I have probably already posted about this a time or two, but when I told people I was going to homeschool my daughter 4 years ago, I got the typical weird looks, raised eyebrows and questions such as “What about her socialization??”
Now that homeschooling has become more main stream and widely accepted, I get less judgemental looks and more people telling me that they wished they could do that with their kids.
I’m here to ask THOSE people, why can’t you homeschool??
(Warning: I’m about to step fully on the soapbox and rant here. It’s my opinion, feel free to disagree)
Excuse #1: I Work Full Time
I’m not trying to be like, “look how great I am,” but hopefully to show you that using the “I work full time,” is an excuse that can be overcome. I work 4+ jobs and am a single mom. If it’s important to you, you make it work. Look for options and help. It’s out there. Or maybe it’s time to give up the boat, the SUV, and the 4000 square foot house and downsize some of those bills to focus on something pretty important, namely, your child and their education.
Excuse #2: What About Socialization?? I Don’t Want My Kid to be Weird.
When people ask me this (not as often lately, with all the school shootings and bullying that is commonplace in our schools now), I tell them that I don’t see it as a bad thing that my daughter is spending more time with me and other adults, than her peers. I taught 4th grade for five years in the traditional school system. I don’t want my child anywhere near some of those kids and their influences. So what if my kid is a little weird? She couldn’t care less about Justin Beiber, watches Strawberry Shortcake and Dr. Seuss cartoons instead of Walking Dead and Carrie… I see those as good things. My eight-year-old read the Hobbit and can converse with not only adults but kids her age as well. I’d rather err on the side of innocence and a sheltered life than have her exposed to the world and it’s harsh realities that she will learn soon enough.
Excuse #3: I Don’t Have the Patience to Teach My Child
Let me remind you, and I apologize if this sounds harsh, but you signed up for parenthood. You signed up to spend the next 18+ years, teaching, guiding, not screwing up and equipping a little human being to become a functioning adult. Oh, and you also are an adult who has full control of your emotions. I’m not saying that there aren’t days that I don’t want to rip my hair out and bang my head against the wall. Yes, there certainly are, many of those days sometimes, but in the long run, I’ve learned to be MORE patient in this homeschool and parenting adventure.
Excuse #4: I Am Not Equipped To Teach My Child
There is no magical formula to teach your child. Yes, they need to learn how to read and write. They also need to be able to do basic math and have some working knowledge of the world around them. You can learn how to teach. It’s not that difficult to impart knowledge. There isn’t a magic worksheet, textbook, or formula that will help your child learn. You only need resources and love. Probably a little bit of a plan, too. Beyond that and more importantly, they need to learn VALUES. Ultimately, my goal for my child’s education is to have learned compassion, love, patience, kindness, honesty and integrity. Having her know who ruled the Roman Empire in 20BC isn’t really that important in the grand scheme of her life and contribution to society…even though, yes, she does learn about that stuff. You may not know who ruled the Roman Empire in 20BC either, but that’s why they created books. (By the way, the answer is Augustus. And I googled it).
Excuse #5: I Don’t Want To
Fair enough. You don’t have to. This isn’t a diatribe on why you should homeschool. If you don’t want to, then don’t. Send them to traditional school. It’s not a terrible thing. But just don’t forget that YOU as the parent are still responsible to teach them. It may not be math or science but to be awesome human beings that contribute to society.
Are there days that it would be easier to just send the Kidlet to school? HELL YES.
But every night, when I fall into bed, exhausted from the day, I think about the time I get to spend with my kid, watching her grow and helping shape her, it’s worth every crazy, tiring, and sometimes overwhelming moment 🙂
Here are a few of the field trips we’ve already been on this year: