Are You Going Back to School or Homeschooling this Year?

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Is Homeschooling Right for Your Family?

I know that this topic can be a rather polarizing one, with some people feeling that public or private schools are the best thing for their children, and others want to teach their children themselves. No one can decide what is best for your children except for you!

For some families the choice to homeschool is severely limited by state law to the point that it is almost impossible to teach your children at home. Other families are dependent on two incomes to support their family, making it too difficult to even attempt homeschooling. There are also many children who love going to school.

Your State

If you are concerned about the legality of homeshooling in your state, I encourage you to visit the Homeschool Legal Defense Association for more information. They do not offer advice online, but they offer legal support for paying members.

Make sure you know what the rules and regulations are for your area and follow them to avoid headaches down the road.

 

Your Family

Every family is different and has different dynamics, so there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to teaching your children. For families who live so far from the closest public school that they kids would spend hours on the bus each day, homeschooling may be the best answer. Other families have some children who will learn much better in the quiet environment of home while their siblings crave the hustle and bustle of a busy classroom.

You need to take time to consider what will benefit each of your children the most and roll with it. Maybe you love the idea of homeschooling all of your children, but one of them has special needs that require the majority of your time and energy. Will you be able to give all of your kids the attention they need to succeed? Only you can tell…and you may have to give it a try before you know how well the homeschooling life will fit each child.

Your Child

Do your children want to homeschool? I have friends who homeschooled some of their children, but some went to school because that was what they really wanted. If they crave time with children outside the family, you may want to look for a homeschool group or co-op to join so that your social butterflies can flutter around their friends. Other kids are perfectly happy to spend all day with their books and siblings.

Socialization

One of the comments from non-homeschoolers that bothered me the most was “But what about socialization? Your child needs other kids his own age around.” Our family did not homeschool until my son was in second grade. While he was in public school, he was too busy playing the class clown or being teased for wearing the ‘wrong kind of pants’ (they weren’t designer jeans) that I don’t think he was part of a positive social interaction. As homeschoolers, we joined a group that met once a week and also got together with friends on a regular basis too. I felt that his social life was of a much higher quality than he had in school. You may have to work a little to find families with similar ideals to your own, but it will be well worth the effort.

 

Do What’s Right For Your Family

You may very well meet up with resistance from your extended family, friends, or neighbors if you decide to homeschool. Don’t let that stop you from doing what’s right for your children! When we decided to homeschool, my husband’s family all understood and supported us 100%. His siblings were all public school teachers and had seen the problems caused by ‘No Child Left Behind.’ My family was more concerned about socialization and whether we would continue to homeschool through high school. They soon started to see how well our son was doing with the changes.

We continued to homeschool through high school and our son is in college now. He’s done very well with his grades and enjoys the control he has over what classes he takes. I’m so happy that we started down this path and found the wonderful friends we’ve met on our homeschooling journey. It’s been a positive experience for all of us.

 

Do you homeschool? Or are you considering homeschooling for your family? I love to hear from other homeschooling families!

 

 


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12 comments on “Are You Going Back to School or Homeschooling this Year?

  1. Jill

    We homeschool our 6 children and thrive on family, farm and fun! And socialization?…well, usually people comment that our children are more social with the general ‘public’ than are public-schooled children, because they appreciate and are comfortable with interactions and relationships with people of all ages, not just their same-age peers. Not to mention how tightly bonded we all are- the family unit. As well as the skills they have learned that seem so distant to kids these days: cooking, cleaning, diligence, critical thinking, (and like you said, not accepting the status quo!!),animal husbandry, problem-solving self-reliance and just plain common sense stuff! What a true blessing homeschooling has been. Love your blog!

    Reply
    1. Lisa Lynn Post author

      Hi Jill,
      We’ve had the same comments about how our son interacts with the general public πŸ™‚ School is the only place where you’re stuck in a room with only kids your age…that’s really not indicative of real life.

      Thanks so much for sharing! I can tell your kids will grow up well adjusted and self confident πŸ™‚ So glad to hear from you!

      Reply
  2. Jenny

    I was homeschooled starting back in ’84 when I was going in to jr. high. I was taught at home on up through high school with my four other (younger) siblings. My parents took us out of school for religious reasons and we followed a very rigorous and structured curriculum. While that isn’t the specific route we would have taken had my husband and I had children (I think we would have leaned more towards “unschooling”), I consider homeschooling to have been a great experience and one that I would strongly encourage. I felt that I received a very good education and socialization was never a problem ~ this was back in the day when co-ops were hard to come by. I was active in my church youth group, took music lessons, and participated in several other extra curricular activities.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Lynn Post author

      That’s awesome, Jenny! We never found socialization to be a problem either…and I’ve never met homeschoolers who felt that it was a problem. πŸ™‚ Thanks for sharing your experience with us!

      Reply
    1. Lisa Lynn Post author

      Hi Elizabeth,
      I haven’t heard of that curriculum, so I’m interested in hearing how you like it πŸ™‚ I never signed up for online curriculum and we sort of evolved into more of an ‘unschooling’ approach as we became more comfortable with letting our son find his own subjects and interests. I think that unschooling has gotten a bit of a bad reputation, but when done properly it can be very effective. But I always wondered about some of the online curriculum that are offered and how well people like them.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your link!

      Reply
      1. Elizabeth in MI

        We sort of “unschooled” last year, using a bit of this and a bit of that as we felt it was needed but we heard about this one and thought we’d check it out. We are not terribly structured people so we’ll see how it goes. lol

        Reply
  3. Sandra

    We have not started the school year yet. Our State starts after Labor Day.
    We will be going on our 17th year of homeschooling!
    We don’t start until Sept. either πŸ™‚

    Reply
    1. Lisa Lynn Post author

      Hi Sandra,
      Some of our schools around here have already started…it seems awfully early to me. College classes start this week so my son will be going back tomorrow. It will be kind of lonely around here!

      17 years is awesome! Have a great school year!

      Reply
  4. Katrina

    Good Morning!
    I am a homeschooling mom of a little boy and am interested to hear some of your ideas for homeschooling an only child. I love your blog and read your posts every day! We also homestead 3/4 acre in a small city so what you have done is likely workable for us!
    Thanks for being here!
    K. Scala

    Reply
    1. Lisa Lynn Post author

      Hi Katrina,
      Thanks so much for reading my blog and commenting! Our son has always been pretty introspective, so being home without other kids around wasn’t an issue for him. He always enjoyed going to our homeschool group and getting together with other families for field trips, hikes, music practice, and things like that. He has a few friends he really connects with and continues to hang out with, even now that he is in college.

      I think that when you have an only child it is important to seek out healthy friendships with families that you enjoy spending time with. It’s also a good idea to visit family, elderly neighbors, and people with different cultural backgrounds to allow your child to develop relationships that are healthy and rewarding. We live far from our families and have had to work a little harder to develop friendships since he doesn’t see his cousins around to play with.

      When Joe was very young, we used to go to story hour at the library and kids groups at community centers. I would take him to playgrounds and a discovery center to play with the other kids too. Sometimes I feel bad that he didn’t have one really good friend close by to play with, but he is very well adjusted and has a good group of friends. He has also gotten to know kids his age in the student center between classes at the college.

      Best wishes with your homeschooling adventure!

      Reply

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