how you explained how false assumptions can block homeschooling efforts. I’m sooooo grateful to no longer believe the lie that my children must have a teacher in order to learn! The desire to learn is already inside them!

  3. Nancy Blanchard
    Posted May 30, 2013 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

    Thank you Barbie. This was a very good explanation about learning and how we often believe assumptions that aren’t based on truth. I am also grateful to no longer believe the lie that my children must have a teacher in order to learn!

  4. Julie
    Posted May 30, 2013 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the post.

  5. Posted May 30, 2013 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

    I just love this article, I’ve been homeschooling my kids for 3 years and have friends who do the same. Some are in co-ops or writing clubs, and I always feel like I need to do that too. I don’t want the stress of driving here and there to these classes, and it’s good to hear that it isn’t necessarily something that my kids have to do.
    I constantly second guess myself, wondering if they’d be better off in a public school instead of enjoying our time learning together.

    Can’t wait for the other six lies.

    • BarbiePoling
      Posted May 31, 2013 at 4:55 am | Permalink

      Dear Alice,
      The responsibility for raising children is given to parents, and that includes their education. The best place for your children is with you, so that you can parent them for the Lord. I encourage you to read Marilyn Howshall’s Wisdom’s Way of Learning books so that you can begin to rely on and trust in the Lord for how to educate your children, so your second guessing can be gone from you altogether. Wisdom’s Way of Learning ebooks are also part of a bigger set, the Get Started Packet. Included in this packet are five 1 hour long interviews with moms who once felt just like you, and how they came to rest in the Lord for their children’s education with Lifestyle of Learning™ principles.

      I pray the Lord’s many blessings for you as you learn!
      ~ Barbie Poling

  6. Christine
    Posted May 31, 2013 at 12:14 am | Permalink

    Barbie, I agree whole-heartedly. But what about Maths? That is the one subject that I personally struggled with and hence only took my sons up to pre-algebra. Thereafter we sent them to private school … where Maths was/is a struggle… Only whizz-kids can teach themselves Maths?

    • BarbiePoling
      Posted May 31, 2013 at 5:13 am | Permalink

      Dear Christine,
      Here are a couple of great resources to help you with your thoughts about math and learning. This one is a video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=xyowJZxrtbg and this one is an article, http://www.besthomeschooling.org/articles/math_david_albert.html

      My daughter who, struggled with mathematical things had a need to pass college algebra 1 and 2. That need propelled her to learn it, which she did in a couple of months at age 18 with a program called ALECKS. She didn’t have a need to learn it until then, and she learned it much faster at that age than if I had tried to force her to little bits of it all through the years.

      ~ Barbie Poling

  7. cheryl
    Posted May 31, 2013 at 7:46 am | Permalink

    So then, are not the book and internet resourses teachers?

    • BarbiePoling
      Posted May 31, 2013 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

      Dear Cheryl,

      We can most certainly learn from books and internet resources. Our children can and do regularly seek them out, and collect information which they connect with what they already know and increase in their understanding, and have inspiration for growth in skill.

  8. Posted June 11, 2013 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    Reading this helped me to not feel so guilty for all the things I could not keep up with this year ! THANKS!

  9. Krissy
    Posted June 21, 2013 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    This is a very good article! But I think you proved to yourself that you still believe it too through your examples. Learning can most definitely happen naturally – and you prove that through you example of your son using trial and error. But reading what other people have written is a poor example because they are teachers. (Like you said, learning CAN happen through teachers, and that’s still fine and good. But the only one that proves your point is the trial and error.)

    • BarbiePoling
      Posted June 21, 2013 at 8:34 am | Permalink

      Dear Krissy,

      I would encourage you to continue reading the whole series so that you can more clearly understand what I am saying. There are all sorts of information sources readily available to us such as books, videos, internet resources, an other people who know things. All of these are sources that we can learn from if we go after learning from them in a self-motivated fashion. When I refer to a teacher, I am specifically speaking of a person who gives assignments that one is made to do in some fashion such as is the case in schools and most homeschools. While we can freely learn a great deal from so many resources, these resources don’t make us accomplish assignments, even if there are assignments provided such as tutorial instructions. When I or my children want to learn something, we turn to sources that provide that knowledge or demonstrate that skill, but that resource does not make us complete assignments as teachers and parents usually do. Even when children go after the knowledge and demonstration available to them from all these resources, they still enter into a trial and error and problem solving process in order to truly learn it. Since we all know that simply reading or watching information or demonstration is not the same thing as learning it.

      Do we need to make our children do things? Yes we most certainly do, but not the schoolish things that most homeschooling moms believe.

  10. Beth
    Posted July 22, 2013 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

    I just found out about LOLACHE from a facebook post from Practical Homeschooling. In just a few minutes, I was so encouraged and I subscribed to the emails. I plan to research some more! My James is only 2 right now, but already we are reading a character trait and scripture in the morning and checking his “trait-progress” at night. He loves it! We love it because we know God is touching his little heart. I am going to be fairly new to homeschooling, but in our families (my husband’s and my siblings) all but four of their children were homeschooled and loved it! That means over 25 children were! God bless your ministry!

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