00:01: Don’t feel alone with this question. Many, many parents ask, “What about homeschooling all my children at the same time? I’ve got them in school, I want to take them out. I don’t know whether to take them out one at a time.” Let me use an example. You got three children. One is a little one perhaps attending preschool, and then you’ve got another one in the junior levels, and one in the slightly senior levels. And so now it’s older one that you feel you need to take home for whatever the reasons. And now you don’t know whether you should take the other two out as well, or whether you should settle in with the older one and then bring the next one, and finally the youngest, because maybe the youngest is hard work for you and you find you’re not gonna be able to concentrate on sitting teaching your eldest and attending to your eldest needs.
00:46: So that’s the question that comes up very, very often. It’s not uncommon, and people are concerned about this. So this is what we can tell you. First of all, I can’t speak from experience ’cause we never had children in school that we then brought out one at a time or altogether. But because Oikos Ministries has been around for so many years now, we’ve heard many, many testimonies about this particular question and the experience of it. And the bottom line is parents who take a while to bring all their children home generally tell us that they have regretted taking as long as they did in getting all the children home. And they in hindsight would have preferred to have just brought them all home and worked it out. And now let me tell you why they have that experience and why they now say to others, if they’re asking the question directly to them, they say “No, no don’t take your time bringing your children home at a time, just bring them all home.” And the reason is this, that they have shared with me. They say that the children at school could have had a really good day at school and come home to those that were home educated, whether it was one or two or more, and the one returning from being at school could have had a bad day or a good day. Either way they would talk about that. And then the reverse might have been with the children at home, a good day or a bad day, and they talk about that.
02:09: So then this starts to happen, where there is discussions about which one’s better. The child at school would have preferred to being at home that day, maybe the children at home would preferred to being at school that day. So there isn’t a unity as you can gather from that. And this is what the parents have shared with us where problems start. Another problem that they have is the time it takes to divide themselves between the focus at home, and then also attending to the children or child that has been taken to school and the travel and so on. And so then what results from that is they feel, the parent feels now divided. So what we say from Oikos is that if you feel this calling and you feel like this is what you need to do, even if it’s just one of your children that needs it the most, and you feel your others are gonna thrive by staying in school, what we would suggest is you as a family discuss it together and decide. Well first of all the parents together with not leaving God out of the decision making process, but also for you to sit down as a family and decide, “This is what we’re doing for this season. This one’s staying in school and these ones are gonna be at home,” whichever way it’s working. “And this is what we’re gonna be doing.” And you make it work and you don’t allow the division to come in. You remind them, “We’ve decided to do this like this for this reason,” and then you walk in that confidently.
03:35: Or you decide, “We’re gonna be doing this ultimately at the end of the day, all the children coming home, and so we’re just gonna dive right in right here. And we’re gonna say to the children, ‘Some of you would prefer to be at school, others are very happy to be at home, but as a family and as your parents, we have decided that this is the way that we are going forward with your education and as a family. We’re just going to all stay at home, and we’re gonna make this work. And we’re gonna have to be a team, we’re gonna have to work at it together.'” You might find along the way that you have one that has a bad day, that says they’d rather be in school, and that might be a difficulty for you to have to overcome. Again, if you come back to your decision and say together as a family with dad involved, “This is something we committed to. This is something we’ve decided we’re gonna be doing. And so we need to pull together and do it. Some days are gonna be better than others, some days you might… It’s a very real emotion. You feel it’ll be better if you go back to school.”
04:33: The thing that you have to be cautioned of here is don’t listen to the bleating of the little lambs, your children. You’ve got to check with God. Because if you feel swayed by the bleating of the little lambs and you put your children back in school because they think that that’s what’s best for them, but you don’t necessarily feel comfortable with that or feel it is ultimately the best thing for them, well then you’re gonna have regrets and you’re gonna have to actually try and start over again and all that goes along with that. So I’m just cautioning you to please be careful not just to listen to the bleating of the lambs, but rather to stop and be sure that this is right. Maybe the following year one of your children are going to need to back into the system for whatever your circumstances or reasons will be. I think it comes down to this, that you need to be confident in your decision and you need to make it work. If you’ve decided to do that, make it work.
05:26: And ultimately, if you’re just trying to get to the answer of do I do it all at one time or one at a time, the general answer for that, and as I said it’s general because everybody’s circumstances are different. But the general consensus on that one is just bring them all home if you’re choosing to home educate and get on with it. That is what parents have told us is the preferred way, and they would have preferred if they had done it that way. So don’t be afraid. We’ve done a series on the top 10 fears of home education, and this is one of them. There’s lots and lots of help there for you. And also think about this, thousands and thousands and thousands of families have home educated all their children at the same time. So how are they managing that? From newborn babies all the way up to those exiting home education into their adult life. You’ve got large families that have got that huge age spectrum and they’ve managed that.
06:24: So there is a lot of help there for you from those who have really walked it, and not just walked it, they walked it and the results are fantastic. So I’m here to encourage you to not be afraid, and to dive in, grab the help you can, read ‘Better Late Than Early’, the Moores books that you can find on the parent help section on the website. And we are here to help, so if there’s anything that you need assistance with in this regard that you’re concerned about, then you can get hold of us and get in touch and we will do what we can to help you. Please be easy on yourself. As much as it might seem overwhelming and you’re tempted to take one tiny step at a time that you can cope with, and that might seem the more sensible way to go, I want to suggest that you have courage to do this in its completeness. And that is by bringing your children home and not putting too much pressure on yourself to try and get it all right in the first week, or even the first year for that matter.
07:23: Let it just unfold, take your time, be a family, and relax into it, settle into it. You’ll find what works for your family, how to attend to teaching the one to read while you’re needing to feed the baby and take care of that. You will find out what works for you. I actually did another little video clip called, ‘Fitting It All Together’, and you might find that one helpful to watch as well, because it’s just some ideas of how doable it actually is. So I just came back to assure you to have courage and to take it easy, that you can do this.