Why I Homeschool
The nature of education is changing. Perhaps now more than ever, parents and young people are reconsidering their options for how to learn what they need to learn, and many are also reconsidering what is essential knowledge, as we move toward an uncertain future, where the nature of work and “essential work” is unstable.
The reasons I have chosen to homeschool are many, varied, and ever-changing, though some core reasons and benefits have stood the test of time. I quickly realized that homeschooling is really full-time parenting. As such, it is a heavy task. It is a commitment I reconsider every school year (sometimes every day!), so in recent years, I took the time to write out my homeschool mission statement. This helps me evaluate my priorities for my children as whole beings, and assess whether homeschooling is still the best way to meet those priorities. I share my mission statement below, and if you are thinking of homeschooling or already are, I encourage you to write one for your family too.
I choose to homeschool in the elementary years so that learning can progress in a natural environment and at a natural, individual pace, and the majority of my children's time can be spent in imaginative play, outdoors and free time. These years pass quickly and never return, and I want to be present and enjoy their youth, and to allow them to enjoy their childhood.
Middle school years:
I choose to homeschool through middle school to protect my children from the growing pressures of peers and allow them to grow into their identities in comfort and confidence.
High school years:
I choose to homeschool high school so that my children have time and freedom to pursue their interests, they can lead a healthy life with a manageable work load, low stress and adequate sleep, they can spend their last years at home with family, and they can continue to learn the truth about our world and connect knowledge to action.
These are my goals. If at any time the top priorities are not being met, or are being met at the expense of crucial skills and opportunities, we reevaluate and assess our options. So far, only one of my children has been to school, and that lasted for (a difficult but wonderful) two years (4th and 5th grade). I have a child in each level right now--elementary, middle and high school.