I am often asked about my reasons for homeschooling.
I usually keep my answer short and simple (we love it!), but I find in reality there are all sorts of benefits. So I sat down to think about it and came up with the 10 top benefits homeschooling brings us.
Ten Benefits of Homeschooling
Surprisingly this is the least mentioned of 'objections' people raise when talking about my reasons for homeschooling.
Yet I am constantly amazed and the scope and depth of the things we have learned (and I feel we have only just scratched the surface!). Learning never stops when you homeschool.
Education can be not only tailored to the children's interests but also 'real life' education can take a major part (cooking, book-keeping, organising a party!). By keeping learning fresh and interesting I can develop in my children a deep curiosity and desire to know and understand the world around them.
From rules and regulations. From standing in line. From asking permission to visit the bathroom or have a drink. And most importantly from restrictive time constraints.
We have the time to investigate an interesting subject in depth. We have the time to stop and watch a caterpillar eat its way across a leaf. And we have the time to close our books and visit a museum - just because.
We also have the flexibility to work learning into our life whatever else is happening.
3. Family and love
Although there are proponents of 'quality time, not quantity' I wholeheartedly disagree with them!
A family is as strong as the time it spends together. In eating, playing, learning and laughing together we are building a bond that is strong and durable.
My children are protected in a warm and loving environment, which will give them a secure base when they venture out on their own.
4. Morals and Values
When she first heard we were to homeschool my horrified mother-in-law exclaimed "Its not just their education - it's their whole moral upbringing!" Err...yes..exactly!
I don't want my children to be taught their morals from someone I don't know well. And I certainly don't want their values to be gleaned from a group of equally young and inexperienced children. In homeschooling I can help to guide them and set an example.
I want my children to know who they are - and to value their own self-worth. And for that I feel they need to be given the space to experiment without condemnation.
My children have no concept of 'designer labels'. They don't measure people by which trainers they wear. They feel entitled to have their own opinions and to state them. I want my children to have confidence and belief in themselves and a homeschool provides an ideal environment for this.
How can children learn to operate in society when they are not a part of it?
My children meet everybody - rich, poor, young, old, quiet or loud. Their social spectrum is not confined to 20 children the same age as them. They can converse with all sorts of people.
My children glow! Not chained to desks all day, they are out in the sun and are strong from climbing and running. I can keep a check on their diet and make sure they are getting enough water to drink.
But more importantly they have a joy about life that keeps them stress-free and with a healthy immune system. Isn't that a great reason?
Remember being passionate about something? Remember when you wanted to learn all you could about it, or work at it for days at a time.
I think passion is an important part of a life. A passionless existence is a dreary one. But many of us try to squeeze in the things we are passionate about in small chunks of time instead of making them a major part of our lives. One of the benefits of homeschooling is that I can give my children the gift of time to explore their passion.
9. Creativity and Imagination
I believe we are here to use and enjoy our talents and homeschooling gives me the opportunity to encourage my children to revel in the things that capture their imagination.
My daughter taught me a huge lesson about creativity which I cover in my article Homeschooling Crafts.
Childhood is a fleeting thing, and I want my children to enjoy it. Homeschooling gives them the time and space to just be.
I am not saying that we have ALL these benefits of homeschooling ALL the time (boy, would I be insufferable!!) - I am saying that the opportunity for these benefits present themselves when we are homeschooling - and it is up to us to nurture and embrace them. And THAT is why I homeschool.
Oh my goodness! I am a home schooling mum of 4 and I have NEVER found a better site! Thank you so much.
Blessings, Jenny (New Zealand)
I wanted to say THANK YOU for your fabulous website. I found your website, and finally I have the confidence to take the plunge and take my daughter out of school and educate her at home, thank you, thank you. Marina (UK)
I cannot get over how much great information and super ideas you have here. Fantastic! Ruralmama (USA)
This is simply fabulous!! I just now found this site and I'm so excited!! The opportunities and suggestions as well as the need to inspire are exactly what I have been searching to fulfill!! I'm so thrilled to get started and even more excited to continue to explore all of the fabulous suggestions and creative ideas you have offered here!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you! Jennifer (USA)