Although, the concept of homeschooling has always been there, it started gaining popularity only recently. It is a convenient education option for families who always have to move, due to the professional commitments of the bread winner of the family. Such, frequent transfers often disrupt the education of children, hence, homeschooling is best suited for them. Besides this, there are several other advantages of homeschooling.
Pros and Cons of Homeschooling
Although, homeschooling is a great option, it may not be for everyone. Homeschooling and traditional schooling have unique advantages of their own. The decision of homeschooling or traditional schooling should be made only after considering several factors. Given below is a list of pros and cons of being homeschooled.
This is the biggest advantage of homeschooling over traditional schooling. Many small children find it difficult to get up early in the morning and follow the scheduled classes. This often results in lack of attention and eventually dropping of grades. On the other hand, homeschooling gives the freedom to both children and parents, since they can plan the classes as per their will, without any hectic schedule. This also relieves the parents of stress, as they no longer have to prepare their kids to catch early morning bus or make them do their homework.
The biggest flaw of traditional schooling is that it forces the kids, who come from different backgrounds and interests, to learn the same things and at the same pace. However, homeschooling grants the academic freedom by letting your child learn whatever interests him and that too when you think is the right time for him.
No Peer Pressure
Teenagers are often under the constant pressure of looking good and ‘fitting in’ the group. There is always a fear of being ridiculed, if they are not dressed as per the ‘norms’ or seen with ‘wrong’ people. Also, bullying at high school can have long-lasting effects on the psyche of teenagers. Homeschooling eliminates this possibility as your kids can dress according to their will and be what they truly want to be. Moreover, you have the freedom of deciding who your child mingles with.
Homeschooled children often grow up to become independent and self-directed individuals. They often have better communication skills and can socialize with people of all age groups. This is because traditional schooling often limits the interaction of your child to the other kids of his age only. While homeschooled kids get an opportunity to mingle with people from all walks of life, through the medium of community activities or homeschool groups.
More Family Time
Since, the life of kids no longer revolves around schools, exams and vacation, the family can spend time together as and when they want. They can take vacations in off seasons or can visit parks or museums on week days. As parents get to spend more time with their kids, they can nurture good values in children, which can prevent them from treading on wrong path in future.
For the convenience of homeschooling, one of the parents (usually the mother) has to forgo a full-time employment. This can put a financial pressure on the family. Moreover, the family has to spend an additional cost on educational aids, which do not come cheap. This problem can be solved to some extent by increasing the reliance on Internet and libraries.
Isolation of the Parent
Since, parents have to devote most of their time for homeschooling, they tend to completely cut themselves off from other adults. This lack of active interaction with other adults may lead to stress and other emotional problems in parents. However, this problem can be overcome by strictly taking time out for recreation or meeting friends.
Grown up kids often feel the necessity of joining a competitive sports team. The excitement of selection and then finally playing for the school team is completely missing in homeschooling. Community sports activities can be good for small kids, but as they lack a competitive spirit, teenagers may not find them interesting. One solution to this problem is to form a team of homeschooling kids or to inquire if the education laws in your state let the homeschooling kids play in the school team. This also holds true for other hobby classes, which are easily accessible at school.
Homeschooling is still seen as an oddity and homeschooled children may find it difficult to mingle with other school children. In extreme cases, parents may get criticized for thinking out of the box and taking such a drastic measure. However, if you are confident about your decision, there is no need to give in to any criticism or ridicule. Teach the same to your kids as well.
You must have realized while going through these home education pros and cons, that though there are some issues with homeschooling, you can always resolve them. The decision of homeschooling your children can be a tough one and you will have to consider all the homeschooling pros and cons, pertaining to your individual situation.