Understanding homeschooling pros and cons is important for your role in your child’s education at home goals and family values. There are advantage and disadvantage of homeschooling when thinking of home school. Understanding the learning opportunities available, as well as the home school challenges, will help you make critical education decisions for your family.
HOMESCHOOLING PROS AND CONS
Benefits and Disadvantages of Homeschooling
To start home school, you need to understand that homeschooling is a major lifestyle change. Although there is a great deal of educational freedom to homeschooling, you should also understand that there are challenges like how homeschool socialization is different and how adjustment periods can take a time commitment from already busy parents.
If you want to get right to some quick answers for pros and cons to homeschooling (including homeschooling myths):
What are the pros of homeschooling?
- Control of your child’s learning.
- Relaxed learning styles.
- More freedom and flexible schedules.
- Exposure to a variety of learning opportunities.
- Learning can take place anywhere!
- Kids have the opportunity to develop confidence in their skills.
- You can teach/learn the topics you want, including religious topics.
- Ability to grow family relationship by spending time together.
- Fewer concerns with bullying and other traditional school peer group issues.
- You can spend more time on harder, more challenging topics. (You can slow down when more time is needed and speed up when a child easily picks up a topic.)
What are the disadvantages of being homeschooled?
- Determining how your child learns best.
- Dealing with society’s perception and judgment of homeschooling.
- Getting easily distracted/staying on track.
- Keeping kids (and yourself!) motivated to learn.
- Finding a homeschool curriculum.
- Balancing different learning levels if you have multiple kids.
- Spending a lot of time together and not getting breaks. (Yes, we all get tired of being with our kids sometimes…)
- Finding your support network and homeschooling group.
- Homeschooling is expensive for some and families may encounter financial constraints.
We’re going to cover each of these in more detail later in the post (including reasons not to homeschool), so keep scrolling!
Is homeschooling a major disadvantage for the students?
Homeschooling is not a major disadvantages for students. However, parents need to be aware of major times commitments and dedication that it takes to homeschool, which may be seen as home school cons to many.
Is it better to be homeschooled?
Whether or not it is better to be homeschooled will be different for each child and family. While there is some research that suggests homeschoolers perform better on standardized testing and later in college, the decision to homeschool should be based on the individual student’s needs.
Pros and Cons for Homeschooling Overview
What are the advantages and disadvantages of being homeschooled?
If you’re just starting the home school search and looking at home schooling benefits, you may be wondering about home school pros and cons for students with questions like:
What are the cons and pros of homeschooling?
Are homeschoolers lying about benefits homeschooling provides?
There have to be some disadvantages of homeschooling, right?!
Are there benefits of homeschooling vs public schooling?
Is being homeschooled good?
(I mean, show me the positive effects of homeschooling and homeschool learning, right?! Where ARE those homeschooling pros and cons statistics, huh?)
And, you might wonder, “What are the homeschooling pros and cons high school?” or “Do colleges accept homeschooled students?”
(The answer is YES, by the way. There are many successful homeschoolers who go on to college! Even Ivy League schools!)
So, that’ seems like a homeschooling benefit, right?
Or you are thinking, “What is the cost of homeschooling and are there financial benefits of homeschooling versus public school?”
Understanding the advantages and disadvantages of home schooling is a lot!
But, here’s the real deal:
The homeschool pros and cons vs public school pros and cons are different for everyone.
So, let’s start with…
Is homeschooling more effective than public school?
Homeschooling can be more effective than public school if parents use home school to tailor learning to the child’s needs and interests. Otherwise, aspects of public schooling may be just as beneficial as homeschool learning.
Why you shouldn’t homeschool your child?
Parents shouldn’t homeschool their child if they are not committed to providing a custom education at home that meets a child’s specific learning needs. Home schooling takes time, research, and dedication to helping your child learn in their own way.
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In life there are advantages and challenges … and the homeschool life is no different!
If you read any of the homeschool expert opinions, they’ll give you both the real homeschooling advantages as well as the honest negatives of homeschooling.
So, we’re not going to paint a rainbow-and-unicorn picture of why homeschooling is good here, but we are going to be honest (and even tell you about some unexpected home school benefits!).
We’ll give you a parent’s perspective and how it benefits your students and also talk about some things that you definitely want to be aware of during home school (especially if you are looking for information on the benefits to homeschooling vs public schooling).
Here’s what we promise:
This is an ULTIMATE GUIDE to homeschool advantages and homeschooling cons full of critical information to help make informed decisions about education and school.
BUT … you should know:
If you talk to any homeschooling family and ask “Is it worth it?” (like, is there really a homeschool advantage?) — AND THEY’RE BEING COMPLETELY HONEST — they will list out some major benefits for homeschooling, but they’ll probably also have a list just as long of homeschooling disadvantages and arguments against homeschooling.
According to one study, “[parents] chose homeschooling because of religion, social factors, and a desire for high achievement. They see both advantages and disadvantages to public schooling and homeschooling.”
Because, EVERYTHING has positives and negatives, so don’t let that deter you — there will be definite advantages of home schooling and, in many cases, clear disadvantages.
Let’s get to the critical homeschooling pros and cons…
9 Major Advantages of Homeschooling
So, is homeschooling a good idea?
What are the benefits of being homeschooled?
Here are some home schooling advantages:
- You Control Your Child’s Learning
- No Rushed Learning
- Tailored and Focused Learning
- Learning Can Take Place Anywhere
- Flexible Schedules
- Exposure To A Variety of Learning Tools
- Better Protection Against Negative Peer Trends and Positive Exposure to Different Age Groups
- Increased Confidence and Sense of Identity
- Fewer Crowds
BE SURE TO CHECK OUT THE DISADVANTAGES OF HOMESCHOOLING RIGHT AFTER THIS SECTION. KEEP SCROLLING FOR A FULL UNDERSTANDING!
Let’s take a closer look at each of the home school advantages…
1. You Control Your Child’s Learning
One of the best things about homeschooling (on the homeschooling pros and cons list) is that you get to control your child’s learning.
Even though some states require that homeschoolers use a specific curriculum, the parent (and the child) still gets to decide when and how the topics are learned.
Plus, with homeschooling you still have the flexibility to allow your child to lead their own learning and add the things they want to learn about, even if you have to follow a state mandated curriculum.
2. No Rushed Learning
A study in England revealed, “rushing able mathematicians through the curriculum means England is producing pupils with only a ‘superficial’ grasp of the subject.”
Unlike public schools who have specific milestones they must hit and specific times (mostly for state testing), homeschool kids get to learn completely at their own pace.
If your child is excelling at math above her level, you can move her up to the level that challenges her.
Conversely, if she is struggling with spelling, you can slow down and allow her to learn at her own pace.
These are both a major plus on the homeschooling pros and cons list!
3. Tailored and Focused Learning
A huge advantage of homeschooling is that you get to tailor learning to each of your kids.
You may have one child that can just read a book and completely comprehend a topic.
On the other hand, you may have another child that really needs to get their hands on something to fully comprehend.
With homeschooling, you get to tailor that learning based on how your child learns and what he or she wants to learn.
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4. Learning Can Take Place Anywhere
Let’s see: we’ve homeschooled in the car, at the FedEx, in the hospital, at our family farm in Virginia, and, of course, at home.
(Just to name a few places.)
Honestly, the list goes on and on.
To truly appreciate homeschooling, you need to get out of the mindset that kids must be sitting at a desk in a room to learn. Homeschooling is NOT schooling at home.
(You may sometimes see it referred to as tuition-free online school, too.)
REMEMBER: Home school learning can take place anywhere, which is a huge advantage of homeschooling.
5. Flexible Schedules
My daughter is a night owl. She always has been (even as a baby). She likes to stay up late and sleep in a little later.
When we first started homeschooling, I tried to force her into the go to bed early, get up early for school thing.
After some crying and gnashing of teeth I thought, “Why am I doing this?”
I was forcing my kid to work against her natural body clock.
So, we switched it around and now she is so much happier.
With homeschooling, you get a flexible schedule that allows you to organize your homeschool schedule in the way that works best for your entire family!
Or, do you have outside the home classes? You can organize around those, too!
Do you like to travel and use roadschooling as your learning tool?
Homeschooling is super flexible and fits around whatever you have going on!
6. Exposure To A Variety of Learning Tools
This is another one of my favorite homeschooling advantages.
When you homeschool, your child doesn’t necessarily have to be “taught” by just you (or by the online curriculum at home).
You have the ability to access a ton of different learning resources to help your child!
My kid wanted to learn Spanish (which I don’t speak), so I found an outside Spanish class that she attends two days a week.
She wanted to learn sewing (which is an amazing life skill), so she goes to a sewing class.
Also, we regularly take advantage of free or very cheap classes offered by parks, nature centers, libraries, art centers, businesses, and more!
And, we do all of this in addition to her at-home learning!
7. Better Protection Against Negative Peer Trends and Positive Exposure to Different Age Groups
One of the biggest disadvantages of home school for students arguments you will hear is that homeschoolers won’t get enough socialization with their peers.
But, have you stopped to consider that it’s just a more controlled social environment of other kids who may be great peers for your child?
Some educational psychologists state that kids get their values from the people they spend the most time with.
(I don’t think that’s any big revelation. Right?)
In a PBS.org article, they discuss a July 2000 study by the Seattle-based Discovery Institute.
In this study, counselors watched videotapes of homeschooled and traditionally schooled children playing.
“The counselors, who did not know which children were from each category, noted that the homeschool students demonstrated fewer behavioral problems than their peers—a result that [one counselor] attributes, in part, to homeschoolers’ main role models:
‘Public school children have, as their main role models, peers, while homeschool students have as their role models, adults.’”
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8. Increased Confidence and Sense of Identity
This homeschooling pro is connected to the previous one for homeschooling pros and cons.
Take a look one more time at what the counselor said during the study mentioned above:
“Public school children have, as their main role models, peers, while homeschool students have as their role models, adults.”
My kid has a mix of homeschool and traditional school friends of all different ages, cultures, and belief systems.
However, she is not with these kids all day everyday, so they rarely have an effect on what she wears, what she does, how she speaks, her likes and dislikes, etc.
In general, as a personal experience, I’ve noticed that her homeschooling friends tend to be more accepting of their differences than if she is in her group of traditionally schooled friends.
All of this allows her to “try out” who she is/wants to be with little to no peer repercussions, which helps her confidence.
9. Fewer Crowds
As a homeschooling family, we visit the zoo, museums, parks, pools, and a ton of other places while traditional school is in session.
We also enjoy less crowded travel because we tend to schedule travel when other kids are in school.
This seems like a silly one to add to the homeschooling pros and cons list, but I actually think it’s huge on the list of homeschooling pros!
(My anxiety is not a fan of crowds!)
Now that we’ve covered a few of the advantages for homeschooling (there are many more, but this is a good starting list), let’s take a look at why is homeschooling bad.
(And, yes, there are homeschooling cons… )
Here are the arguments against homeschooling…
9 Crazy Disadvantages of Homeschooling (That No One Talks About)
Have you been searching through all the disadvantages of homeschooling articles?
I have good news!
Your search ends here because we’re going to get real and talk about some negatives of homeschooling.
So, why is homeschooling bad?
What are the disadvantages of homeschooling?
- You Control Your Child’s Learning
- Dealing with Society’s Perception
- Easy To Get Off Schedule
- Choosing a Homeschool Curriculum
- Balancing Multiple Learning Levels
- Homeschooling Can Be Costly
- Access to Outside Classes Can Be Limited
- You Need to Build Your Own Support Network
- You Must Let Go
Let’s take a closer look at each one.
We’re going to walk through the REAL cons of homeschooling and break down the arguments against homeschooling.
And, why homeschooling is bad idea for some moms and families. . .
Or . . . is it?
One of the first problems with homeschooling is also one of the homeschool benefits.
1. You Control Your Child’s Learning
We listed this as a benefit of home schooling, but controlling your child’s learning can also be a homeschooling disadvantage. (Yes, one of the perks of homeschooling is also one of the negative effects of homeschooling.)
Homeschooling is not for the faint of heart. It is a full time job (and if you already have a full time job, then homeschooling is going to be another full time job on top of that).
It takes time and patience and scheduling and planning.
(It’s pretty much nonstop.)
And, it’s a huge responsibility to take total responsibility for anything, let alone your child’s learning.
HOWEVER, with all of that said, it doesn’t mean you can’t (or shouldn’t) do it. You just need to be really honest about the responsibility of it all before you start.
2. Dealing with Society’s Perception
Most of society still believes the many myths out there about homeschooling.
As a homeschooling parent, you will deal with judgments and questions from your friends and family who may not support (or understand) your decision, and even strangers when you are out in public during “school hours.”
It is your job to be confident in your choices and be ready to answer the questions that homeschoolers get asked.
On a positive note, homeschooling is becoming more mainstream, so society is becoming more educated on “What is homeschool?” We get a lot less questions and judgments today than we did years ago when we first started to homeschool.
3. Easy To Get Off Schedule
Homeschool takes a great deal of dedication and time commitment.
But, one of the biggest negatives to homeschooling, is it’s easy to get distracted and get off schedule when life happens.
Although having a few days of getting off track here and there are fine, don’t let it become a regular occurrence (or you’ll be super stressed trying to get caught up–especially if you’re following a specific curriculum instead of unschooling).
This doesn’t mean you can’t be relaxed with your homeschooling. It just means that it’s your responsibility to keep your child’s learning moving forward.
4. Choosing a Homeschool Curriculum Is HARD
Talk to any homeschool parent and this will be up there in the Top 5 ARRRRRRRRRGH! disadvantages when discussing homeschooling pros and cons.
If you don’t have a state required curriculum or list of subjects (every state is different), choosing the homeschool curriculum you will use can be completely overwhelming.
There are many choices and there are often no “one size fits all” for different learning levels.
(And, I won’t even get started on the different homeschooling methods … at least not in this post.)
Not only that, you will have many stops, starts, and curriculum changes and still may not find the one that meets your needs.
If you’re new to homeschooling and struggling with this, I recommend starting with unschooling and slowly working into a unit studies method.
Also, be aware that schooling at home and homeschooling are two very different things.
You will want to choose the one that is right for you!
5. Balancing Multiple Learning Levels Is Challenging
If you have multiple children that you are homeschooling, it can be tricky — especially if you have babies and/or preschoolers in the homeschool mix along with school aged kids.
There is good news, though!
As your kids get older, they will become more autonomous in their learning and probably need less assistance. This will allow more time for the younger ones.
Also, you can create some good group unit learning projects for all ages.
(Science and cooking are always good options!)
6. Homeschooling Can Be Costly
Are there financial benefits of homeschooling?
WELL . . .
Homeschooling can be costly, especially if you have multiple kids and you’re purchasing different homeschool curricula for them.
Additionally, there are the costs of any outside classes or activities for each child.
So, homeschooling can be expensive, but not so costly that you cannot do it.
(Anywhere from a few hundred dollars per child each year into the thousands of dollars, depending on your choices.)
Like anything, you will need to budget for your family needs.
7. Access to Outside Classes Can Be Limited
Depending on where you live, access to outside classes and activities for your homeschooler may be limited (or nonexistent).
However, don’t let that be a deterrent when thinking about homeschooling pros and cons!
You will just need to work a little harder to find (or create) those activities.
(Be sure to start with your public library!)
Also, if you see a local business that has cool things (think pottery studios, bakers, etc.) ask them if they would add a homeschool event or class.
You may be surprised how receptive many businesses are to this!
8. You Need to Build Your Own Support Network
A huge disadvantage of homeschooling is that you, as the adult, will need to build your own support network.
(The kids will get much more socialization than you, trust me.)
There is no PTA or regular school functions where you get to know the other parents and build relationships with them.
(At least not until you build your 0wn!)
You will need to work hard to create and maintain a support system of fellow homeschooling parents because there WILL be days when you feel like you’re losing your mind.
Luckily, today we have many ways to connect with groups online. So, start with homeschool groups on Facebook and also search the internet for homeschooling groups in your area.
You may also want to see if there are any co-ops available in your area (and explore if you want to join).
Lack of homeschooling support can start as a con on the homeschooling pros and cons list, but you can easily bump it up to a pro just by participating in an online homeschool support group!
9. You Must Let Go
If you’re new to homeschooling, it will not look anything like what you know or what you grew up with (especially if you went to public school–if that’s the case, be sure to check out deschooling!).
Be aware that you need to let go of what you know about learning (because what you probably really know is about schooling not learning).
And, we get it, letting go of control can be hard. However, letting go of control and how you think schooling should work may be one of the best things you can do for your homeschooling.
Be flexible and allow learning to flow!
So … is homeschooling good or bad?
As you can see, there are many homeschooling advantages and disadvantages.
We’ve put together an extensive list of pros and cons of homeschooling. We hope it’s given you a better understanding of the home school lifestyle!
Oh, by the way. . .
NEW HOMESCHOOLERS: WHERE DO I GO FROM HERE?
If you’re feeling overwhelmed from all the information on advantages and disadvantages of homeschooling, be sure to start here:
This is an ultimate guide for new homeschoolers and will walk you through, step-by-step on how to get started homeschooling!
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