Thanks for joining me today for the blogging A to Z challenge as I share my life as a working homeschool mom and blog my way through the alphabet. Visit my series landing page for all of the posts in this series.
When I first began my homeschooling journey, I was very fortunate to be surrounded by family and friends who embraced my decision to homeschool. Even though I got a lot of questions about the “how’s”, for the most part the feedback I received about our decision was very positive. As far as objections, my biggest nay sayer was myself.
Today I want to share with you some of the objections I’ve entertained in my own mind on this journey. I would be untruthful in saying that I never question my choice today. I do. But I know that, at least for now, it is the right choice.
OBJECTION #1 – You can’t Homeschool. You Work Full Time.
Yea, I pretty much thought I was crazy to take this on, and most days I still think I am. But you know what, we are working it out and most days are very good days. Some days are very hard, and we have a few days that are just plain aweful. But we are doing it.
I am blessed to live in a State where it’s very easy to homeschool and work full time. I am only required by law to keep attendance records and a course of study. I am not required to follow any certain curriculum, nor do I have to abide by any certain schedule. As I’ve mentioned before, homeschooling works for us because we are able to do school when it fits into our schedule. Most days, that’s between the hours of 12pm and 4pm (some days are shorter, some longer), as my son tackles his course work under the watchful eye of my husband while I work. Sometimes we work together at night on writing, science projects or other things.
It is not impossible to homeschool and work full time. Challenging? Absolutely! But not impossible.
OBJECTION #2 – You can’t Afford To Buy Curriculum.
This was a huge obstacle for me to overcome. With a disabled husband and one real income, I have to make wise decisions regarding curriculum purchases. When I first began homeschooling, I thought I had to buy all of the latest curriculum, use what everyone else was using, and purchase everything new. It’s taken me four years to finally understand that homeschool curriculum and resources do not have to be expensive. Matter of fact, there is an entire FREE site with curriculum in every subject for grades K-12. If you are looking to homeschool and need time to consider curriculum, or simply cannot afford to purchase your own, check out Easy Peasy All-In-One Homeschool. It’s absolutely FREE!
After four years, I hardly ever purchase anything new. I belong to four different Facebook groups where I buy and sell curriculum, and eBay and Half-Priced Books are also great places to purchase used curriculum. If I am going to purchase new curriculum, I frequent places like Rainbow Resource Center and CurrClick. And anything that I purchase (new or used), I try to keep in great condition so that we can resell it to help purchase next year’s curriculum. This means we are use a lot of notebooks instead of writing in consumables.
OBJECTION #4 – You’re Not Home To Teach. How Will He Learn?
The great thing about homeschooling a Middle School child is that, for the most part, he is self taught. Because 80% of his curriculum is online, he is able to do his lessons without me. Those lessons are self-graded and all I have to do is check in a couple of times a week, review the grade book, and see where he may need assistance.
For the other 20% of his curriculum, the majority of his lessons can be done without my having to explain anything to him. My husband is home to be “teacher”, but acts more like a mentor/guidance counselor. If there are any assignments I feel he needs more direction in, those are saved for evenings and weekends.
OBJECTION #5 – My Son Will Become a Hermit And Lack Social Skills.
Socialization is a question that all homeschooling parents I know face from those who feel their children will become hermits, self-centered, or unable to socialize. I am of the firm belief that there are many ways our children can gain socialization skills outside of traditional school, such as co-ops, group sports, camps, youth groups, youth center activities, volunteer opportunities, etc.
My son participates in a co-op with other homeschool kids at least once a week, where he participates in sports and receives “homework help”. He is also very actively involved in church youth group. Even though he’s been homeschooled the last two years, he has remained great friends with a few of the other boys from his elementary school, and they get together often on weekends, or participate in online gaming activities together.
Some would argue my son does so well with others because he was only homeschooled the last two years. But I disagree. These last two years have been the most awkward for him (both emotionally and physically as he’s entered the teen stage), and I’ve had to push him at times towards socialization. The fact of the matter is we have to be intentional about it or he could easily become a hermit and never want to leave the house.
I am sure there are other objections, but these would be my top five. Thanks for reading!