Monday, November 07, 2005

Starting to Homeschool

I've heard it said that 50% of families who start to homeschool don't make it through the first year.

I've personally had quite a few friends get excited about homeschooling, only to give up after a few weeks. In many ways, homeschooling is like planting seeds. It takes a season to see the fruits of your labor. It usually doesn't produce instant results. Problems that developed as a result of years of public education are not going to magically disappear in a few weeks at home. Parents fail to take into consideration that when your child spends the majority of his waking hours away from home, it is easier to pretend everything is all right. I mean, if you don't see a problem behavior often (because you don't spend that much time with your kid), the difficulties seem smaller. Also, the problem becomes someone else's responsibility. It is much easier emotionally when it is the school’s responsibility to fix that kid.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told, “My kids just won’t listen to me.” So, you think it is any different for homeschoolers? I’ve had to go toe-to-toe with each of my kids to get them to listen to me. My advice to parents is that you want to work out this relationship now while they are young. Later, you don’t want to go up against a teenage who has no respect for you.

You’ve got to be willing to go through at certain amount of discomfort when you start homeschooling. Kids don’t necessarily like what is good for them. Children like to test you. And remember, everyone has a bad day sometimes.



Unknown said...

Love this post! It's so realistic...
I began homeschooling with our four children this year and it has been, to say the least, very challenging at times. It has been fun as well :)
However, I am thankful for some of the more experienced mothers that gave me a fair 'warning' of what to expect (especially when you pull your kids from a school setting).

In any event, we've had an adventure so far. We are going to finish our year off & hopefully will continue into the future :)
Rachael D

Henry Cate said...

I'm glad you found the post helpful.

I just checked out your blog. It looks like you are still going strong on homeschooling!