n every home education journey you find pockets of the year where the echoes of your non-homeschooling friends run over and over in your head.
The university-schedule school.
As homeschool moms, we sometimes live within two extremes. Sometimes we have these beautiful, smooth, and easy days, where having our kids at home is the dream we always wanted it to be. No, it's not perfect, but the pace of the day is unhurried. There's time for academics, and time for reading, time for a hobby, or simply time for kids to run free and wild, the way it should be. Dad comes home after work and instead of the flurry of after school "stuff" that would come home with your kids on the yellow school bus (such as long evenings spent doing homework) you get a less stressed evening. There's time for dinner, and reading aloud, sports, activities, or just being together. Even ushering kids around to activities is less hectic because you don't have kids cramming hours of homework into the van rides to and from soccer practice. You find yourself thankful you're not in the frenzy of the traditional 40-hour school week away from home.
But then, there's the other extreme- the days where you feel so overwhelmed, so stretched thin, and exhausted from having your kids home all day, every day, and you just want some adult conversation, or even an afternoon alone! You wonder if your house will ever be clean again! You don't feel like you are meeting everyone's academic needs. The kids are grumpy, and at each other's throats because they need a break from everything and everyone too. They ask for playdates to see friends and ask why they can't "go to school." They want to know why "all the other kids get to go to school." You sigh, you feel like you're failing them, but you also know what the rat race of traditional school is, and you know they will eventually burn out too. You want to keep their childhoods as care-free and age appropriate as possible, without the high stress of full time school, all while giving them responsibility, a high quality education, and life-giving social structures.
You want them to experience the community of school- the friends, the supportive and caring teachers, things like recess memories, Valentine's day parties, and Christmas programs. But you aren't willing to sacrifice their childhood waking hours for it.
You try co-ops. But those are just as exhausting and take time away from the stuff you do need to accomplish, and they almost always interfere with the baby's nap. And really, they don't give much of a break. You look around for private schools that let homeschoolers attend gym, or art, or other such classes, but they begin to feel like outsiders because the other kids are all together all day, every day.
So what's the answer? Are there really any happy mediums between home educating and full-time, traditional public or private school? Maybe you're feeling like most home educating moms- you kind of just want some relief. You want some confidence back and some joy in a structured, well thought out plan....one that you don't necessarily have to create, and you want your babies spending more time at home growing up, than in a school classroom. You just want a little bit of both- home and school.
Well, we have the answer! The university-schedule school. It just might be the perfect blend you've been waiting for, even if you didn't know it!
So instead of spending the rest of the school year wondering if there's a better way, come check out the first, classical, Christian, collaborative school in Fishers, Indiana. Why not jump in and try something new? Maybe the collaborative, five day academic program, but with two days at school and three days at home is just what you and your kids need to find more balance, beauty, and blessings in educating journey.
A well-known educational philosopher, Charlotte Mason, believed that as much as 1/3 of education is atmosphere. Life is dependent on atmosphere. Atmosphere is essential to life’s existence. A gardener understands this quite well as he knows that his plants, vegetables, fruits, and flowers’ survival depends on the perfect atmosphere for thriving growth. A doctor or surgeon understands the importance of a sanitary and clean atmosphere for his patients’ well being. Mankind depends on the perfect atmosphere of oxygen and temperature to survive. Atmosphere has the power to bring life or death.
An education that nourishes a child’s whole being, not just his mind, or his test scores, hinges on his atmosphere. A truly vital question in the discussion of a child’s education is, “Is my child’s atmosphere conducive to life and growth, cultivating truth, goodness, and beauty?” The two most important factors of a child’s educational atmosphere are the home and the classroom.
The life supporting gift of time is offered by the university-schedule, giving families and students the time and ability to focuses on developing a child's whole person. The gift of time gives them ability to play, to create, and to nurture personal interests and hobbies. The university-schedule and the natural, gradual movement towards self-motivated, independent learning cannot be overlooked. The gift of time is one of the key elements of a child’s education.
The reality is that in our day, in this place, at this time, more is required from an academic standpoint than it was hundreds of years ago. However, I fear that in recognition of that reality, we’ve outsourced everything, loaded our students up with hours and hours of "school," and took out one of the key elements of our child’s educational atmosphere… the family, the community, and the gift of time.
The reality of a five-day a week, full-day school means that our children spend a very large portion of their waking hours in an educational atmosphere that is contrived, draining, and personally stifling. These set-ups steal so much unnecessary time from our children that there is little left to pursue personal talents, hobbies, abilities, or entrepreneurial desires. Families find themselves at the end of the traditional school week race, drained, and with little resolve.
Just as the life-supporting atmosphere of the family and community cannot be overlooked as one of the key elements of a child’s education, the atmosphere of the classroom and its educational provisions shouldn’t be overlooked either. There absolutely is value in the classroom. There’s value in other mature, and character worthy adults speaking into the lives of our children. There’s value in children being around others different from themselves and their family unit. There’s value in our children sitting in a class of peers discussing the arts, rich literature, and the great men and women of history. There’s value in our teenagers taking their learned skills of persuasion, speech, and writing and constructing credible and strong arguments among their peers. There’s value of having educators who have become masters in their specified fields breathe wisdom and clarity into subjects they are passionate about. There’s incredible value in skilled educators bringing their sphere of expertise to the process of a child’s education.
There is tremendous value in both. When the question arose, “so how do we get the best of both worlds?” The Classical Academy was born.
Through enrollment at The Classical Academy students receive a FULL, private, classical, Christian education, within our unique, innovative design. Our full curriculum and educational plan is created and implemented by our professional staff. TCA is a place where students will receive the benefits of a quality, private school education among a genuine community of students and teachers growing and learning side by side.
Partnering through enrollment at TCA gives your child the gift of time, along with a rich atmosphere conducive to life and growth, cultivating truth, goodness, and beauty.