Homeschool Posts

Monday, January 8, 2018

5 Reasons to Homeschool High School

As I finish up my last year of educating my oldest child at home and look forward to soon beginning the high school years with my 2nd second, sometimes I need to remind myself of “why” we are doing this thing called homeschooling. Ten years is a long time to keep at a job. Children grow and their needs change. Parents grow and their needs change.

In the day to day minutiae of teaching this child to read, that child proper mechanics, and this other one how to prepare a meal, it’s very easy to get lost in the wilderness of the everyday doing. We can forget where we are going and why; it’s easy to get off track. 

Sometimes the road gets a little muddy and we lose sight of our path.

Sometimes we come to a place where the road is washed out, forcing an unexpected detour.

And sometimes we find that we were headed in the wrong direction all along and need to calculate a new path altogether.

This week, the topic for the Virtual Homeschool Fair is: The Reasons We Homeschool.

5 Reasons to Homeschool High SchoolEach homeschool family’s quest is different. Our own family’s reasons for first taking the plunge are not even the reasons we keep doing it year after year. I hope you’ll visit my fellow bloggers as they also share their Homeschool Why. You will find their posts linked at the end of this article. We have 23 participants this week!

I’ve written about our family’s decision to homeschool and how our reasons have evolved many times over the years.

I’ve also talked about how important it is to know your why. Today I want to talk about why homeschooling through the high school years is so rewarding. I highly recommend it.

So, if you are approaching those years and are dreading it or wondering if you should do it…read on!

5 Reasons to Homeschool through High School


1. Your teens need your care and guidance more than ever.

david cropWhen my  kids were wee ones, I worried if they would learn to read, to use the potty without missing, to tie their shoes, to multiply, to chew with their mouths closed…these skills came to them with time and with practice, just as they do for most kids.

As they grow up and mature, it seems they need us less and less, doesn’t it?

To be sure, they don’t need us to wipe their noses or to read a bedtime story to them. But they still need us. They are still learning how to make their own way in the world and they have lots of questions.

The hard questions.

Parenting little ones is hard. Because sleep deprivation.

But it never stops being hard to see your child struggle; it never stops being heartbreaking to see your child make a serious mistake or lose something precious to them. For our family, homeschooling has given us a special closeness that I don’t think we would otherwise have. We share so much of our lives with each other that it seems obvious for the kids to also share their doubts and anxieties with us, their parents. 

Teens need to know that we are there for them. They need our emotional and psychological support. When we are in-tune with are kids, we can see when something is wrong and get them help if they need it or have the tough the conversations with fewer inhibitions.

2. Your teens need the freedom to be themselves.

Home is one of the few places you can really let your hair down. It should be a safe place where we don’t have to pretend or fill some particular role.

Now, this is not to say that kids (of all ages) don’t need opportunities to be with their peers. They do (I’m going to talk about that in another post). But having the freedom to retreat to neutral or safe ground is something that most kids don’t have these days. It can be hard to constantly stand up to different influences.

Everyone needs time to just be. It’s good for the heart and the soul.

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Homeschooling also allows your child the freedom to learn at his own pace, whether he is gifted, facing learning challenges, or somewhere in between. None of my children are “average,” and all of them would struggle to fit into a middle ground. By learning at home, they have been able to continue to progress at a pace uniquely appropriate to them.

3.  Your teens need to follow their passions.

homeschooling supports my kids passionsNo matter what academic path your child takes through high school, there will be gaps. In a brick and mortar school, the class options are whatever the school offers. As a homeschooler, your child can pursue a unique path while using a wide variety of resources.

The options are nearly limitless, between online classes, local apprenticeship opportunities, mentoring, home brewed studies, etc. If you child is an aspiring artist, he can pursue further instruction locally or online and find a mentor to help him further his art. If your child is into programming, you can find a program to nurture her interests.

Don’t allow yourself to become mired in what high school should look like. Yes, there some core subjects you will want to cover---but you can still deliver a one-of-a-kind high school experience.

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4. Your teens need the time to pursue things outside of academics and planned activities.

There’s more to growing up and becoming an adult than academics.  As homeschoolers, we have a more flexible schedule than we would have if our children were in school and this opens up possibilities for other opportunities, whether it be spending time with younger siblings, taking an impromptu road trip with Grandma and Grandpa, or even taking a job during “school” hours.

Not needing to be in a particular building during certain hours Monday-Friday simply opens up possibilities that otherwise might not be available.

5. You teens need a learning partner.

3 reasons to read to your teenRead to your teens. Read them a newspaper. Or read them a novel.

Yes, they could read it themselves.

But when we share a book together, we share an experience. When we talk about the ideas in that book together, we open new worlds together. When we read an article, we share our collective wisdom and critical thinking skills.

The learning never stops. My husband still reads to me, and I to him.

You can do this whether you homeschool or not, of course (and I recommend that you do it whether you homeschool or not), but my point is that when we read together, we are learning together.

When my oldest child struggled to understand his biology textbook, I read it to him. And we discussed it. And he understood. Learning is not a passive activity or something that happens in a vacuum. When you homeschool your child, you are partnering with him in his future.

Now, my teens do have other learning partners. Peers and other adults who teach them things at co-op. Those partnerships are very valuable and I wouldn’t want to give them up. But when you are able to partner with your child and learn together, you are adding another layer of richness to your shared experience and your relationship. Those are memories you will both have for the rest of your life---don’t give them all away to someone else.

The #1 Reason to Homeschool High School: Your Teens Need You.

Spend time with them. Listen to them. Read to them. Homeschool them, if you can. You will cherish the relationships you build and the memories you create.

Yes, homeschooling high school can be hard. But it is so worth it.

Can you accomplish many of these things without homeschooling? Probably. It takes work (all things worth doing do, right?). It can probably be done though---where there’s a will there’s a way. Winking smile 

For our family, a lifestyle of home learning has made these things easier and has given us gifts that we never could have anticipated when we first started this journey. I know that homeschooling is not for everyone and every situation, I just want to let you know that if you are walking this road (or considering it), the obstacles are worth overcoming.

2018 Virtual Homeschool Fair

Now, let’s see what my fellow homeschool bloggers have to say about The Reasons We Homeschool.

Note: all posts will be live after 8 am EST on Monday, Jan. 8th.

5 Reasons to Homeschool High School by Susan @ Homeschooling Hearts & Minds

Weird Homeschoolers by Kim R. @ Good Sweet Love

How We Make Homeschooling a Lifestyle by Jeniffer @ Thou Shall Not Whine

Our Ever Evolving Homeschool Story by Christy @ Unexpected Homeschool

5 Reasons You Will Want to Homeschool by Michele@ Family, Faith and Fridays

How Our Homeschool Came To Be (and why we continue) by Sabrina @ Kids, Crunch, and Christ

Home Education - 10 Reasons we keep going...even when it's hard by Lizzy @ Peaches@Home

So... Tell Me Again Why You Homeschool? by Leah @ As We Walk Along the Road

Virtual Homeschool Fair 2018 - Week 1 - Why do I Homeschool  by Joelle@Homeschooling For His Glory

Homeschool Reasons: Bullies, Faith and More by Annette @ A Net In Time

In Pursuit of Purpose by Laura @ Four Little Penguins

A Long Time Ago . . . Why We Decided To Homeschool by Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break

The Why Behind Hopkins Homeschool by Amanda @ Hopkins Homeschool

5 Reasons We Love Homeschooling by Brittney @ Mom's Heart

Why We Homeschool - It's What We Do by Kristen H @ Sunrise to Sunset

Why we Home Educate and Extra Benefits by Sarah@Delivering Grace

Homeschooling: The Big WHY? by Lisa @ True North Homeschool Academy at Golden Grasses

Regaining Your Homeschool Focus by Jen @ A Helping Hand Homeschool

Why do we homeschool? by Dana @ Life Led Homeschool

Our “Homeschool” Why by Jacquelin @ A Stable Beginning

Because Life is Precious by Lori H @ At Home: where life happens

1998 vs. 2018: Why We Homeschool by Debra @ Footprints in the Butter

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8 comments:

  1. Thank you, my boy is entering the teens this year, it's neat watching questions flourish

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    1. I'm sure the lad will prosper and amaze you. ;)

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  2. I love these reasons and agree with them as a parent of two graduates and two soon to be high schoolers. :-)

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    1. Thank you, Leah. It's always good to hear from homeschool parents who have graduates. We are getting there. Not sure if I'll be able to keep from crying. ;)

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  3. We are almost to the teen years, so this has been an informative read for me.

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  4. These are all so true, especially # 1! We have one graduate and another one to follow next school year. Congratulations, you have almost made it!

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  5. We aren't to high school yet but I plan to continue homeschooling and these are great reasons!

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  6. Schooling in the teen years can be a challenge but SO rewarding! And yes, they need us! Thank you for hosting the VHF once again, it is a pleasure to join you!

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