Kate raised and homeschooled her three children and, over the years, a myriad of neighborhood and community kids throughout multiple local programs, projects and initiatives. A journalist and now filmmaker of the newly released Dancing Joy (now available for rental on Vimeo ), today Kate continues to help her children raise their own kids.
Kids learn to encounter, appreciate, work with and honor those around them–first by seeing it done in the home, and second, by being part of a community. Our family always did what I call “home church”, meaning working naturally with our entire community. But we also were out in society taking advantage of things like libraries, community college, sports and dance activities, music, and friendships. I honestly was the tough mom, insisting on having the kids at our house, saying no to sleepovers, insisting that if they had a birthday party, everyone be invited, no one got left out.
Our house was a center of activity–we had theater projects going on for kids in our community and later, the WAIT team. We developed family activities based on things we found significant.
Our purpose isn’t to educate kids to fit into the existing society. True socialization is the one that brings kids to realize that everyone is either in the parental, sibling, spouse or child realm at any moment. It is from this understanding that we learn and practice how to interact with the wider world. We wanted them to honor and value all people–not just ones that shared their beliefs. We really wanted them to have healthy, loving marriages, so we had to work on our own, developing solutions to many issues unique to our couple. That really came from God, and by finding lots of outside sources too.
Kids really don’t care about the issues of having tons of money or a gorgeous house–they want to be loved, seen, valued, and supported, and they want to see their parents as honorable, hard working, loving and happy people. If kids have good relationships in the home, they easily learn to navigate in society. Schools never “fix” what’s lacking at home. Home is the real place where socialization happens.