When many parents consider homeschooling their children they often think the longest about all of the challenges that would face them as homeschooling parents. Often times the hardships, perceived and real, dwarf the benefits. Parents wonder how they will find the time to homeschool. They may doubt their ability to be a good teacher or instructor. Lack of socialization and structure may also be a concern.
What about the benefits though? Are they receiving the same consideration or do they get trumped by all of the potential hardships and problems? What are some of the benefits? Here are few things to consider:
Homeschoolers Can Work at Their Own Pace
The public schooling system is often times criticized for its failure to consider the individual needs and learning styles of each child. In classes with 20 or more students it is impossible for children to get the one on one attention they may need and it is easy for a child to be labeled as “slow” or learning disabled because they appear to be behind their peers academically. The problem with this thinking this that it does not consider the very real possibility that they are simply learning and working at their own normal pace and development. When one standard of excellence is forced upon all children then inevitably some children will fall behind and be made to feel inadequate. Homeschooling can be incredibly liberating for you and for your child when they are allowed to grow and learn on their own terms and at their own unique pace. The one on one time you spend with your child may be just what he or she needs more than anything else.
Homeschooling Is Flexible
Parents of publicly schooled children are all too familiar with pressure. Their lives are dictated by alarm clocks, bus schedules, lunch money, school activities, teacher’s conferences, homework, and bedtimes just to name a few. It may seem that public school is the easiest option for a busy parent but when all of the demands placed upon parents by the public schooling schedule are considered it starts to look more like a burden than a benefit. Homeschooling can be done on any schedule that works for your family.
Homeschooling Allows Parents to Teach Their Values
Parents of publicly schooled children will often be the first to tell you about how the issues that face young children in schools today are of great concern. Children are exposed to foul language, drugs, smoking, illegal activities, and sex just to name a few. Most parents would probably consider this peer top peer education to be inappropriate and lacking. Parents that homeschool are in the unique positioned to be the able to teach their children about these issues on their own terms and at the appropriate time without too much outside influence counteracting their instruction.
Homeschooling Can Increase Socialization for the Whole Family
The availability of homeschooling playgroups and support groups and other homeschooling activities such as travels to museums and historical areas of interest provide opportunities for socialization for everyone. More and more homeschooling parents are realizing that they don’t need to stay home and assist their child with workbook drills. They can take their children out of the home and benefit from real life experiences, meeting to new people, and seeing new things and places. The whole family benefits when learning is expanded in this way.
When considering homeschooling for your child it is easy to dwell on the hardships that may be presented by this choice but don’t forget that there are a lot of benefits too.