With your child learning from home you are probably wondering will this ruin my child’s future? There are many parents considering this topic and we want to share some insight into this important question.
Homeschooling will not ruin your child. On the contrary, homeschooling is a practical method to educate your child. And learning from home may also provide more benefits like focused learning, fewer distractions, and a strong family bond.
There is an increasing number of parents who homeschool their children all over the world. The evidence does not show that it ruins children. Actually the research shows that it can be beneficial for the parents and child. Traditional schools and what is considered institutional and compulsory schooling has only been around for the past century. Before this, in America, we were most likely going to send our children to a 1 room schoolhouse. This would be a mixture of ages and with just 1 teacher. Much of the education was also provided by the parents and family based on their practical needs. This did not ruin children.
A homeschooled child can have a rich and personalized experience through a customized education. All aspects of the curriculum, mix, time, and environment can be fine-tuned and adjusted. Parents can sense and notice when things need to be changed since they are involved in their daily routines. Social interactions can be scheduled with a wide range of variety. For example, classes can be at home, at a public or co-op school, community college, or with a group of other homeschooling parents. Family values and bonds are strengthened and you are free to add arts, music, or extracurricular sports. Homeschooling can also accommodate the special needs student for medical, developmental or they have been bullied.
Homeschooling is a Safe and Practical Method of Education
Many parents homeschool for a range of reasons and all are perfectly legal and practical. This is the beauty of educating your own child and ultimately your family. Because this is a new lifestyle not only for the child but for the family. Some families just need to homeschool because there are no other solutions to satisfy the conditions. For my family, it was simply that we don’t want our child to go through the school system here. Students need to go to school from early in the morning from 7 am until 4 pm. Then they will normally need to go to evening tutoring classes. In my opinion, that can ruin a child and their childhood.
We live abroad in Taiwan and most students must go to “cram schools” in the evening. If they didn’t, then there would be so many new things they would have to be able to learn by themselves. And they would have no way to catch up. They either need to skip over it or just go to the cram school until 8-9 pm every night. Some students can adapt to this type of rote learning. And some do very well and pass tests and exams with no problem. But some have a very poor experience. My 14-year-old son is still in the traditional school system here and is experiencing this cycle of tough times. But we have decided to homeschool our youngest son, starting at age 5 and a half.
Personalize Your Homeschool To Develop Your Child
The main attraction of homeschooling for our family is that it can be personalized. This is a unique part of the homeschool lifestyle. Because remember that this is going to be a change in the way you think about your daily life and routines. Now I look for every opportunity to have my children learn something as we move through our daily life. In the past, I would not think like this. I think that in the past I was just assuming that my kids would just learn everything at school and we just have fun at home. The teachers will teach and my children will just learn. Isn’t that what school is for?
Now I realize that I was wrong. And since my own wife is a teacher, she has also opened my eyes to reality. And that is that parents need to personalize their children’s education. We know our kids the best since we are around them so much. But wait, how will we be around them if they are in school all day? My wife shared with me that she is around kids all day and she sees their struggles. And she also senses that parents are assuming that all aspects of a child’s education are the sole responsibility of teachers. But in reality, how is that possible? How can a traditional school teacher dictate to each and every student what they need to study, how to study, and how to do their homework?
Traditional Schools Cannot Personalize But You Can
Traditional public or private schools can’t possibly provide personalized attention to each student. But as a responsible parent, we can homeschool our children and personalize it. When we take the time to be with our children and read and work with them on the schoolwork, we can see where they thrive and where they struggle. We can also sense immediately what is something they really want to learn more about. And we can put this down on our school plans. Or we can pull up more about the pyramids of Egypt and how were they built? My son just comes up with so many questions now and I pay attention and write them down. This will only help my child, it won’t ruin him!
We can use this in our daily or weekly plans. Some things I can give him answers to right away, or show him on my smartphone. Last week he wanted to know more about what made clouds move, and I said the winds. And then he asked are there clouds in outer space? I realized there were so many things he was interested in and not enough time to teach him! So I had to keep a running list of subjects we will touch on in the future. This realization was clear to me: what happens in school when he asks his teacher a question? I am going to assume nothing, because there is no time. Or he might not even ask, or they won’t hear it, or there is no time for questions!
Adjust As They Grow And They Thrive In Homeschool
One great thing you can do to make sure your child thrives in homeschooling is to adjust things as they grow. We’ve read and watched so much about homeschool to know that there is not 1 curriculum or path that works for everyone. Some issues will arise because of time constraints with your work schedule. You might not have enough time to focus on a subject for now. Other times may just pop up where you might adjust the schedule to fit something extra in. Your child wants to learn more about how to draw and you would too! If you want to see the 5 basic elements of drawing, just check this article I wrote about it here.
The opposite of ruin is growth and build and we like this word much better! Homeschooling does not ruin a child but it helps build them up where they need it. My daughter also had an experience with homeschooling during a semester she took off before she transferred to another high school. She felt her private school was stunting her growth and was too focused on a particular track of study. When something is not working you are free to change directions and find a better solution when you are homeschooling.
There are so many methods and flavors of the homeschool. I think it is also worth watching this video that explains what the 5 types of homeschooling look like. When I was starting out,I came across other similar videos which were very helpful.
Involved Parents Do Not Ruin Children
As we become more aware of the daily activities, behavior, and reaction of our children, we can also learn more about how and what they are thinking about! In the past, with my other kids, I would have little details about what they were learning and what was going on in their life at school. It was easy for them to withhold and deflect questions as teenagers usually do! But if we had the opportunity to see and witness more of their daily activities we could advise, adjust, and become more involved. And if we were involved we might be able to communicate better with our children. This is something I have learned since homeschooling.
Certainly, your children may still want to keep things to themselves. They might even feel burdened with us watching over them. But then we will need to adjust our style of parenting and be sensitive to our children and respect them. As we become more involved we know what we can talk about and it’s easier to connect with them. I can feel my children sense this and appreciate that we are becoming closer. This is when you know that it will make a difference in their lives. Being involved does not mean being nosy or prying. Just because you are homeschooling doesn’t mean that your children don’t deserve to be respected and given privacy. If your child feels that you have ruined their life, you may need to take some time to evaluate what’s the matter!
Social Opportunities Abound for Homeschooling Children
Studies show that homeschooling kids take part in more out of home activities than traditionally schooled kids. This leads us to how we as homeschoolers need to create opportunities for our children to socialize. We can plan the schedule and the curriculum, but we should not leave out the critical part of their kid’s life, their childhood! The good news is that homeschooling can leave us with much time to have fun and learn. We can get more done without distractions of a public school environment and then have time to do some sports or other valuable extracurricular activities. Homeschooling does not ruin your child because of a lack of socialization.
Just like you may have had a great time when you were a child riding your bike in the neighborhood, or climbing trees in the forest. You will need to provide this in their childhood as well. Your children need friends and opportunities to make friends. This is where the extracurricular sports, clubs, and community activities and classes come in. Some families also rely on church-sponsored activities and classes. Your neighborhood may also have cooperatives that you can join that have ways for your kids to meet regularly with other kids. If you don’t incorporate this into your routine, yes you may ruin their childhood.
Family Values & Bond Is Stronger Through Homeschooling
My wife was the main driver for our family to decide on homeschooling. It is also the reason I started this Homeschooling site for parents and dads. I want to become more involved in my child’s life as they grow up. And I believe I have things to share with them that are valuable. My values about family are important and I will not ruin my child or their childhood. The values of our family are setting the tone for us in our work and educational views. In the early days of my career, I would work overtime and would travel frequently to visit customers and work on projects in China, the United States, or Europe.
As I realized this was not conducive to a good family environment I changed my ways. For the past decade, I have made leaving on time from the office a priority. In Asia, this is not the norm and most employees will work overtime. They rarely leave before their bosses. And co-workers will ostracize you if you leave “early” like at 5:30 pm. My belief is working overtime and not being home for dinner is something that can ruin a family and children more than homeschooling could ever! OK, “ruin” is not a word I like in this situation, but you get the idea, that it is not natural to be away from the home so much.
And having a family meal is ideal and nowadays not the norm. But we strive to improve and I also try to work from home to make up for this. We are also making more time for other family activities like good old-fashioned camping! That’s right, we think it is still a great form of outdoor educational activity that can help make the teamwork and family bond stronger. You can learn from each other and the learning opportunities from setting up camp and planning are invaluable. You can read this article I wrote about homeschooling and camping to learn how to plan for the best experience for your family.
It may seem at times that homeschooling takes a huge amount of time. It does! But the payoffs are that you spend quality time together. You will grow together and develop not only yourself but your child as you both learn from this new lifestyle.
Add Arts & Music With Homeschooling
Since you control the schedule and you will have more time for it, we recommend adding music to the homeschool schedule. My wife is a music teacher and she always has highlighted the importance of music and the arts. And this will not ruin your children’s education either! It enhances their skills and appreciation for discipline, teamwork, and practice. Playing a team sport or playing in a school band has similar benefits for character development and social interaction. Your kids need to have these times to play and learn with their peers. They will bond and they will fight and they will ultimately learn how to get along with people from all walks of life. You will need to organize their schedule and allow them the time to enjoy their childhood.
Learning about music and playing an instrument are 2 different types of learning Your state or local requirements may require music appreciation to be a part of your curriculum. But we think it is more beneficial to learn about music and play an instrument. I always wish I had stuck to playing the drums or piano as a kid, but I was far too lazy. But my wife insists that learning an instrument can be just as beneficial as playing team or individual sports. The research certainly shows the benefits of music in your child’s life. See this very informative article about it and the key benefits.
musical education can broaden and enrich a child’s development in many ways. In particular, music has an intrinsic value as a great cultural invention, it has the ability to function as a vehicle for emotional expression and communicationReimer, 1999; Trevarthen & Malloch, 2002
You’ll Have More Time to Add Extracurricular Sports
My older son plays baseball on his local school team and they practice during the weekdays and weekends. Sometimes during the summer he doesn’t have many days off for anything else, not even a family vacation. But I can see that this has given my son a new character and improved his behavior and demeanor. It has helped him grow up and gain some much needed discipline. This may seem like commonsense, but I can really see the results. It’s everything about baseball that melds his personality and habits. His coach even insists that each player maintain a crew cut throughout the season with no exceptions.
My 16 year old daughter did track and field, the long jump and 400m relay. She won some medals and had some really tough training. But I can also see the same positive results not only in her school work, but her diligence in getting her work done without any nagging from me. She has learned how to manage her time and studies so she can focus more attention to her track and training. The incremental achievements in her long jump or 400m times took lots of training and sweat. And I know that she values hard work, training and the camaraderie while on the team. These are character building activities you cannot replace or find in the classroom. They can only be created on the track or on the field.
Overall we cannot believe that people would think homeschooling could ruin a child. The love and dedication it takes to plan and educate your child will have some challenges and hurdles. But we think they will be far outweighed by all of the benefits that homeschooling will provide you, your child and your family. Ultimately it is going to help you bring up an outstanding and bright new member of your community.