Thursday, January 24, 2013

Benefits Of Homeschooling Series - Part 1 - Freedom

We are relatively new to the home education or homeschooling world. This series on why we LOVE homeschooling is inspired by all the questions I get asked about why we homeschool When people ask I usually reply with a different answer depending on what benefit of homeschooling I am enjoying most at that time. I also normally choose an answer that the person asking will understand or relate to in some way.

I LOVE homeschooling!

In fact, I sometimes feel I have discovered some sort of amazing secret that most people don't know about......and it is so liberating! 

 Homeschooling = Freedom from the rush of daily life

Homeschooling affords us freedom from the rush of daily life. Although our days are (mostly) structured and sometimes busy we don't feel tied down. We are doing life on our own terms. I hate to admit it as some of my friends honestly believe I started homeschooling for this reason but I LOVE not doing the school run! I love that when I'm up all night with the baby that I can sleep in an extra half an hour. I love that when the weather is warm (like it is today) that I can take them to the beach. I LOVE that my kids get to be free from the pressures of modern life (this includes mainstream school) just that little bit longer.

Recently we traveled with my husband (and his work) and went to Melbourne for the week. We spent the week visiting friends, at different museums, in the hotel pool and reading in our room. We didn't do any 'sit down' work but I have no doubt that they learnt heaps! Homeschooling means freedom.

Homeschooling = Freedom from comparisons and expectations

My boys are very bright. In fact, they are intellectually gifted. I only share this so you understand that this makes our homeschooling experience a little unique. School was a challenging environment partly because my boys were aware they were 'different' and in mainstream school no-one wants to be different. They were very aware of parents and teachers making comparisons and then placing unrealistic expectations upon them because of their giftedness e.g just because you are a five year old that can do third grade maths it doesn't mean that emotionally or even socially you are also a nine year old.

Homeschooling means that whether our children are slightly behind or above the 'average' they can be set free from comparisons and expectations and work at their own pace.

Homeschooling = Freedom for kids to be themselves

When we first began considering homechooling I found this article that literally, made me cry. It was all about why homeschooled kids are so annoying. It inspired me.

"When “annoying” kids like this go to a traditional school, they’re ridiculed.  They have a hard, or even impossible, time finding their niche.  They must either hide their true personality and inclinations in order to be accepted or they’re pushed to the fringes and made to feel abnormal.  Not good enough.  Made to feel less likable than those who keep their ideas and opinions to themselves or fail to form any to begin with.  Made to feel that convictions and fascinations are stupid and that pop culture is the only culture....

Homeschooled kids are not ridiculed into being someone that God didn't intend them to be..."

- Dwija Borobia

Mainstream school is a world in itself and often times, not a very nice one. Children learn from a very young age that it is important to deny themselves to 'go with the flow'. It is no wonder that it is often not until early adulthood that children begin to discover themselves and who they are. I believe children who are homeschooled 'know' and 'discover' themselves much earlier because they are free to be who they are. I also believe homeschooled children generally, have a stronger sense of self-worth than other children.

Homeschooling = Freedom to follow passions and interests

DS7 is an excellent little basketball player. At the age of 5, he woke up and said he wanted to be a professional basketball player and then spent the entire day (no exaggeration) outside bouncing a ball and shooting hoops. Now, he is old enough to join a team and he continues to practice daily on his own accord. Clearly, he loves it. Homeschooling means he can spend more time doing what he loves and also means he has more time to devote to an area that he is both interested and gifted in.

Ah, freedom. It's like a breath of fresh air.  

What other 'freedoms' have you discovered through homeschooling?

1 comment:

  1. Hi Tara,

    You're doing a fantastic job with the kids. I have to say homeschooling has never looked so good since moving to Austria. The school system here is so rigid! The kids learn everything by rote. There is no playtime - only a 15 minute 'Pause' to eat a snack. And a weekly spelling list of 16 new words, then a spelling test on Friday. Such pressure for a 6 year old! It makes the Australian system look incredible!

    But, as an only child living in a foreign country, we are persevering with it in order for him to socialise with German speaking children and to learn German from native speakers. For how long though I do not know!

    Substituting his learning however with loads of learning at home and out using lots of homeschooling principles. He has fun and doesn't realise he's learning.

    Can't wait to see the learning paths your little ones carve out for themselves!


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