As my son and I got out our frying pan, ready for a fun game from our All About Reading lesson on our living room floor, I glanced over at his glowing face and casually asked, “Is this the kind of stuff you did in your kindergarten class?”
His eyes widened as he shouted “Absolutely not!!”
“Do you miss your friends and the learning from your teachers?”
“No, no, no!” came his response. “Homeschooling is WAY better and I never want to go back to public school!”
“Why?” I inquired.
My son’s top 5 reasons why homeschooling is better than public school.
1. “I don’t have to sit criss cross applesauce on the floor.”
In other words, there is flexibility in how and where he does his learning. The freedom to move , build with Legos, or stand on his head while listening to a science podcast, doing verbal math, or having a family read aloud is huge for my ADHD kid.
2. “There are not as many kids.”
In his kindergarten class there were 29 students and 2 teachers. I would often hear my son mention not doing something because “the teacher was busy helping someone else” or “he would just teach the lesson to EVERYONE and we all had to do the same thing.” Even with his IEP and additional support staff, my son found it hard to stay on “task” during longer lessons. With homeschooling, lessons are short (10-30 min. usually), he has one-on-one attention, and there is flexibility in his choice of lessons and learning approach.
3. “There are not as many distractions.”
“In my old school, I always had to worry about what someone else was doing and sometimes there were a TON of distractions and then my brain would get too tired.” Despite living in a 750 sq. ft. apartment in a city with noisy leaf-blowers, conversations, parked delivery trucks, helicopters (we live in Washington DC), or even construction directly under our window, we do a fairly good job of minimizing distractions during our 10-30 minute lessons. And sometimes, a change of scenery – taking the work outside- provides just the right kind of distraction.
4. “Math is harder and more interesting.”
In our home learning, grade levels are less important than the relevance of the learning to our son. He really can move at his own pace.
To put this in context, our little guy is a slower reader, most likely on the lower side of average – maybe reading 6 months behind “normal” pace. And that’s okay in our family. We value slow and steady and habit building which are particularly important skills for the ADHD brain to develop over unnecessary worrying, pressure, and comparisons to keep up with…who?
In terms of math, he was feeling bored so we started incorporating some 2nd grade concepts, remaining mindful of the importance of review and repetition of the basic concepts. So, while he probably reads more on pare with a beginning 1st grader, he is fully engrossed in 2nd grade math and will most likely want to start challenging himself with 3rd grade concepts by the end of the summer.
5. “I wouldn’t get to take a frying pan to school.”
So, now that he is homeschooling, he gets to learn in a way that’s fun, in a way that has meaning, and in a way that works for him.
Today was not the first time my son has told me he “never wants to go back to public school.” Last week, during our morning gratitude time, he blurted out “I am so grateful for homeschooling and I think public school should be outlawed.” I chuckled and gently reminded him that some families (or children) don’t want to or don’t have the luxury to homeschool and that the important thing is that each family has the choice to decide what works best for them. “Well, homeschooling works best for me!” Came his confident reply.
What do your kids love (or perhaps dislike) about homeschooling? How do they rate home learning vs “traditional” school? Leave me a message below or contact me directly. I love learning from other homeschool families.
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