A new school year is looming upon us and many parents are deciding whether to take the plunge into homeschooling. I understand your fears as I was once in those shoes, but now that I’ve completed that journey I can assure you that, yes, you can do it.
I’ve heard many people say, “Oh, I could never homeschool.” I don’t usually say it out loud, but I pretty much always think, “Yes, you could.” I’ve helped many parents, from a variety of backgrounds and situations, get started over the years. Whether they were single working parents, on a small budget, or had a lack of support, I saw them find a way to make it happen.
Take this simple quiz to see if you have what it takes to homeschool:
1. Do you have unlimited patience?
2. Do you have a PhD in education?
3. Do you have a large amount of savings to be able to devote to homeschooling?
4. Do you have the support of your family and friends?
5. Do your children quickly obey your every command?
I hope that I haven’t needlessly worried you, but you’ll be relieved to know that none of those things are necessary to successfully homeschool your children!
As parents, I firmly believe that God equips us to “train up” our children. Further, I’ve come to see it as every family starts out homeschooling. Think about it, under your care your children learned to sit up, crawl, walk, talk, and more. Did you have a college degree to teach that? God designed our children to learn. They learn with or without our help.
Reasons to Homeschool
- Homeschoolers are well-prepared and well-adjusted as supported by research performed by Dr. Brian Ray of National Home Education Reasearch Institute. (HNERI) Dr. Ray specializes in following up on home education and its graduates, and the results consistently report that homeschooling not only works, but produces outstanding results. Homeschoolers consistently outperform public- and private-schooled students in every area (socialization, standardized test scores, community involvement, and more)
- Consistency of teacher and environment: If your family moves around a lot, there won’t be a constant change of school, curriculum, teachers and teaching styles. Students who miss a lot of school due to health problems won’t fall behind.
- Pass on your values to your children and teach what you believe to be important.
- Stronger family ties due to spending more time together. School time can adjust to Dad’s (or Mom’s) work schedule. Siblings learn and grow together.
- Avoid problems in schools such as bullying, exposure to sex, alcohol, drugs, and other negative influences.
- Freedom to travel, set your own school schedule, and live where you want without regard to the school district.
Should you decide to homeschool, here are some recommended first steps:
- Review state laws regarding homeschooling. Join HSLDA, if possible.
- Study different homeschool approaches, and learning styles.
- Attend a homeschool convention.
- Find a support group near you, as well as Facebook groups.
- I wrote an ebook to help parents prepare for homeschooling. In 9 Easy Steps I’ll help you set yourselves up for success!
10 Pieces of Advice for New Homeschoolers
Warnings from a Retired Homeschool Mom
Homeschoolers in College ~ From the Professors’ Perspective