What happens to kids homeschooled on the homestead.

My oldest sons--Drew and Shea

Part of my intent with this blog is to encourage you that YES! your kids will turn out okay being schooled on the homestead. I know of several young men that grew up learning their math in the garden or their biology while butchering and I look forward to featuring something about where they are today in future posts.

But today, while looking at my son’s blog, it dawned on me that I’ve never thought about featuring my own kids. Shame on me. So today I’d like to share with you where my two oldest boys are and how they’re using their homeschooling from the homestead.

In all fairness, I must confess that my oldest son was only partially homeschooled. He wanted to go to school and so every other year he attended a small Christian school near our home. So I can’t necessarily take all the credit for his education. However, I can take the credit for making sure that he learned practical life skills.

This guy, Drew, apprenticed under a blacksmith beginning at age 14. Today, he fashions beautiful pieces out of iron in the forge on his property. At 15 he started working for a builder of custom homes. He learned enough in seven years working for Jay, that he could own his own company if he took a mind to it. But before he could entertain that thought, someone else approached him about working as estimator and office manager of their excavation firm.

Both boys worked together to make this shelf/coat hook combination for me for Christmas--while they were still teenagers!


That’s nice, you say, but where’s the homesteading come in? Well, Drew and his wife also keep goats and chickens on their mountainside property and this year he built his own green house and had the land terraced to accommodate more than just a kitchen garden. They are well on their way to living a sustainable lifestyle.

He built this chicken coop off the ground to deter predators.


My second son, Shea, called me from Haiti last week for my sausage seasoning recipe. He was planning on butchering a hog the next morning and they wanted to make as much sausage as they could. The folks in the mission enjoy a lot more meat since Shea arrived because of this skill.

They got most of their butchering experience on deer, though.


He also helps families in the mountains plant their crops. His senior year of high school he apprenticed under a cabinet maker and learned a great deal of woodworking skills both from his apprenticeship, and from his own study.

Planting cabbage on a Haitian farm.


Homeschooling can take on many different shades, styles, or forms. No one is right or wrong. What is right, is what is right for your own children and your own family. For us, homeschooling on the homesteading is what is right. And for now, the proof is in the pudding.

What are your grown kids doing? Feel free to share in the comments. And if you think they’d be willing, I’d love to interview them for this blog, so mention that as well.

Blessings to ya,

This post is linked up to the Carnival of Homeschooling!


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6 Responses to What happens to kids homeschooled on the homestead.

  1. Deborah Jennings says:

    What handsome creative young men you have raised! I didn’t home school my children. Mainly because I was a single mother and had to work to pay bills and buy groceries. I would loved to have been able to home school. My children are all grown and married with children of their own now. I do try to teach the grandchildren when they come to stay with us. We cook, and garden. When they express an interest in crocheting or knitting, I try to show them how to do it. We mostly have fun while we “play”.

  2. Karen Lange says:

    Thanks for sharing about the boys, Carol! I knew a little about them, but it was nice to hear about their journeys to date. They are wonderful young men!

    Our three have graduated from homeschooling. The oldest is 30 and married with a wonderful wife and 4 year old son. He has two associate’s degrees, one in liberal arts earned when we lived in NJ, and the other, an associate’s in science in computer drafting here in KY. (The two degree thing is another story!) He worked in an engineer’s office for a while, but decided he isn’t a desk job kind of person, so he and my husband are partners in a carpentry business. He uses his drafting skills quite a bit for their business. Btw – they are planning on homeschooling their son. :)

    Our middle son is 28 and after graduating, he attended community college and obtained 25 credits. He’s worked with my husband and other son when we lived in NJ (landscape contracting business) and then when we moved to KY, he got a job at a paint store and did freelance graphic work on the side. He now works full time for a web design firm in Louisville as a graphic designer and illustrator. His graphic design skills are entirely self taught.

    Our daughter is 26 and has worked in numerous places. While in high school at home, she was certified as a lifeguard and water safety instructor and worked at the local special services school pool. She’s held various jobs here in KY, including as a lifeguard, sales associate, billing specialist, and administrative assistant while earning her associate’s in liberal arts. She is currently working as an admin. assistant. She also interns for a small media company that films documentaries and is considering pursuing photography. She’s also interested in writing. (Imagine that! :))

    We never pushed the college thing, we simply encouraged them to explore some classes and other continuing education options while they had the time to see if it would lead to anything they wanted to do. They all graduated a year early from homeschooling, and we didn’t want them to go away to college, so the local community college was a good option. Bottom line – we encouraged them to do what they felt led to do. It’s a blessing to see your kids go from little homeschoolers to wonderful adults – not to sound boastful, but to me, it’s just a testimony to God’s faithfulness.

    Thanks for letting us share, Carol. Wishing everyone well on their homeschool journey!

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