All parents want the best for their children. We want to provide them with the best things in life, at least the best that we can afford. When we raise children, we should focus on the necessities to ensure that they grow up with a healthy body and an equally healthy mind. They should have enough food to eat and water to drink, comfortable clothes to wear, a safe place to live in, as well as a warm bed to sleep on. Aside from these essentials in life, it is also important to provide our children with the best education to help in shaping up their future.
There are a number of options and ways to educate children. Parents can opt to enroll their child or children in a public school or a private school just like most parents do. However, parents are not just limited to these two options. Aside from enrolling children in educational institutions, parents now have the option to educate their kids at home through homeschooling. Basically, homeschooling differs from other forms of education in the sense that children do not have to go to school in order to learn. With homeschooling, learning literally starts at home. It may not be the typical way of providing education, but it is an old educational practice that has been adopted by great people in history. George Washington, Theodore Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, and Thomas Jefferson are just some of past US Presidents who have gained their education through homeschooling. Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Charles Dickens, and Leonardo Da Vinci were also homeschoolers. Many remarkable and talented personalities started learning at home yet that did not hinder them from excelling in their chosen fields.
As mentioned, homeschooling has been an age-old educational practice, but it has gained popularity and support in recent years because of the advantages that it brings both to students and their families. A couple of these advantages are proximity and safety. There may be a number of public or private schools accessible in different areas, but nothing beats not having to leave the house in order to learn. Parents who send their children to educational institutions have to add transportation or school bus fees to their budget. Those who live just a few blocks away from schools have the option to just walk, but safety may be an issue especially for smaller kids. With homeschooling, parents do not have to worry about all these because their children start «school» the moment they wake up. They can start to learn things at home anytime. They do not have to worry about skipping breakfast so that they will not be late for the school bus. The children stay safe because they are home where their parents can always see them. Most importantly, bullying will never happen at home.
There are studies which showed that one of the reasons why parents choose to teach their kids at home is because of dissatisfaction with the quality of education that some schools provide. They feel that educational institutions often leave something to be desired and that something is lacking. School teachers often handle a large number of students in a class and because of the quantity, quality may sometimes be compromised. Parents who are into homeschooling believe that they can educate their kids better with a non-traditional form of education. They can talk about anything with their kids, adjusting and teaching in a way that they find suitable for their children. They can do that without having to worry that they are deviating from any lesson plans mandated by the school. Children can learn in their own time, with parents making sure that the children learn and enjoy at the same time.
Compared to sending children to public schools or private schools, parents find homeschooling to be more budget-friendly because there is more flexibility when it comes to the money that they will spend. They can even save more with homeschooling when they have more than one child because homeschooling materials such as reference books and computer softwares can be reused. This cannot be done, especially in private schools where students will be required to purchase books and other school supplies per student. As for public schools, although they are essentially free, there may be a lot of hidden fees and expenses such as the cost of uniforms, PTA dues, class pictures and yearbooks, and even school fundraisers and other activities. Sometimes, schools may also require children to attend field trips and these trips usually cost a lot, including the budget for food and beverages. Parents can also go on field trips with their homeschooled kids and although they will also spend money, the advantage is that they all get to enjoy the trip and learn things together as a family.
Another advantage of homeschooling is that the children are not bound to any schedule. They can take their time in learning things and also get to experience and enjoy every family event. Children who are enrolled in schools do not have the capacity to travel a lot and because of that, their parents cannot travel too. Sick days are also limited in schools and sometimes, teachers do not even accept excuse letters and medical certificates. As a result, children force themselves to attend school even when they are not feeling well and that compromises their academic performance. There are also instances when they skip school and end up missing some graded activities such as quizzes and recitations.
There are a number of notable differences when we compare homeschooling with other forms of education. At the end of the day, parents must decide which is the best for their children. A lot of things must be taken into consideration and the preferred choice should be beneficial for all. Education is an important treasure that no one can take away from anyone so it should not be compromised. Each child is different and there may be cases where homeschooling is the best option. Ultimately, parents should be able to provide their children with the best education that they can give whether in an educational institution or in the four corners of their home.