Why people homeschool- Some reasons for homeschooling

by Mary Ann on May 11, 2011

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Many fathers are becoming more involved in the education of their children

Why do people home school? It is interesting that the reason people home school has changed so much and that the number of families who are choosing to homeschool has grown so dramatically. Home schooling has grown from 850,000 children in 1999 to more than 1.1 million today, according to the U.S. Education Dept. That is amazing and in my mind wonderful.

In the early years religion was the main reason many parents opted to home school. As a child of the 60’s I can recall that being a hippie was also a reason for homeschooling, getting off the grid so to speak. : )

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There are many methodologies for homeschooling

Many non-homeschoolers still think that is the case, however the homeschool landscape is changing dramatically. The number one motivation today, research shows, is the concern about traditional school environments including negative peer pressure, safety, and drugs. Another top motivator is that schools are not adapting with the times.

I was recently reading an article about many of these changes in the way people think about education and their families.

There is a growing trend among the educated elite that says, “I can do a better job of preparing my child for life than the school system, which presents information for an outdated economy.” These parents want their children actively learning, hands on, so to speak. Their goal in home educating their children is so that they will have an edge in the global economy. In this circle homeschooling is attaining a reputation as a secret weapon for Ivy League admission.

Many parents just want a bigger part in their children’s lives. When a child walks out of the house between 7:30 and 8:30 every day

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Allan and Gracie Donaghey making a tornado in a bottle

and comes home between 3 and 5 in the afternoon it cuts into family time in a major way. Parents aren’t as intimidated these days in their own ability to teach their children and see it as a way of pulling their families back together.

The change in the traditional work landscape from “a place where one works” to being able to work from home or any number of locations has moved the cause of homeschooling. Homeschooling frees families from the need to live in one place for the majority of the year. It allows families the freedom to move from place to place as work and inclination lead them. The internet has made schooling available to children in fairly traditional formats, as well as nontraditional formats, no matter where they live.

Another reason more parents are feeling free to enter the world of homeschooling with their children is that it is gaining  acceptability. The fact that homeschoolers have long swept the national spelling bees and geography contests has helped change the perception of homeschool. For goodness sake there is even a reality show about a home school student named Scott who got an almost perfect SAT score. These things cannot help but de-stigmatize the idea of homeschooling.

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Families are finding it enjoyable to study and be together 

Most of the parents that I work with homeschool for many of these same reasons and others. They want their children to have strong core values. They want them to see the world and its history as a whole, not in fragmented parts. They want to teach  their children to think and not just memorize. They want them to love learning. Many of these parents feel a great need to link education to the maintenance of freedom and healthy progression of society. They want their children to learn to serve and give back.

No matter what the reasons are that parents have for choosing to homeschool their children it is a choice that still takes some courage to make. Eunjee Viscardi who is a neuroscientist and now a homeschooling mom said,  “It was nerve-racking because we’re all brainwashed to believe that our children have to be in school.”

Lynne Miles-Morillo, a mother of three, said that what surprised her was how lovely it was for the family to create its own educational rituals.

It is safe to say that homeschooling is here to stay.

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It is lovely for a family to create their own educational rituals.

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