I know that we have all heard this question from well-meaning friends and associates. My mother heard those same questions 24 years ago when she pulled my brother and I out of the public school system, never to return! So let’s talk for a few minutes about what I missed out on and subsequently what my children, who will never (as long as I can help it) go to a public, will miss out on.
1. Social Interaction. Not being in a classroom of 15-40 kids will definitely affect my child. For some reason, people think that this is an important part of growing up. They think that developing social status as a 2nd grader is imperative to shaping who our children will become. I don’t want to downplay social status, they will have to learn it some time, but not being in a classroom of enormous proportions where the teacher has to focus on so many individuals is not going to keep them from learning it. People also seem to forget that we live lives outside of the schoolhouse anyway. My kids learn social skills in other environments that we consider to be important. They are not isolated from the community as a whole and made to live inside of a bubble until they are 18. They have play dates with other children, go to the community parks and events, and have friends at church and in their various activities.
2. Sports and Activities. I have a great and simple answer for this! Home school Groups! It is so easy to find other home school families these days! We have five families in our church alone and a community full of home schoolers. There are many opportunities for sports and activities in the community, some of which are only afforded to home school families. We go to our community center for sports. We use local Upward Sports opportunities. The best part of it is that since we are not tied to the public system, we get to plan and choose what are kids get involved in. We get to work it around our schedule. Also, let me remind you that just because we do not go to school, does not mean that we do not go on field trips. We actually plan terrific field trips and can even go on the spur of the moment field day! Try doing that with 30 kids who have to all have permission from their parents and travel arrangements made. Advantage, home school!
3. Quality of Education. I have had a few brave people ask me if I really think that I am qualified to teach my kids. Let me say that even without my experience in a private school as a teacher, coach, and class monitor, I would still be qualified to teach my kids at home. My mother educated us without having graduated from high school herself. If you believe in yourself, have confidence in the Lord, then you can do anything that you set your mind to. Here is a little secret, honestly, the curriculum does all the work! If you find a solid curriculum that lines up with what you believe, then follow it. I have worked with several good curricula and it is not hard to decide what will work for you. If you do run into something that stumps you as a parent, then we have many great resources to draw from to get the help that we need. This can be addressed in an as needed basis. And just in case you are wondering, the education that I received at home from my “unqualified” mom was more than enough to get me a 26 on my ACT!
As you can tell, this is not an exhaustive list, but my word count is high! So I’ll just leave it with these three. What kind of questions have you had to tackle as a home school parent? Please add them in the comments! Have a great day! and thanks for reading!