Don’t Be Afraid to Homeschool

Years ago when I would mention homeschooling to friends or strangers, I was bound to receive one of two replies: Either they applauded but assumed it was something they couldn’t do themselves or they had bought into stigmas surrounding homeschooling and would never choose it. 

But with school closures due to COVID, parents were thrust into homeschooling or long-distance learning, whether they wanted to do it or not. This left many of them feeling overwhelmed or lost. In my personal experience, as one who was homeschooled, I have found that homeschooling was and is, actually easy. As with anything worthwhile, there is a certain level of difficulty, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. 

At the risk of sounding flippant, I’d like to offer two reasons why I think more people should homeschool and five tips for making the most of it.

The word “indoctrination” has been thrown around quite a bit today in discussions of the public school system, but that problem is not a new one. Government education is necessarily rooted in principles of socialism.. That may be a hard pill for some to swallow, but if you look at the construct of public education you will see it’s true. In Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels’ Communist Manifesto, they listed “free” public education as one of the features of their “10 Plank” system for seizing power. If we have learned anything from history it is this: in order for socialism to work there must be a certain level of indoctrination. Who better to manipulate than children?

I don’t believe that everyone who works in public education has this agenda, but I can’t disregard the evidence that socialist goals typically involve working within the confines of government schools and the targeting of children. Children are impressionable, compliant sponges, prone to soaking up their environment. Thus, they are left vulnerable to those around them who wish to further an agenda. With this goal in mind, the most necessary step to making socialism a reality is to get parents out of the way.

I’ve heard two quotes within the last year that solidify my thoughts on the matter and they are a big part of why I continue to urge parents to homeschool. The first is from the fall of 2021 when Terry McAuliffe was running for governor of Virginia against Glenn Youngkin. McAuliffe said that “parents should not tell schools what to teach.” This type of thinking is unacceptable. It is 100 percent your right as a parent to know exactly what your child is being taught. Thankfully, Glenn Youngkin believes that parents reserve that right, and his support for parental rights led to his victory in the general election.

The second and, in my opinion, most alarming quote came from Joe Biden in April 2022 when he said that while children are in the classroom they “don’t belong to their parents.” I’m sure some will say this was a gaffe (among the many that Biden has made), but I see it more as a Freudian slip. It left an unsettling feeling in the pit of my stomach and to me, is further evidence of what sinister things are going on within the public school system.

If these politicians believe parents shouldn’t be involved with the curriculum in their children’s schools and simultaneously believe that children “don’t belong to their parents” while they’re at school, what does that tell you about the level of control the government has and the lack of control parents have?

Another reason for suggesting homeschooling is the flexibility it provides. When I was homeschooled we could breeze through all of my subjects within a few hours. Public schools have to build in time for hundreds of students to change classrooms, have recess, go to lunch, assemblies, etc. ensuring longer days. This simply isn’t necessary at home. Too often I see parents (and children) overwhelmed or pressed for time between getting their kids to and from school, sporting events, and other activities. Homeschooling leaves room to breathe for both children and parents. 

Not only does homeschooling offer flexibility in your day, it also offers flexibility with curriculum, out-of-the-box thinking, and more personalized learning for your child in their respective weak areas. Gone are the days of only “one way” of teaching or learning. Looking back, are there certain things you wish you would have learned in school? What about filing taxes or creating a job resume? The list of valuable life lessons you can incorporate into your lessons is endless.

If these two reasons aren’t enough to convince you, I’d like to introduce you to a family you may not have heard of from Alabama who homeschooled all 10 of their children successfully. So successfully in fact, that all 10 graduated high school at age 12! You can read more about them here.

If you’re thinking you’d like to give homeschooling a go, here are five tips to help you begin:

1) Look into the legal requirements and laws in your state on homeschooling. To get started, Home School Legal Defense (HSLDA) is a great source for that information. I also recommend that homeschool families—both new and seasoned—consider joining HSLDA. Each state also has its own private, statewide homeschool organization, which can help you successfully navigate the homeschool waters.

2) Remember you are not alone. Homeschooling is on the rise and because of that, many parents are in the same situation in which you now find yourself. If the thought of homeschooling full-time by yourself makes you nervous, homeschooling co-ops are a great option for the first-time homeschooling parent. At their core, co-ops are made up of other homeschooling families who have similar goals encompassing education, activities, and socialization. This can be a great option in the beginning or even for long-term learning depending on your needs. There are full-time co-ops covering most subjects or even a la carte classes. Again, there is flexibility. You can look online for co-ops in your area.

3) It’s normal to feel like you don’t know what you’re doing. You’re learning what works and what doesn’t, creating a brand new routine and curriculum. Remember to give yourself some grace in the beginning because you, too, are “learning.” You know your kids better than anyone else, so you are best suited to teach them, even as you learn along with them.

4) Keep an open mind and go beyond the “classroom.” Homeschooling is not just schooling at home. Learning does not have to mean being confined to four walls all day. Take museum tours, read books aloud to your kids snuggled on the couch, go to farmer’s markets, teach life skills like maintaining your vehicle or cooking, explore nature, and so much more! Build family relationships and memories while learning. You can’t do that when your children are at school nine hours a day.

5) Follow your child’s interests. I can’t stress enough the importance of cultivating their interests and passions early. This creates a driven environment to learn and creates a space for their own individuality to shine through. Having a freer schedule allows more time to pursue delight-directed studies, a musical instrument, sport, or other hobby. With respect to the family I brought up earlier, that is one of the key tips they talked about also. I’d say it certainly worked for them!

About Lauren Farrell

Lauren Farrell is the development coordinator for American Majority. A self-proclaimed political junkie, she has loved politics since she was a child. She resides in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia with her fiance and three dogs.

Photo: Jill Brady/Staff Photographer Getty Images

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