I’ve been contemplating homeschooling my daughter when she turns 4 for a variety of reasons. This really came into my mind a few months ago when I just looked at how busy life truly is and how I feel like I’ve missed out on quite a bit already in Ellie’s 2.5 years. I feel like it is so scary to raise kids these days, there’s so much craziness happening around us and while I know we can’t shelter them or have no evil happen to them, I do believe we can provide them with a more positive childhood and an impactful, tailored education that is setting them up for the best possible future in this world.
Here’s a few reasons I’m seriously considering this route for our family.
The Education System is lacking & isn’t the best method for learning these days.
Don’t get me wrong, there are so many amazing teachers out there but the system just is not ideal. Teaching 15-20 kids at a time is obviously going to be less efficient that focusing on a few. If you know me, I’m all about efficiency. Schools are either going to teach to the average student or to the student that is struggling. This means that the other children’s education will suffer. By homeschooling, I can tailor our education to what interests and motivates my daughter. If she can pick up a subject or problem in a couple hours of devoted lesson, there’s no need to spend days or even an entire week going over that topic as she might in school. By using time more effectively, we won’t run into the burnout that some kids face by being involved in extracurriculars as well – going to school, then going to soccer practice, then having an hour of homework every night, it’s all too much for kids and what’s the point? We as adults are already stressed out and way too busy, why do I want to put that same burden on my kid so early if there’s an alternate way?
Traditional schools are not the “Real World”.
In school, kids are not encouraged to interact with each other in a collaborative way most of the time. They are sitting in desks and being lectured at about topics they don’t necessarily care about. Spending 8 hours in this environment is not natural and it’s not “real world”. Do you sit in meetings every single day and just listen to someone drone on? No. And if you do, I’m betting you wish you didn’t and would love a career change. “Real world” is interacting with people of all ages, all backgrounds and pursuing topics and hobbies that actually interest you. With homeschooling, we could achieve a more well-rounded experience that nurtures a sense of learning, collaboration and respect for others.
Technology (Social Media) is King.
I don’t know about you but holy crap, I’m terrified at what kids see and listen to these days. Constant access to technology, i.e. social media, youtube, etc is messing this innocent little beings up. They are spending their free time and time between classes glued to their screens rather than “socializing” with other kids (which I think is interesting since supposedly that’s alot of people’s biggest argument for sending their children to traditional schools – that they need to socialize with other children their age). Kids are connecting to people that aren’t even around them and that most likely aren’t who you’d pick as their role model, amiright? Kids have less and less creativity and imagination as they have a constant source of entertainment from their devices. And if you don’t provide them with their own, they are going to be looking at their friends, which is even worse since you have zero control over that one. It’s a double edged sword, my friends, and a scary one at that. You wouldn’t believe what kindergarteners are seeing and saying these days. If I’m wrong to want to limit that kind of exposure, then I’m fine with that.
There is a better way to “Socialize”.
I feel like the biggest argument against homeschooling is that kids supposedly will miss out on the socialization aspect. By homeschooling, we can promote more positive and engaging connections. By getting Ellie involved in local homeschool groups she’ll constantly be in community with children older and younger than herself, she’ll be interacting with and respecting adults, she’ll be learning and playing instead of sitting around or staying at a screen. There won’t be the constant nag of keeping up with the popular girl at school or, even worse, getting cyber bullied for something she wore to school or because she dropped her lunch tray. Kids are brutal. Especially girls, I know from past experience. If I can surround her with a more positive learning environment that will give her confidence and the resources she needs to be a better person, you can bet I’m going to give it a try. I don’t buy the whole argument that you need to have bad experiences to build character. Especially at a young age. There is PLENTY of time for bad experiences when she is older and more mature. My goal is to just provide her with learning experiences that I believe will be better for her and it’s not like she won’t still have exposure to conflict and such within homeschooling activities with other children. That’s just part of life, it’s not exclusive to being in school. And she’ll be more adept at handling it instead of feeling isolated.
More time for play & learning about things that interest you.
As I mentioned earlier, if we choose to homeschool, we are the educators for our children and we can tailor that education based on what we feel is best, as well as what they actually show interest in. We can also teach in a way that fits each learning style better. For example, Ellie is definitely a visual and kinesthetic learner. This means she learns by seeing and by doing. She is very independent and always wants to dive right in and try it herself. Knowing this, I can develop lessons and plan activities that accommodate. And those lessons will take far shorter than they would in traditional school trying to teach 20 kids of all different learning styles. With that time saved, we’ll be able to spend the rest of the “school day” doing extracurricular such a music class, jui jitzu, spanish class, park days, nature groups and field trips that will expose her to so much more than just reading about something in a text book. This is why I am most looking forward to potentially homeschooling Ellie. The freedom it will give us and the exposure to real things.
Hopefully that all makes sense and I’d love to hear any reasons you have for considering homeschool or what you love about it if you already are homeschooling!