1. Please do not look at our children with pity. They’re happy, they like to learn at home, they have lots of friends, they don’t have to get up early to catch a bus on very cold days and they get to experience many things other children don’t. Our family travels a lot during value seasons and we get to go to cool places when it’s quiet and not during school break. We hardly ever have to wait in lines and we get a lot of discounts.
2. Please do not ask us about the socialization of our children. They have many opportunities to socialize in a much broader sense and are constantly learning to become productive citizens. They are able to grow into their own personalities, choose their own interests and create their own sense of style. Just don’t ask, it’s rude – we don’t ask about your child’s future ability to conform to what society deems acceptable.
3. Please do not tell us you can’t home school because you don’t have the patience for it. You are implying that we were born with an endless supply of patience therefore it is easy for us to home school our children. This is definitely not the case. Homeschooling is hard and challenging at times but it’s a decision we made based on what we felt was best for our children. If you don’t want to home school that’s your choice, it’s OK to just say so. We respect you for it.
4. Please don’t tell us you can’t home school because you don’t have the discipline or organizational skills – refer to #3 and then visit our home. Please excuse the clutter!
5. Please don’t assume we are trying to convert you to homeschooling if we happen to mention it to you. We are like any other parent, we like to talk about our children’s studies and education and because we home school our views tend to be from that stand point.
6. Please don’t try to convert us to public school, catholic school, private school or any other school out there. Like you, we made the choice based on what we thought was best for our children and we are happy with it.
7. Please do not discourage anyone you know who is thinking about homeschooling their child. It’s a valid choice and it’s a big decision – one that is never taken lightly and can be extremely daunting at first. You would never discourage someone from sending their child to private school, so don’t do it with potential homeschoolers. You know the saying, if you don’t have something nice to say….
8. Please do not assume that our children will fail to achieve successful futures. There are a multitude of studies available that show homeschooled children in general score higher on average. A simple online search will bring up very promising and exciting studies – too many to list.
9. Please do not assume that we as parents are not intelligent enough to educate our children. We are capable and while we may not know everything there is, there is a plethora of resources out there for us to direct our children to and help them find the knowledge they need. You would be surprised at how much our children teach themselves and each other.
10. Please do not assume we are lazy parents because we choose to home school our children. Yes, some of us may do our schooling in our pajamas or stretched out across the floor. Sometimes we do our lessons outside on warm, sunny days under a shady tree. We may get all our studies finished by lunch time and spend the rest of the day reading, doing crafts or playing games but that does not make us lazy. We constantly research curriculum, help with assignments, teach our children, take them on outings, go to co-op classes, mark school work, keep records and many, many other things. All the things you do as parents and all the things your children’s teacher does too.
11. Please do not assume we home school because we are scared to allow our children to enter the “real” world. While we do not keep our children home because of unknown and even a few known dangers lurking around school halls, we do feel that home is a better environment for our children. It’s not fear that drives us, it’s hope for a better future.
12. Please do not try to quiz our children, in hopes to point out the flaws in their education. They’re not monkeys ready to perform at will. Half the time my children will look you right in the eyes and tell you they don’t know the answer to your questions because they’re not allowed to tell you to take a hike!
13. Please do not tell me that you could never spend so much time with your kids. That just makes me sad for your kids.
14. Please do not assume we are weird because we home school. Some of us are just weird, it might be all the Syfy we watch or maybe we’re just born this way, but it’s not because we home school. Homeschooling is becoming more acceptable and popular.
15. Please do not assume that because we home school we hate teachers! On the contrary, we have a lot of respect for teachers and can’t imagine how they teach a class of 30 kids at once and then have to deal with the parents too. Kudos to the teachers out there who have committed their lives to teaching children!