I get asked some why we homeschool our children. And I put up with a good bit of attitude from people who have very strong (and very wrong) preconceived notions about homeschoolers and homeschooling. So, here is my list of reason why we homeschool.
** Disclaimer** These are MY reasons. I do not believe that homeschooling is the only way to educate. I do not believe that it is wrong or immoral to put children in school (public or private). I do not believe that everyone should homeschool.
~ I homeschool my children because I want to do it. I really do enjoy teaching and learning with my children. It’s fun.
~ I homeschool my children because I can. Yep, it’s legal in Texas. I have the time and resources to do it.
~ I homeschool my children because I think I can give them a better education than any school out there. This is not to say that I am better at teaching, but rather that I can give my children one-on-one tailored education.
~ I homeschool because I don’t like having my life schedule dictated by someone else. My days are not set according to the school’s schedule. My vacations are planned when they are convenient to my family.
~ I homeschool because it’s what I would have wanted as a child. While I know that my children might or might not have similar experiences to mine, school was a place of torment on the bad days and an extreme waste of time on the good days for me. I bear scars that are very deep from my time in school.
~ I homeschool because I don’t like “forced socialization” of children. I get to decide who I want to hang out with and spend time with. Why shouldn’t my children? Yes, we all have to learn how to get along with people who are mean to us or who we disagree with, but generally speaking as adults we have a lot more control over who we associate with. My children are active in various groups with other children from a wide variety of backgrounds, races, colors, etc.
~ I homeschool so that my children get to experience the world in greater depth. I want my children to experience the richness of other cultures and locations, not just read about them.
~ I homeschool my children because I feel called to do it. There really is nothing I would rather do with my days.
Here are some misconceptions that I think are necessary to address.
~ I do not homeschool because I think public school is evil. There is plenty of evil in the world. I do not believe that public schools are the source of it. I do not believe that parents who send their kids to public school are abandoning them.
~ I do not homeschool because I want to shield my children from ideas different from my own. My children learn about other religions and beliefs that we do not adhere to. They read popular books and watch tv/movies that are age appropriate.
~ I do not homeschool because I want to protect my children from difficult or painful situations. I do want my children to have a firm foundation in their faith and a strong belief in their abilities. I am preparing my children to stand strong and provide a good defense for their beliefs.
~ I do not homeschool my children because I believe I am morally-superior to other non- homeschooling families. Every family has to make their own decision about what is right for them and what they believe God is calling them to do. My decisions are just that, MY decisions.
~ I do not homeschool my children because I want to “disengage” from the culture around me. My family interacts with many people from all walks of life. We are active in mercy ministries. We are participants in much of what the popular culture offers.
I hope this helps others understand why we do what we do.
Rachel Miller, a member of a PCA church, is a wife and home-schooling mom who finds time to do writing and research. She blogs at A Daughter of the Reformation where this article first appeared. It is used with permission