Pros and Cons of Homeschooling

Homeschooling has been a hotly debated subject among parents for many years now. So much so that homeschooling almost had a negative stigma attached to it. It is only in recent years that homeschooling has gained in popularity among parents. 

There are ups and downs to teaching your children at home and these must be taken into serious consideration before making that decision. It is best to weigh the pros and cons of homeschooling and how it will affect the family dynamic as opposed to public or private school and its affect on the family dynamic. 

Pros

Less scheduling conflicts

No worrying about being late for the school bus is at the top of this one. Parents do not have to worry about pulling kids out of school for doctor appointments or because they are sick. 

More family time

The fact is, a family trip to the museum or park can be incorporated into the home-school curriculum. These family trips can double as field trips. The parent(s) spend more quality time with their kids while teaching them at home. 

When parents are running off to work and kids running off to school, the family gets little time together. Homeschooling can bring back that family time in a big way as they share in the kid(s) learning and accomplishments.

Relaxed environment

The at home learning environment is more comfortable and relaxed. It is a fact that people learn well when not nervous or uncomfortable. Children can also retain more of what they learn when they are happy and relaxed. There are no strict time constraints for each subject matter which allows for more thorough discussions in an open environment.

What this means is that children are more apt to be enthusiastically involved with their studies and subject discussions when learning at home. There is no fear of ridicule (from other students) like can be present in public schools. Students that harass and ridicule other students are commonly referred to as bullies. 

No peer pressure

Home-schooled children do not have to worry about classmates laughing at them or trying to talk them into doing things they should not be doing like drugs, smoking or drinking alcohol. There is no worry about home-schooled children skipping classes either. Kids have a way of influencing each other in good and bad ways. Home-schooled children will not learn bad language from other kids, nor will they pick up bad habits like talking back or dressing inappropriately. 

Peer pressure is a huge factor in public schools and can lead to a lot of behavioral problems. Home-schooled children do not have to be concerned with such issues. 

Cons

Limited social interactions

This is actually one of the biggest downsides to homeschooling a child. Even if you take your child on outings to public parks or other places where they can interact with kids, they are still not benefiting from day to day contact with those kids. A large part of learning social conduct happens at school, starting at a very young age.

The concern is that home-schooled children are more socially awkward than children who attend public schools. This becomes a problem when the home-schooled child has to enter into the adult world with limited social skills. This problem can easily be addressed through frequent public outings, church attendance and play dates with other home-schooled children.

Limited sports participation

One of the more fun things about public school is the opportunity to join a sports team or the debate team or school band. There are many scholastic clubs kids can join to have fun. Home-schooled children have limited access to these activities.

One way around this is for home-school parents to form clubs and sports teams on their own. This is an option and can be accomplished with great success.

There is much to consider when talking about homeschooling your kid(s). On the other hand, there is much to consider when discussing a public or even private school setting. The most important thing is that the kid(s) get the best possible education in order to become productive members of society. If that can be accomplished at home, then go for it! If it is best accomplished in a public or private school, then so be it.

The point is that it is the education and development of the children that matters, not what is socially acceptable to a certain group of people. Some people argue loudly against, and even scoff at, homeschooling. In the grand scheme of things, parents should do what feels right to them and their children’s needs, not the opinions of other people.