When I tell people we homeschool they tend to look at me like I have more than one head. That I must be absolutely out of my mind. Schooling at home is on the rise and the way I see school curriculum going and society I do not see us homeschoolers going anywhere! There are two things I hear every time I say that we are a homeschooling family, “I could never homeschool! I just don’t have the patience or money” and “What about socialization?”. I am going to touch on the first one for now. Getting me started on ‘socialization’ (forced assimilation is not socialization) is a dangerous topic which I get all riled up about. Those who say they could never homeschool though? Those parents make me smile. The fact is that if you want to homeschool you can. If you don’t want to homeschool you don’t have too. Parents, you do not need to be forced to homeschool, send your child to public school, send your child to private school, Montessori
, learning community, and whatever else is out there. The cool thing about being a parent is that YOU get to make that decision.
I have come to realize that most parents who say they could just never homeschool their kids most likely already are and they just do not know it. The child is already going to public school full time, seeing a tutor, playing sports, having family game nights, in scouts, helping around the house, in chess club, avid readers, and spending way too much time on google. Take away the brick and motor school and you are already homeschooling! I see these parents who have a kid in every sport and activity and the parents themselves volunteer and I am exhausted just listening to their schedules. I am the crazy one for homeschooling?
What if you took away the brick and motor school? Those activities wouldn’t be going anywhere. You as the parent, your volunteer load ‘may’ be lightened but probably not. You and your child will finally have a few extra minutes together, you’ll see how they learn, you can learn with them! There will be time. Just time. Because that time is going by incredibly fast.
You can homeschool too! The awesome thing about homeschooling is it is on your schedule and time frame, no one else. You can school all year and take days off as you please. You can take vacations at a time when everyone else isn’t and be the first in line at the theme park. There is this misconception that schooling HAS to be done 8:00am-2:00pm Monday-Friday with a break in the summer. Why? I can teach my son to read Sunday after church or after dinner when he is relaxing from a day of play. We can do lessons on Christmas Eve or take a random Tuesday off to go fishing.
Parents, you say you could never homeschool because you do not have the patience, time, or money. If you want to homeschool (and this is for the parents who want to homeschool) you can! I have addressed the time misconception. Now I will address the money concept.
Homeschooling is just too expensive.
As of the next school year, I will have children 9, 6, 3, and 1.5. The first 3 are now ‘old enough’ for school. While I will debate this until my face blue, a lot of parents are sending their kids off to some type of schooling starting at age 3 now (and sometimes younger). By homeschooling, I am saving the government $21,230 with my older two (I’ll wait for my refund Maine). By staying home with my preschooler my family is saving an average of $5,000 and by staying home with our baby we are saving $4,320. Please note that these are on average, would probably be more in my area where specialties are hard to come by since we are rural. These savings I just calculated do not include random fees, supplies, fundraisers, lunch, breakfast, etc. All the things that add up with kids in school.
Since the government says it costs just over $10,000 to educate one child does that mean that is what I’ll be spending in my home? No way! We go to the library daily, check out books sales and thrift stores, stock up during August when all the school supplies go on sale, and use any and everything on the internet. I also make my own
worksheets. There are SO many resources out there that homeschooling really is next to free now! Don’t worry about printer ink, head over to Ink Graber and they have recycled cartridges. My biggest homeschooling expense since I started was our Epson Inkjet Laser Printer which was $80 from walmart. With Ink Graber, I spend less than 5.00 per ink cartridge and those XL’s last forever. I can afford to homeschool my kids and with creativity and ease, you can too!
What about patience? I run out of patience. I am a mother of children! How can I not? Think about this though when you are teaching or helping with homework or coaching:
If you are getting frustrated and losing patience how do you think your child is feeling?
Exactly. I bet 9 out of 10 times they are having a negative feeling at the same time. With homeschooling, you are allowed to take breaks whenever you need, relax, and recoup. Your child may have learned how to read like a wiz by just using books and worksheets but when it comes to math that method may not work. That is the great thing about homeschooling, they can learn the best way for them. No time limit, no time constraints. No being held back because the rest of their peers are behind.
If you want to homeschool, please give it a try. April vacation and Summer break are coming right up. Here is a great opportunity to give homeschooling a try! Even on the worst, most frustrating, nothing seems to get done days you will end the day knowing that you did something amazing. You will end your ‘school week’ hearing your child say something that YOU taught them. Hearing them read a book or do a math problem that YOU taught them. They will use a skill that YOU helped them discover. There is not just a sense of accomplishment there but a new bond and trust that has been developed. On my worst days, my daughter will say something to her siblings that is something I taught her. Heck, she will be playing with them! Something I never did when I was a child! My kids are all best friends and that is a good enough reason out of any to homeschool them.
If you want to homeschool you can. You will have the time, you will have the patience, and you will have the money. It will work out. You may think you do not have a support system but you have a Maine mum of 4 right here blabbing on the computer who is cheering you on and supporting you every step of the way.