Reasons To Homeschool
Benefits Of Homeschooling vs. A Public Education
Why would anyone ever want to homeschool her child? Don't those kids turn out weird? Aren't you worried about your child's socialization? How could a stay-at-home mom ever be smart enough to teach her child at home? How will your child get to know the "real world"? Will your child end up too sheltered? Won't your child miss out on great curriculum? After all, the public schools have been at it for quite some time. They must know what they are doing, right? There is no way homeschooling could measure up to those standards. I went to public school, and I turned out alright.
There are these and hundreds more arguements people give to the parent who is thinking of homeschooling. I should know. I was a huge doubter myself. Then I was thrown into homeschooling (kicking and screaming, might I add) and my world was forever turned upside-down. What was only meant to be a temporary situation turned into a total lifestyle change for everyone in our family. I look back at my past attitude about homeschooling and shake my head in amazement that someone so well-intentioned and intelligent could be so ignorant.
So why the change? What has happened in the last few years to change my mind so completely and totally in the other direction? Well, first of all, when my son was in public school, he was labeled as a poor reader and believe me, for quite a while he lived up to that label. He was told what he was capable of, and what he was not. Just like any normal child, he achieved exactly what it was that the adults in his life expected him to. All of this changed soon after I brought him home.
Don't those kids turn out weird? Maybe. Depends on the parents, mostly. But I would rather my children turn out with my brand of weird. Have you seen some of the kids the public schools turn out? Not that I have a particular aversion to nose-rings and breast-implants, I just figure those are not decisions for my 9-year-old to make. Never mind the fact that I have seen too many children under the age of 12 high out of their minds from whatever is the drug of choice that week. But I digress. Yes, my child may turn out weird, but only in a world where a 10-year-old smoking pot is considered normal. I'm ok with that.
Aren't you worried about your child's socialization? Yes. That's why I homeschool. (See Above).
How could a stay-at-home mom ever be smart enough to teach her child at home? Well first of all, you absolutely do NOT need to be a stay-at-home mom in order to teach your children. There are many women, and men, who hold full-time jobs outside the home and still find time to teach their children all that they need to know (often better than the public school system ever could). Secondly, to my utter amazement, many stay-at-home moms are almost overqualified to teach their own kids, because they know the children so much better than a public school teacher ever could. It is absolutely amazing to me how well I have gotten to know my own child, and how easy teaching him has become just because I understand how he learns. If there ever comes a time when he is learning a subject I feel unequipped to teach, I hope that I will have instilled in him the ability to learn much of it for himself. Much of what I hope to achieve is to teach my child how to learn. If I can teach him that, he can teach himself pretty much everything else.
How will your child get to know the "real world"? Will your child end up too sheltered? Well, in my opinion, too many kids get to know the "real world" when they are much too young. However, it is posible to expose your child to as much, or as little, of the "real world" as you would like at whatever age you deem appropriate. This is one of the highlights of homeschooling, in my opinion. Again, I really don't think it's a fine idea for my 9-year-old to be introduced to cigarettes, or worse.
Won't your child miss out on great curriculum? After all, the public schools have been at it for quite some time. They must know what they are doing, right? There is no way homeschooling could measure up to those standards. This is absolutely the most absurd arguement yet. I should know. I thought this way even after I started homeschooling. The fact is that there are so many different homeschool curriculums out there, that it's hard to know which one will best fit your family, or your particular child. You can choose any one of them, several of them, or make your own based on your child's needs and your child can end up just as educated, or more so, than any "normal" student out there.
I mentioned that my son was labeled a "poor reader" by his school. He was in first grade and reading at what the school liked to call a "kindergarten level" I took him home and all we did for the first year was read. We were at the public library ( a wonderful resource for homeschoolers) at least once every week and we took out books like you would not believe. We read about history and geography, science, fiction, non-fiction, science fiction. Just about every topic you can imagine, we read. I read to him. He read to me as he could, and little by little he read more and more until he could read me a whole book. A few months ago he finished his first chapter book The Call Of The Wild, by Jack London. He was 8. A poor reader? I think not. The advantage of having a one-on-one learning experience with his mother made all the difference in my child. It could be for yours, too.
I went to public school, and I turned out alright. Well, that may very well be true, but I want my child to be more than alright. My dream, and every parent's dream, is for our children to be extraordinary. I don't think I will trust his fate to a quickly decaying school system just because that happens to be the social norm.
If you are thinking of homeschooling your child, there is no better time than right now. Public school (along with a whole lot of other things run by the government) is circling the drain quickly, and we as parents should care way too much about our children to allow them to remain in such a toxic environment. Why would anyone in their right mind want to homeschool their child? Because the children we have today will run our tomorrow, and they had better do it with some values, or we, and they, are in serious trouble.