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A Better Way, Homeschooling

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“No, I’m not going to do it. You can’t convince me, there is no way I’m going to put her through that. There is no way I am going to home school my daughter,” says Regina Lowenstein, 34. “I want my daughter to have every opportunity and Homeschoolers have no future.” For many people, homeschooling is seen as bad thing, depriving children of experiences and leaving them without a diploma. For several reasons, many people believe that home schooling is bad for their children. They say that it prevents their kids form socialization, their children don’t do as well in school, and that home schooling is too time consuming and costly, yet that is far from true. In truth, homeschooling is a great opportunity for your children and can actuality improve your child’s learning abilities. First of all, one of the main reasons parents say no to homeschooling is time. Most parents don’t have the time to be sitting at home all day and teaching their kids. For them, public schooling is much more convenient, since children can be in school when parents are at work.

Yes, home schooling can be time consuming at first, but that is only as you are getting used to the switch. In truth the younger your kids are, the more time you spend with them, so why not spend that time helping them learn and having fun. Many homeschooling programs are a lot of fun for both the parent and the child, involving many fun and enjoyable activities, like art or playing games, and the benefit of homeschooling is that it can be done at any time during the day and at any place. School work can be done out side, at the kitchen table, the office, in the car, on a boat, or on a plane. After a coupe of weeks, your child will be able to do school with out you helping them every step of the way, you don’t even have to be home and they can still get their school work done in a fun and safe environment. Home schooling is also very flexible, allowing you to take a vacation day any time and any day of the week. Say you got the day off of work and you want a family day, no problem! You can easily take a vacation day without your child missing any school work or home work assignment.

It’s as easy as saying “No school today!” In addition to this, homeschooling actuality improves your child’s learning abilities. In 1997, a study called “Strengths of Their Own: Homeschoolers Across America” showed that home schooled children average in the 85th percentile, while the public school students averaged in the 50th percentile. In short, this test showed that homeschoolers, on the average, out-performed their counterparts in the public schools by 30 to 37 percentile points in all subjects. Similar results were seen in 1990, when the National Home Education Research Institute issued a report entitled “A Nationwide Study of Home Education: Family Characteristics, Legal Matters, and Student Achievement.” This study found that the average scores of the home school students were above the 80th percentile in all categories were as public school students remained in the 60th and 70th percentile. This shows that home school students on average score much higher then public school students. Being home schooled, students have fewer distractions, like bulling and peer pressure, and can focus on what really matters, family and school.

With this additional time, many students end up being a year or more above their grade level and can often skip a grade or two in school. This was proved in 1986, when researcher Lauri Scogin conducted a survey called “Home Schooling: An Idea Whose Time Has Returned,” which surveyed 591 homeschooled children. Scogin discovered that 72.61% of the homeschooled children scored one year or more above their grade level in reading, where as 49.79% scored one year or more above their grade level in math. Another reason many parents don’t home school their children is because of socialization. For many children, socialization is extremely difficult, and it is for this reason, many parents don’t want to take them out of the day to day socialization opportunities of public school. However, homeschooling doesn’t decrease a child’s socialization, but it actually provides children with the same, if not more, opportunities. Your kids can still hang out with other kids, both home schooled and public schooled, in every signal way that traditional school kids do.

Children can still enter sports, or go to the park for PE and play sports with other home schooled kids at any time in the day. Also, many home school programs offer monthly socialization opportunities, allowing home school families to connect with other home school families in the area or across the state; perfect for finding your child a pen pall or a close by friend. No only that, but parents are welcome, giving you a chance to meet experienced home school parents and make a few friends yourself. Also, home schooling helps build family bonds, and bring you and your children much closer together. You see, relationships are the most important thing in a family. When children are away from home six-to-eight hours a day, family relationships weaken. Children begin to focus on trends, looks, peer pressure, crushes and fitting in, and they begin to loss sight of what is really important, family. Homeschoolers, on the other hand, learn to truly appreciate the time they spend with family and they learn to treasure every moment. They don’t care what people think, and through out all their life they will never be to cool for Mom and Dad. Homeschoolers don’t care about fitting in, but rather, they learn to value their differences, what sets them a part form everything else, and they learn to understand that they are special, one of a kind.

As a final note, one of the main reasons parents don’t home school is cost. Most public school parents say that it cost too much to pay for home school books and materials, or for a computer based school program and it’s much cheaper to send kids to public school. That’s true, it does cost a lot to pay for books or school software, but it does not cost nearly as much as it does to send your children to public school. According to the 1997 “Strengths of Their Own: Homeschoolers Across America” study, Dr. Ray found the average cost per home school student is $546 while the average cost per public school student is $5,325. In addition to this, parents can actually spend less then $546 dollars for their child’s home school education and still provide them with the best education possible. There are many types of software and computer games that can replace text books, and they can be found for a cheep price and in good condition at stores like Unique as well as on the web. There are also many online schools with little to no cost to you for a great education.

There are also free online public schools, like K-12, that have real teachers and every opportunity of both a public school and a home school. Homeschooling is not only cheaper, but also much better for your child. No matter what reason you are skeptical about homeschooling, the truth is that it is much better for your child then public school. Home school provides every opportunity that a public school does, but you are in charge of your child’s education. As Neil Postman said “Children are the living messages we send to a time we will not see.” So why not give your child the best that can be offered. After all, a loving and caring family is what really matters and you can be there to guide your child every step of the way, the right way. Your kid’s childhood is in your hands, why shouldn’t you be the one to mold it. “I have seven children and have been homeschooling for about 14 years. Eshantee and Nia, my two eldest, began their school career in preschool and first grade at a private Christian academy. Though my family enjoyed an excellent experience at the Christian academy they attended, I was very impressed with how open and earnest my daughters were to learn everything I wanted to teach them.

During their first summer vacation, they wanted to know all sorts of things, like how to make biscuits, what made the sky blue but the clouds white, why were kids mean to some children but nice to others, and the list goes on and on. “It dawned on me just how precious the time we had together truly was. In just a few short weeks, we would no longer be able to spend our days learning about the world around us together. I wanted more of this very valuable time and determined I did not want to share the fleeting years of my children’s youth with anyone else. “With only so many waking hours in a day, why should I give away my children’s best moments to someone else? That’s why we made the decision to home school. My family and I have been extremely happy with our decision. We have all learned so much about one another and the world around us. It is awesome to watch a child develop into the wonderful adult they will one day become.”

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