The decision to home school children does not come easy to most parents. The social school environment is impossible to reproduce, and many children who are home schooled probably feel somewhat removed from the general society. Of course, many homeschoolers find friends in the various after school activities they take part in, or even within the home schooling community. Such online communities have turned out to be great assets to parents and children worldwide.
Even so, keeping your child at home when you’re not living in an isolated spot is a difficult thing to do. Will you live up to the task? Will your child grow up to resent you for keeping him out of Public School? Will home schooling foster your child’s self-learning and indipendece, or create negative results?
The most pressing question is probably the following: Are we home schooling our children for their benefit or ours, the parents?
I have made grandiose plans to home school my future children. Having been educated in Italy, I want my children to share in the magic of the birth of music, the masters of the Renaissance, the wonders of intense world history and geography, the ability to recognize an Impressionist painting or cite Greek Mythology at age 12. My children will write brilliant papers on the psychology of Bertolucci’s films, and my husband will educate them in Group Theory, Quantum Physics and the Stock Market.
My children will be cultured Einsteins, impressing all and looking down at those silly Public School brats who think dissecting a frog will prepare them for Harvard. They will speak at least four languages and always be grammatically correct.
Of course, these are selfish plans. Once the child comes along, his or her personality will probably define our choices and help us see what he or her needs in life.
For some, keeping the child away from curse words and later sex and drugs is one of the main factors in the parent or caretaker’s decision to homeschool . I do not bear such illusions, however, because I know that children will experiment with everything no matter what.
I am approaching homeschooling from the perspective of learning, which in my opinion is inadequate in American Public Schools. I have found that America has swapped advanced methods for actual substance.
Many European countries still have a primitive and constricting approach to schooling, but the students get an all-encompassing education, from the arts to the classics and everything in between.
What we need is a combination of advanced teaching methods and adequate schooling, something that many private schools probably offer at an exorbitant price.
As homeschooling becomes more and more popular, parents are less worried about social factors:
homeschooling children meet in afternoon sports or other activities and get together on weekends. Like children of traveling diplomats, they are a breed apart but not unique in their situation.
Still, many children need the bustling and loaded school environment, and I think of homeschooling with many conflicting outlooks, despite still being childless.