Today is the first day of school in my area. I got a nervous feeling last night, thinking about how this is DD's first completely legal year. I even freak for a moment, thinking I need to enroll her before CPS comes knocking down my door claiming I don't teach her. Then I came to my senses this morning when I woke up to thunder. Rain was pouring from the sky. The entire bottom fell out. I looked over at my 5 year old sleeping right next to me, and I thought, "THIS is why we homeschool." So I thought just for fun, while I am taking a break from cleaning and DH and DD are lounging together, I would make a list of reasons why we homeschool/why we love homeschool. Some are just silly reasons, others more serious, but altogether, they make up the reason we homeschool.
1. I want to see S learn. I want to see the fire in her eyes and feel the passion in her heart as she studies the things she is most interested in.
2. S wants me to be there to experience those things with her too.
3. We are not morning people. Waking up at 6 and 7 in the morning is reserved for very special occasions like the annual family reunion or vacation.
4. We get to pick the style of learning that suites our child best and adjust and mix it up as needed. We currently use a mixture of unschooling, Charlotte Mason style, and unit studies.
5. We can go on field trips any time, any day. We take advantage of that regularly.
6. Homeschool activities are much cheaper. (We pay $200 a year for gymnastics. And many of her clubs are $25.00 a year.)
7. We can have playdates any time of day. (Daytime usually works best for us.)
8. S can study whatever interests her.
9. S and I can both wear night clothes on lazy days, which we can have any day. (We are having one of those today. DH is off work, and as I mentioned previously, the rain is pouring outside.)
10. No homework. (Well, it is all homework I guess, but it is all by choice too.)
11. We don't have to work around school schedules.
12. We can go to Pump It Up throughout the school year when there is almost nobody there.
13. We get first dibs on the best books at the library because we are always there.
14. Homeschool discounts, Baby! (The Ripleys museums offer the best homeschool discount I have seen by far! $6.99 tickets for adults and children, all day, every day.)
15. S can watch all aspects of life at home. She gets to see my daily cleaning, while she either helps or plays. She gets helps cook every meal, breakfast, lunch, and dinner. (These are all things I would be doing while she is in school.)
16. We don't have to buy a TON of Back To School supplies and clothes.
17. We can go on vacation during the school year while hotels are cheaper and the destination areas are dead.
18. Our weeks run Tuesday through Saturday because DH is off Sunday and Monday.
19. We can add rock climbing to the curriculum.
20. No car rider lines.
21. We have lunch together every day.
22. I have a good excuse to spend money on educational toys and games.
23. S can build relationships with people that she would never meet otherwise because I would do all my errands while she is at school.
24. S can go to bed whenever she wants. (Part of our unschool philosophy.)
25. DH and I get to make all the discipline choices.
26. No textbooks.
27. Every day is completely different.
28. S is around an array of children every day that are different ages, not just hers age.
29. It strengthens my relationship with my daughter.
30. In the Winter we can spend the day under the blankets, sipping on homemade hot chocolate and reading all the lastest books we have checked out from the library.
31. We don't have to pay for private school.
32. I know all of S's friends personally as well as their parents.
33. No rote learning, only creative learning and ideas here.
34. No preparing for standardized tests. (She will have to test, but we never have to reveal the results to the school board and it does NOT decide weather she passes or not.)
35. S can learn to read on her own time.
36. Lowest Student:Teacher ratio there is.
37. S can practice math problems while dancing around the room.
38. I know about any negative influences my child is around and can remove her from the situation if it becomes too much from her.
39. No cafeteria lunches, only organic!
40. I can teach her freely about Jesus.
41. No worries about what teacher S gets. We already know, every year, it will be ME!
42. No worries about bullying.
43. S will never have to worry about being compared. (I used to do this to her, even when she wasn't in school. Now I know it is not worth it. Children learn different things at different rates, and that is okay. She may be ahead in art, but behind in math.)
44. She gets to be a kid even longer! (Kids are being forced to grow up and learn more and more these days. I have learned to be more lax with S and allow her to be small while she is small.)
45. S can practice her art ALL DAY!
46. I can tell my child the truth about sex (and even Santa) without having to worry if she will blurt it out in from of a bunch of kids whose parents may not be ready for them to know.
47. Freedom to work at S's pace.
48. I can kiss my child's face any time of day.
49. S will not regularly be taught things that we do not believe in, like "Stranger Danger."
50. I do not have to undo any indoctrinating that the public schools have done.
51. S is always allowed to ask questions, especially, "WHY?"
52. I get S during her "good hours," not her tired after school hours.
53. I believe God called us to homeschool and be 100% in our child's raising AND education.
54. No worries about school shootings. (I know that shootings can happen anywhere, but it absolutely terrifies me to think that I wouldn't be there to protect my child in that situation.)
55. The way we homeschool makes learning as natural as breathing.
56. No report cards.
57. We can spend time with family members any time we want, especially since Grandpa is usually in town on the week days.
58. Vacations count as field trips. And going to the grocery store counts as a hands on experience.
59. S will not get lost in the crowd.
60. I know what S does every day. I don't get the standard, "Nothing." response when I ask her what she learned at school.
61. Some people say, "Sure. Act high and mighty, but the only reason you homeschool or can bare to be around your child more than a half the day is because you only have one." Well, yes. That is the reason, but not in the way you think. One of the main reasons I chose to homeschool is because I do have an only child, my only living child, and the only child we have been able to have in the last 6 years, and I cannot bare to miss a moment more with my only living child than I already have with my child I never got a moment with. I want to treasure every second. Experience every high. Help her through every low. And back off when she needs some space. I want to take it all in, because we may never get to do this again.
And lastly, when I asked S why she is glad we homeschool, she said,
"Because I get to be with you and learn with you every single day."