For many years, homeschooling has been looked at as “weird”, “alternative”, and that it creates sheltered kids that cannot function in the real world. However, these views are quickly changing (thank goodness) and there are many reasons why parents are choosing home education over public schools.
Some interesting general facts about homeschooling (source):
- It is the fastest growing form of education in the US right now
- Homeschooling saves taxpayers about $27 Billion a year because these kids are not in public schools
- About 2.3 million American children are home-educated
- Home-educated children generally do better on standardized tests than public schooled children.
- Homeschool students are being actively recruited by colleges now
- Parents do not have to be certified teachers to educated their own children
- Homeschooling allows kids to really learn more about themselves and what they want to do in life because they get more one-on-one interactions
- Also, depending on your state’s requirements, most homeschoolers don’t even need any specific curriculum. You may have to cover a few basic subjects like math, writing, and science but you are free to chose what you want to teach your child (which is how it should be!)
Main Reasons why more Parents are Homeschooling
- More individualized attention: Teachers are overworked and underpaid these days, and many are being run into adrenal burnout because of it. MANY teachers are now changing their careers because of this, or they’re heading towards being online teachers where they have better pay and less stress. They have to deal with dozens of kids for hours each day, all of which have their own needs and methods of learning. Homeschooling allows kids to get more time to be taught the way that they learn best
- Freedom to learn at their own pace. Every kid is different. Just because a child is a certain age, it doesn’t mean that they will all be mentally at the same level of learning.
- Freedom to learn what they want to learn: You may have to focus on a few main subjects but kids have more of an opportunity to learn more on their own. They can read, learn instruments, do science experiments, and more.
- Common Core: Common core has been in schools for a few years and it has been terrible for teachers, parents and students that are made to deal with it. The way that things are taught with Common Core make absolutely NO sense, and it is a one-size-fits-all approach to education. Read 10 reasons to oppose common core here.
- Less chaos: With homeschooling, there is no rushing around every day trying to get multiple kids to their specific schools. This means less stress for kids and parents!
- Better food options. Many schools are still serving food laden with GMOs, high fructose corn syrup, sugar, and artificial ingredients. Some classrooms even use candy on a daily basis to keep kids easier to handle, so they are hopped up on sugar all day long which can lead to chronic illnesses.
- Less illnesses: Let’s face it, kids get sick easily especially in big groups. Thanks to poor diet, lack of movement, and generations of passing along deficiencies most kids lack strong immune systems these days. They tend to pick up nearly everything they are exposed to, which means more sick days and more doctors visits.
- No threat of violence, sexual assault, drugs, bullying, etc
- Not being forced to sit still when physically unable to. This is a big one! Kids are not capable of sitting still for long periods of time, nor should they have to. But because many schools are cutting down on recess times and they are made to sit at a desk for hours at a time so many children are falsely being diagnosed with ADD/ADHD and subsequently being given DRUGS to calm them down. Kids are not allowed to be kids anymore in a school environment.
- No threat of medical procedures being done without parental consent: The fact that in some places things like vaccines and IUDs are being given to children without parental consent is immoral and ridiculous. It was reported a few years ago that girls as young as the 6th grade could obtain IUDs without parental consent. There have also been reports of the CDC funding vaccine clinics in schools, and there are many reports of children receiving vaccines and other medical treatment at school despite forms on file signed by parents that the school is not authorized to do anything without the parent’s consent.
- No standardized tests: Doing well on tests does not make a person intelligent, and doing poorly on tests doesn’t mean that the person is not intelligent. I am not sure if some states require the standardized testing for homeschoolers but the ones I have read about so far do not require them.
- Learn real life skills and not just from a general curriculum. How many of you actually learned how to cook in school? Or how to change a tire? Or how to grow food? What about how to take care of a pet or sibling? Or maybe how to do well on a job interview? How to run your own business? I could go on and on here. The things that we learn in public schools are not always things that are even applicable in the real world. I was one that went to public school, had parents that worked full time, and once I was an adult in the real world I had to basically learn everything I needed to know on my own. Public school prepares you for life as a docile citizen. In fact, public school was first created to “make sure that the children of poor immigrants get “civilized” and learn obedience and restraint, so they make good workers and don’t contribute to social upheaval.” (source) However, not much has changed since then- the school structure is still basically the same as it was at its inception about 150 years ago, even with all of our technological advances. (Source)
- Many parents are working from home these days which makes it much easier to accommodate homeschooling.
The Socialization “Issue”
This “issue” is brought up so many times than some homeschoolers call socialization the “s” word.
How many of you went to school and got to talk all day, every day with your peers? I sure as heck didn’t! You would get a few minutes in the hallway between periods and at lunch/recess, and the rest of the time you were expected to be quiet, sit still, and listen to the teacher. You didn’t speak unless spoken to, and if you tried to talk to your classmates without permission you would get detention. The *only* time that you were able to speak to others for extended periods of time in class would be for group projects. Hanging out was for after school, during sports, and on the weekends.
The argument for “how will kids learn how to socialize when homeschooled” is just moot. It’s been proven that kids learn how to socialize from birth from their parents, not from being in large groups of kids at a young age. Socialization in the real world is different than public school anyway. Shoving dozens of kids in one room and forcing interaction when needed is not exactly a natural way one learns how to socialize.
So how do homeschool kids get socialized? At the park, at stores, at the home’s of friends and family, and at activities like sports, Boy/Girl Scouts, 4-H clubs, etc. This is also another thing that is individual! Every person is different and some kids just take longer to feel comfortable with other people. You just have to keep trying until your child is ready. This method can be much better than just throwing them in school and hoping for the best. Read more on Socialization and home school here.
So! There is my input on homeschooling. As you might have guessed, that is the goal I have for my family once we are ready. If it is feasible for your family it really makes so much sense to homeschool. Your kids will learn more, learn at their own pace, and gain more skills that are useful in the real world. The argument of socialization is a silly one as there are plenty of people that go to public school that still can’t socialize correctly in the real world. At the end of the day, public school is NOT there to raise our children and I think that is a big myth that many people seem to believe.
Do you homeschool/unschool? Let’s talk in the comments!