By Lana Moline
I stayed home 8 years, until all 3 of my kids were old enough to enter school. Making the decision to resign from my job in the corporate world was a difficult one for me at the time. I worked for a human resources consulting firm and could have easily gotten use to all the comforts and perks that came with the position. However, my life took a different turn after about 3 years on that job when I got married.
Before my husband and I were married, we spoke about children and the importance of offering our whole selves as parents to them. We agreed that although we are parents for a lifetime, the prime nurturing moments are for a season so we entertained the thought of not only staying home but creating a lifestyle that allowed and encouraged both of us to be available in their formidable years. Between our roles at work we were used to structure, organization, goals and results and so that’s the framework we employed to organize our family life as a business. Our approach was birthed out of need, common sense and practicality.
I wanted to make sure my kids had fun since we were going to be home all day together but there was so much that we needed to teach them before entering school. My first step was designing a curriculum that was all centered around producing thinkers. I didn’t want them to recite facts to me. I wanted to encourage their creativity and genuine desire to learn. Also I wanted to make sure that this experience was enjoyable for me as well because I knew that it would be over in a relatively short period of time and it was as much a journey for me as it was for my children. In fact, my blog was started in part because I wanted to continue to write and it was an easy way to keep everyone posted on what was going on in our lives.
I created centers in their room much like many pre-k/kindergarten classrooms. We learned reading, spanish, sign language and art. I taught the other subjects as integrated life lessons. We learned math as we counted money and allowance. Science was masked as cooking or on the playground looking at butterflies. Social studies was our play groups that included people from all over the world and the many vacations that came about because we all tagged along when my husband travelled for work. In fact, each time we joined my husband on a trip when he had to work, I found a library in the city and continued our lessons. I would pack workbooks, reading material, games, crayons, kids devotions and paper and my treat to myself was a leather skin red tote bag so it looked kinda cool.
Those years were wonderful. My kids refer to their experiences sometimes but I don’t think they truly understand the depth of it all yet. In any business the smart move is to invest in something and get a great return. I am convinced that I’ve done just that.
Lana Moline is an integral part of the Blackloveandmarriage.com writing team, freelance writer and poet who lives in Ft. Worth with her three kids and husband Emile. Married 11 years, both media professionals have vowed to maintain integrity in all aspects of print and broadcast journalism.Visit her atLana Moline Speaks.