By guest author Jason Parker
Dads need to be homeschooled. Which is simply to say, from a Christian perspective, dads have to intentionally train themselves to lead their families to know Christ.
If you do an internet search for practical ideas on how dads can be involved in homeschooling, you will find quite a few good ideas. I don’t intend to duplicate all that good advice here. I simply want to encourage dads with a few things that stick out to me from the successes and failures of the ongoing process of homeschooling our six children.
If your wife and children cannot see why the work is worthwhile, your homeschooling won’t last long. You must provide the vision. It need not be flashy or erudite. It just needs to be there, and it needs to be clear. This will guide priorities. You cannot do everything. You cannot do all the potentially good things. Your children cannot be involved in everything. But you can do what matters most for eternity.
For some fathers and families, finances are not an issue, but for others, there needs to be intentional effort exerted to make sure that you provide adequate resources to homeschool well. Your children can learn an amazing amount if all you have is a Bible and the joy of living life to the fullest, but your wife and children will thank you for generously providing everything you can to equip them in the learning process.
Read to your children. Read the Bible most of all, and then read all kinds of books together. Teach your children to read, provide lots of good reading material, and then talk to them about what they read. Embark on an adventure of learning together. Spiritually and intellectually inquisitive dads model for their children the joy of lifelong growth in the knowledge of God.
You must provide godly discipline in your home, and this is not merely to keep your wife from imploding at the end of every school day. Discipline is a basic component of discipleship. One of the destructive effects of sin is that it makes us curved in upon ourselves. Our children have a sinful tendency to dull ears and dim eyes. They see only themselves at the center of the universe. They don’t smell the aroma of the Spirit leading them on the quest to know Christ. They need to be opened up to receive all the wisdom that is crying out in all of creation. This is the gift you give to the well-disciplined child. The well-disciplined child has the courage and confidence to try and fail and try again until he succeeds. He has the humility and honor to learn not only from his parents but also from all of his elders. She has the tenacity and work ethic to master whatever she sets her mind to. Godly discipline gives the gift of mature freedom.
Homeschooling dads who provide their families with vision, finances, the love of reading, and discipline do well, particularly when all of these things are done in love. You can never ever have too much of this fruit of the Spirit. When this is present, you are making real disciples of our loving Savior.