Is homeschooling right for our family?
Families choose to homeschool for a variety of reasons. Keep in mind that while you may know other families who homeschool, it is a unique and individual journey. While considering this option, it is important that you and your spouse are on the same page. From that point of agreement you can prayerfully consider the options, research and talk to others who have already begun their journey. Dads often find it helpful to sit down with another homeschool dad and ask questions.
Where do I begin?
The initial prospect of homeschooling can seem daunting. Find other families who homeschool and ask to sit in on a school day. Research as much as possible. HSLDA offers a great getting started resource. Contact a local support group. Sitting down to chat with someone who is already homeschooling will quickly help you realize YOU CAN DO IT! Pray and don't forget to breath!
What will our days look like?
Homeschooling will look like YOUR family and that's the beauty of it! Each family's way of doing things is unique. Some are more regimented, with a specific start time and order of subjects. Others are more laid back, even doing school in their jammies. One thing you can expect is that a "typical" homeschool day will be shorter than a traditional school day because of the one-on-one attention your children receive. You will also love the daily opportunities you have to connect with your children's hearts. That's not something you can put in a lesson plan.
What if people disagree with our decision to homeschool?
Chances are someone you know will not like your decision to homeschool. For this reason, it is important that you and your spouse present a united front. It usually doesn't do any good to argue, but to simply state that you feel this is the best decision for your family. When people disagree with homeschooling it is usually because they are not familiar enough with it to understand the benefits. Over time the positive results they see in your family will speak for themselves.
What about high school?
Opportunities for homeschooling your high school student abound. You don't have to be a math wiz or a chemist to teach your young adult. CLEP testing, dual credit enrollment through area colleges and copious amounts of curriculum mean you CAN homeschool your high schooler. And here's the best part - having them home will strengthen your relationship with them during a critical time in their lives. Check out HSLDA's website for many helpful links to get you started.
What about socialization?
Ask yourself this - up until this point in my child's life, where have they learned the majority of their social skills? Children start learning these skills at home. Next question - having seen the social issues today's kids face in schools, do you want your child learning how to behave from their friends? Instead of being relegated to a classroom of similiar age peers, your student will be exposed to people of all ages and walks of life. The hardest thing about "socialization"? Figuring out what to say NO to so you can actually stay home and get school done!
Homeschooling doesn't have to be scary! Check out The Homeschool Mom website for a plethora of helpful information to get you started on your homeschool journey!