We have the ability to control what they learn and the quality of those subjects.
If we want to spend four weeks on engineering principals because it is something that we noticed caught the kid’s attention last year, we can and do. We spent a few days designing and building a spirograph robot using the Lego Mindstorm EV3 system. We looked at this tutorial and made some modifications for our robot.
Nearly all of the kids were immediately engaged with the project. They learned about programming, robot design, and input-output from automating physical device. (I’ll discuss this more in a later post)
There’s something to be said for being able to decide when, where, how your children learn. We set the time that school starts. (usually around 8:00) If we decide that a specific reading curriculum is not to our standards, we can change to a different program-- even in the middle of the school year. It’s our decision. If we want to spend more time on STEM subjects and not do History for a year, we can. If we decide to drive to Gettysburg to learn about the Battle of Gettysburg or the Gettysburg Address, we can.
3. Ownership of their Educations
Shoving responsibility of our children’s education to the state, or anyone else for that matter, does not sound appealing. We decided to home school because two of our children needed additional help that they were not receiving in public school and one of them was not being challenged enough. Our local public school was not responding to our concerns. Heather and I took action.
Here are some of the statistics on “parent-led” education.
4. Less Peer Pressure!
We get to shape our kids views and ideas vs. schoolmates. That doesn’t mean our kids don’t have friends; they do, both public school friends and home school friends. We just are more involved in these friendships, and can spend some time talking to our children about good friends vs. toxic relationships. Our children do not have to worry about bullying, school violence, or just fitting in. Their attention is focused on learning in a positive environment, where they are comfortable.
5. Stronger family bond
I feel that the relationship that my children have with my wife will be stronger in the long run. Our children learn with us. We read together, research together, study together, ect. I like to think that our children will look back and appreciate the time they were able to spend with us during their younger years. They grow up so fast and I want to take advantage of every day that we can.