Five Things That Simply Aren't True

...About Homeschooling.

Today, I offer you some statements to ponder, which, in my opinion, are simply untrue. You are welcome to disagree. We are each entitled to our own opinions after all, and here are a few of mine.

You Need to DO It All (And All By Yourself)
Perhaps you've started planning for next year already. You have looked over all the curriculum, suggestions, activities, and courses, and you now think maybe you should be doing much more than what you have planned. 

However, the truth of the matter is NO ONE can do it all, nor should you try.

You have to identify those courses and activities which are important to your family at this time, and concentrate on them. This means that every one's homeschool will look differently. For the most part, you will see similarities. Every homeschool family I have ever met wants their children to learn to read, write, and work with numbers. Yet, each one of these families has chosen to teach their children these skills in unique ways.

{Incidentally, those items that may be required by your state need to be included as well. Not all state laws are the same. Be sure to check your state's requirements. Click here for state laws.}

Once you have determined what you want your child to learn and do next year, you will need to figure out how. This how can be answered in numerous ways, including in home instruction by you, a tutor, a co-op setting, a specialized class taken online, etc. The options for homeschoolers have grown tremendously in the past decade since we first started.

You Should Have a Teaching Degree
While some may argue a teaching degree is necessary, I would like to submit my humble opinion. Personally, I'd rather have my child taught by someone who does not possess a teaching degree, but has a passion for/knowledge of the subject material and a desire to help my child succeed. A teaching degree does not always guarantee this.

You Can Protect Your Child from Bullies and School Violence
One of the biggest misconceptions about homeschooling is that you can shield your child from bullies and violence. To an extent this may be true, but not completely.

Bullies use mean words. They tear us down, manipulate us, and contort our self-esteems to increase their own standing.
Bullies are all around us. They aren't confined to the playgrounds.

'Mean girls and boys' exist anywhere people gather. Which means they are present in corporate circles, family reunions, grocery stores, libraries, and yes, even in churches.

Unless you plan to keep your child confined to the four walls of your home, they will at some point encounter a 'mean girl/boy' or even a bully. It is better to teach your child to recognize bully behavior and speech. Give your child the skills and self confidence to either stand up against bullies or walk away.

You Can (and Must) Create a Perfect Environment
The perfect environment was lost in the Garden of Eden. This side of eternity it doesn't exist. You can purchase white boards, desks, beanbag chairs, baskets, and bookshelves. However, a perfect environment also includes a perfect atmosphere. And, atmosphere is created by the individuals who interact with in the environment. Since we cannot escape the sin that resides in ourselves and our children, we, by default, bring the sin that mars our 'perfect environments.'

This is not to say, you shouldn't try to make a nice environment for learning. I'm just saying perfection, for us, isn't attainable. By God's grace we can, and do, create environments of love and peace.

To Homeschool Well, You Must Do It Like 'This'
Homeschooling, by connotation, is not a one size fits all endeavor. All families are unique, comprised of unique individuals who live in unique homes with unique assets. Therefore, every homeschooling family will be different. So why do we try to impose such restrictions on ourselves and others?

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