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Why I Home School

Love this pic of Lily.  She looks so excited about what she is doing!  She loves dressing up too, so we do school in dresses whenever I let her.  I just noticed another perk of home schooling in the background.  Tea is always on hand through the winter 🙂

I struggle with why I do things a lot.  Often I find myself doing things because of fear… or just laziness, and usually they aren’t the right things to be doing.  I wanted to write a post on why I home school because I think and study it a bunch, and I am passionate about the need to do things for positive reasons instead of fear.

Some people home school out of fear.  Fear for their kids leaving, fear of other kids, fear of school system, fear of bullying, and many others.  I am not going to deny that those are real fears.  What I do want to stress for myself, and anyone else thinking about home schooling, is that these things are not a reason to home school.  In life, I choose to run toward the positive and not away from the negative.

It is true that lots of these can be seen as a positive or negative depending on how you word them and that is o.k.  I want to be a ‘glass half full’ kinda gal.

Why I Home School

  1. I love my kids and want to hang out with them.  Really, I do…. sometimes I need to take an average of my emotions for the day (or week) to get there, but I do love hanging out with them 🙂
  2. One on one (or two in this case) instruction.   There are mornings that I get dizzy going back and forth between both kids helping them with their work and answering questions.  I have no idea how a teacher with 20 kids in a classroom can keep up with all the questions.  It has been proven over and over how good it is for education ratios to be lower (less kids per teacher), and home school rocks this!
  3. Personalized curriculum.  Every kid has different strengths and interests and often they change by the day.  Home school can bend and flex with these without affecting any other kids.  If a kid gets the concept, move on.  If they struggle, do a few more days on it.  It is that simple.  If they feel like writing, do a writing assignment on the topic.  If not, do it verbally or artistically.  Learning goes on at full speed/the right speed.
  4. Flexible schedule.  I am going to write more about this in a few weeks, but there are some days that kids are ready to work and some days that they just aren’t.  I can tell by how their school is going if they are fighting a bug, or if they are stressed out, or if they are tired.  With home school we can fly on some days, and putt along on other days based on their emotional and physical health and no one is bored or upset (or they are less bored/upset than they could be).  This is something I am learning more this year.  It also helps that wake up times and nap ending times can be worked around depending on how much rest they need.  Not only that, but our holiday schedules are also flexible which makes it great to get good deals 🙂
  5. Social and scholastic separated.  I am all about socialization for my kids.  Often thought of as the big problem for home schooling I think it is a huge positive that the kids don’t have to try and figure out how to do them both at the same time.  “Work while you work, and play while you play….” (first part of an anonymous poem the kids memorize) works here perfectly.  When they are with friends they can play, when they are working they can just work (though they due distract each other quite a bit).

These are the big ones.  Our positive reasons to home school.  I don’t always feel like doing it when I get up in the morning, sometimes the kids drive me crazy, lots of times I don’t feel like I am doing a good enough job.  But over all it helps a lot to keep these things in mind.

I would love to talk to you if you are thinking of home schooling or have any questions.  I wish I knew more people who home schooled when I got started who could encourage me.  I am really thankful for the few I did find who helped me make the decision.

16 Comments

  1. I really admire mothers who “home-school” their babies and I intend to do it once I get married and have kids. It’s not just about fear, you’re right. I guess every kid who are home-schooled gets to be “bonded” with their parents in a most special way. I love the fact that you love hanging out with your kids. And as a kid, to my parents for now, I really love hanging out with my family. There’s nothing like it. You’re shaping a world for your family that they’ll treasure forever. Cheers for you! 😉

    • I am sure you will do great! So glad you have such a close family now. Treasure it! They are hard to come by sometime. I just hope as my kids grow up they will still want to hang out with me 😉

  2. Eve Eve

    Hi Lorilee.
    I used to home School, several years ago, my daughter is now 27.
    The one thing I will say about it is, it was one of the best things I did and I only wish I had home Schooled my son too.
    I used to get a lot of people or should I say most asking what I did about socializing. They seemed to think my daughter was kept indoors all the time and did not mix with anyone. We used plan trips and outings together, read maps, check timetables, look up places that my daughter found interesting and visit them when they weren’t so crowded like in the School holidays. We also have a big family and my daughter had lots of friends but friends she choose not the ones that you get thrown into a class with. We used to go on nature walks, to the beach, shopping where she learnt about prices, weights, food etc.
    We baked which is a great maths and science lesson.
    We went swimming and she joined St John’s ambulance , there are lots of after School classes that are not just for children who attend School. Brownies, Scouts, royal training corps the list goes on.
    I joined Education otherwise which was international and they were a great support. They have a list of all the other families that home School that we both made some very good friends through and had a lot in common with.
    I certainly got a great deal of pleasure from the experience and I loved being with my children they were a pleasure.to be with and still are. My son believes in home Schooling too now and sees the sense in it. He says School failed him and I feel sorry about that because if I had my time again I would have home Schooled him too.
    Anyway keep up the good work you are giving your children a very precious gift TIME.. Good luck.

    Eve
    x

    • Thanks so much. Socialization was the one thing I was worried about. That same book “A well trained mind” talks about that and I loved what they had to say. Basically they said that yes, school is the best place for them to get use to getting along in a large group of similar peers. Life, however, is very different after school. There isn’t any other place in life that they will need to uses those skills again. In the workplace and world they will be socializing with different ages and lots of different kinds of people and they will need to know how to socialize that way. In that way home school can be even better getting lots of different socialization experiences. One thing that a home school mom told me when I was thinking about home school was that she could always tell a kid was home schooled if they made eye contact and talked confidently with adults. I don’t know if that is universally true, but my daughter talks to adults as well as kids older and younger all time and can communicate really well with lots of ages. Either way, it helped me not stress so much less about the socialization thing.

  3. Danielle Danielle

    Thinking about homeschooling but fearful of my lack of structure. I start strong, going over abc numbers etc for the first week, but by the middle of second week have fallen off the band wagon. Homeschooling is so wonderful but I don’t feel organized, smart, and consistent. Any advice? Could I even Homeschool?

    • Danielle,

      Yes, I think you could home school. It isn’t as hard as it sounds. I have weeks where I am strong and organized and weeks that are much less so. It is my personality and it seems to work for the kids and their interest as well. How old are your kids? I would love to chat with you about it. … I will tell you that all the home school blogs you read (including mine) go over (mostly) days that go well when they and the kids are both engaged.

      I would say check your library out for a book that talks about what a kid needs to learn each grade level. There are lots of books out there that talk about it. This isn’t something to build curriculum off of or stick too necessarily, but it gives you a real idea about what they are supposed to learn. Really, each year they have to learn very little. They just need to learn it well and be comfortable with it so they can build on it the following year. You don’t have to take them from Kindergarten to a perfect ACT in one year 🙂

      Other things I would recommend is maybe starting with a more structured curriculum and then changing if you want after you have established the habit. There are curriculum out there that spell out what kids need to do each day and even teach them on CD and you can just be there for them to ask questions. Also, there are people who do 1 or 2 classes with a public/private school and the rest at home. This might be another way to help establish structure.

      Let me know what you think or if there is any way I can help 🙂

  4. Danielle Danielle

    Lorilee,
    Thanks! Im going to check out the resources you gave me and try sricking to a small schedule then build up to it. 😉

    • 🙂 Let me know how it goes!

  5. I always think the socialization argument is funny. I went to public school and then college right afterwards, always having my peers around me. But, after I graduated and got a job in the real world, I was the youngest person in the office…in each of my 3 jobs before I had babies. In fact, I was the youngest by a long shot. I think the closest age gap was 10 years at my final job. Not that it mattered to me, I have always had a wide range of ages in my life, but it was kind of interesting to see that I was not in fact going to be around people my own age. Also, I feel like if I had only ever been around my peers, I wouldn’t have succeeded in the job environments that I was in. Friends of mine who were right out of college were still into partying every weekend, and not as concerned about life commitments. But, my co-workers were beyond that stage. Great reasons for homeschooling though! I think mine are very similar 🙂

  6. Amy Amy

    I love home schooling! I wanted to home school our oldest from the beginning but I was a single Mom who was in graduate school. He went to public school and we supplemented evenings and weekends. I struggled with sending him because I loved spending time with him and I just wasn’t happy with the quality of the education he was receiving, even after moving to the “best” school district in our area. By the time he was in 3rd grade I’d met and married my husband. After having some issues with his teacher, she was insisting that his motor ticks that were due to Tourette’s Syndrome were purely behavioral, we decided to home school him. It’s been a great almost 4 years now. We intend to home school for the long haul for him and the other two.

    • Yay! So glad it is working for you! Thanks for coming by the blog. Good to meet you 🙂

  7. I will be home schooling my son in the fall. He has Cystic Fibrosis and is one of the kids who just picks up every bug. It was that way all through daycare and now in preschool too. My husband and I have weighed every option, and we both think this is the best for him. My daughter attends public school (does not have CF) and does quite well. She is very much the social butterfly and I think the extra interactions with other kids is very beneficial to her. My son will still have social aspects, between playing soccer in the summer, taekwondo during the school year, and in another year he wants to start Boy Scouts, not to mention the interactions at Sunday School. Many of my friends have criticized our decision, but we know this is what is best for our child. I’m really looking forward to it!!

    • Good for you! I was worried about the homeschooling thing but am less and less as my kids grow. They are growing and learning great and we are having fun with it as a family 🙂

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