Spring is here and you might already be thinking about taking a break from school next year. This is a good time to start making the decision because you’ll have all summer to prepare and you can take some time while school is still in to find out what your child would be missing next year.
Start by deciding why you might take your child out of school. Even if it is only for one year, it’s a year that will require a complete lifestyle change, so it needs to be thought through carefully. The better the reason, the more likely it is to work.
Bad reasons to homeschool for a year:
Homeschooling is fashionable and everyone is doing it. (This is the worst reason of all.)
I’m tired of getting up early and getting the kids on the bus. (If that is too much work, educating them will be even more work.)
My best friend is doing it and we can do it together. (You probably won’t do it together all the time, and it will stop being a fun buddy project after a few weeks.)
My kids aren’t doing well in school and I don’t know what else to do. (This can work–it was my initial reason–but there has to be more.)
There was a school shooting and I’m scared. (When the fear wears off, so will the motivation.)
Good reasons to homeschool:
I love teaching–I’d love a year to teach my own kids.
My child needs a break and we need time together.
It will be a family adventure.
It’s a test run for long-term homeschooling.
I want to give my child a year to catch up, recover from a bad year, or celebrate his giftedness.
It should be noted that the good reasons only work if you are really motivated. Homeschooling is hard and you owe it to yourself and your child to give it all you have. I’m not trying to scare you off, but you do need to take this seriously. If you are really committed, if you love spending a lot of structured time with your child, and if you enjoy teaching or supervising school work…this can work.
You don’t have to be a great teacher. You just have to love helping your child learn. The rest will come with practice.
If you’re thinking about homeschooling for a year, what motivated you to consider such a drastic leap? Is there something holding you back from making the final decision?
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