Traditional Catholic Homeschooling

My mother had her teachers credentials from Illinois, but only taught philosophy for a short time at Toronto University before she married my dad.  She also was trained in the Montessori school paradigm.  She strongly believed that each child learns differently and at a different pace.  She also did not believe children were to start studying till they were in 1st. Grade and that they would catch up very quickly when they are older.

IMG_4862A few of the 17 Children, 2 more were adopted after I moved out.  

Once she married my dad, she stayed at home and homeschooled us through grammar school, way before it was allowed or popular.  In order to not get in trouble in those days with the school district, since we were not in school, my mother would advertise as a private school and have other children come and study with us.  No one ever studied with us.  I then went to Catholic high school for 3 years and finished at the public high school.  From there I studied 2 years at Cabrillo College and graduated from Carleton University in Ottawa Ontario Canada.

Since there were 17 of us children to start with, and my dad was working, my mother had to organize all the studying, (and most of the time it was very disorganized).  We also traveled a great deal, (twice lived in Mexico building schools for the poor and another time in Fowler building a Catholic Church), so it helped that we were homeschooled.  Nevertheless, the routine was pretty much always being disrupted, as many on you who are homeschooling now see happen all the time.  Life is just one big succession of interruptions.  

We older children helped the younger children do their reading and math.  I remember a lot of homemade flash cards with math and vocabulary on them.  I also remember that I learned mostly on my own working in the workbooks.  So what I am getting at is that children survive fine in chaotic homeschooling environments because they are basically smart.  But that is if you will not allow them to waste their time on TV, Video games and computers.  They learn to play, but not to read, write or add.  We were never allowed this.Common-Core

Today, the morals, the immodest dressing, the homosexual agenda in and the common core curriculum in the public schools, makes Catholic homeschooling seem to be the only option, (other than a good Catholic school, which is very rare today).  But even there, many do not teach Catholic teachings and you also have the huge added expense of tuition.  1917 Canon law had that all parishes were to have parochial schools.

Many orthodox people do Charter School homeschooling because it is free, the books are free and they also get money for extra-curriculum activities.  There is also a limited amount of supervision by the charter school staff, so that the busy mothers do not have as much to do.  But the text books are from the public school and they will soon have common core as part of the education.  And in this system, there are no Catholic religion classes or Catholic material in the other areas of learning, like reading and history.

Many families avoid Catholic homeschooling because the programs and  books cost money and the parents have more of the responsibility to make sure their children are keeping up with the assigned school work.  But in these Catholic courses, there are religion classes, always going deeper and better with each grade.  They also have Catholic themes in all other subjects as well.  For this reason the Catholic homeschooling programs are the best option, as costly and difficult they may be.world

Many mothers are concerned about public schools and would like to homeschool their children, but are afraid to do it, because of all the responsibility and they feel that they are not educated or qualified enough to be able to teach their children.  Although they are rightfully concerned about the responsibility and their lack of knowledge, this should not stop them from homeschooling.  Many of their children are not learning to read or write or do math at their public schools right now anyway.  Many of the children in public schools are way behind.  Better save their souls than be able to teach them perfectly.

Finally what is of dire importance is to keep in contact with other homeschooling families.  Besides socializing at church, these children need to be able to make friends and not be too isolated.  What we started at St. Patrick’s in Escalon/Ripon, Calif. and is still working well, was a homeschooling cooperative.  All that meant was that during the school year, one day a week, the families would get together for some common classes, socializing, eating, outings and the Christmas program.   It is very loosely organized, has a year schedule and you do the best you can.

Another option, for those who can afford it, is to hire a helper who comes to your house and tutors your children in the subjects they are struggling with or that take more time.  And another thing that is working for my friend homeschoolers is to go to a teacher’s house, pay a small tuition, and she teaches all the children at once the common courses they all need.

7S43_All_Souls_School1I want to really encourage everyone to homeschool.  Yes, it is a big sacrifice.  Yes, it takes a lot of work.   Yes, it cost money.  But it is worthwhile.  Your children do not need to be super stars.  But they do need to get to heaven.  It is much more likely that they will have fewer exposure to sinful ideas at home.  Here is a simple link that tells you everything you need to know about Catholic homeschooling.  Catholic homeschooling resources.com

Here are a few of the most popular Catholic homeschooling vendors;

 

It may be extremely difficult, but we are so blessed to be traditional Catholics and to be able to form children into great christian people of the future world and Church.

6 Replies to “Traditional Catholic Homeschooling”

  1. I started 1st grade at { OUR LADY OF VICTORY } Baltimore,maryland in 1965.The nuns were in full habit,and I was taken to the cloak-room on one occasion for discipline.But I do believe in home schooling for kids.Both of my biological parents were teachers at one time,but I thank GOD they never home schooled me.As I look back to my youth,neither one of them were Good Catholics.And I was no angel.But I’ve always been 100% Pro-Life for the unborn baby humans no-exceptions.

  2. Hi Father,
    I originally found one of your old posts on Minions a while back when my child was asking if they were bad or good. I found your information very good and helped me to properly direct my child. Since then I have subscribed to your posts and have found them an answer to prayer many times. I am so blessed to have found your writings and they speak to me personally many times – I believe you are truly God sent to help others and myself in these very hard times. This article has particularly spoken to me. I have decided to homeschool our 1st grade child as the changes to our Health & Physical Education Curriculum in Ontario which is to be implemented this fall in both Public and Catholic Schools is completely against the true Catholic Churches teachings. Thanks to affirming and giving me the courage to embark on this journey. God Bless.

  3. Thank you for encouraging home education, Father! It is the best way to go for many reasons. And the older do help the younger. The photo of the little girl with the quote about teaching our children to follow Christ is lovely, but I wish the girl had more clothes on. We get so used to modern fashions (more and more nakedness even on the young) that we don’t even “see it” anymore. (often wedding photos on Catholic websites use a photo of a bride in an immodest gown) Anyway, my children were home educated and we loved it. Those were happy years. Now all but one of my children are long gone.

  4. Father, I am a new homeschooling parent. I was very hesitant to do it because I was afraid of failure, I wasn’t qualified, afraid my child would fall behind and have no friends. Now finishing our 1st year I am very grateful that we decided to homeschool. As you mentioned at times its very chaotic but we regroup and start fresh the next day. I do meet with another family that homeschool their daughter in the same program (Our Lady of Victory) for music class. This allows us to socialize with families that share the same values. I hope I can encourage other mothers to try and homeschool. Its not easy, but its really rewarding for both my child and I. As we start a new year, I pray that God may give me the necessary graces to continue on this journey. God Bless!

  5. Great article! I also wanted to say the Catholic Heritage Curricula has some very nice materials as well.

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