SummarySarah-Vita Younan presents three famous homeschooled students to counter the stereotypes, jokes, and prejudice encountered by some homeschooling families.
Homeschooling, though becoming more common in the past 30 years, still comes as a surprise to so many people.
Society is riddled with stereotypes, jokes, and even prejudice toward the average homeschooled student. What people in society seem to overlook is that homeschooling has been around for a very long time, and was even the social norm for many years during a time when only the rich could afford any kind of education.
Because of these previously developed opinions that students educated anywhere else but the classroom are not well-educated, homeschoolers are often met with the assumption that they aren’t good enough.
Personally, I know the feeling and rejection of being treated differently because of how others thought I was educated, and the rare surprise of meeting someone who was also homeschooled, or met with approval and praise for the educating style of my parents.
Very unrecognized to society is that many famous people in history, who we look up to and even are taught about, were indeed homeschooled.
Seeing The World Through A Lens
Ansel Adams, a world-renowned photographer born in 1902, was homeschooled because he was thought by the teachers to have a learning disability because he was slow. His father was a wealthy man, and sent him to many private schools.
Ansel resisted the traditional way of learning because he so highly creative, but the teachers thought he was “just slow.” After another failure with a school in San Francisco, his parents began homeschooling him when he was 9 years old, and he continued his education himself when he turned 12.
It was actually on a family trip/“field trip” to Yosemite National Park that Adams discovered his passion for photography, contributed to by his parents and at home learning.
Though a diligent student, the flexibility of a homeschooling schedule allowed Ansel to master and further his talent, and he grew into one of the best and most well-known photographers in the world.
And Then There Were None…
Another famous figure that many people don’t know was homeschooled was the Queen of Mystery: Agatha Christie. Christie was the youngest of three girls, whose older sisters went to traditional school.
In her childhood, she was an extremely nervous and shy child, so she was taught by her father, mother, and a governess, until her teenage years. In her home studies, she gained a deep appreciation for literature, especially Sherlock Holmes mysteries, dance and music.
It was through her homeschooling that Agatha developed her creativity and became a great author, that is still highly popular to this day. The only books to be sold in more copies than any written by Christie, up until today have been The Holy Bible and The Dictionary.
Through The Wardrobe
Finally, also a well-known figure in the world of literature, C. S. Lewis was also homeschooled. Lewis’s parents had him stay home during his childhood, educated by his mother and governess. His family had an astounding library, which consisted of entire spare rooms filled with books to aid his education. Lewis did try to attend private school when he was 15, but found the experience unpleasant and dull, and was brought back home to be permanently tutored by the family until University.
Granted with a homeschooled education that let his creativity flourish rather than dumbing it down, Lewis followed his dreams and gifted the world with the fantasy Chronicles of Narnia, that are still studied and loved by children and adults, and remarked as one of the most famous series ever published.
Many homeschooled students face a stigma that has been unfairly designated that they are not smart or skilled enough to compare with those that come from a “traditional” education, when in fact homeschooling was the tradition before anything else.
Homeschoolers are often asked to comply or compromise with what is expected of public school students, because they don’t want to single them out as special, and authorities are, unfortunately, very often surprised at the vast array of knowledge, flexibility, and capability that can come from these students.
It can be difficult to go through life feeling like you’re not up to par simply because someone thinks their education is superior to yours. Yes, grades are important, and we should strive to do our very best in school, but even God knows that through grace, one can only give their very best in everything they do.
Through Him, our best becomes more than enough and His grace will give us everything we need to succeed in life.
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me (2 Corinthians 12:9).”
“Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God (2 Corinthians 3:5)”