Our family’s choice to home school is something we put a lot of thought and prayer into. We often revisit this decision and reconsider our options. Life changes and circumstances affect the decisions we make. In order to make an educated decision we choose stay open-minded.
Homeschooling is not for everyone and it’s not for every season. Along with everything else in life it is what’s best for your family. This year we have decided to continue homeschooling and I thought I’d share some of the reasons why.
- My husband is a musician. He travels often. Usually he is gone on the weekends and home during the week. We can adjust our schedule around his so that we still get family time. We also can decide to take our school on the road with him. The flexibility is a HUGE reason we love homeschooling.
- We prefer for our children’s main influence to be us. Children are like sponges and they soak up everything in their environment. We like to control how they are presented with information and make sure it’s done appropriately and at the right time.
- We like using different teaching methods. Each child is different and learns at their own pace. At home, we can meet each of their needs by teaching in a way that works for them. Also, I am not rushed so I can go at a pace that makes learning fun for my children.
- We like to focus on their individual skills. Every child is better at one subject over the other. Or they have unique talents or interests. At home, we can invest extra time focusing on these skills.
- Character traits and personality traits are just as important as educational development. In schools discipline is limited which makes it difficult to enforce manners, work ethic, bullying, honesty, compassion, responsibility, etc.. Also, with so many children that have parents with different beliefs not everyone will have the same values. This makes the exposure to behavior, that might not be allowed in your home, much more present in your kids lives.
These are just some of the reasons we are still homeschooling. But in all fairness and to help you make an informed decision for yourself I’m going to list some of the cons of homeschooling.
- My children are always home. This one makes me laugh out loud. It seems impossible in today’s busy, not so child-friendly, culture to have a life where they are always present. It makes it difficult for doctors appointments, hair cuts, and keeping a clean house. But I can proudly say I have done this for almost 10 years, so it can be done. I have found having money for sitters helps or having close friends that are available to babysit for free every now and then. If moms stick together and help one another this eliminates this problem greatly!
- The house is hard to get clean for more than a few seconds. With people always at home, there is a constant source for messes. I have found assigning chores to be very helpful. It will only help your child to know how to do the dishes, sweep, and clean up. It also enforces responsibility and a helpful attitude.
- I have to do a lot of extra work. It is my responsibility to teach them. This gives me a lot of work. But in all honesty, many women have jobs while still doing their motherly and wifely duties such as laundry, housekeeping, errands, and cooking. Homeschooling is your job. It’s not any harder than having a job outside the home and then coming home to do your other tasks. Also, that is where teamwork as a family comes in. Husbands and kids can help out as well.
- I am not a teacher. I have not gone to school to be a teacher. This means I am learning as I go, just as they are. Many will find this intimidating but with google, pinterest, and great curriculums you can find any information necessary to teach. There are other options such as tutoring, co-ops, and private school classes available to help where you are struggling. Your job is not to know everything, it is to do whatever is needed to find out anything.
- Curriculums are expensive. This is my first year investing in Abeka which is pricey. When we first began to home school we were not in a place where we could buy tons of curriculum. We still had very successful homeschooling years. There are a lot of free resources online, used curriculum for sale, library books, and websites that can help. We are only a few weeks in using Abeka and I will admit that it is so much easier. I do not have to find anything, it is all provided for me in the books. If you have the money, buy the curriculum and make it so much easier. If you don’t, do not worry, it just means you will have to do some research and planning.
- My free time is limited. Well, you can imagine how much time 3 children can consume. My advice is to teach them to respect your interests and allow you to have uninterrupted time doing whatever it is you want to do. My 7 and 9-year-old are great at this. My 2-year-old isn’t, so nap times or early bedtimes give me time to myself. I workout, read, and take bubble baths all of the time. The key is to take the time to teach your kids to respect you. Explain it to them. They love me just as much as I love them so they are very great at letting mom have mom time.