Why would anyone in their right mind choose to homeschool their child or children? I asked myself this question over and over. I wanted my children to have the best education possible. Didn’t every parent, though?
I don’t even remember exactly when it was that we decided to homeschool. All I know is that it was sometime during the summer of 2007. We had just immigrated to Canada from Germany. Homeschooling our children was completely out of the question when we lived in Germany. Seriously, who wants to have their children escorted by police to school anyway? Or worse, taken away?
After coming to Canada, it seemed that were so many options in education. There were public and Catholic schools, private and charter schools, and then there was the option to homeschool.
When did you decide to homeschool? Why did you make that choice? I am curious. I love hearing people’s stories about that pivotal moment. Maybe you knew before your child was even born. Maybe you are a second-generation homeschool family. Or maybe your kid was like mine, and was bullied terribly and treated like he was stupid.
I will never forget the day my son’s teacher yelled at me for lying. She actually yelled at me! She accused me of exaggerating my son’s abilities. I didn’t lie.
My son was shy, he didn’t trust his teacher and didn’t feel like answering her because she always yelled. That was his impression albeit. I am fairly sure that she didn’t yell all the time, but I am sure that she wasn’t very patient either.
My son came home from his German primary school devastated every single day. He hated school. I thought for sure that I would be just as bad as her. I am not a particularly patient person by nature. I didn’t have a degree in education and I knew nothing about homeschooling a child.
Among the boxes and chaos of the move, I made a plan. Once I had decided that we were going to try to homeschool, I was on fire. No one could stop me!
I was so excited that I called my mother-in-law and told her all about it. I have no idea why I called her first?
She asked me, “Why would anyone choose to homeschool?”
At the time, I couldn’t explain. I just knew that this was the best option for our family. I promised her I would try hard and that in time, she would see. Unfortunately, she never grew to understand. Sadly, she passed away in the winter of 2018 and will never get the chance to see her grandchildren be successful adults.
If I could talk to her again and explain, I know exactly what I would tell her. I have my reasons. These reasons are commonly shared by other parents who choose to homeschool.
55 Reasons Why Parents Choose to Homeschool
- To spend more time with your kids. I love to spend time with my kids. They grow up so fast and I am so thankful to get to spend so much time with them.
- Flexibility. The ability to fit homeschool into your life so that it works for you is amazing.
- Child-led learning is possible.
- No school runs! We can sleep in or do what we want and not have to be at school at a certain time.
- It is interactive. It is not one-sided blah, blah, blah and the other side is tuning out, although that can happen.
- One-on-one educating. This is one reason that homeschool children do so well on standardized tests. One-on-one time helps kids really hone their skills.
- Students get to learn at their own pace. They aren’t behind or ahead of anyone.
- You can create your own curriculum. Your children can learn anything using the tools of your choice and don’t have to follow someone else’s plan if you don’t want to.
- Younger kids can learn from older kids by simply being present. Your younger children will learn things that you don’t actively teach them by simply being present. This can be good or bad.
- Parents have time to teach their children life skills. If you live on a farm, they can learn animal husbandry. If you don’t, they can still learn to cook, garden, do an oil change, etc.
- Homeschoolers have the flexibility to learn anywhere.
- Homeschoolers also have the ability to take breaks when they want. Kids who can’t sit still can move around at will.
- Creativity is nurtured and encouraged.
- Accommodations can be made. A child can be supported in the way they need to be supported.
- Homeschool children have the benefit of a tailor-made education. This is particularly important in the high school years.
- Homeschool children aren’t compared to their peers as much. It does happen, but it is easier to avoid.
- No child is left behind. A child who learns at their own pace won’t feel pressured to keep up.
- A homeschool child’s strengths are strengthened. There is time to deep dive into their talents and skills.
- Typically, homeschool lessons are much shorter and more efficient than those in public schools.
- There is more time to explore career ideas.
- Homeschool families can take a vacation in the off-season or when it is convenient. They aren’t bound to school schedules.
- Homeschool kids have way more time to be kids and to play. Play can even be integrated into the homeschool lessons. We love to use single-player games in our homeschool.
- Homeschool kids are encouraged to be independent thinkers. We enjoy using classes that use Socratic discussion for this reason.
- Homeschool children get to be kids for a little longer than their public school peers. Not only do they get to play more, but as parents, we can choose to homeschool in a way that allows children to maintain their innocence for a bit longer.
- Homeschool kids can use toys and games to learn.
- Parents who choose to homeschool so that their children won’t have to put up with mean teachers. Okay, we may have our days, but that doesn’t really count. We aren’t mean all the time.
- There are fewer distractions at home.
- Homeschool kids have time for hobbies. I will never forget the time my son asked a kid he met what hobbies he has and the poor kid told him that he didn’t have any because he didn’t have time for hobbies.
- Kids who are homeschooled can learn for fun and not for the sake of passing a test.
- One of the reasons we choose to homeschool is because we can take advantage of the opportunities that come our way. This can be in the form of a field trip or an educational opportunity – like the elderly neighbor who taught my boys woodwork.
- Families get to spend more time together. My oldest son lamented that when we went to college, he wouldn’t get to spend as much time with his siblings as he did in high school. Siblings have time to bond that they wouldn’t have if they attended public school.
- Homeschool kids can be themselves and are less likely to conform. They don’t have to have the ‘in’ clothing pieces or listen to certain music to fit in.
- Character formation is so much easier when kids are homeschooled.
- There is time to work together on things as a family. This can be anything, from combatting anxiety to disassembling a motor.
- Siblings can be friends. They can and should be friends if they attend public school, but I remember not wanting to be caught dead with my brother and my kids aren’t like that at all.
- In general, the family bond is stronger in homeschool families. I guess if you are forced to be around people more, they grow on you.
- Many choose to homeschool their kids to limit the negative influences in their child’s lives.
- Homeschool kids get to learn together. Group learning is encouraged and results in way too many inside jokes and fun memories.
- It is easier to support our children’s individual needs. We parents are more aware of what triggers them and what causes them angst.
- It is easier to address issues because we are more aware of them.
- Homeschool kids can learn outside. This is a great perk when the weather is warm. Please say that my kids aren’t the only ones that do their schoolwork up in a tree.
- Pets are allowed. You will often find one of my kids with a pet on their lap while doing their work.
- Read alouds are not just for preschoolers.
- Children eat better. We know that they are not tossing their lunch or buying junk food.
- Homeschool kids get time to learn how to cook. Since they are always eating, they get to learn how to prepare simple meals and snacks.
- Homeschooling can really build a child’s confidence.
- Field trips don’t have to cost an arm and a leg and they can be done when there are fewer crowds.
- Homeschool kids learn time management skills. When they have a chance to play outside when the lessons are complete, believe me, they don’t dawdle.
- Homeschooled kids are sick less often. My son picked up everything that was going around in public school. That definitely slowed down when he started homeschooling.
- You can sleep in.
- Music is allowed. Some kids learn better when they listen to music.
- You can use food as manipulatives.
- Homeschool children play with children of varying ages and aren’t restricted to playing with kids of their own age.
- You have help doing household chores.
- A big reason that our family chooses to homeschool is food allergies. We don’t have to worry about cross-contamination.
There are so many reasons to choose to homeschool. What were your reasons for homeschooling? Did your family support your decision?
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