Forward With Faith

by Kelly Royster

I remember when I first considered the idea of homeschooling. I was gung-ho and confident until the big yellow school bus came by and picked up everyone’s kids but mine. Then reality hit; what was I thinking?? Fortunately I had armed myself with a small arsenal of knowledge that really helped me confront some of the scarier issues that beginning homeschoolers face, such as homeschooling within the law, curriculum choices and the dreaded ‘s’ word (socialization!) Perhaps you have some of these same fears. Or maybe you just want to connect with other Moms who have been there and done that and see what life in the thick of homeschooling looks like. If so, then I have a suggestion for you! The LDSHE Beginner’s Seminar! It’s a day full of classes that address these very issues and more.

When I first considered home education I was worried about reporting to the “authorities.” I wanted to make sure I turned in the correct information for testing, attendance and whatever else might be required. The Legal How-To's class addresses how to dot all i’s and cross all t’s when working with school administrators. It also deals with record keeping so you have the information needed to keep track of your child’s progress.

I wasn’t as worried about my ability to teach as much as I was worried about what to teach and when to teach it. And with the ever-increasing number of homeschoolers, more and more great curriculum is available. How does one choose and why? What is a classical education? Or TJEd? The Curriculum Conundrums class addresses the different homeschooling philosophies and curriculum choices and helps you sort through them to discover what direction you may want to take your family’s education. At the end of this class there will be a curriculum browse giving you the chance to look at actual curriculum and talk to other moms about why and how a particular program worked for their family.

And of course my mother in law was worried about my kids not being ‘normal’ or socialized like other children. Maybe your husband is worried about your son playing high school football. Sports, Socialization and Grandparents is a class that covers these topics and helps you address the concerns of well-meaning family and friends.

One of the best things about the Seminar is the opportunity to hear from ‘veteran’ homeschool Moms and glean wisdom from those who are in the trenches of home education. The Daily Routines class follows three different Moms through a day in the life of their homeschool. You’ll get an idea of how a typical day at their house looks and gain some ideas for your own school day. There will also be plenty of one on one time with these Mentor Moms during the curriculum browse, during breaks and at the end of the day during our Mix and Mingle with Mentor Moms.

This is an LDS Conference and the day wouldn’t be complete without a class that emphasizes the opportunity we have to offer our children a uniquely LDS education. How can we best apply gospel principles in the education of the little ones entrusted to our care? We live in the “great and terrible” day of the Lord and our children can be the great among the terrible if we nourish them with knowledge and intelligence.

Kelly is a Virginia native and currently resides in Louisa County, VA with her husband Scott, her four beautiful daughters ages 6-14, and a new baby. Kelly attended BYU and received a BA in Linguistics and a TESL Certificate. She grew up dancing, and while at school, she performed with the BYU Theatre Ballet, touring across the western US and South Africa. Currently a full-time homeschool mom, she teaches ballet at a local studio and to the gymnasts at her daughter's gym. Kelly also enjoys gardens, chickens, herbs, reading, music, camping and learning languages.