I have been contemplating homeschooling for over a year now, I have another 5+ years though until my first child is school age. I do encounter many moms looking for encouragement in their homeschooling endeavor, including this concerned mom from Dallas in the Mamapedia community.
I'll start with the negative and end with the positive. Here are some reminders of just how broken the public school system is, in case anyone forgot (check the links for full stories):
- Four Georgia schools investigated for possible cheating
- 700 NYC teachers paid to do nothing
- Teacher pleads guilty to charges of having sex with student
- National arts test scores offer clouded picture
- Retired teacher reveals he was illiterate until age 48
- Violence in Public Schools
- U.S. slipping in education rankings
- Bullying rampant in U.S. middle schools
- Bullied to death
- A 16 year old's account of her public school years
- It is unfortunate this list can go on endlessly...
That is not to say that there are no odd stories about homeschool. You are a lot less likely though to find homeschool kids shooting each other. You might come across a couple of cases of child abuse where hopefully justice will prevail. The rest will be stories of successful entrepreneurs, spelling bee champions, and close relationships between children and their parents. Of course homeschooling might not be right for everyone, but I believe it is worth it if you feel capable and even if you would have to review your budget and do some major cuts on unnecessary spending when you forgo your full time job and become a full time mom. I am hoping to continue working from home when we embark on our homeschooling voyage, that is also a great option.
Now on a positive note, whenever you feel discouraged, ready to give up on homeschooling, or facing opposition from family, friends, and officials - come back to this list of reasons why homeschooling is so worth it:
1. To nurture, train, and educate our children
2. To center our lives around family rather than school
3. The role models they follow will be their parents not their age-appropriate peers (the jails are full of those who listen to their peer group and not their parents)
4. Children grow up so fast, I don’t want to miss a moment
5. We can vacation and travel on the off season
6. We can take field trips on the spur of the moment and lots of them
7. Instead of learning to interact with 20 other same age children they will learn how to interact with children and adults of all ages
8. No need for "socialization" as defined by the American Heritage Dictionary -- a verb meaning, "To place under government or group ownership or control."
9. Pupils taught individually achieve 30% higher on standardized tests than pupils taught in a standard class of 25 students (more statistics)
10. Encourages a lifelong love of learning
11. Adds to the richness of our culture by promoting diversity in educational choice
12. Every child is unique and learns in different ways and we can design our curriculum to each child's individual learning style
13. We know EXACTLY what our child is taught
14. I am re-educated
15. We can accomplish more in less time
16. Education still takes place on snow and sick days
17. In this computer age resources for homeschoolers are abundant
18. To foster emotional security
19. No cliques
20. To encourage creativity
21. To develop independent learners
22. I love being with my child(ren)!
23. It is the responsibility of the parent to raise children, not the government
24. Academics will not be replaced with "socialization" and sex education
25. The student/teacher ratio is unbeatable
26. Fewer back injuries, no heavy backpacks to lug
27. No school shootings
28. You can sleep in (School kids typically get less sleep than the recommended amount for healthy development)
29. Learning can combine lessons such as art and history, math and science
30. You can always read more reasons that I will add with time by coming back to this blog post!
Have fun homeschooling and remember that only you, the parent, love and know your children best in this world, take good care of them!
Photo courtesy: sxu