To Homeschool or Not to Homeschool? Things to Consider When Making this Important Decision
Whether or not to homeschool your child can be a very difficult decision to make—one that will impact your child’s life forever. While public schooling is not for everyone, homeschooling isn’t either. As with any other major life decision, adequate research is important in the final decision making process. You want to be sure that you have all the facts, including the positive and negative aspects of both choices, before you make your choice. The following questions should be considered before making this decision.
Do You Have Time?
Making the decision to homeschool your child is not something that should be taken lightly. Homeschooling is a great responsibility for you as a parent. There is much more to it than just going over material for a couple of hours a day. A good homeschool schedule will include experiments, field trips similar to school trips, projects and fun days. Not to mention the time necessary to prepare your lesson plan, grade papers, and come up with ideas for future projects. If you aren’t able to commit the majority of your time to the home schooling process, you should probably take some more time to think about it.
Need Personal Time?
A homeschooling parent often spends almost all of their waking hours with their child. While in theory this can seem like a great aspect of homeschooling, it can get to be overwhelming. Everyone needs a break every now and then. Is there another parent or some form of support system available to give you a break from time to time? Even the most dedicated parent needs a little alone time.
Are You in Agreement?
While homeschooling might be your idea of the best possible form of education for your child, it’s important that you and your spouse both agree. Are you able to financially make it on one income? Is that something that you both want to do? Also, don’t forget to ask your child what they think. This decision will impact them the most and their opinion is important. If they are adamantly against it, they might not be very cooperative.
How Will You Socialize?
Making the decision to homeschool your child gives you the opportunity to have control over who they socialize with. While homeschooling will keep them from possibly falling into the wrong crowd at school, you still need to make an effort to encourage their socialization. You will need to actively make arrangements to get your child together with other children on a regular basis.
Are You Confident?
If the idea of being responsible for your child’s education makes you nervous, that’s okay. However, it is important that you be confident that you are qualified for the job. Your child needs to feel like you know what you’re talking about or they won’t take you seriously. The curriculum and teaching materials will help out a lot with the actual content, but if you have trouble grasping the material, you may need to seek a tutor for a certain subject. Are you prepared to do this?
There are many resources available for parents interested in homeschooling. Taking the time to properly research the pros and cons and talking to a few other homeschooling parents will help you make your final decision. It’s important to also remember that homeschooling can be taken one year at a time. If at any time you decide that it isn’t for you, you can still enroll them in public schools the following year.