Why Did We Choose Homeschooling?

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I don’t think I’ve ever written here about how we came to homeschool, so when Savannah kindly offered to interview me for the “Who Homeschools?” feature at Hammock Tracks, it seemed like a good opportunity to tell our story.

How did you end up deciding to teach your children at home? Have they always been homeschooled or did they attend school outside the home, at one point?

Four years ago I’d never heard of home schooling. Then our intense, bright five year-old daughter, C, moved from nursery to full-time private school, and a few issues arose. I enlisted the help of the wonderful parenting coach, Scott Noelle, and it was through Scott that I had my first glimpse into the world of home schooling.

At that stage, however, I didn’t know anyone other than Scott who homeschooled (and he lived 5000 miles away!), and things settled down with our daughter, so we didn’t take the idea any further.

Why our son Left School

Then the following year our younger child, J, started school. We didn’t know at the time that he had sensory processing issues, but after two terms I could see that if J was going to fit in at school, it was going to be at a heavy personal cost to him.

The last straw was when J, who had just turned five, came home in tears because “I’m not going to be allowed to do any of the fun stuff for the rest of the week”. Outside his classroom was a beautiful, sensory, outdoor play area that the children were allowed to use for short periods at a time. On gentle questioning I discovered that because J had refused to come in from the outdoor play area as soon as he was told to, he was going to be punished by being kept inside for the rest of that sunny May week.

That just wasn’t the environment I wanted my little boy spending thirty-four hours a week in.  So we brought him home.  We haven’t looked back.

How our Daughter Followed

By that point our eldest, C, was coping well with school, but after meeting up with a few of our home-educated friends over the summer, she decided to join us at home. She said, “I just want to do one term in year 2 [grade 1], because I like the teacher and I want to be in the nativity play”. 🙂

That whole term I wondered if she would change her mind, but she didn’t. She had a great final term, starred in the Christmas play, and left.  I love that she made the choice to come home and was able to do so on her own terms.

What is your goal in home educating your children?

… to continue reading, head over to Hammock Tracks for the full interview.

Hammock Tracks’ “Who Homeschools?” feature also contains the stories of many other homeschooling families. We’re a diverse and fascinating bunch – one of the many reasons I love this life!

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8 thoughts on “Why Did We Choose Homeschooling?

    1. Thank you – I really appreciate you taking the time to say that 🙂 It’s always a bit nerve-wracking sharing more personal things – probably why I hadn’t got round to it until now!

  1. What an intriguing sounding series. Now I need to go check this out…….

    Oh, and you really posted enough of your posts that I REALLY wanted to head over and finish it, well done.

  2. The answer to the question has changed over the years–we started because it was clear our eldest would not thrive in any school–and we do it now because it’s clearly so right for us. My ultimate goal, I think, is to raise people who, when they need or want to learn something–go and learn it. Who don’t think, “Oh, learning Spanish is so difficult, I can’t do it.” But who think–“I want to learn Spanish, so I’m gonna. Difficult? Sure. Lots of things are difficult. But why should that be something that stops me?”

    1. Love that goal. And I relate to what you say about how it’s changed over the years. In retrospect I’m so thankful things worked out the way they did with my son (even right down to his lovely teacher going on maternity leave and being replaced by someone who didn’t understand him at all). If all had gone smoothly we might never be enjoying this wonderful, outside-the-box lifestyle.

  3. I loved reading your homeschool story and finding out more about your family. “It’s always a bit nerve-wracking sharing more personal things.” That’s so true but it’s also rewarding when it leads to great online friendships.

    I started homeschooling because I wanted my children to love learning. Now we homeschool for many reasons. Isn’t it wonderful how we discover more and more benefits and delights associated with homeschooling, as we go along?

    A beautiful outdoor play set and no time to play on it… that is so sad.

    1. Thank you, Sue. Yes, giving something of ourselves does help us make friendships, doesn’t it? It’s true online as it is in real life.

      You’ve certainly fulfilled your original goal, from what I’ve read of your family’s story!

      And yes, the delights keep coming, don’t they? No empty play sets around here.

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