Homeschooling and the family
According to the National Center For Education Statistics, almost 1.1 million children underwent homeschooling in 2005 alone. That's a lot of children. Once upon a time, homeschooling used to be a radical statement - something like a declaration of independence. It was the conservative Christians who advocated homeschooling in the '80s and legalized it in every State. But the typical homeschooler of the day is not religiously motivated.
Recent surveys indicate that parents are actually quite fed up of the public school systems where much of the learning is superficial and compulsory. They are also concerned about negative school environment ranging from drugs and abuse to negative peer pressure. As a result, we have a surprising mix of people who form the homeschooling world of today. They cut across all religious and regional borders. Their main aim is providing meaningful and productive learning through a method that strengthens the bond between the various members of the family.
All these families have one thing in common - a long enduring commitment to the sanctity of childhood. The children in these families are accorded a primary position. Many believe, and rightly so, that homeschooling allows parents to bring up children in a more natural and nurturing environment. Public schools can make one nervous, diffident and downright mean. Children who get schooled at home are protected from these damaging negative influences till they reach an age where they can handle it. Homeschooling draws the whole family into the almost religious task of schooling. Everyone is put to work. The parents together form a bond with the children. Any experience can be turned into an educational experience. Both the parents are aware of exactly what is going into their child's head.
Parents also have greater control on the kind of religious and moral values that the child imbibes. Even watching a movie together can become a learning experience. Trips to the libraries and other places become educational as well as recreational. A homeschooling family is primarily dependent on the income of one earning member. That means that often spending has to be curtailed and proper planning of expenditure is a must. This helps to bring the family members together and everybody gets involved in the process of saving money. Having a parent at home to supervise, to nurture and care for the children brings with it a lot of love and caring. Even your husband chips in and there just is no room for boredom. Yes, problems do crop up, and there are a lot of misgivings in your mind. But when you know that your kids can always count on you, and your kids know it too, then homeschooling becomes a richly rewarding experience.
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