Interview with Homeschooler Linda Potje

Linda is a homeschooling mother of an amazing 10 year old boy (who happens to be my nephew!). She is truly delighted in her calling and shares her experience as well as some valuable advice below….

What were your reasons for homeschooling?

I wanted to be part of my son’s day, and his emotional development.  I wanted to be available to see through his frustrations and have hug breaks. Being a part of my son’s education is very important.   I want to help him learn by choosing curriculum that works with his learning style. I also want to empower his learning and teach at his pace.  Homeschooling allows me to encourage his interests and incorporate them into our day. We choose outings and extracurricular activities that work for us; and as many as we like! We school with whom we choose and friends that are positive for us. This helps avoid social problems like bullying and negative influences.  We also homechool for social and moral reasons . We work through any challenges  as my husband, Hugh, had learning issues when he was young, so he was on board.

How long have you been homeschooling?

Since Matthias was born….He is 10 now.

Can you highlight some experiences during your homeschool years?

Matthias loves lots hugs with me and the animals throughout the day. I love watching Matthias develop confidence to want to be able to spell,  seeing it right in front of me, and feeling proud that he was never made to feel ashamed of his challenge. I experience Matthias’ pride when he accomplishes things throughout the day.  Seeing his love of math makes me happy! Listening to Matthias tell his friends why homeschooling is so great makes everything so worth it.

Is there a certain method and/or curriculum that is working for you?

Definitely eclectic.  We use some curriculum, do some unschooling, and go to some homeschooling groups to round out our experience. Teaching Textbooks for math is great.

Are you planning to homeschool high school?

At this point, yes.  He has a strong homeschool network, and loves homeschooling.  So I plan continue.

Would you consider public school at some point?

Sure, possibly if I felt that it was a good choice for him.  I am not even considering this until high school.  At this point, Matthias has no interest and always wants to be homeschooled.

What piece of advice would you recommend to homeschoolers? 

Find a network of friends that work and incorporate them into your homeschool experience.  Don’t be afraid to leave those behind that don’t work.  Start groups/outings if there is a need. Ask children what they want to  learn. Gently push but don’t push to frustration. Try to prioritize responsibilities.  Some days there is so much going on, I need to put things on the back burner to prioritize him.  Believe in yourself.  Don’t assume others are doing things better than you. Find at least one mentor/confidant.   I have my sister and she has been incredible in times of insecurity, doubts and lows.

Matthias

Matthias climbing a tree on a homeschool outing

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