We have been homeschooling for two years now, and in the fall we will begin our third year of homeschooling when my son enters second grade and my daughter enters first grade.
In a previous post I shared the four biggest factors that lead our family to begin homeschooling two years ago. In this post, I share 13 reasons why homeschooling has worked out great for our family.
Note: This post is not meant to criticize families who have made a different decision about schooling for their children. These are simply the reasons why homeschooling works well for us. If my kids were in a traditional school, I’m sure I could come up with a list of reasons I was happy with that choice as well!
#1: I enjoy homeschooling.
As I wrote before when I explained why we initially decided to homeschool, I decided to give homeschooling a try in part because I thought I would enjoy it. As it turns out, I was right! I’ve really enjoyed creating curriculum, spending quality time with my kids, and walking beside them as they learn and accomplish so much.
If there comes a day when I am no longer having fun, we will have to reconsider our decision to homeschool. But so far, through two years of homeschooling, the good days have vastly outnumbered the bad days. As such, I anticipate continuing to homeschool for the foreseeable future.
#2: I can adapt my teaching to fit my kids’ learning styles.
All kids have different learning styles. I like that I can adapt my teaching to meet the way my kids learn best. If they need to move around while we review material, they can get up and move. If they need a “brain break” in the middle of a lesson, I give them the time they need. If they need to use a particular manipulative to understand a concept, I provide it to them. If I need to find a better way of explaining something so they will be able to understand, I keep searching until I find the right way to explain.
#3: My kids get to learn at their own pace.
Going through our curriculum as fast or as slow as we want has been a huge blessing for both of my kids. I love that nothing holds them back if they are ready for more challenging work. But at the same time, if they need more review of a concept or skill before moving on, I can continue to provide it until they are ready.
#4: No one fails, and therefore no one feels like a failure.
Failure does not exist in our home. If my kids aren’t getting something, we simply keep trying until we are able to master the material. Sometimes we take a break for a few weeks before returning to a particular concept. But we only move on when my kids understand the concepts, and no one is made to feel bad if they need more time to learn.
#5: There are no tests.
I spend so much time working with my kids that I know very well exactly what material they have mastered and what material they still need to work on. I do not need to give tests where they either pass or fail (see #4 above). I do not need to grade them. I am constantly assessing their understanding and I don’t put undue pressure on them if they don’t understand a concept. I simply provide additional review.
#6: I can choose learning topics based on my kids’ interests.
I love that I can pick curriculum, reading material, homeschool classes, and thematic materials based on my kids’ interests. For example, my kids love LEGO. So this past year I enrolled them in a LEGO movie making class where they learned to make stop motion movies with LEGO. And when we were studying simple machines, I purchased the LEGO Education Simple Machines set so they could learn new science concepts using their favorite toy.
#7: There’s no need to wake up early or rush out of the house in the mornings.
Many homeschoolers sleep in until 8 or 9 am each morning. Our family doesn’t sleep in nearly that late – we are usually up by 6:30 am – but I very much appreciate that we have the option to let the kids sleep in if needed, and we are in no rush to get out the door in the morning to arrive before the school bell. This makes for simpler mornings and a less stressful household.
#8: My kids have lots of free time to explore their interests.
With homeschooling, we are usually able to get through all of the material I want to cover in a fraction of the time it would take if my kids were in a traditional school setting. The upshot of this is that my kids have plenty of down time at home where they can explore their interests. My kids get very little screen time, so this means they use their free time to build LEGO creations, play basketball in the driveway, dig in the backyard, or engage in other creative free play.
#9: I can support the development of their conflict resolution skills.
My kids, like most siblings I imagine, frequently get along but also have their moments when they get on each other’s nerves. And when friends come over, the kids often get into disagreements.
I feel blessed to have the skills and the time to help my kids develop their conflict resolution skills so they can solve disagreements in a fairy and healthy manner. This is a life skill that I hope will serve them well throughout their lives.
#10: We maintain healthy eating habits.
For health reasons, we are extremely conscientious about the food we eat. With my kids at home, I get to control the food they have access to so I can nourish and heal their bodies with real, healthy food. I like that I am helping my kids establish good eating habits and I am getting their taste buds used to a wide variety of healthy foods.
#11: We have the opportunity to travel during the school year.
I love that we can take a day off whenever we want without having to be accountable to a school that wants my kids in their seats. This means we can take a beach day in the middle of the week if we are hit with a mini heat wave in February. We can leave town early on a Friday for a long weekend get away. Grandmum can take the kids for a getaway anytime she is available. And we can take family vacations during times of the year when prices are lower, the weather is better, and the crowds are smaller.
#12: We make friends with other homeschool families, giving both me and my kids a network of friends.
We homeschool through our school district’s home study program. Within this program there is an active group of parents who get together on a regular basis. This has provided my kids with a wonderful group of friends who range in age from toddlers to middle schoolers. I have been very pleasantly surprised at how well the kids of all ages play together. And the kids are all so well behaved because the parents are very involved and have raised wonderful human beings.
Plus, being part of a homeschool group has given me a built-in group of friends that I get to see on a regular basis. The social support has been as invaluable for me as it has been for my kids.
#13: We can schedule appointments in the middle of the day.
Both of my kids see a variety of specialists to support them with a variety of health challenges. So between the two of them, I feel like I am always running to one doctor’s appointment or another. It is a huge blessing to be able to schedule those appointments at any time of the day rather than having to fit everything in during after school hours. This also allows us to avoid traveling during peak traffic hours.
So there you have it – the top 13 reasons why homeschooling has been a wonderful choice for our family. If you are a homeschooling family, I’d love to hear what you love most about homeschooling – leave me a comment below!
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