Yes You Can! Teach Your Own Kids By Homeschooling

BY: - 1 Feb '13 | Parenting

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Photo Credit: jimmiehomeschoolmom via Flickr

Photo Credit: jimmiehomeschoolmom via Flickr

Teaching your own kids by homeschooling is something many parents have considered. A few years ago, we considered doing so. Four years later we are homeschooling our twelve and seven year old children, while our three year old is following right after them. In addition, we also serve as directors and tutors of a community of 15 homeschooling families.

We had many concerns early in our decision process. One of our biggest was, “Are we capable of effectively teaching our kids?” Some subjects we expected to be easy to teach, but what about those subjects we didn’t like in school, or just weren’t very good at?

We learned this was common for parents considering homeschooling. Some of you may have similar concerns now, and doubt the fact you can teach your own kids. I am here to encourage you by saying, yes, you can! You are more than capable of teaching your own kids by homeschooling. Below I’ve shared a few ways you can get over your own insecurities in teaching your kids by homeschooling, in addition to some practical steps you can take.

1) Realize you are already teaching your kids

Our children are gifts from God that He entrusted us to nurture, guide, and to teach. We teach them almost every other thing in their life, but for some reason we don’t think we can teach them certain subjects in school.

I’m guessing you had not changed a pamper or nursed someone, but you did because it was necessary for your child. Every parent has learned to teach and guide their child to master various skills. And very few of us have given them over to someone else to do it, because we felt we could do it in their best interest. It is no different in homeschooling.

2) Dispel the myths of the traditional school model

If you choose homeschooling, you have to break your mind of the traditional school model. That model is not the only way to teach our kids. If you are continually trying to make your homeschooling look like regular school, and measuring your kids development the way traditional schooling does, you will be missing out and might become discouraged.

You don’t have to be Mrs. “So and So,” the fourth grade teacher at your child’s traditional school. You do not have to have a paper (degree or certificate) that says you are qualified to teach your own child. If that is the case, then you aren’t qualified to do anything mentioned in point #1 either.

When you get over making homeschooling like traditional school you will give yourself the ability to make mistakes (inevitable), to learn from them (a must), and for things to not look perfect (they won’t). This helps from being discouraged and questioning yourself so much.

3) Take complete ownership of your child’s education (and yours)

The scary part of homeschooling can be the most exciting part. By choosing homeschooling you are taking complete ownership of your child’s educational development. I don’t know how many times I’ve heard parents complaining about the quality of education at their child’s traditional school, or what the school and teachers should be doing. You now can address this and fill in any gaps your child was missing in traditional school.

I will not lie and say it is easy. But is definitely doable, and when a family takes ownership of their education, it is amazing! You may have to change some habits. You want to turn everyday happenings into learning opportunities. In doing so, your kids will grow to love learning, and will do so even when school stops.

So, if you are watching Maury in the morning, Dr. Phil in the afternoon, reality TV at night, and on Facebook in between, then don’t expect your child to pick up a book and read on their own.  However, if you read to them, read with them, have them read to you, and pick up a book instead of the TV remote, then you are helping them by modeling those habits.

4) Practical Steps You Can Take

There is no 1-2-3 step process to homeschooling, but there are some things you can do to help in your decision making, build your confidence to teach, and actually teach. Here are some practical steps you can take to address those things:

  1. Determine why you are considering homeschooling. When you have a solid “why,” it helps you make decisions, focus, and keep going when it gets tough.  Homeschooling can get tough!
  2. Research state law and homeschooling regulations. Knowing that you are within the law and your rights gives you peace of mind to focus on what is important, educating your children.
  3. Research homeschooling curriculum. A curriculum will provide you a guide, the lessons, the how-to, the tests, and pretty much everything you need to teach and measure your child’s progress. You don’t have to start from scratch.
  4. Go to a convention or attend a parent practicum.  A practicum is a training for homeschooling parents.  You can learn how to teach from those who have done it, and are doing it.  Conventions are great places to learn about all things homeschooling, as well as purchase homeschooling curriculum and supplies.
  5. Connect with other homeschooling families in your area. You do not need nor should you take this journey alone.  There are homeschooling co-ops, communities, and groups all around. Get connected and involved.

Teaching your kids by homeschooling can be scary at first, but you can do it, and do it effectively. Our homeschooling experience has been amazing. We have experienced things with our kids that we may have missed had we stayed with the traditional school model. In addition our kids are thriving.

I encourage those who are considering homeschooling. You were specifically chosen to raise, love, provide for, guide, and educate your children. You are fully equipped, and nobody is more qualified! Yes, you can teach your own kids by homeschooling!

BMWK — What questions about homeschooling do you have, that you’d like to see addressed in future posts?  Please share those questions, and your thoughts in the comments section below.

About the author

Jackie Bledsoe, Jr. wrote 62 articles on this blog.

Jackie is an author, blogger, and speaker who helps men better love their wives and lead their families. He is the creator of The 7 Rings of Marriage™. You can receive his latest BMWK posts in your inbox, plus his latest marriage and parenting posts from around the web by subscribing to his weekly newsletter!

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13 WordPress comments on “Yes You Can! Teach Your Own Kids By Homeschooling

  1. Kenneey

    As an educator in the public school system I have definitely considered an alternative for my son…however you have raised some valid concerns that I mist definitely have. I teach middle school and am not really sure how to go about teaching the younger grades and that scares me. However I will look into the home schooling curriculum and conventions! Thanks, this was helpful!

    Reply
    1. Jackie Bledsoe, Jr. Post author

      Thanks for sharing Kenneey. The curriculum we use focuses on laying a solid foundation of facts and memorization for the younger/elementary age kids. If you choose homeschooling, I am sure you will do great. Like I said in the article those things we are most concerned about can be the most excited, and rewarding for you and your child.

      Reply
  2. Shandra

    This is our 3rd year homeschooling our children ages 10, 9, 8, and 6. This journey has truly been a blessing to our family!

    Reply
  3. Frances Jones

    WOW! My husband and I are just pondering the idea of homeschooling our little lady, who is now two years old. She is now attending a Christian private school part time, but I would love to tap into those subjects and learning skills that the traditional school system is no longer offering. Also, the financial aspect of private schools are tremendous as well. Thank you for such a wide scope of considering this option for our little blessing and any children to follow as well. Awesome!

    Reply
    1. Jackie Bledsoe, Jr. Post author

      @Frances, my pleasure! Thanks for commenting. We started out the Christian private school route and loved it. It got to be costly so our daughter went to public school, and excelled there…after toying around with homeschooling for our youngest (at the time) we decided to go all-in with it. We have not been disappointed. You can do it too! :)

      Reply
  4. Tinikia Pettiford

    Homeschooling seems like a wonderful option and i believe it will benfit our family tremendously i think the hardest part for me is knowing which curriculum to use. Ive research several of them but i dont know which is a bette quality program. If anyone has any advice or experience with good curriculumns please share.

    Reply
    1. Jackie Bledsoe, Jr. Post author

      @Tinikia thanks for your comment. We use the Classical Conversations curriculum which is a classical Christian based curriculum. Classical education goes great with the way we (as kids and adults) naturally learn. You can also join (or start your own) Classical Conversations community with other families in your area. I encourage you to check them out online for more info.

      Reply
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  6. Ty Thomas

    As a veteran homeschoolers of 7 years, my husband and I could not be happier with our choice to educate our children at home. We’ve graduated one and sent him off to college on a full academic scholarship. The remaining grades we have are 11th, 9th, 5th and 1st. (The 5th and 1st graders never attended public school.)

    To all those families who are considering homeschooling as an option, I we open to answer any questions. Go with your gut or intuition to take true ownership of your child’s educational foundation. We are based in the Houston, TX area and we are one of the founding families of a very large minority homeschool support group called HomeschoolBFF (Brown Faced Families). Don’t be disuaded or intimidated by the common “concerns” about homeschooling. Socialization, peer interaction, college readiness and competiveness do not have to be negatively impacted simply because you choose to school your child at home. The quality of a child’s homeschool experience is truly a matter of choice on the part of parents. Be bold, be courageous, but most of all, trust yourself! Homeschooling is truly a LIFE STYLE, and unless you embrace it as such, you will be short changing your child AND yourself.

    To all those who are currently homeschooling, be steadfast and unmoveable. And know that your love for your child and desire to lay a strong educational foundation is the most important tool that you will need to stay the course and enjoy the journey.

    Many Blessings!

    Reply
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  9. Terassa

    @Ty Thomas – THANK YOU SO MUCH for that response. To Jackie Bledsoe, Jr. – Thanks for the article, too. I am considering it as a mother for the health concerns, but my spouse is hesitant because of the all the forementioned concerns you listed… He’s probably more concerned with my level of patience, though… I’m more concerned with structure. I would like a support group – for peer interaction for my Child and I, and I would like a curriculum that is more “BFF”-centered :)

    Reply
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