26.4.10

What are the top reasons that I homeschool?

A warning: this is potentially going to come across as snobby and possibly condescending. I went to a high school known for producing a snobby attitude, and while I was often told I didn't act like I went there, I know some of it rubbed off. This is intended to be an explanation of why some of my attitudes might be a little different; it is not intended to say that other reasons are bad, that our reasons are the best, or any other value judgement. It just is what it is. Any snobbishness or condescension is unintentional.

With that said, why do we homeschool?

It started here...
01. Both Spousal Unit and I were at times bored during elementary and high school, and we went to excellent schools. We know how bad boredom can be for enjoying learning!

So began to investigate the
02. In our area there are many private schools and church schools. The church schools are automatically ruled out. Several other schools are too difficult to which to gain admission, and once in, we would need significant financial aid. Even with that aid, it would be a drain on our finances. We couldn't travel as often. It would be, potentially, negative socially for the kids. Finally, there are no private schools that offer the academic rigor we desire for our children that are close enough to our home for us to also have the family life we desire.

That essentially decided us. For the academic rigor we wanted at a price we could afford, we were looking at homeschool. Then we also considered...
03. Sibling relationships. Spousal Unit and his siblings never attended the same school once he was in seventh grade, and neither he nor the next youngest ever attended the same school at all as the youngest. I've also observed the way that being separated by age can carry over negatively onto sibling relationships. I was an only child, and if my kids don't have the sibling love as adults, I want to be able to say I did everything in my power to help them have it.

Finally, you could say, our decision boiled down to the aforementioned rigor as well as
04. Time. With homeschooling, we can pursue the aforementioned rigorous academics, extracurricular and cocurricular activities, hobbies and avocations, and still, thanks in part to the absence of homework, have time for the kids to play freely, to have down time, to explore their own interests, to read for fun.

The flip side is that I want my children to have all of these advantages of time and family relationships as well as the advantages of a private prep school education and extracurricular activities. Understand, though, that I don't think the currently educational model is inherently flawed, the way many homeschoolers seem to. If an amazing school that fit our criteria appeared on the horizon, and we could afford it? We'd have to think very seriously about it, at least for high school. At this point, I have grown attached to homeschooling and the way it makes our life work, so I don't know if we could, when push comes to shove, take that plunge. In that sense, I definitely feel that homeschooling is a lifestyle and not just an educational choice! Still, in the end, the academics and activities we pursue are based on a school model, for good or for ill.

3 comments:

Riceball Mommy said...

I like your reasoning, and I don't think you came across as snobbish at all. This well written and we share some of the same reasons for homeschooling. I also feel the same way you do now that we are into it, I really like homeschooling now I wouldn't be so quick to give it up.

Dottie said...

Your reasons are very similar to ours and I don't feel it came across snobbish at all either. I have nothing against schools - I just don't feel like they're the best place for my children at this time. We are enjoying homeschooling but we'll probably give our kids the option of going to public high school. In our district, the high school is amazing. Every year they have tuition students from out of district and kids who were in private school or homeschooled until high school - it is just that good of a school.

Smrt Mama said...

I should do one of these. We have some similar reasons, but some different ones, too.

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