This post is a continuation of my reasons to homeschool, click here to read part 1 if you missed it!
I am passionate about homeschooling and I hope that comes through in my writing. I wish a warning like this wasn’t necessary, but we live in a world where it seems people are constantly trying to get offeneded. If you read the first part to this post, you likely read the preface at the top where I stated that none of these opinions are meant to offend anyone. I’m going to paraphrase it again here just to be safe!
Everything stated is my personal opinion. This is what my husband and I have chosen for our family. Homeschooling is a lifestyle that is not suitable for everyone. That said, I am extremely passionate about homeschooling and I want to be honest in this post. It is not my objective to offend ANYONE or to make anyone feel bad for their own choices when it comes to educating their children or anything else. If you are curious about homeschooling your own children or just wondering why the heck people do it, please continue reading with an open mind and an open heart!
When kids are homeschooled, they spend more time at home and have more opportunities to help around the house, learning important life skills. My kids are still little but starting this year with my almost 5 year old, I already have a long list of chores he can learn to do and I even have some ideas for how to make it fun for him to b participate. When my almost 3 year old sees big brother doing some of these chores, I’m sure he’ll want to try too.
Learning is intentional
When kids are homeschooled, learning is genuine and solely for the sake of learning. They aren’t learning to receive a good grade or to perform well on a test. They are learning to gain knowledge. My 5 year old is constantly exploring the world around him and looking for more knowledge to take in.
Interaction with kids and adults of all ages
In my previous post on homeschooling, Homeschool Myths You Should Stop Believing (and Spreading), I argued against the myth that homeschool kids lack “socialization.” I’m putting this in quotation because it is ridiculous to think children need to be in a classroom full of kids their same age to learn proper social skills.
There might be some truth to the socialization myth when kids are homeschooled in rural areas, but that is not an issue here in Utah. Every time we leave the house my children get opportunities to interact with other people of all ages too. They are also constantly watching my husband and me interacting with each other and other people. They are definitely learning the social skills they will need throughout their lives. I strongly believe that the variety of people they interact with each week will give so much value to their lives. As they get older and we become more active in the various homeschool groups here in Utah, they will get even more opportunities to interact and bond with kids of all ages.
More time to play
Every homeschool parent I talk to agrees that the amount of time it takes for them to teach their kids at home is a fraction of what it takes in a school. Because learning is faster and takes less time, there is more time for playing. I strongly believe that kids, especially younger kids, should spend as much time as possible freely playing without instruction. There are numerous studies that show how beneficial it is for kids to play freely. My boys, 5 and 3 years old, are constantly playing. All day, everyday and rarely without one another. I love sitting in my living room and hearing their little voices coming in from the backyard or up from the playroom.
Less peer pressure and bullying
I believe a big part of homeschooling is community. I will know my kids friends and I will know their friends parents, and they will all know me. I hope I will build friendships with many of their friends parent’s over the years as well. Because of this sense of community, there is less opportunity and hopefully less appeal for peer pressure and bullying.
Museums, parks, and other fun activities aren’t crowded during the school week
This is a silly one but it’s so true. I love the Spring and Fall because we can go to the park on warm days and the only other kids there are very young or other homeschool kids. The weeks between Memorial Day and school ending for the Summer are our favorite times to visit the splash pad before they become crowded with older kids. In the colder months, we can go to the Aquarium or the Children’s Museum and also not have to face a crowd as most kids are in school. Occasionally we run into a field trip though.
Attendance mandates in any school environment lead to kids attending school while sick. There is much less opportunity to catch and spread illness when children can stay home while sick. If someone in a homeschool group gets sick, they stay home. Yes, getting sick as a child is important to build up the immune system, but the constant passing around of colds and other illnesses in schools isn’t so necessary.
More time to pursue hobbies and interests
As my kids get a little older, they will be free to start following their passions from a much younger age than most people are able. They will also have near unlimited amount of time to spend on these passions. In my previous post, I explained that I want my kids to feel like they have control of their lives and how they spend their time. I believe that being able to dedicate more time to their passions at a young age will give them an even greater appreciation for their lives and freedom.