Volume 4 Issue 3
by Mary Leppert
I am often bothered when I here homeschooling referred to as a "movement." Why? I can't really tell you, except that one image that comes to mind is a herd of cows moo-ving toward a certain pasture. This fits one of the definitions of "movement" I found in Webster's Dictionary: "The activities of a group moving toward a certain goal." I guess what we do in our family does have a certain goal in mind, but I don't know that being a family has an "end," in a linear sense, as most goals do.
To me, homeschoolers are the opposite of this sort of mass activity and mass thinking. Most of us begin homeschooling with our linear concepts intact - sequential goals following each other in a straight line (in our minds, anyway) for the day, week, month, "school year," life, etc., that we have been brainwashed into accepting as correct living. As we progress through a year or two of living a more natural life, we come to the realization that life is not really linear but rather, is spherical. Things happen simultaneously, not sequentially. Growth occurs that we hadn't planned on and some of what we planned fails miserably. There is an element of mystery at work here. What I am saying is that "homeschooling" is a small part of what we are doing. We are just a family, living our lives.
This brings to mind the conversation I had with a friend the other day. She told me of an article in another home-schooling publication which stated that one of the mistakes homeschoolers make is trying to get everyone on the bandwagon; the writer felt that homeschooling was not for everyone. My friend commented that she felt that homeschooling is not for every parent but homeschooling is something that every child deserves. I have been thinking about this a lot and I agree with my friend. Keeping our children home and raising them ourselves, having them primarily influenced by their own families in a warm, loving environment is our duty as parents! I know so many parents who say "I could never do that." I challenge them that instead of joining a "movement," relax, bring your kids home, get to know them with fewer outside influences and just enjoy being a family!Our 4th Anniversary
This issue marks the end of our fourth year of publishing The Link. We feel very fortunate to have our job of work be something so rewarding and enjoyable; hearing from you that you have enjoyed and/or benefited from a certain article or writer is very satisfying.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who reads The Link. Many things have changed in these four years. In late August, 1995, we had the first issue in hand, a skimpy 12 pages and we printed 5,000 copies. At the time, I didn't know what we were going to do with all of these papers crowding us out of our apartment.
I belonged to two different homeschooling groups with about 80 families total. I also had homeschooling friends around the country to send it to. The leader of one of the groups I was involved with wrote one of the few articles, so I sent a copy to everyone in her group, which left us a total of 4,950! We subsequently sent out another 100 or so to other homeschoolers we knew, which brought us down to 4,850 and room at one end of the couch where our son could sit! That first week of the first issue, a friend who felt that homeschooling wasn't popular enough to warrant printing 5,000 copies of The Link said to me, "Do you think anyone's gonna read this?"
Four years later, I can say, "Yes, people are definitely reading it!" This current issue finds a circulation of 100,000 nationwide, and we are going to 10 foreign countries as well.
We want to thank all of you who read The Link, contribute to it, send us your comments and tell your friends about it! And we thank you for home-schooling and making a better world for us and our children to live in!In This Issue
Please note that The Link will be doing three conferences nationwide in the year 2000. Many people from the South and Midwest have written to us and requested that we bring our conference to their respective areas. We have chosen two central locations - for the South, Greensboro, North Carolina and for the Midwest, Chicago. We hope to see many of you there this year!
Also in this issue, we have three book excerpts from new books fresh on the market. One is our book, The Homeschooling Almanac 2000; the second is Discover Your Child's Learning Style by Mariaemma Pelullo-Willis and Victoria Kindle-Hodson. The third is The Well-Trained Mind by mother/daughter team Jessie Wise and Susan Wise-Bauer [not available online]. I decided to run these excerpts because these books are excellent and relevant to the season. This time of year many new homeschoolers join our ranks and many of us veterans begin re-thinking our philosophies or are looking for something new in the Fall. I am sure you will enjoy them!
Also, this issue features In An English Garden, a Charlotte Mason column by Catherine Levison. We are pleased that Catherine will be a regular writer for The Link. She has much to offer through personal experience, being the homeschooling mother of five children and a Charlotte Mason expert, having authored two books on Ms. Mason to date. Please note: Catherine will appear at all three Link Conferences in 2000.
Another new columnist in this issue, is Cafi Cohen, homeschooling mother of two, well-known columnist, author and regular speaker at The Link Conference. We are very pleased to add Cafi to The Link!
A third new columnist in this issue is Teri Brown, who will be writing a column called The Field Trip Lady. Teri is a homeschooling mother who is resourceful, full of excitement about homeschooling and knowledgeable about inexpensive ways to take field trips.
Two notable missing columns are: The Colfax Corner. The Colfaxes are very busy right now with a number of things, one being David's new job as a Supervisor of his county. Their column will resume sometime in the future. Until then, you can continue to send questions to them at: The Colfaxes, c/o Mountain House Press, Box 353, Philo, CA 94566.
The other missing column is Gary Grammar which will resume next issue.
Please note that if you would like to be among our writers, see the Writer's Guidelines in our printed issue. We welcome your perspectives on homeschooling, parenting, etc., and we also pay according to the guidelines! You can query with a particular article or topic anytime via our e-mail or snail mail addresses, as well, if you have something that isn't mentioned in our guidelines, but you feel could be pertinent to Link readers.
Happy reading until the next issue!Copyright © 2006 Modern Media