Homeschooling is something that most parents do not typically consider, in part because of how solid the American public school system is as a whole. However, there are certainly cases in which homeschooling may make more sense for a family, not just for the child’s benefit, but for the parent’s benefit as well. Both of my sons were homeschooled by me, and I am so happy that my husband and I made that decision all those years ago. I wanted to share some of the reasoning behind why we made that decision all those years ago, including downsides that we had to consider as well – in other words, the pros and cons of homeschooling!
So many parents want their kids to go to a school in which the student to teacher ratio is as low as possible. Well, with homeschooling, you get just about the best ratio possible by dedicating you as the teacher to just your one child (or two in my case). Because you are teaching just your children, you can put in all your efforts to teaching your child effectively, which is a challenge at many public schools.
In addition, homeschooling your children allows you to schedule things with a bit more convenience. Your child can not only learn at his or her own pace, but he or she can also ask you about assignments and other school-related topics at any point in time since you are both living together. This flexibility in scheduling also works out very nicely for you and the family as a whole, as you have the ability to accommodate family events and other activities by planning school schedules around them.
While homeschooling can be really great in a lot of respects, there are clear downsides. The biggest one is most likely going to be for you as the parent as it necessitates you doing this as a full-time job, in lieu of any other real job that actually pays you money. If your spouse has a job already, then this downside can definitely be mitigated, especially if you were not going to work either way, but if you did have a paying job, or were planning on it, then it will definitely put some financial strain on you and your family, even if your spouse makes their own money.
When it comes to your child though, another downside which can reasonably be just as significant, is the fact that homeschooling limits them from meaningful social interactions with kids their own age. They will not make friends through school like most students will, and that could affect their upbringing significantly. However, this can also be mitigated by enrolling your child in various extracurricular activities outside of school that do allow them to interact with kids their own age.
Homeschooling definitely isn’t for everyone, both in terms of the child as well as the parents and the family as a whole. There are many things to consider when it comes to homeschooling your child and so hopefully my musings have helped clarify some of the most important points. As one final parting thought: even if you are likely not to have your child homeschooled, the least you can do is consider it, because it very well may be what’s best for them as well as your entire family!