"Homeschooling provides our children plenty of time to complete academics and extra curricular activities leaving plenty of time to play."
Before I begin, here's my commitment to you- I will always be respectful of your choice. As much as I love homeschooling, I realize it isn't for everyone. Know that you will never be judged for making the best decision for your family. I just want to help you with whatever works best for you and yours while sharing what has worked best for me and mine.
Like many families, when our oldest was 3, we began looking at schools. We gathered information on early childhood programs and potential schools for children his age. When considering what was offered, I wasn’t drawn to any of the options for various reasons including meeting his educational needs, the disproportionate number of black boys in Special Ed, and wanting more time to instill our family values. While it didn't make my top three reasons, the lifestyle of traditional school wasn't appealing. I had a 5-month-old at the time and waking up the baby to bring the oldest to school, returning home for a few hours and waking up the baby again to pick up my oldest was a huge turn off. All of those reasons made me contemplate homeschooling. When I proposed the topic to Derrick, he was hesitant. His initial concerns included socialization, my commitment to the process and his example for our kids. After reading several books on homeschooling and praying for guidance, we had a few more conversations. I acknowledged and addressed Derrick’s concerns.
Fortunately, homeschooling changed over the past 30+ years, and parents no longer homeschooled in isolation. Quite the opposite, there are so many groups, co-ops, classes, and opportunities to interact with other kids during the day that it can be a struggle to make time for academics. I have many passions and I’m always drawn to the next new thing, so wondering about my commitment was valid. The compromise was that we would re-evaluate the decision on an annual basis to ensure that we were both satisfied with the progress that we were making. Finally, regarding his example, we discussed that school doesn’t necessarily change personalities. He was quiet when he started and finished school and I was quite the opposite. Neither of our school experiences changed who we were as individuals. When Derrick and I married and talked about our future, homeschooling was not on the radar. AT ALL! Fortunately, I was open to the idea-- it's been on of our best parental decisions.
"Homeschooling does not have to happen in your home with only your children. It can, but it does not have to. The flexibility of homeschooling is appealing to our family."