I have been talking to a lot of families about potentially homeschooling their children. The rise in homeschoolers is awesome! Homeschooling is not a decision to be taken lightly, or is it? Once we came up with the decision to pull our then 5th grader from public school, it was easy. Well, the decision was easy. We are still working on the carrying out phase.
We developed our ‘why’. Why do we want to homeschool? Ours was simple. We don’t want any more stop light, emails or notes home about our son’s behavior. Let me clarify: He had/has ADHD and was constantly being a distraction to the normal format of a public school day. Not only that, he had no friends. His self esteem was in the toilet and he began to question his own existence. That was our huge red flag saying HELLO!! Your child needs something else.
Simple. We had to overcome comments from friends and family, which, once you have your why, even if it is “Because I want to”, those concerns from your mother-in-law, asking if this is another half-way project of yours…(gee, thanks lady), are going roll of your back because you know that you are doing the best for your child. My favorite to date is “You don’t want your children to be socially awkward, do you?” Haha! Have you met my child? He was already socially awkward. He was the kid always in trouble. The kid who sought out attention from peers by taking the dares and making waves just to be seen. So, yes! Please, homeschooling, make my child awkward!
Turns out, the safe environment of home, unconditional love and support can make a child gain his confidence and now, he is commented on his maturity. (Sometimes. He is still 13). Most people don’t have ‘why’s’ that are so drastic. A neighbor of ours pulled her daughter the second day of kindergarten because they both missed each other. Another family never thought it an option to go to public school as both parents were also homeschooled. All of the focus on testing and not allowing children to be children strikes a chord with some of my fellow homeschoolers. Children need to run! They need uninterrupted exploration time. Time where they can dive into a topic of their choice and spend hours on a toothpick project, true story.
Reasons for homeschooling vary from family and everyone has their own experience and their own desire and goals for their children. I want confident children who know that they are loved and love to learn. I would also like them to clean more, but that is a work in progress.