Catholic Home Schooling


#1

Mothers and those knowledgeable, please help me decide whether I should home school my children.

What are the pros and cons?

I am not looking to read a book, yet, but rather your personal insights. I possess almost zero knowledge in this area so be gentle.


#2

I put “yes” even though I have no children currently. My husband and I plan to homeschool. He was homeschooled for 3.5 years and my mom pulled my younger siblings from Catholic schools and homeschooled/homeschool them. So, this is from both of our perspectives:

PROS:

  1. It brought my family much closer and my husband has a good close relationship with his mother as well.

  2. My mom was able to teach using a Catholic cirriculum and able to implement the faith in everything. They also had time to go to daily mass and attend other functions because there was no time constraint.

  3. One of my siblings suffers from dyslexia, and so my mom was able to work with him and the cirriculum to fit his needs and this has helped him a lot (I do realize that at schools they do have special ed. too)

  4. The one-on-one time has helped immensely and the kids aren’t “bored” wasting their days away like I did in school. Plus, each child works at their own pace. I have one brother who whizzes through everything and another who struggles with almost everything, so it’s helped to be able to move at a pace each one is comfortable with.

  5. They aren’t exposed to too much. That doesn’t mean their anti-social - they just don’t have to deal with a lot of the things that unfortunately many children do through regular schools.

CONS:

If you do decide to, I hope there’s a good homeschooling group to get involved with. I know one of my biggest fears (my mom was planning on homeschooling me in high school but ended up not doing it) was that I’d have no social life. However, with the homeschooling groups, they have a co-op (where they have “elective” classes they take together and the parents teach them…ie. science classes (my dad who has his master’s in chemical engineering taught a chemistry class), speech, creative writing, gym, dance, a Duct tape class (where they learn to make things out of duct tape). My siblings are also involved in soccer, boyscouts/Little Flowers, youth group, and other activities along with playing with the neighborhood kids.

There’s so much more that’s great, but these are just a few :).


#3

Oh, also, just a quick inspirational story -

My husband was failing math by the time he was in 5th grade. His parents met with his teacher and the lady told them that he was basically a failure and would never learn math or be a good student. So, my mother-in-law pulled him out and homeschooled him til high school. She figured out that he never grasped the basics of multiplying/dividing which is why he was doing so poorly. Well, suffice to say, my husband is now a high school math teacher and spends his free time trying to figure out complex math problems and he LOVES solving Rubix cubes :D. He plans to get his master’s and phD in math eventually and I fully support this! And to think what would have happened if his mother had not made this decision.

Not all teachers are like this. My sister’s 3rd grade teacher spent extra time outside of school with her, helping her learn her multiplication tables and rewarded her for it, but in my husband’s situation, the teacher was not so helpful and on top of this great achievement, he was also able to finish school early and start late (b/c there was no “in-between” time esp. since in a classroom setting there’s a range of learning levels) and spent a lot of time doing other hobbies, etc. :slight_smile:


#4

I voted NO…
Only because the last option sounded a little harsh (“Of course not, I want my kids to be normal”)… but in essense I guess that’s how I feel.

I base my feelings on the only examples I’ve personally witnessed of homeschooling families…
3 seperate examples… none of which would ever convince me that HS’ing is a decision I would consider.


#5

I voted no though our children are under 2 so they aren’t in school anyways. My order of preference is: 1. Catholic School
2. Homeschool or maybe there’s a rare chance Public School if I find a “conservative” one that stays out of religion and doesn’t offer questionable classes or conferences etc, but I’m not sure I could find one that way, but anyways.

Here is an interesting quote from Canon Law:
ß2 Christ’s faithful are to promote catholic schools, doing everything possible to help in establishing and maintaining them.

Anyways, in the end you have to figure out whan would be best for your family, what will be best for their spiritual and educational needs. BTW, canon law does state that a Catholic school must be, well, Catholic (they say it in better words). WHen I say I pref. Catholic school, I also mean a real Catholic School, not an independant, not very Catholic one. IMHO a good orthodox school is ideal, but if not available, homeschooling is a good alternative.


#6

My oldest DS went to Kindergarten at our parish school and we’ve homeschooled ever since – he’s in 6th grade now. We homeschool 4 of our 5 kids, the youngest being just 2.

Pros:

If we start school at 8:00 (which we do most days) the youngest are finished by 10:00, and the oldest by 1:00 or 2:00.

My husband’s work schedule is such that he often has week days off and works weekends, so hs-ing frees us up to do family activities during the week. The other pro on this is that we avoid crowds by visiting amusement parks, etc. on weekdays when other kids are in school.

My children seem to get along with each other better than other families I see. (To be fair, I am also comparing with neighborhood children who have no religious upbringing, so it could be the Catholicism just as much as the hs-ing.)

I know exactly what my children are learning in every subject, and how far along they are. I know their capabilities much better than I would if they were at school all day. I can also converse with them about what they are learning. (For example: “Look kids there’s an example of Federal Architecture that we learned about in Art!”)

No homework!

My children are less “worldly” than other kids, including other Catholic kids, because they are exposed to far less “society”. (For example, they are the last ones to know who the current pop stars are, and the latest fads, etc.)

Depending on where you live, there are many other hs-ing families to do things with, and their kids seem to be just as nice as ours.

My children are learning about being part of a family, whereas many other children are learning how to be separate from their families, especially siblings. (They have their own “class” at school, their own friends that are their specific age, not many common friends or experiences, etc.)

One on one, (or even one on 7 or 8) teaching is more effective than one on 20 or 30 or more.

Discipline problems (and there are plenty!) are caught right away and dealt with by parents who truly love the child.

I get to sleep with my children’s principal! :slight_smile:

Cons:

Feeling inadequate or insecure about the job.

Constantly defending your choice to others – family members are the worst.

Less personal time for myself.

Harder to get housework done completely, but kids can pitch in a lot more than tradtional schooled kids, so it’s a pro and a con.

If you have to work outside the home, finding time to fit in school, or finding care for the kids.

Having a spouse that’s not fully supportive can make hs-ing very difficult or even impossible.

I’m not saying that homeschooling is for everyone, some people try it and it’s just not a good fit for different reasons. It has definitely worked for us. Good luck with your decision


#7

I voted yes – we homeschool our children.

The pros are honestly too long to list.

However, the reasons homeschooling is beneficial for one family may not be the reasons another family would want to take this one.

The cons are there…and we are feeling them now for the first time in five years. Before moving here, I would have laughed at anyone who mentioned socialization. Well, the social part is the only con we have gone through in the years, and it’s because we moved here.

We were always busy with outside activities & being more social than most families. Our homeschool group was very close & did more field trips in a month, than the public schools did in a year. I can’t even begin to tell you about all the good that comes w/ a great homeschooling group where you can break off with some great friends. :thumbsup:

Now we have moved to another state. :frowning: It’s been awful for my children who are used to spending a lot of fun time w/ friends. The homeschool group we belong to now isn’t great. We’ve been here a year and just aren’t clicking with anyone. That’s fine when your kids are young and don’t need much outside social interaction, but at this time it’s not working for us. I’m even considering putting them in school next year …for some friendships. It’s definitely NOT NOT NOT for the academics.

You will have to be an extrovert (if your not, you either change or your children will suffer). It’s a great way to meet other families. I started a science co-op in my home, I contacted the rec center to start homeschool PE, and I would put together all the holiday parties. If you’re willing to really be involved, it can be wonderful.
Homeschooling activities & groups needs the parents to make it all work.

Homeschooling is great. We really don’t want to stop. We are a homeschooling family…it’s a lifestyle! DH is even considering moving back to the state we came from.

Honestly, if you would have asked me about pros & cons when we lived in the other state, I couldn’t give you a con. Now, we are feeling the hurdle of making friends. So, it matters where you are and how things are there.

No one will be able to answer how your experience will be without knowing what your community has to offer!


#8

I’ve toyed with the idea of homeschooling our children but it would all depend on money and whether or not I could afford to quit working. Even if we could afford it, I’m still not 100% set on it. I guess I’m torn halfway on it.
The pros would be that we could create an environment to educate our children with NO distractions and I would know that they were getting a good education.
The cons would be that they would be socially secluded from most of the other kids their age, except for their siblings or relatives.


#9

I did at one point, but darned if they didn’t grow up.

I do not home school my granddaughters at this point, as I am their guardian, and they are in an exellent, small CATHOLIC (all the way Catholic, no apologizing, no watering down) school.

PROS: The education can be as individualized as you want it. The socialization is better, as kids socialize with all sorts of people, and is parentally controlled. Even kids with LDs benefit. You can go on vacation as a family when it’s convenient. You control what they learn. When the kid is ready to move on, he or she does. There’s not a class of kids who holds him or her back. If he or she wants to take more time, there’s not a class of other kids who’ll be held back by your kid. It’s as inexpensive or as expensive as you make it. If there is an influence you don’t like in the local schools, public or private, you don’t have to worry about it. It is cheaper, generally, than school in a building, or even public school. Support groups and co-ops abound, and there is always somebody creating a new one.

CONS: Some states regulate things more than others, so the con of standardized testing, keeping records, registering, portfolios, etc. varies with the state. You’ll want some sort of record, in any event, in case you need to change educational opportunities. Be prepared to be very involved with your children and learn along with them. Be prepared to go to a lot of places and see a lot of things. Contrary to myth, home educated children DO socialize, sometimes in the extreme, because they are not bound by age conventions. And while home educated children tend to have less problems later in life, home education does not make them perfect. Don’t expect them to NOT to have problems or make mistakes.


#10

I homeschooled two seperate times:

Homeschooling for us was such a grind when while we were doing it… but when we look back on that time, it’s ALWAYS with very fond memories.

I decided for me it’s like labor… while I’m doing it… I HATE it and KICK myself for doing it again… but when it’s done I think… oh not so bad. And look at the results: Kids learned alot… spent quality time as a family…we could be our own boss… make our own schedule… in retrospect it was all good.

But I wouldn’t do it again.

(I don’t think?) :wink:

I say give it a try. You’ll never know unless you try.


#11

Opps… need to clarify… homeschooling for ME was a grind. My kids always loved it and were very sad when we stopped.


closed #12

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