When I tell most people that I was homeschooled until my freshman year of high school, they are shocked. I often get responses like...
"Were you prepared enough academically for high school?"
“But you’re not antisocial or awkward. I thought that’s what homeschoolers were like?”
“How did you make friends?”
After dealing with these types of questions for most of my life I have my quick answers down to these questions or concerns.
But after that, I always go on to explain the wonderful impact that being homeschooled has had on me and how I would never have done my schooling up to this point any other way.
Now you should not expect to homeschool your kids and have them turn out like the majority of other “nice” but boring people without dreams and ambitions that come out of public school.
But you also don’t need to worry about them becoming some shut-in who is afraid to make eye contact with anyone and wants to become a pee chipper in Antarctica instead of trying to make the world a better place.
The fantastic benefit of homeschooling that I reaped was the freedom to think of any activity/sport/subject/language/hobby that I was interested in and the agency to actually do it.
Whether that was becoming a master architect of mud forts and treehouses at age 6, archery, playing soccer, exploring the nearby forests, learning Spanish, woodworking, being allowed to stay out on a weeknight in order to play competitive card games, or rigging elaborate booby traps in my room.
Unless something was incredibly expensive I never felt like there was anything that I couldn’t do or try out as a kid. I think that feeling is incredibly important to foster in young children because it gives them a much more powerful internal locus of control over their life which stays with them forever.
Despite eventually losing interest in all of those activities I previously mentioned, had I not had the freedom to try them out, I wouldn’t have discovered my more serious passions which are fashion design and graphic design. Nor would I be as self-assured and empowered to turn those passions into my full-time career and business.
I will be forever thankful that my mom made the decision to homeschool my sister and I because without that environment growing up it is very likely that I would be pursuing something uninteresting, well paying, and spiritually draining.
Although this is only my homeschooling experience, I think that it’s also incredibly important that you listen to your children to see how they feel about it. If it is something that really doesn’t work for them and you force it, well buckle up for years of hell and thousands of dollars in therapy.
Always remember that you and your child are both simultaneously the teacher and the student who always have something to learn from every lesson as well as each other.