Have you ever stopped to think about ALL of the perks of homeschooling? A conversation with a friend today sparked some thoughts about how different our family life would be if we didn’t homeschool. As we talked around the kitchen table, my friend recalled to me how different life was in their family before she was able to be a stay-at-home, homeschool mom. After she left, my oldest daughter asked me if I wanted to do an art project with her. While we were working on the project, sitting at the very same kitchen table, I began to recall the conversation from earlier in the day. I started to think of all the things I would have missed out on if we had not decided to homeschool.
I thought, would we be sitting here spending time tearing and gluing paper together if she were in public school? I actually asked her about it. She said, “Probably not. I’d probably have to be doing homework right now.” I said, “You’re probably right.”
Let’s take a moment and think together, as homeschool moms, or maybe potential homeschool moms: what are the perks we get everyday just because we homeschool?
The first one, and most important one, is being able to teach our children our number one goal in life: to serve God and go to Heaven. As homeschool moms, we have the very unique perk of being able to fulfill Deuteronomy 6:7 in a way no other parent has, because we are truly with our children as they rise up, as they sit, as they walk by the way, and as they lie down. We GET to talk to them about God everyday and in every moment. What an awesome blessing!
“You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.” -Deuteronomy 6:7 (NKJV)
The second perk would definitely be quality time. Have you ever stopped to consider the amount of time children who are in school are away from home? Let’s just take an average school day: kids get up around 6:30, and their time in the morning is spent rushing to get out the door on time. They get up, get dressed, eat breakfast and are out the door by 7:15. Then, they spend the next 7-8 hours at school, leaving approximately 6-8 hours at home before bed. If both parents work until 5, that leaves 3-4 hours of time with their kids before bed. This time, more than likely, is spent helping with homework, getting dinner, and getting ready for bed. A normal school day for us looks like this: the girls wake up on their own, get up, study their Bible, get breakfast, and work on their math. While they do that, I do my Bible study, get dressed, and eat breakfast. We then do a Bible lesson, read, and do other school work together. This time that is spent studying God’s word, reading, and learning with my girls is some of my most treasured time.
Third, we get to see and be a part of those “light bulb” moments. Few feelings compare to the feeling of accomplishment. When your child finally gets something they have been struggling with, you can both relish in this moment of success. For me, the most memorable of these moments is when they were learning to read. I don’t know of any other educational moment I have felt more pleased with, because I knew it would benefit them in incredible ways. Reading is the gateway for every other subject. Being a part of that is a perk I would never trade.
I think fourth on my list would be the flexibility of homeschooling— tons and tons of flexibility. Some of this flexibility I had to learn throughout the years, but it is definitely something I don’t think I could ever trade. We have flexibility in what to teach, when to teach it, and where to teach it (on the couch, at a desk, in the kitchen, in the bedroom, at the park, in a hotel room while on a business trip with dad, etc.). We can shift schedules to have a play date, or deal with an unexpected life event more easily. We can go on vacation in the off season. I am very thankful for this freedom!
A fifth perk to homeschooling is being able to allow our children to follow their own interests. We could call it “special interest led learning”, or digging deep into whatever sparks their curiosity. My daughter just spent nearly a whole day researching what dog would be best for our family. She then nearly convinced her dad and me to buy said dog. Unfortunately for her, neither one of us was convinced at the same time. The point is, however, that homeschooling allows us to generate opportunities for whatever our children are interested in so that they can learn and expound more upon that subject. Maybe instead of continuing with the history curriculum, your child gets intrigued during the second lesson and wants to learn more about George Washington. We can let them go learn all they can about him. Or maybe, they take a special interest in art, music, or robotics, and we can find them special classes or mentors to help them pursue their curiosity.
I am certain that the list of perks are endless. These are simply my top five. Whether you are a homeschool veteran making your list of perks in your head as you read, a mom on the fence about homeschooling, or somewhere in between, I hope you will be reminded of all the positive reasons there are to homeschool. I am so thankful for the opportunity to teach our children at home, and I would never want to know any other life than the life of a homeschool mom.
Blessed be the Lord, Who daily loads us with benefits, The God of our salvation! Selah
(Psalm 68:19, NKJV)