Seven Reasons Why We Think Homeschooling Our Child is a Better Option
When we announced that we will homeschool Skye, we were quickly stereotyped as rightwing oddballs for trying to sway away from norms and traditions. For those who are quick to judge, we forgive you. We can’t blame you for thinking that way. In fact, we are not even sure of what we’re doing. We do not know if we really could homeschool our child. As early as now, we fear that all these hullabaloos might end up in academic failure and emotional nightmare.
Skye is half a year shy to 3 years old. We still have a long way to go. What we are venturing into is more on “homeschooling experiment”, and that we are not totally shutting our doors on the possibility of buying our daughter’s school uniform and driving her to class at the last moment. You see, we all are humans. We make mistakes that we will someday regret. But for rightwing oddballs like us, the greatest regret is not trying the things we feel like trying. And right now, at this very moment, our hearts and our minds are set into this “homeschooling” thing. We think and feel that we can do it; thus, we can do it!
Last week, we timidly attended a workshop/seminar for first-time homeschoolers. We expected attendees to be stay-at-home mothers in long skirts, but to our surprise, in attendance were doctors, IT experts, businessmen, animators, teachers, and other professionals! Listening to their reasons convinced us more that we are heading the right track. If this group of amazing individuals are planning to homeschool their children, then we think we must, too. Our speaker Donna, is a neurosurgeon by profession and a homeschooler by passion. She homeschools her four children, FOUR CHILDREN!
Me and JimBry were brought up in two different institutions. We are not teachers by training, and we never dreamt we would become homeschoolers. However, since we both want our daughter (future kids) to be properly integrated and appropriately socialized, we are leaning to this unconventional journey of learning.
So we can get the ball rolling, we had a somber talk the other night and we came up with the list of reasons why we think we are doing the right choice by homeschooling Skye.
1.) We want Skye to sleep more and worry less!
Sounds fun, yeah? Because, come on, she’s just a child. Sleep is as important as nutrition and exercise. Children need it to ensure proper body and mind development. When they are rested well, they learn better (and they have fewer meltdowns).
We do not want to wake up our darling from deep slumber to attend school if there is an option for her to learn in her most-prepared time. Homeschooled students get more sleep than those who attend regular schools. When they sleep well, (most likely) they wake up happy, and they are more prepared to learn. We do not want the idea of setting up an alarm every morning for our little girl just so she can meet the bus schedule. Also, waking up so early to prepare sack lunches is not something we fancy as her parents. We want to start our mornings with snuggle and plan the day together. JimBry and Me had enough of the hurry-up-and-fix-yourself-quick-or-you-will-be-late-for-school morning greetings. We want Skye to have something different. Something nice. Something full of love.
For now, we want Skye to sleep as long as she wants. When she gets old, she’ll have her sleepless nights, she will deal with lots of issues that will deprive her to rest. Let the future take care of that. Every child deserves a goodnight sleep.
2.) We do not like what most local schools have to offer and we cannot afford progressive schools.
If we will have to send Skye to school, we want a progressive school because we want a balanced child. However, tuition fees in progressive schools start at Php 60,000 – for preschool level. The one we like costs more than Php 120,000! Outrageous! You see? Education is expensive, and quality education is overpriced. Gritting our teeth, we are walking away from that option.
Holistic development cannot be found in traditional schools. Most of them offer customary kind of learning by using a uniform curriculum for a batch of students. They do not consider what type of learner a particular child is. Students are pigeon-holed and being tracked as gifted, average, or someone with special needs. The target of local education is everyone for everything. No specifics. The “individual capacity” to learn is being neglected. Through homeschooling, we can enrich Skye’s strengths and supplement her weaknesses using a child-led approach.
3.) We are selfish parents.
Our family values relationships more than any awards or test scores. We want Skye with us in the heyday of her youth. We want to witness all her eureka moments. We want to be there sitting at the front seats admiring her high spirits and passion for adventure that will enable her to transcend every hurdle that she will be facing in the future. We want to witness the whole process of how she finishes a project and not after it has already been graded by someone else. We want to be able to work on our child’s behavior and work ethic by being present through her development years. We want that the values we teach her at home will be put to test in the real world with our personal guidance.
Don’t you dread the time when your jobs as parents will be despoiled by just pushing your children through homework, extracurricular activities, and exams? We do. If we notice children now, the longer they stay in school, the farther they drift away from their family. We do not want Skye away from us during her best and worst moments that she will learn to lean on other’s shoulder. We do not want to share her when she is well-rested and happy and very much ready to play or learn. We do not want to send her to school jumping in high energy only to get her back when she’s drained, grumpy, and hungry. We want to have plenty of time together, every single day, during her formative years, because someday she will eventually discover other relationships and create new bonds and loyalties to a new community. We want to take advantage of the time that we can have her, while we have her – now.
4.) We want Skye to learn at her own pace.
No two individuals are the same. Cliché! Then why would you use one curriculum to teach several children all at the same time? Kid’s education must move depending on the child’s requirement on the particular subject area. How many kids in school actually pursue their unique interests? If doodling is prohibited, because it is not part of the subject matter, how will your little artist nurture and improve his God-given gift? Do teachers listen (intently) to their students when they start talking about their made-up stories of friendly ghosts, purple dinosaurs, and tea party with Jesus Christ? How will your darling writer polish her storytelling gift if her stories will just be taken for granted? Education must be the wind in their sails for them to float. Education must be everything but an anchor of boring textbooks and endless assignments.
With homeschooling, we will know when Skye is ready to learn, what she needs to learn, and how she can learn effectively. Since we know her more than anyone else, we can design and adjust the curriculum to suit her learning styles and meet her needs.
5.) We want Skye to see learning as a fun activity.
How many hours do children spend in school, listening to their teachers? When they get home, how many hours do they spend in doing their assignments? How many hours do they have to talk and play with their siblings and parents before finally retiring to bed? Have you seen a grade schooler cry because he’s tired memorizing his notes, or because he doesn’t want to wake up at 5AM for his 6AM class?
Learning in homeschooling is not contained within the corners of the classroom. We can learn fraction by baking cookies, history by visiting museums, culture and tradition by travelling, and a lot more! We can make use of fun supplementing materials such as YouTube, interactive online educational sites, and others. In homeschooling, children are not “forced” to listen and learn. They listen and learn when they want, how they want.
Learning is anything but distress. It must be something that children look forward to.
6.) We want to be the masters of our own schedule.
Since homeschooling provides a great deal of flexibility, we can do family activities freely. We can schedule visits, travels, doctor’s appointments, vacations, etc. in our preferred time. We can stay away from busy weekends when crowd is everywhere, we can take advantage of promo flights which usually fall on weekdays, and we can manage to avoid expensive peak season rates.
We make our learning schedule. We can start the lecture whenever Skye is ready, and we can take recess anytime without having to worry about over breaks.
7.) We can teach Skye essential life skills.
Practical life skills is very important to us. With approximately twenty tropical cyclones entering the Philippine Area of Responsibility yearly, we want Skye to be equipped with proper knowledge and skills for survival. Aside from cooking, budgeting, home maintenance, and time management, which we plan to integrate in our homeschool curriculum, we also want her to learn living and survival – something that is not being taught in regular schools.
There you go. You see, we have good and valid reasons, right? Like you, we also want the best for our child. Our option may differ from your choice, but that doesn’t make us less of a parent. You might enjoy chocolate, and we prefer vanilla. This homeschooling may or may not work, we have yet to see the result/s for ourselves. We will let you know if we go astray.
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