“My kids are too social to be homeschooled!”
Oy. I hear this ALL the time when someone strikes up conversation with me about homeschooling. My question I often ask back to them after saying, “Well, homeschool isn’t for everyone for sure, but that being said. . . Do you send your kids to school to socialize or to learn and prepare for their future? It’s not meant to be a sarcastic question or a smart @$$ question; it’s a true question that everyone needs to think about before posing a question about socialization. There are so many kids in public school who aren’t social at all and extremely shy, only surviving day to day at school learning and what they need to know and doing what they need to do to get through school.
So many people have a “stererotypical” view of homeschooling, that we are all weird, awkward-long-blue-jean-skirt-wearing fruit loops unable to exist in normal society. LOL It’s almost laughable. We may all be weird, that may be true; because I mean who in their right mind would volunteer to teach their own children school everyday. No, only kidding! Everyone is weird; everyone is weird to someone and it’s just the way it’s always been and the way it will always be. If everyone were the same it would be awfully boring.
Homeschooling is actually the biggest blessing that has allowed us so many wonderful opportunities we wouldn’t have had if we weren’t homeschooling. We have met so many wonderful friends homeschooling, gotten to go on awesome behind the scenes field trips, been able to study all kinds of things that interest each child, take vacations when everyone else is in school, do hands-on real world projects (I teach my kids carpentry and many other DIY projects), my kids have been able to learn alongside kids of all different ages and been able to learn to assist each other, we have been able to study from living books instead of dry boring textbooks and the list goes on and on.
Our son has been able to live out one of his dreams of owning a lawn business. For math one year we did a simulation of him owning a sports store. It’s called Your Business Math: Sports Store from Charlotte Mason. He LOVED every minute of it. He now runs a very successful lawn business. He offers mowing, blowing, edging, weed eating, laying mulch/pine-straw, hedge trimming, leaf removal and small plantings. Right now he cares for 16 yards and does roughly 8-15 per week with an occasional extra job here and there. He manages his ‘money-in’ verses ‘money-out,’ bought every piece of his lawn equipment with his earnings, advertised, networked with other landscape companies that do work in our neighborhood and made some awesome contacts. He does yard estimates and provides his customers with several options for packages, payments and optional add-ons. Brayden has learned so much from this experience and has built a fantastic client base. He is a successful business man at 14 turning a profit and learning the real world of business, communication, and good work ethics. This would be nearly impossible with a public school schedule. With him being 14, I do play chauffeur driving him and his equipment to each job and back, but seeing him succeed and be so happy is 100% worth it. . . most days. So, with his first year of high school he is taking a break from playing soccer to get a feel for his time requirements this year. He will play basketball in the winter though I feel sure.
Update: Since writing this post Brayden has since bought a golf cart and added on a tow hitch with the help of our neighbor so that he can pull his dump trailer that he also purchased. So, he is now on his own with his lawn business. My not so little man cub is able to to leave “the den” to adventure out on his own to complete his jobs.
Our girls are just enjoying learning and being girls, hanging with their friends (Yes, they do socialize, quite a bit actually!). It’s become a joke that our house is the community center of our street because all of the kids are over at our house after school. LOLMy middle daughter plays soccer and is an avid reader devouring books by the week. She is also kind-of wanting to make homemade soaps and bath bombs of some kind and babysit. We shall see if she will continue her research to make her bath products. Right now, she’s enjoying being a kid too much for working which is fine with me!
Our youngest would love to babysit, but she is just not old enough yet. She wants to be a NICU nurse one day and right now is just playing it up everyday with her friends after school. She has taken hip-hop dance for 2 years but is burned out on that and is thinking of trying jazz, soccer or gymnastics.
Now, the downside of homeschooling: There honestly aren’t very many that I can think of. I will list the ones that come to mind! One would be just hard days with the kids, but everyone has hard days with their kids, so I’m not sure that can even count. The homeschooling hard days don’t even compare to those hard exhausting toddler and newborn days!! Another hard part of homeschooling is wondering if you’re doing enough, worried if they are learning what they should and keeping the records (which is just tedious but not so much hard). Many people make a mountain out of a mole hill when it comes to homeschooling. I mean I honestly don’t even remember anything I learned through school except I remember kindergarten vividly, 1st grade I remember learning to read with Buffy and Mack (Most kids today learn much earlier), and I remember 4th grade being ridiculously hard having to outline chapter after chapter of the most boring history book ever! So, it is my hope and prayer that my children remember learning, exploring, and remember and retain at least some of the things we are doing for school!