Thoughts on 30+ Years of Homeschooling — w/ Chris Davis

Thoughts on 30+ Years of Homeschooling — w/ Chris Davis As a homeschooled graduate who began homeschooling in the late 1970s and 1980s, I have a desire to introduce current homeschoolers to their history. Chris Davis was one of the pioneers of the modern-day homeschooling movement. He was the founder of The Elijah Company, one of most successful homeschooling book catalogs of the 1980s and 90s, is an author of several books on home education, and is the founder of a homeschooling travel ministry. For many years Chris spoke around the nation, encouraging and equipping Christian parents for the task of raising their children to fulfill God’s unique calling on their lives. I am grateful to call Chris a friend and am excited about introducing you to his wisdom. — Israel Wayne Israel Wayne: Tell us about your background in education and what led you to the radical decision to home educate your own sons. (What year did you begin homeschooling?) Chris Davis: It is my experience that a person’s worldview changes only when he discovers truths he did not previously know. The Bible calls this “repentance” which literally means “afterwards, to understand”. Sometimes God has to deal with a person in such a way that, afterwards, he is forced to understand things he would not have accepted without God’s dealings which are often lovingly painful. So it was that in 1982, my 4 month old son was diagnosed with a terminal disease, a personal, drawn-out crisis that caused me to reconsider everything I had been taught (and had accepted) about God, the Church, and just about everything else I believed to be “truth”. My soul was in turmoil and my life at a crossroads. Not the best place for a young pastor to be. Into this confusion, God came to me with Jeremiah 6:16 promising that if I “stand at the crossroads and look, and ask for the ‘ancient path’—once I discovered that path and was willing to take it—I would find rest for my soul”. As I questioned everything from who He is to what His church means to how to raise children, I began to build what I considered a biblical framework and a very personal, faith relationship with my Father. About 1984 I left the professional pastorate and also decided my sons would not attend public school, an educational decision which was illegal at the time. Israel Wayne: What do you see as some of the greatest difficulties families face when they make the transition from institutional classroom schooling to a home-based learning environment? Chris Davis: My sense is that families face the same difficulties and basic...

© Israel Wayne.