No matter what our knowledge of the homeschooling world is when we begin, I feel this thought crosses our minds somewhere in our first or second year of homeschooling. Even though I had a younger sister who was homeschooled, I still thought I should be prepared to send my son back to public school.
My husband was supportive but he too was not totally convinced of this new lifestyle we had adopted. Truth to be told, I wasn’t either.
What if my son missed out on opportunities that only the public school could offer? What if the teacher were more prepared than myself on a particular subject? What would I do if we got to high school and I don’t have a science lab? What field trips would he miss out on? What programs and curriculum could they provide to prepare him for college and life better than his father and I could?
I have experienced those same worries and concerns. What I have learned is that we can’t lead our lives, teach our children or fully enjoy the benefits of homeschooling based on "WHAT IFS". We either will be insane and live in a state of constant panic and fear or we need to choose now to intentionally homeschool.
Now, in my veteran mind, saying we’ll give homeschooling a year is like saying "I’ll give my newborn a year and if I don’t have a great year, we’ll we just can’t keep him’ lol Now THAT is insanity! lol lol. You know we prepare so carefully and think everything will go perfect along with our perfect crib, perfect schedule and perfect baby.
If I had judged my whole parenthood by the first year with my oldest I wouldn’t have had any more. It was not "rock-a-bye-baby". The sleepless nights, the night’s up pacing, rocking, digging for
information to understand him and ME was met by lots of hard work and "on the job training".
Homeschooling is very similar.
I homeschool to enjoy the freedom, to have better standards, to give more time, to tailor the curriculum, to give my children a better future, a better foot hold in life, to build Godly character, to foster sibling relationships, to build a relationship with God, to capture my child’s heart, to make learning a delight for the child and on and on.
Along the way, I figured out this would not happen if I kept looking back instead of looking forward. Keep looking forward to your end goals and don’t measure your whole homeschooling career in front of you by one or two years. It is worth every effort and sacrifice.
Here is a cruel thought: If for some reason your child had to go back to public school, neither I or you would have any say so into what the public school did. That has proven true in more than one case.
So here is my answer to the above questions:
If I sent my children back to public school, it would be giving them less as I can offer more. Yes, some subjects professionals will know more on than me, but I am the parent I don’t have to know the subjects, my children do. I can hire tutors and used DVD’s and learn right along with him. We still don’t have a science lab, we have something better, a full stocked kitchen that is the perfect science lab. Field trips are not taken once a YEAR but once a MONTH. CLEPPING (college level examination programs) in highschool puts my children ahead of their public school counterparts by testing out and being awarded college credits in high school for subjects they all ready know.
What about you, have you chosen to intentionally homeschool?