I very recently had a lovely discussion with a lady about homeschooling. I met her while at a play place, handed her my card and we started talking.
Before I go any further with my homeschooling “bit” I want to tell you that I support the public schools and understand that homeschooling is not for everyone. There are lots of reasons to choose public schools, I support the PTAs/PTOs and list their events on our site because I know that public school is where a lot of families send their children, and they should have access to education.
Here’s my myths-busted
1). People homeschool because of their religion.
While yes, many people choose to homeschool because of their religion, there are other reasons that have nothing to do with religion and why people homeschool. Some need to because of a children’s medical needs, or some because they need to travel a lot, or their children have needs not met in the school system
We decided to try homeschooling after our oldest son was exhausted and cranky and upset every day after school. There were other kids in the class that weren’t behaving properly, and the we did speak to the teachers and it wasn’t rectified. Our very happy, sociable child was becoming upset and angry at home.
We also didn’t like the common core curriculum that was being taught. I started out as Early Elementary Education teacher and realized that there was a lot of politics pushed on the schools and often not as much character development. The number of kids per classroom were also alarming, and I knew my son loves having one on one attention while learning. I knew I had gotten lost in the crowd during elementary school, and because I was higher achieving, I was often sent to help others do work instead of strengthening my own skills.
There are also a lot of children that have behavioral needs that are put into classrooms that equals a disruptive learning environment. Everyone has a bad day, but I honestly feel bad for the one teacher who has to be in front of 30-35 kids teaching them while a few misbehave. With the funding of schools being so low, many teachers have to go it alone, and there is very little they can do but tolerate it, bring it to the principal or have a school psychologist intervene. Many times all of these resources are tapped and the teacher, and the other students, are left to manage with disruption.
2. Homeschooling takes a lot of time
Taking the time to homeschool could eat up a lot of your time. You could do lots of lesson plans and research, but there are options available that you can purchase that have minimal lesson planning time. It’s basically all done for you and you can just give the lesson to your child.
There is “Public Education” online, that is still considered homeschool but is also considered public education. With programs like “K-12” and “Primavera” they send you all of the supplies and give you a voucher for internet, however, you cannot claim homeschooling on your taxes and the curriculum is already set out. I have heard from many parents that it is highly computer intensive (taking many hours a day) and not very malleable for your own children’s needs.
Many companies offer curriculum to buy that is “out of the box” such as Abeka and Sonlight. Much of the curriculum that you will find has a religious base to it, but there are some secular options as well.
3. Homeschooling is expensive.
It can be. Here is a great idea about homeschooling costs from HSLDA.org . But, you can also find used curriculum and do co-ops, use the library and their programs or use “schooling at home” options like K12 or Primavera. K12 and Primavera are essentially public schooling at home.
Right now we use the library for most of our reading books and get little workbooks through Amazon and the bookstores. There are also used curriculum resources throughout the web.
4. Homeschooling is lonely for both kids and adults
There are so many groups around that can help you and your kids acclimate to homeschooling. I have actually even heard parents of homeschoolers say “There is so much social involvement for my kids, I don’t know when we will get to the schooling part.” Through groups, churches and even classes and sports that your children can be involved with, you can be very socially involved with your neighborhood and community.
5. I work so I can’t homeschool.
There are a lot of parents who do work who also homeschool, but are lucky enough to be blessed with jobs that they can work from home or are able to juggle their work schedule so that one can teach the children.
6. You can do it alone
Homeschooling is something that you need to have at least your spouse on board with. If it is not supported by both parents, I feel that the child won’t get the best education possible. Having support from friends and family is good as well, but with all the great groups available, support is closer than you may think.
Great resources for you to check out if you have any interest in Homeschooling are The Arizona Families for Home Education. You can find out about the laws in AZ, resources, events and groups nearby.
Also, at the National Level, check out the Home School Legal Defense Association. It sounds much more serious than it sounds, but it has information regarding laws around the country as well as great tips, info on curriculum and so much more.
Check out this amazing Ultimate Guide to Homeschooling. If you are thinking about Homeschooling, this huge, comprehensive guide has tons of information.