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Why You Should Not Homeschool Your Child

Updated on April 8, 2015
notyouraverageal profile image

Mom. Homeschooler. Mystery shopper. Editor. Wife. These are a few words to describe notyouraverageal. Her life is anything but average.


Many Good Reasons

It seems like more and more people are choosing to homeschool their kids. They all have their own reasons, some good and some not so good. If you are considering homeschooling your kids, you may have many good reasons to do so. However, if most of your list is made up of these reasons, you might want to think twice.


1. Because everyone else is doing it.

While this seems like a good enough reason to homeschool, it really is not. While it may sound fun to homeschool because your sister is doing it or because your best friends are, I don't recommend keeping your kids home just because someone else did.

You may find out very quickly that you have a different schooling approach than they do. Perhaps, you're someone who just wants to school for a few hours a day while your best friend believes in eight hours of education. Homeschooling just to be with her may not work out so well for you. You'll find yourself waiting around for her to finish, wondering what in the world her kids can be learning for that long each day. Or, if you are the marathon schooler, you'll find yourself resentful that your friend's kids are riding their bikes in your front yard while your kids are arguing over math problems.

Homeschooling can't be based on what is popular with the 'in' crowd. Instead, it has to be based on what is best for you and your children. What's right for some may not be right for all.

Why I Homeschool: The Real Truth by Naturally_Erin

2. Because I want to sleep in.

I've actually heard this reason given for why someone wanted to homeschool their children.

The truth is, my family sleeps in later than families with kids in school. There are days that my kids don't get up until what would be considered "the lazy hours" by many. It is nice not to have to get up to go to school.

The flip side of that is, there are days when we get up early to go on field trips or to classes. There are also many, many evenings when my kids are still talking to me much later than they would be if they had to get up for school. There are nights when my daughter is still working on her biology homework at midnight. Homeschooling is definitely not just a great way to sleep in. It's just a different way of doing things.

If you are choosing to homeschool your kids just so you can sleep in, you are going to find yourself quickly disappointed!

Please, please, please!


3. Because he (or she) asked me to.

Many homeschoolers start educating their kids at home because their kids asked them to. Perhaps the kids were miserable in school, or maybe they were bored. There are many reasons kids don't thrive in a school setting, and sometimes, they will ask their parents to fix it for them.

There is nothing inherently wrong with homeschooling your children because they want you to, but this can't be your only reason. Believe me when I tell you, there will be days when these same children who so sweetly begged you to homeschool them will yell at you that you are ruining their lives by homeschooling them. Maybe not, but there's a good possibility that they will! In that case, you'd better have another reason besides, "But you wanted me to," for making the decision you did!

4. Because you want life to be easy.

This one cracks me up. People sometimes believe life will be so simple if they just keep their kids home and educate them. In one way, they are right. Things are easier with the kids at home. You don't have the constant running to and from school or the forgotten homework assignments or the last minute science project or your child's promise that you'll back 12 dozen cookies for the bake sale. In that way, it's easier.

However, in place of the the last minute science fair project, you have three science projects started on the kitchen table and a history diorama being built in the dining room. You have a fort in the back yard, and your daughter will use your sewing machine to make period correct clothes. You'll have to remember homemade apple butter and whole grain bread for the history co-op on Thursday and an Indian headdress for 4-H on Friday. You'll have a house that has not been cleaned, really cleaned, in the last 4 years. Trust me. Life is not any easier for homeschoolers than for families with kids in school. It's not easier. It's just different.

Your Free Time

What would you do if you had 8 uninterrupted hours of free time?

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5. Because you love free time.

I've heard a mom or two say that homeschooling would be great because she would have more free time if she was not always volunteering for the PTA or at her kid's school. Listen to me when I tell you this is not true!

If you value going to the bathroom by yourself, don't homeschool.

If you ever want to read a book that is not educational again, don't do it.

If you want to meet your friends for lunch without having children in tow, send those kids to school.

On the surface, homeschooling seems like it will free up a lot of your time, but that could not be further from the truth. I started homeschooling in 2004. When I manage to have a phone conversation without being interrupted by a child, I'll be sure to let you know.


6. Because you want a clean house.

Okay, okay, in theory, this sounds realistic. If your kids are home all day, they can help you clean, right? Sure. Because they help you now....

The reality is, more time at home means more messes. Be prepared for books and projects and papers galore on the kitchen table and math manipulatives on the living room floor. You may even hear yourself ask the question, "Who spray-painted the dog blue?" Your children will be busy learning, and learning involves messes. There will be books and papers everywhere. If you think your house is messy now, just you wait, my friend. You ain't seen nothin' yet.


Not Everyone's Cup of Tea

There are many great reasons to homeschool your kids, and many families are very successful in homeschooling. However, if your reasons to homeschool are based solely on this list, you may want to think twice. Homeschooling is a big commitment, and it definitely isn't everyone's cup of tea.

If you are considering homeschooling, do your homework first. Talk to other homeschoolers. Ask them their reasons for homeschooling. Ask if their expectations matched the reality of life as a homeschooling family. Ask what mistakes they've made in homeschooling and find out what they would do differently. Then, if you're brave enough, ask for their honest opinions about whether or not you should teach your kids at home. Before you jump in with both feet, make sure you've considered the pros and cons! You'll be glad you did.


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      Cherie 2 years ago

      I so totally agree on the messy house... I have homeschool stuff everywhere! And, free time? Really? What is this free time people speak of... my brain can't comprehend that phrase! Oh, and don't forget the kids fighting... yep, that's a big one here! Wouldn't have it any other way though!

    • notyouraverageal profile image

      Al 2 years ago from Florida

      I agree! Thanks for sharing!

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      meme 2 years ago

      We started homeschooling when we discovered that our firstborn child was not likely to fit in with a "group of peers" . She preferred the company of adults, by 6 her reading and comprehension tested by a non-related teacher showed she was at a 7 th grade level. Clearly she was a square peg and having intelligent conversations that her aged peers would be unable to comprehend, thus keeping her isolated. Her thirst for knowledge was near insatiable; throughout our homeschooling years I would become find that she would have read the entire book I had planned to use for the next two months of school. I finally moved out of her way and she began researching and learning everything she could about everything. By 7 th grade, she was enrolled in several FLVS courses and we tried supplementing at a local charter school, which was a disaster. She was bored and hated being there, so we enrolled her at "flvs full time" when they became a "real" school" that finally offered a diploma to its graduates. She has a few classes remaining to complete her AA, and will continue her education on her terms, whatever they may be. My point in sharing all of this is don't be afraid to try homeschooling, it might be just what your child needs, and if it isn't then you still have a great number of options available - you are not locked out of those other options.