“Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Daniel provides our next BackStory interview. He is #4 in a tight-knit brood of 5 formerly homeschooled siblings and each has taken their own unique path. Daniel is now an accomplished engineer as well as a proud papa and husband. His family knows the trials and the joys of home education and has inspired many along the way. I personally witnessed the values his parents instilled in him and their family and was touched when Daniel took the time as a teenager to mentor one of my young sons. That's just the kind of success this homeschool family produced and herein lies the evidence.
Be encouraged and inspired.
When did your homeschooling begin and how long were you homeschooled?
I started on my homeschool journey in 4th grade and continued until I graduated.
How would you characterize the teaching/learning style of your parent's home?
I largely worked and studied on my own. Reading aloud at a self-paced level is how I picked up the most from my studies. I generally attempted to get schoolwork done sooner rather than later but there were times when my parents had to step in and give me that extra push in order to keep me up to date on the subjects I didn't particularly enjoy.
What was your favorite area of study?
I always enjoyed the arts, drawing, painting and even creative writing. Word play like in Shakespeare is something I still enjoy.
What was the best part of homeschooling?
Setting my own pace. I think everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses so understanding what you need to spend more or less time on is important to develop a good sense of priorities.
What was the most unique part of your homeschool experience?
It sounds silly but [I enjoyed] being able to decide what I wanted for lunch and cook it for myself everyday.
What do you wish had been different in your homeschooling?
We all have regrets we wish we could change but I don't think any of mine are drastic enough to warrant the wish for a change.
How did your peers view you as a homeschooler?
Most of my peers were homeschoolers so there was little in the way of negative feedback.
How do your peers view you as a former homeschooler?
To be honest, it doesn't come up that often. When it does, most of them are surprised that I am so well adapted to society, having spent the majority of my primary years as a homeschooler.
Do you feel you missed out on anything as a homeschooler?
I'd be lying if I said no but I do feel like I would have missed out on much more if I hadn't been homeschooled.
How did homeschooling shape you into the person you are today?I would say that it helped to create an understanding that we are in charge of making the future, not just executing it. It helped me understand that I have to know where I want to go in my studies and how I want to further my education.