Homeschooling was never in the plan. Back in the early '90s, I met a couple of homeschooling families. They were a bit odd but quite nice. That was my first exposure. Later, as a member of the Conservative Book Club, I was sent a book by Raymond and Dorothy Moore called The Successful Homeschool Family Handbook. I also came across The Christian Home School by Gregg Harris around the same time. Soon, I was hearing Dr. Dobson talk about homeschooling with Dr. Moore on Focus on the Family.
God just lead me to it. My Lowell agreed. We decided to do it for a year. My family disagreed with us even though it was just kindergarten. That was the year of Columbine. After that, my mom stopped fighting me.
Mrs. Andreola taught about Charlotte Mason's gentler way of learning. Short lessons, lots of variety, real living books, nature study, etc. It lead me to use whole books, hands-on activities, and life experiences along with our math books and such. I now have grown children aged 21 through 32. They are intelligent, self-motivated, life-long learners who know how to find information, study for themselves, discuss issues, and solve problems.
One of my sons had the courage to fix a rather involved brake problem with my older daughter's car. I asked him how he knew what to do. His father isn't mechanically inclined with vehicles. "YouTube!" he said. He was brave enough to tear her car apart and persevere when it got hard. I am thankful and proud.
Don't be afraid. Don't get caught in workbooks only. Teach them to learn. Provide a print rich environment. Model a love of reading and learning. Do hands on things. Make God, The Bible, and church central in your life. God will lead you in the path for your children to prepare for each one's future.
You can homeschool. I highly recommend that you read Mrs. Karen Andreola's books, A Charlotte Mason Companion and Mother Culture: For a Happy Homeschool. She no longer writes her blog, Moments with Mother Culture, but you can still find a wealth of information there. She is a wonderful resource for homeschoolers who are starting, who need some new ideas, or who need a little encouragement and mother culture. She is approachable and friendly.
I will never regret the years I spent homeschooling. My children think for themselves. They can pursue any type of future the LORD has for them. We were able to give them experiences that helped them to explore their areas of interest. We did it all on a very low income with God's provision and favor. He made a way where there seemed to be no way. We stood at the crossroads, and we chose the ancient path* where the good way was and is. Someone else might say we chose the road less traveled.
It was hard. It was good. It was worth it all.
Be brave and courageous,