MY STAR IS SHINING- From Homeschool to Honors

When I announced to my siblings that I was taking my family to Morocco for a month to celebrate their 16 & 18 b-days, my sis said to me, “If that were me, I’d be spending that money on my children’s education.” And I replied, “I am.”

  1. I sat on the modeling stand for 25 years at Kutztown U. and during that time I observed many, many students. It got so I could tell the difference between those students whose parents merely handed their children the money for their education, and those that had to contribute, make it happen, work for it.  I told both my children as I jetted them to 18 different countries before they left home for college, and usually spending at least a month at each one exploring and adventuring, that they would have to find a way to get to college themselves… I was spending the money on travel.  I THOUGHT a world education- experiential knowledge was more valuable in the long run.My children both figured out how to win scholarships and shine above the rest of the amazingly bright children out there now-a-days and there are many- who enroll in AP classes and have a ton of college credits under their belts before they even graduate from high school. But because my children taught themselves – home schooled, or as I like to say, world schooled, they were able to explore their world, nurture their passion, feed their talents and learn leadership skills so that when it came time to submit a home schooling portfolio, they really did stand out.  It’s not that my children are rocket scientists, although they are both in Honors at Temple U. and are very bright- it was THE WAY they learned that made the difference. They taught themselves their last 6 years of school, they learned largely what they wanted to learn and they NEVER lost their insatiable desire to learn.
  2. So as I witnessed my daughter, Sierra, getting her golden cords placed around her neck, which she’ll wear at graduation next month, I felt so proud of her. I must come to Philadelphia multiple times in the next month to witness her receiving graduation honors, including the Diamond Award, the highest award to a graduating senior this university bestows.It’s not that I’m trying to toot my children’s horn here- the point is, we were scared shitless of homeschooling when we decided to take the plunge. I was afraid of losing my life, afraid of falling short as a facilitator, afraid my children would get lazy and I’d have to fight with them to do the work. Nothing could have been farther from the truth. If I were to give anyone advice on home schooling today, I would say, if you sincerely enjoy your children’s company and if your children are motivated individuals, it can be the biggest blessing and best decision you could ever make as a parent. It can also be the best decision your child can make as a student, which can positively affect him/her the rest of their lives. (And that is why I am writing a new book about it!)At Bryce’s graduation party here at home (graduated from “Cindy’s World School”) he wrote a rap about how he wanted to change the world and make it better- make a difference, my cousin came up to me and marveled, “Aren’t you just so pleased with your son- aren’t you surprised?” And I said, “Pleased, absolutely, surprised, not at all.” For I have always taught my children that they are here to make the world a better and a more beautiful place- SOMEHOW- that is their task, and I EXPECT them to work at this. That is one of the reasons I gave them the amazing childhood that I gave them. To give them the tools and the background to do that. And I can’t wait to see what My Star, Sierra is going to do with that!  
    We are not here merely to make a living. We are here to enrich the world, and we impoverish ourselves if we forget this errand.” – Woodrow Wilson.   

5 thoughts on “MY STAR IS SHINING- From Homeschool to Honors

  1. I love words but I could not find just the right single word to capture how important this piece of your family history is to all parents. I tried out some words – tremendous, fantastic, etc – and they were too boisterous for the simply powerful, yet incredibly important significance of Sierra’s path to her degree and how it impacted the growth of her intellect. I have had the joy of witnessing Sierra’s intellect and was greatly impressed. Yes, yes and yes, Cindy. Not everyone can homeschool as you have done. More should try. However, every parent should consider the value of how their children learn. More parents need to understand, as you have shown, that their role should be heavily invested in having their children develop the drive from within themselves to explore and apply critical thinking skills integrated with contextual experiences in nature and outside of the constraints of a classroom. An authentic knowledge of intellectual development in children starts with love and holds its greatest value outside a room with 4 walls, a talking head in the front and computer screens all around. Thank you and congratulations to Sierra and the entire family.

    • Ken- tahnk you so so much- what you have to say here is so important for other readers to hear becuase it isn’t just me singing my kids praise- could you copy and paste to the coment section on my Fcaebook blog soothers can see? Thanks you so much- it has been a great gift to correspond here with you and hsare ideas – I relaly appreciate the time it takes to communciate-

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