Homeschool Difference

What is the homeschool difference? It is truly glaring when you compare it to public or even private education.| #homeschoolpodcast | homeschool difference| homeschooling|Homeschool Difference ~ Episode 478

What is the homeschool difference? It is truly glaring when you compare it to public or even private education. With lofty goals public education has failed children, again and again, having become agenda-driven. What is a parent to do? Look at the alternative which is homeschooling and reap the rewards with children who are well adjusted. Yes, that is a thing. Listen to this podcast and get a veteran homeschool mom’s perspective.

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There has to be a difference right? I mean after all the work and self-sacrifice from homeschool parents we need to reap the benefits and the rewards. Well, the answer to that is yes and no. Of course, we all want great kids who love what we love whether this is faith in God, a good moral compass, or kids that grow up to be well adjusted. Yet how does homeschooling make the difference?

One of my podcasters (I own this homeschool podcast network in case you didn’t know), once did a podcast on how homeschooling can’t save you. That is true. In and of itself just the steps of homeschooling are not going to create the perfect kid. No one is perfect and no parent no matter how self-sacrificing has all the answers. Yet, homeschooling can definitely help. For one thing, there is not an outside influence if you are the teacher and parent rolled into one. This does not preclude a child’s ability to ask questions (and not the ones to set mom off – this is for one of my children who knows how to get me going). But, a true and honest discussion with a variety of dialogue is good.

I believe that homeschooling does make a difference in more ways than I can list. I completed my homeschool journey clocking in at thirty-two years. In the early days of homeschooling, I learned (not as quickly as I hoped) that recreating the classroom at home was a mistake. I was missing all the things that make kids a kid, like giving them time to think, explore their passions, and find out that learning is an adventure.

Here is an example of the early days of homeschooling. I ordered books and workbooks, sat and worked with my son (my daughter was attending a high-end preschool), and I was burned out about halfway through. My son was engaged but I was so bored. I didn’t like the first math workbook at all, so I ordered another mid-year and had my son begin at the beginning. Friends, I had experience as an educator. I was a degreed teacher with early childhood and special education thrown into my elementary education degree. I am so happy I decided to bring my daughter home for kindergarten because the dynamics of our homeschool quickly changed.

With a boy and a girl both with diverse interests, I had my hands full. Read aloud books turned into a large stack of books, and teaching them to read was an adventure in itself. It wasn’t until my fifth child that I had a child that read early. And, if I received a phone call? I lost my entire class. The minute I answered that phone my kids were gone! I used my husband who is a great listener and his suggestion was to begin to observe my children. What were their interests? What did they do when they escaped our classroom because I was distracted? My kids like my husband gravitated to the outdoors. We lived on acreage and there was so much the children wanted to explore. Everything from fishing in the pond, to raking leaves in the backyard to make a path, they had plans that did not include my carefully crafted curriculum.

In addition, the children bonded with each other. Not the kid down the road, or the person sitting next to them in class. My kids only had each other and they made the best of their classroom situation with some encouragement and direction from me. They enjoyed homeschool outings and meeting other children and because homeschooling allowed my kids to develop unique personalities they easily made friends once introduced. We added camping to our family activities and other homeschool friends joined us on occasion. I do think that homeschooling allowed my children to be friends with each other. This continued on with all of my kids, my youngest two were roommates for one year when they attended the same college. Their friends were amazed they got along. How sad is that?

Another homeschool difference is that families form a special bond. There is more time to think about and plan family outings and grow closer. We prayed together, ate our meals together, traveled to ball games together, and so much more. We are still close to our adult children. My oldest daughter and her family come to our house most Sundays for a meal, or we go to her home. We receive calls often from our two children that live out of town and attend church together when they are home.

I believe that homeschooling puts us in a unique position to be available for our children. We are not trying to get them to complete their homework or help them with special projects in the evening hours. Instead, school work is accomplished during the day on our schedule and does not often spill over into the evening hours. My two oldest had a goal of completing their school work before noon. This didn’t always work for them, but they tried. Their goal, not mine.

Another unique possibility of homeschooling is the ability to spend time focusing on an area of interest. Are your children interested in music, sports, reading, or writing? Homeschoolers have gone on to win national competitions such as science fairs, 4-H fair competitions, spelling bees, and sports titles. My daughter participated in the Softball World Series two years in a row. She and my son both earned sports scholarships to different colleges. My daughter and I co-authored a three-book series, The Truth Seekers Mystery Series. These books were selected by God’s World Publishing as the Book of the Month and featured for many years in the Christian Books catalog.

What is your child’s interest and how can you encourage them? Again, the unique opportunities that homeschooled children have far surpasses their counterparts. Instead of fitting into a curriculum designed for an entire classroom of similar-aged and grade children, your homeschool can cater to the interests of your children. What are you reading for literature? My children read CS Lewis, the classics, and more. They had a specifically designed reading list for American Literature and World Literature in high school (and yes, some books were definitely not on our list).

Just think of the possibilities! The homeschool difference is something your children will benefit from for years to come.

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