If the figures from the U.S. Census Bureau are anything to go by, 2020 saw the biggest increase in home-schooling yet.
About 11% of households with school-age children were house-schooling their kids by fall.
This has been attributed to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
So, Is It Worth It to Homeschool Your Kids?
Yes. But it is probably not the best approach for some children. Home-schooling comes with numerous advantages, such as parents being free to decide what to teach their children. However, as the pandemic has revealed, both children and adults are better off out there up and about. Prolonged stay at home often leads to stress which may hamper the learning abilities of the child. Homeschooling makes sense for children with mobility issues.
Why Homeschooling Is Worth It
1. Increased productivity
If you are concerned with the productivity of your child as well as the quality of education they receive, homeschooling is certainly the most practical approach to take.
Most public schools are under-resourced, with just 1 teacher for every 20 – 30 children.
This means your child isn’t receiving the right amount of one-on-one attention and instructions from the teacher.
It also means the child is spending a lot of time on potentially unnecessary work.
No wonder children in public schools often return home with tons of homework to complete – they can’t accomplish much in the school environment.
Homeschooling ensures the child concretes on what’s relevant.
Even better, the instructor (you or the private instructor you may hire) dedicates all their time to the child.
Homeschooled kids don’t do homework.
2. Freedom of religion
If religion is an integral part of your family, you should probably opt to homeschool your child instead.
Public schools are starting to do away with Christian teachings in the classroom at an alarming rate.
Such things as Lord’s prayer face a total in some schools.
For that reason, homeschooling can be the best way of instilling the values of your religion into your young ones.
3. Better relationships
It has been argued that homeschooled children tend to turn into introverts or end even display anti-social behavior.
This is likely to be true, but you can’t ignore the emotional stability they get as a result.
Homeschooled kids don’t mix with lots of kids from different backgrounds, which means they are less likely to pick some destructive behaviors.
Adults who were homeschooled tend to cultivate better occupational and interpersonal relationships.
4. Better stability
How did you feel when your family relocated, forcing you to change schools?
If you want your child to grow up knowing how to handle life challenges – such hard transitions as the death of a family member, for example – then consider homeschooling them.
Homeschooled kids find it easier to change homes or cities compared to their counterparts in public schools.
5. More elaborate and flexible education
If you want the education of your child to be more advanced and specific, you can use vacations and similar activities as part of the homeschooling curriculum.
And since the child won’t waste a lot of time doing irrelevant things, they will go to bed earlier and wake up at the right time as you prescribe. No homework.
No morning rush to catch the school bus – all learning is completed during the daytime in specific hours.
Better yet, your kid can move faster through subjects and exercises they understand, meaning they can dedicate more time working on more challenging topics.
Another thing you probably didn’t know is that homeschoolers tend to outperform their counterparts in public schools in standardized tests.
6. Real return of the value of the “school fees
If you feel that your child isn’t receiving the value of the money you spend on their school fees, then homeschooling can be a better alternative.
With homeschooling, not only will you be able to invest more money in your child’s education by buying more specific learning materials but you’ll also maximize the returns in terms of the quality and quantity of education per dollar spent.
7. You get to set a different path for the child’s socialization
If you want your child to follow a different socialization path to what public schools offer, homeschooling is the best path to take.
- You get to cut the social pressures and ridicule that might have reduced your child’s self-esteem or discourage learning.
- Zero bullying, especially if you feel your child stands out of other children for some reasons
- You get to expose your child to more adults and more relatable children through a field trip, excursions, and similar activities.
- You get to connect your child to other homeschoolers of the same or varying skill levels and ages
- Expose your child to more realistic skill-building activities
8. More time for local community involvement
Public schools don’t appreciate the value of community involvement as you probably do.
If you choose to homeschool the child, you remove distractions from students and other children who don’t value community involvement. Homeschooled students are self-motivated and often show more pride in their achievements.
The Bad Side Of Homeschooling
Don’t let the aforementioned figures lead you into thinking homeschooling is the new normal.
A lot of parents dread it and might return their children to public schools once the pandemic eases. If you aren’t prepared for these downsides, your children are better off in a public school:
1. It eats into your time
Unless you are always freely available to plan the school-time and related activities and even handle the administrative tasks of being a teacher, you are more likely to give up on schooling within weeks.
Taking full charge of the program will mean less time for yourself each day.
The potential for fatigue and stress is high now that you are taking on teaching responsibilities and parenting at the same time.
You can choose to hire a home tutor to assist or take over the whole program but this won’t make it to be very different from sending the child to a public school.
2. Fewer friends are never good for your child
Most homeschooled children don’t grow up with a large circle of friends.
Less frequent interaction with many other children will certainly hurt how a child grows up.
Without many friends within the same age group, it is easy for a child to grow with narcissistic or anti-social tendencies.
3. Shallow curriculum and minimal access to essential resources
One of the biggest flaws of homeschooling is that it lacks the robust structure found in public schools.
You will only focus on things you think are useful to the child and leave out those you find unnecessary.
Some of these “unnecessary” parts of the public school curriculum may be valuable to your child – you are probably biased or have an unfavorable attitude towards them.
Also, homeschooled children are cut from the rich resources and technology found in public schools.
The flexibility that comes with it also means parents must teach an array of subjects.
More freedom and flexibility will demand that you dedicate extra time and exercise more responsibility.
4. Limited access to extra-curriculum events
Perhaps the biggest benefit of public schools is the unrestricted access they give children to recreational and amateur leagues.
Some public schools encourage pupils to participate in regional homeschool sports classes.
Homeschooled children are almost entirely cut off from these sporting events.
Most school districts don’t allow homeschoolers to attend or participate in their public sports teams.
If you jump these hurdles successfully, your child is guaranteed to achieve the same – if not more – as their counterparts in public schools.
Is it worth it to homeschool your kids?
Yes. But it’s probably not the best approach for your child.
If you are concerned with the productivity of your child as well as the quality of education they receive, homeschooling is certainly the most practical approach.
However, homeschooling lacks the robust structure you’d find in public schools.