Archive for December 6th, 2008

Homeschooling Part 3: The Cons

Here is a continuation of my homeschooling “research” as I try to prayerfully determine if this is what is right for our family.  Again, these are not cons that I came up with–they are from the Family Education website.

1)  Time Restraints.  The author of this article pointed out that homeschooling consumes a lot of mom and/or dad’s time.  My thought is–my time now is already consumed eight hours a day with WORKING “for the man” : )  !  I’ve never been a stay at home mom so I don’t even know what it would be like to have every day to myself.  As I see it, even if I spend four hours everyday homeschooling then I still have four hours to clean (wow–imagine that, I may have a clean house once in awhile!), cook, run errands and just be a mom and wife.

2)  Financial Restraints.  I am praying, praying, praying that we are able to get our finances in order so that I can work only part time once we move.  Our plan and goal and what we are praying for is that we make enough from the sale of our house to pay off all of our debt.  All of it.  The van, the school loans, the credit card, all of it.  We need to make enough to do that and still have enough left over to put a down payment on our next home.  So then when we move our only financial responsibilities will be our mortgage and our living expenses.  If we are able to do that, then it is feasible that I will be able to work 16-20 hours a week instead of my usual 26-40 hour work week.  We certainly won’t be living like millionaires and I could work more and we could get a bigger house but it’s a sacrifice I am willing to make to be home more with my kids.  Who cares if you have a big house if you have to work all the time to pay for it?       

3)  Being with Your Kids 24/7. I love my kids.  Do they get on my nerves?  Sure they do.  However, I don’t see this being a problem.  Aaron’s big thing has been (said to me), “I just don’t think you have the patience for it.”  Okay.  Here is my response to that.  Do I have much patience with my kids right now?  Not really.  But here is a typical day for me:  Get Annagrace up and out of bed around 7:30.   Get her backpack ready to go.  Pack her lunch and snack.  Get her hair and teeth brushed and send her out the door to the bus stop.   (Aaron does help out with all that I might add!)  Get myself ready for work (and Madalyn too if it’s a Thursday or Friday).  Go to work usually from 8:30-4:00.  Come home to a very messy house–dirty clothes on the floor, dishes in the sink, trash waiting to be taken out, school papers all over the kitchen table.  Do a few chores then sit down and finish my computer work (usually takes me anywhere from 45 minutes to 2 hours depending on how many patients I had that day).  Help Annagrace do her homework.  Cook and eat supper.  Do more chores.  Get the kids bathed and to bed.  Finish photography projects (especially this time of year!) until around 11pm and then go to bed.  Would you have much patience if that was your typical day?  

Aaron is always telling me that “everyone else deals with it” and I’m not the only one.  Hold that thought for a minute.  My hubby and my 3 year old are home everyday.  We are blessed that Aaron can work at home.  However, having a man and a 3 year old home all day equals one messy house when I get home.  Madalyn is like a tornado.  Normal people send their kids to daycare when both parents work.  But Madalyn is here all day making messes while Aaron is working  so I don’t come home to a clean house, I come home to a house that is even messier than when I left it 6 hours prior!  

I get very frustrated with the kids because of all the other things stressing me out during the day.  I truly believe that I will function better when I am home more.   That and I am hoping that I can take a four day school approach with Friday’s off so that we can do activities, run errands, visit the park, go on our field trips, etc on that day. 

 4)  Limited Team Sports.  I am the mother of a very uncoordinated six year old girl.  Maybe she will want to play organized sports one day (I doubt it) and when and if that time comes we can always look for community teams, homeschool teams, etc.  Over the last 4 years she has taken swim class, karate, ballet and tap classes–all using community resources.  So I don’t see that being a big deal for our family.     

5)  Living Outside the Norm. Our family doesn’t have a problem with this at all!  We certainly don’t follow the mainstream with our views on church (we belong to a network of house churches).  I have thought about how it would feel to the kids to go to church at home, have school at home, etc.  We would definitlely have to get out there and get involved in community organizations, homeschool groups, etc. so that the girls would have plenty of opportunities to socialize with other kids. 

Can anyone think of any more cons?  I know someone had mentioned before about the socialization aspect–that the kids may become socially awkward without daily interaction with other kids.  I have read from more than one source that homeschooled kids tend to socialize better with people of all ages (including adults) than their public school peers do.  One woman pointed out that her child had a birthday party and had kids from 3-14 there–all of them belonged to her homeschooling group.   Our kids are both very social anyway and love being around people so again, don’t think that will be a problem. 

My mom asked me yesterday what would happen if I didn’t like it or that I couldn’t handle it.  Well, she can always go back to public school.  There is nothing saying that this is a forever deal.  I don’t think that I’ll have to worry about it though. 

My biggest concern right now is CAN we do this.  Financially, I mean.  Can we afford to do this?  Can we afford for me to work part time.  If we were staying in Virginia, in this county we are in right now, then I know the answer would be no.  The cost of living and the cost of homes are way too high here for it to ever be a reality in our current living situation.  (So maybe that is just one more reason why we feel we are suppose to move to Greenville).  Anyway, more on the financial aspect in my next post.  Let’s just say it’s been a financially difficult (and that is putting it mildly) week for me.     

Thoughts?


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