Earlier this week the girls and I joined some favorite friends on a fun and informative tour of our state capitol as a homeschool field trip. Our guide explained the history and purposes of the impressive marble building, from the state senate to the legislative house, the ornate murals to the gold man atop the rotunda.
He was a great guide– knowledgable and enthusiastic, quickly warming to our inquisitive gaggle of outgoing middle-schoolers. Near the end of our tour, from our perch atop the rotunda overlooking the city, he actually confided, “You guys aren’t like most homeschoolers.” We all enjoyed a hearty chuckle, but then he continued to spout off a bunch of preconceived assumptions of who homeschoolers are, what we believe, and why and how we do what we do. You know, those guys.
I mean, I get it… denim jumpers and french braids, amiright? For the record, I’ve heard yoga-pants are the new denim jumper. I was wearing Birkenstocks, so I really can’t judge. We all churn butter and sew our own clothes and never socialize outside our giant families of SUPER RELIGIOUS brain-washed zombie children who dress identically and aren’t allowed to speak without explicit permission from their parent who’ve convinced them the earth is actually flat… Ummmm?
Frankly, I’m happy to dispel unfair, archaic stereotypes of home-educators… and Christians. Families all over choose to educate their kids at home for a myriad of reasons in a million different methods. Little did the tour guide know that one child present had four siblings absent, too young to take the tour; my dear friend alongside me had two more babies at home; we all actually do love Jesus, I’d just recently cut my too-long hair, and many days I do prefer a comfy long modest skirt. It just goes to show you not to judge a book by it’s cover, and to maybe just maybe abandon labels altogether– instead simply acknowledge each other’s unique humanity.
PS- All homeschool moms are cool moms.
I’d given the girls a pep-talk en route reminding them of proper decorum in a such a setting. I implored them to be good examples as we’d be representing all homeschoolers to potentially watchful eyes, particularly mindful of potential presence of governmental workers who might actively oppose our right to teach our children at home. As a strong proponent of all genres of education (we’ve dabbled in most all of them: public, private, charter, online, partial-enrollment, & at-home) and of life-long learning, I’m grateful for those who’ve gone before me in lobbying for our freedom to select the method that best serves our unique needs on a year-to-year, kid-to-kid basis.
It was a great day; we learned more than even expected.