Homeschooling is the Road Less Travelled By. How has our choice to homeschool our children “made all the difference?”

My child showed me a video about choices called “Leave the Party.” It is from an LDS General Conference Talk by Bishop Gary E. Stevenson called, “Be Valiant in Courage, Strength and Activity.” He talked about a choice made by a young man at a party in Japan. Then he said that the choices each of us make now will make a difference in what happens in our life, in who we become. Every choice helps to shape our lives. It is so true. I pondered it, and thought about our choice to homeschool our children years ago.

It also reminded me of this poem many of us love by Robert Frost called, “The Road Not Taken.” I have it in a book which has the poems illustrated with beautiful watercolor paintings. I really love these 3 lines the most:

“…. long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;”

     These lines are touching to me. I like to put it into my life and my soul. “Long I stood” in 2011, pondering, studying, consulting and deciding. Long I stood then, next to my husband, in 2011 and 2012, he travelling beside me on the path. Should we homeschool? And (in January 2012, we) looked down as far as (we) could, to where (the path of homeschooling) bent in the undergrowth (at that time, that point was, until the next school year started. We just wanted to try it for the rest of that academic year, and be ready to put the kids back in school in August of 2012).


Now to go over these famous lines:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

     For sure, Homeschooling is the Road Less Travelled By. How has our choice to homeschool our children “made all the difference?”


  • Homeschooling helped our children to be happier, get along better with each other, and has brought more of the Gospel of Jesus Christ into our home.
  • Homeschooling has helped others, who have followed us down this path, they seeing that someone they knew was tredding on that path.
  • Homeschooling has given me a more thorough education, as I get to review and teach the things my children must learn. I learn (or review) things along with them and prove my basic education, giving me a stronger foundational education.
  • Homeschooling has led me to learn more about the U.S. Constitution and what is going on in politics in my county, state and country. I had been involved in politics and in learning about the U.S. Constitution, but not as much as I am involved in it now.
  • Homeschooling has led me to meet people whom I never would have met had I not started down its path. These people have helped to shape my life.
  • Homeschooling has helped me to become closer to Heavenly Father because it is so tough and I cannot do it without His help. I have learned and relearned that lesson.
  • Homeschooling has helped me to learn more about the Old Testament because in Life School and in Discover the Old Testament, we have been studying the Old Testament.
  • Homeschooling has made me happier, personally an has improved my health.
  • Homeschooling forces me to improve, as I have children whom I have taught, constantly encouraging me to be a better example to them.
  • Homeschooling helps me know my children on a deeper level. Because I spend more time with them than I would if I sent them to public school, I know more about them. (They also know more about me than they would the other way).
  • Homeschooling has influenced my childrens’ lives immensely, as, for one, they are exposed to completely different learning than they would be were they sent to school. I am not only talking about academic learning, but social learning, also. 
  • Homeschooling gave me and my children more chances to know more about my Grandma Preece and my Uncle Steven, who have now passed into post-mortality. Much of the time we spent with them was during what would have been otherwise, time with them away at school.
  • I have had more time during the days, day after day, to teach my children life skills which they should not have to wait for adulthood and free daytime hours, to learn.
  • I believe my children are closer to Havenly Father and love the Bible and Book of Mormon more than they would otherwise.
  • I truly believe that the choices my children make are better choices than they would have been had they been sent to school all these years.


“The Road Not Taken,” by Robert Frost



Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;


Then took the other, as just as fair,

And having perhaps the better claim,

Because it was grassy and wanted wear;

Though as for that the passing there

Had worn them really about the same,


And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no step had trodden black.

Oh, I kept the first for another day!

Yet knowing how way leads on to way,

I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

October 2016 General Conference Quote: Elder Robert D. Hales, Quorum of the 12 Apostles

This is great advice for all parents and grandparents. I think it is really great advice for this LDS homeschool mom! I know it is about teaching the gospel for most, but for me it is about all of the homeschool teaching I do all week, as well. No training manual is better than scriptures praying pondering and seeking the Holy Spirit. The calling to be a parent gives us the ability to teach in ways right for our family. Awesome. Sometimes I forget that. We must not forget or set aside as unimportant, Family Home Evening. Family Home Evening is not a lecture from mom and dad. (We are guilty of that). Have fun together in Family Home Evening? We need to work on the “fun” part. I must not lose my patience and raise my voice in anger at my kids when I am frustrated during a homeschool day. This will make the Holy Spirit leave. This ultimate advice at the end is great for me: don’t give up!

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A Really Great LDS Homeschooling Essay!

This is SO GOOD! Oh, my. You have to read this and share it with everyone you know who is LDS!

You have to read and share this! It is SO WELL WRITTEN!!!!

The Difference: Never in a Public or Charter School

2 of my kids went to public school for few years and 2 have never been to public school, nor to a charter school. I wanted to write about how I honestly feel about this.

I am so glad 2 of mine have never been to elementary school. My 2 older ones learned things I cannot unteach them. One of my kids feels constant pressure and constantly compares herself to others. She feels pressure to “stay at the top” and to be doing exactly what her top performing oublic schooled peers are doing! My son who public schooled still talks about killing at the drop of a hat, which he learned at public school recess. He also unlearned empathy and kindness. They both learned things like: learning is drudgery, mom’s job is to clean up (like the custodian’s job is to clean up), if someone is crying, ignore them and do your work, kids who are normal do not like their siblings, people must play with kids their own age, and much more, that I have been working on unteaching them.

My daughter who never went to public school has been doing very well in learning and I would say she learned so much more and is so much more advanced than her older siblings were at her age. It is amazing how much farther ahead some can get if not sent to school to get behind. 

Do not take a kid who could learn Items A through J that you want then to learn in homeschool and send them to public school so that they can learn A through d that you want thej to learn and A through J that you do NOT want then to learn and some that you may never be able to unteach them!

As for junior high and high school, my two oldest are now in baseball and softball. They said their teammates use swearwords like crazy and it bothers them really bad. My daughter is also bothered by how immodestly her teammates dress for softball games. I told them ai am so sorry and tood them, that is the way it is in Junior High and High School. 

I think today, I will have a talk with her about doing something bood and brave–asking her teammates not to use those words in her presence. I have done that in my life, and it has worked. People will respect people if you ask them to boldly.

Some people want their kids to have the social experiences that come with public school. I think without those social experiences, my kids will be fine. They have the positive social experiences I think kids need from other kids growing up, without all the negative social experiences I had growing up. 

My girls and I recently went to a homeschooled mothers and daughters retreat and learned a lot of really great, positive and uplifting things in a very social setting. My sons and I are going to go to the same, but with boys and their moms. It is great that the social experiences they have are positive and healthy, and chosen by me. I do not get to handpick which boye and which moms will come to this upcoming event, but the fact that I will be there and lots of moms will be there, helps! 

My eldest daughter just got to go to her first boy/girl dance and she is 7th grade age. It was part of a weekend of learning and socialization with peers. The kids were homeschooled and of our religion (LDS) and they learned how to be queenly or how to be chivalrous. They learned table manners at a special dinner in semi-formal attire. They played games which teach moral and leadership lessons. They had classes and listed to speakers. It was like an LDS Youth Conference, only there were just 18 kids there (plus 20 more who just cane to the dance) and they were all homeschoolers. My daughter laughed, learned and really enjoyed herself. She said the boys were not shy and were great at conversationalism. She said, “they were not how you said they’d be.” She seemed to have had a great experience. She is full of wonder and excitement. She danced with 10 boys. Her experience was very different from my first 7th grade dance.

My first 7th grade dance found me in shock. The music had lyrics that were awful and made the Holy Ghost leave. They music was so loud! There was not much lighting, so it was really dark. It was extremely crowded and I remember feeling a great fear and nervousness. I remember praying it would be over soon. Boys were not asking girls to dance and girls were huddled in groups. Everyone was pretending to have fun, even though I bet most felt as nervous as I did. I had friends who “set me up” with boys who were short like me, because that is what you gotta have in common–height. I know they meant well, but from that I learned that even some of my friends only saw me as “our friend who is short.” My companion dancers and I were so afraid and hardly talked to one another. We did not have much in common. We did not have similar interests. We did have fear of school dances in common! 

Lisa C. Jackson’s Judgy and Preachy version of LDS Living Article

Based on LDS Living Article: “7 Mistakes LDS Parents Make and How to Avoid Them”

10 mistakes LDS parents make and how to avoid them: Preparing Your Kids to Serve Missions.”
1) Sending them to a public or charter school. 

2) Trying to Control your kids and make them do what you want them to do.

3) Forcing them to go to church, read their scriptures, do church activities, etcetera.

4) Using body language and facial expressions like the ones this woman in the photo Facebook Shows with the Link to the LDS Living Article: 

  
5) Expecting your child to learn the gospel by concept and memorization in church, instead of by daily life and by your example.

6) Not putting love first in your relationship with your child. Putting love and the relationship last.

7) Avoiding family home evening and, if married, weekly dates with your spouse to keep the family strong.

8) Not giving your child what he or she needs in the relationship with you, when it is needed.

9) Not listening and caring about your child’s desires and decisions, therefore killing your child’s ability to make them on his or her own.

10) Telling your kid how it is and to face it, rather than letting your kid grow up naturally and gradually, helping choose his or her life, learn about life on his or her own, etcetera.

LDS Homeschooling Northern Utah fb group

No Slave to a Style or Method

I am in Unschooling groups, eclectic groups, montessori groups, LDS homeschooling groups, TJED groups and regular homeschooling groups on facebook. We do not fit into any style. I decided a few months ago that pretending we fit into a box “we do this style,” was just fruitless. We do what works each day, what I feel like we will do that day, and on some days, what Heavenly afather directs. Ideally, every day would be “we do as Heavenly Father directs,” but in reality, I am not perfect and I just do my best every day. Some days, my best means I took a shower and the kids are alive.

I did purchase the L.I.F.E. School LDS Homeschooling Curriculum

I love it. I won’t say we do it every day, but usually whenever we do anything formal for aademics, we include it. It is what keeps me sane. I used to have to make lesson plans for all those subjects, but now I don’t have to and I know that it is included. I don’t have to worry over what to teach, as everything is right there (every subject is included except dance and math). My kids even have a lot of past workbook material to catch up on in LIFE School, so some days, when I di not have time, ability or desire to teach a formal lesson, I just say, “Do 6 pages of Life School,” and they know that means, from past lessons which I have taught, that they have yet to do work for. It takes them anywhere from one hour to never getting it done, to do that, depending on whether they try or not.

We still use Spelling Workout sometimes, too, because my kids need extra TLC in that area. We also use God’s Design For Science as it fits in with our Science in Life School, as a supplement, because it’s the most awesome Science program ever!!! It is not LDS, but Christian, and I add in LDS stuff because I am the teacher!

For more LDS and Scripture learning, we also use Discover the Old Testament, because that is where we are on the timeline of history in LIFE School, is Old Testament and Ancient Book of Mormon Times, for which we use Discover the Book of Mormon. One uses grades 1-3. The others use grades 4-7. They finished 1-3 in a different homeschool year.

Then there is the math, of course, which is also the best math ever because I am re-inventing the wheel. I have seen homeschool moms say of facebook, things similar to, “Why Reinvent the Wheel?” Well, in my case, because I do not like the wheel that is there. It is broken, so I am fixing it so that it works. The math used in public schools is the math used in homeschool, in most cases. I have heard of lots of homeschool math programs which just do not work for homeschool moms, unless they have just one, or very few, kids. I have 6, though, so it needed to be re-thought. It is a lot of work, but I do not follow a math program. Instead, I am creating a Homeschool math program which is a one room schoolhouse approach like LIFE School, which lets me teach math to all the kids together, and when it is fully ready, we will have math lessons as a family (instead of 5 separate math lessons for 5 separate kids old enough for them).

It is not fully ready yet. It is in the works. I do some of it, but mostly, I still have to teach each child a separate math lesson (which I think is so time-consuming)!

In addition to all that, we go when my husband is off work, on field trips to museums and kids learning places. I think it is easier on me not to try to do it without my husband’s help. We also are in a bunch of facebook groups and now and then, we do things with the others in the homeschool community locally. We used to do this more often, and have even tried the Co-Op thing. The Co-Op thing has not been in the mix of late, but I am trying to start my own LDS Co-Op lately, and we will see. Right now, I just plan a get-together once a month. That is all I can do now.

Here is a related post you will want to check out, too. The Current Mix of Our Homeschool Day

HR 5 “Student Success Act”: Scariest. House Resolution. Ever!

HR 5 of 2015 is very scary. Let’s not underestimate the power of changing laws gradually and slowly with 600 page ammendments by Resolutions of Congress!

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HR5 is up for vote this week (Friday, February 27th, 2015). HR 5 2015, 114th Congress Student Success Act new changes proposed

You may lose your right to direct your child’s education.

SPEAK UP! After reading all this, please: 

 -Call your U.S. House of Representatives member, who represents your State! Tell them you are against HR5!

-Copy and paste this article and spread the news to your friends and to your facebook groups.

-Print this article and distribute it in your neighborhood, to other parents at your local school, to relatives, to your friends and in the groups you belong to (before Friday, February 27th, 2015)!

Thanks!

Here in this you will see all the details about what I am discussing here: Article written by a woman who read all 600 pages of the new 2015 version of HR 5

Our state may lose its right to have separate laws regarding education (Utah’s laws protecting our rights ti direct our childrens’s educations will be nullified).

Private Schools will not have the right to teach any non- secular items, will be monitored by the Feds and will report to the Feds.

I am a homeschool mom. If this passes, none of us who homeschool will have the right to do so. We will no longer get to sit and ponder over how we want our child educated. The U.S. Department of Education’s Common Core will be the only choice!

It says you have parental rights in education:

“other than the Federal Government’s undiminishable obligation to enforce minimum Federal Standards of equal protection and due process.”

It grants the parents the right to have a “participating role” in the education of their kids should they accept any help from Federal funds given their state or private school or any federal aid program. This means you can volunteer in the classroom, but you cannot be your child’s teacher. You may have a “secondary supportive role of parents or guardians” (in education).

They are adding yet another clause to the Constitution, pertaining to education, in a resolution changing an Act, that will help them in saying, “We have an obligation to enforce Federal Standards in “equal protection” and “due Process.” Since you are not allowing your kids ti have an equal protection in education and you are not allowing them the right to an equal education, we get to take away your parental rights.

It does not just say they will make you stop homeschooling. It ways they will take away your parental rights.

Read More Here

If this passes, there will be no choice but the “false choice,” which is:

Choice A: Common Core from this school which is a Private School

Choice B: Common Core in your homechool with a Federal Government personnel coming to your house to make sure your child has due process and “equal protection” in education (an education equal to that of all other kids–equal meaning the same).

Choice C: Common Core in a Charter School

Choice D: Common Core online (charter, public or private school from home, with another teacher in charge of your child’s education (not you).

Choice E: Common Core from your local Public School

Choice F: Stay safe. Homeschool and do not participate in any program which receives Federal Aid (including aid for your special ed child, or speech therapy free from the district

Now, lest you think, “awe, who cares? They will not enforce this!” I am warning you that they will. Powerful people have obligations with Agenda 21/ ICLEI/ New World Order
to make our Nation ONE with the World. The United Nations has little power to enforce things here in the U.S. This HR 5 will give the U.N. much, much, much more control over you, over me and over our children.

They will go after the power of the states first. Then they will go after the private schools. Then they will go after the homeschools.

We cannot afford to say in our minds, “Behold, All is well in Zion. Yea, Zion Prospereth.” (2 Nephi 28:21, The Book of Mormon)

All is not well and if we sit on our haunches and let this pass, it will have been our decision to do nothing, and to let our freedoms be given away by our U.S. House of Representatives Reps!

Here is the full text of HR 5

Even Public Education is Against this HR 5 by Congress!

Read More Here

LDS Women Can Make Academic Curriculum!

One really great quote by President Brigham Young on LDS Homeschool Curriculum Writing and Publishing is here below.

“We want to make our own school books. We are paying now from thirty thousand to sixty thousand dollars a year for school books that can be made here just as well as to send and buy them abroad. This is carrying out the plan and principles of building up Zion, whether you know it or not. We may preach until Doomsday, and tell how Zion will look, how wide her streets will be, what kind of dwellings her people will have, what kind of carriages and what fine horses they will have, and what a beautiful looking set of people they will be, but it is all nonsense to talk about what we will never reach if we do not stop our folly and wickedness. We have the privilege of building up and enjoying Zion, and I am telling you how to do it. We want the women, from this time forth, to go to work and save the paper rags, and we will make the paper for them. And they can learn to make type. I can pick hundreds and hundreds of women out of this congregation that could go into a shop and make type just as will as men, it is a trifling thing. And they can learn to set type, and they can learn how to write for our school books. We have plenty of men and women that know how to write books, and how to teach too. We have just as good school teachers here as any in the world.”

President Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 16:17)

He made a great point here, or a few great points. We cannot just talk about Zion. We have to have actions that show sincerity. We have to show faith by our actions. What, in 2015, are people waiting for? Zion is not something that President Monson is going to create for us, then invite us to join in on. Zion is something that united LDS people will create by coming together, having faith and being determined.

Brigham Young is also telling us here, that we LDS members must educate our own kids, that we have those among us talented and able, to write curriculum, design it, get it printed and publish it. We already have much selection in LDS Homeschool Curricula. We have the talent among us to make even more!

I am working on math standards created by piecing togehter the following:

Pre Common Core Utah Math Standards
Constance Kamii math principles, as covered in her Piaget-based research
My own math education (what was taught each year when I was in school)
What I know of my childrens’ abilities at each age
What I know about teaching math at home
What kids need the most in real life, put first
What I want my kids to know at each age
Math divided by topic, then by subtopic, first, and, last, by grade level within the topic and subtopic; Also, math divided by grade level, then by topic and subtopic (so that a parent can teach using one or the other)

If I can do this, why can others who are LDS not also do this? Ehy must we depend on members of other churches making “Christian” curricula? Why should we depend on non-LDS teachers? We can teach our own children. We can! I know, because I can. I know you can, too!

I know many of you who di homeschool ar thinking that the academic strength of LDS Homeschool Curricula is likely not good. I challenge those who think this to go onto the LDS Homeschool Curricula page, click on the links which I have labeled for having academics taught from an LDS Perspective, get samplea of these and try them out with your kids.

For those of you who are not yet homeschooling, I challenge you to contact someone you know personally who home educates and ask them for a tour of their homeschool set-up in their house, with some information on how they do it. I also suggest you join a facebook grouo for local homeschoolers and local LDS homeschoolers, so that you can go to group events and meet these people while you are making this decision about whether to do this yourself.

Please also go with your spouse to the temple, praying before and after about whether it be right to LDS homeschool your kids. I know that Heavenly Father knows what is best for you and yours.

Heavenly Father was involved in our decision to LDS Homeschool. I also recently received personal revelation that I need to unite the local LDS Homeschooling Community, so that we may be one in God’s hands (for if we are not one, we are not his). This blog post is part of that effort. I hope it helps many people!

I share this in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

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LDS Homeschooling Northern Utah fb page

What is LDS Homeschooling?

LDS Stands for Latter-Day Saints. LDS people are Mormons. They are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. You can learn more about this church and its beliefs at About the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

LDS Homeschooling is teaching our children the Gospel of Jesus Christ, from doctrines of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, in our homeschools, which is legal. Just like people of other faiths have the freedom right now, to teach their beliefs in their homeschool, so also do members of this church.

In the public schools, teaching religion is not allowed. Secularism is taught in schools. This is a freedom from religion in schools. It is not a respect for all religions, but a lack of respect for any religion in particular, keeping everyone from the teaching of any religious beliefs in the government-funded and government-run schools.

Secularism requires that the most recent theories developed by scientists who do not add religion to their theories, are taught to the students. Currently in the world, there are a great many political beliefs and philosophies of humankind taught in the public schools. In the U.S.A., I include the charter schools, since they are also controlled by the Common Core or an exact likeness of the same in most non common core states.

If you, your childrens’ other parent and your children are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, then there is no reason to feel guilty about the legality of or the time in your day, taken up in teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ in your homeschool. You can start small and with something very simple, and add or change things with time.

Here is an idea for how to begin to teach the gospel during the daytime, family-home-evening style in a way that is cost-free, using free resources peprovided by the church.

I recommend that together, you sing primary song or hymn, followed by a family prayer (for all present). I call this the devotional, and do not do it every day. I just do it as much as possible. I would like it if I were more consistent, but I am o.k. with doing my best. You should be, too.

When you feel ready to move beyond having this simple devotional, you may wish to add some small additional item. It does not have to be formal. You can teach the gospel while working and talking together, or while walking and talking together!

Here are some free church resources to use as references and helps in the Gospel education of your kids:

The Childrens Illustrated Scripture Stories
The Scriptures
the primary manuals (organized by age)
the current or past year primary theme and lessons
The Childrens Songbook
The Hymn Book
“The Friend” Magazine
“The New Era” Magazine
The youth curriculum
“For the Strength of Youth”
“Gospel Essentials”
“Gospel Doctrine”
“The Truth Restored”
“Jesus the Christ”
“The Articles of Faith”
“Teachings of the Presidents of the Church”
Seminary Manuals
Sunday School Manuals
“Teaching, No Greater Call”

All of these and more, are found here on the church’s official web site for members: The Church or Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

Facebook group for Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints who Homeschool

LDS Homeschooling Northern Utah fb page