Do you ever feel lonely as a homeschooling parent? Wish you had support for teaching subjects you struggle with? Want to share your homeschool experience with other parents? On this week’s Home School Heartbeat with HSLDA President Mike Smith, Jay and Heidi St. John offer suggestions to help you connect.
Our guest today is Heidi St. John. Heidi and her husband Jay are the parents of six children and founders of First Class Homeschool Ministries in Washington State. First Class is an organization that plants homeschool ministries in local churches. Heidi, thank you for joining us on the program today.
Heidi St. John:
You’re welcome! Glad to be here!
Heidi, can you describe the need that you and Jay saw in the homeschool community that prompted you to move your ministry focus to connecting homeschooling families?
Yes, well, in all honesty, we started because there was a need in our own family, and the Lord used it to open our eyes to a broader need that we see within the homeschooling community—and that is the need for friendships and encouragement. Relationships are every bit as important in high school years as they are in the early years of homeschooling—and I think even more so. When parents are around other parents who are homeschooling their older children, their confidence then gets a natural booster shot, and the likelihood that they’re going to keep going all the way through high school increases tremendously.
FCHM groups are also creating opportunities for parents to teach classes that they are passionate about. Parent-taught classes remind parents that they really can teach their own kids. And when homeschooling parents are able to share their gifts, their joys, and even their struggles in this setting, we’ve seen lasting relationships be created. These communities are really creating stronger families, happier kids, and moms who are likely to finish the course, from diapers through diplomas.
Heidi, thank you for sharing that very valuable information with us! Until next time, I’m Mike Smith.