It happens quite frequently.
My boys and I will be checking out at the grocery store, running errands, or any number of other things, and we are stopped and asked that same, all too familiar question.
I can almost see it coming.
I see the look of perplexity on the face of the stranger before us.
It is, after all, usually early in the day.
“Why aren’t you boys in school? Is it a non-school day?”
My boys always answer politely,
“No. We’re homeschooled.“
This is usually followed by,
“Really?! Do you like it?!” And, “Oh! I could never do that!“
I am then usually given a list of reasons why the person before us couldn’t possibly homeschool his or her own child.
“You must have A LOT of patience!“
If only they knew!
Friends, I know that it is not everyone’s calling in life to educate their children at home.
However, if homeschooling is something you are contemplating, here are the top 5 reasons why you shouldn’t do it :
I lack the patience it takes to homeschool my child.
This is, by far, is the response I hear most.
It is assumed that I am the most patient mother on the planet because I choose to educate my children at home.
I’ll let you in on a little secret. I’m not.
I get frustrated. I lose my temper. I give myself time outs.
There have been numerous days where I have simply told my boys that I need some time to myself to cool down before I lose my mind.
Being honest and calmly telling them that I’m reaching my breaking point, (before actually reaching it), gives me a much needed break.
My boys understand that I need to be alone for a little while. They appreciate it. Why?
It helps me clear my mind. It helps me focus.
Most importantly, it helps me see the bigger picture and, here’s the kicker : it allows me to bestow grace on my children.
After all, doesn’t God do that for me, His child?
I don’t have a college degree.
Here’s another secret for you : I don’t either. And a lot of my homeschool mommy friends didn’t finish college just like me.
Yes, I went for a short time. However, my major was music. Not education.
After I met my husband, our whirlwind romance took over and I dropped out.
So how do I teach my kids without holding them back?
I research. A lot. I purchase grade level curriculum with teacher’s manuals.
I study ahead so I know what I’m talking about before I attempt to teach it.
In other words, I’m learning right beside them.
Above all else, I know beyond a shadow of doubt that God has called me to homeschool my kids. And I know that He will equip me for this purpose!
I’m unsure how my children will learn social skills.
Our cure for this issue? Co-ops!
We are blessed by a plethora of co-op options in our area.
From P.E., to academy co-ops, there is no shortage!
There are also church youth groups, and various other community youth activities all of which our boys have participated in at one time or another.
We are also blessed with a large extended family. Our kids have grown up alongside numerous cousins of the same ages.
One of the biggest misconceptions about homeschoolers is that they are all albino hermits, who never see the light of day, and never interact with anyone except mom and dad.
This is so far from the truth! Honestly, we are away from home more that we are there.
And you know what? Our boys are equally comfortable holding a respectable conversation with an adult as they are conversing with their peers.
I cherish my freedom during the day.
I get that. Completely.
We all need our dose of alone time, don’t we? As homeschoolers, we have to be a little more creative when it comes to getting that coveted time.
This is where Dad comes in. Or another friend or family member.
My husband has been AMAZING through our homeschool journey. Although he works hard all day, he’ll step in and take over lessons if he sees I need a break.
We also schedule father/son days.
On those days, he takes our boys out FOR THE ENTIRE DAY to give me time for myself. Its amazing!
Fellow homeschool mom friends also come into play here.
The beauty of homeschooling is that your kid’s friends and their families become your friends too.
There have been many play dates where the kids run off to some other part of the house while my friend and I chat over coffee.
Our kids get that infamous social interaction, and I get some girl time. It’s a win win!
Our boys did attend classes away from home while we were homeschooling through our local charter school.
I did have that glorious freedom on those two days.
When we chose to independently homeschool our boys, I thought I would miss those days.
You know what I discovered?
I didn’t miss those days as much as I thought I would.
My boys may drive me crazy sometimes, but I LOVE our days together. I LOVE learning with them, and growing with them.
Each day I get to witness the AMAZING young men they are growing into. I get to share in their joys when they finally get that new concept.
I get to be there!
It’s a huge blessing! And it’s one I don’t take for granted.
It may take more planning on my part to get that precious me time, but that’s ok.
It’s worth it!
I don’t know where to begin.
Friends, I know it can be overwhelming.
There are so many different options out there its hard to know where to begin.
Let me try to narrow it down for you :
First, decide which type of homeschool route is best for your family.
This takes time. It takes research.
Examples include, Charlotte Mason, Unschooling, Charter Schools, Textbook based, A Hands On Approach, or Literature Based.
There are certainly more options out there, but start with those.
Second, find homeschool mommy groups on social media and join and/or follow them.
Other homeschool moms can offer a wealth of advice and encouragement to you! Make those connections!
Third, give yourself time to research your curriculum options.
There is so much to choose from! Write down your focal points, (topics you most want to study) and what your goals are, and go from there.
You can even go with your child’s interests! Our boys love animals so last year we used Apologia’s Land Animals for Science.
We also took a whole year and studied the life of Walt Disney as an elective.
Lastly, set a basic schedule for your year.
Having a clear “map” of the entire year is helpful.
How long would you like your school year to last? For us, we homeschool year round with tons of breaks mixed in. This works wonders for us!
Look over your calendar. Factor in your spouse’s work schedule, holidays, birthdays, vacations, etc.
From there, you can decide on the duration of your school year.
For more on scheduling your year and helpful tips on how to do so, click here.
Friend, if homeschooling is something you are truly considering, if home education is truly on your heart, don’t let the reasons listed above derail you from your purpose.
If you are being called to step out in faith and homeschool your children, do it! You can! You are able! It works for our family, and I know it will work for yours!
And you know what? I’m here for you if you need help! Truly.
There is a whole community of homeschooling moms out there that would jump at the chance to help you too!
You can do it!
*This post contains affiliate links. For more information on affiliates, please see our disclosure page.