When I started homeschooling I never imagined all the questions about homeschooling that we would get.
I think people are perplexed by homeschoolers because they can’t put us in a box.
Society can’t categorize us and, for some reason, that makes some people uncomfortable.
Unfortunately, to many people different means weird.
When we meet someone new and they find out we homeschool, we generally get one or two of the same questions about homeschooling over and over.
I get it, people are curious.
(I probably would be, too.)
So, I’m OK answering questions and fostering discussion.
In fact, I like it.
I like answering questions about homeschooling and then hearing about how other families approach learning.
I love fostering those kind of discussions.
I’m even OK with respectful debates and discussions when we have differing educational opinions.
What is exhausting are the judgmental questions about homeschooling from people who seem perplexed about our lifestyle and educational choices.
It’s OK to curious about the homeschooling lifestyle and ask questions about homeschooling; it’s not OK to judge because something is different from what you are doing/what you know.
7 Common Questions About Homeschooling That Homeschooling Families Hear (and The Answers)
Common Questions About Homeschooling #1. Are you worried your homeschooled kid won’t have a ‘normal’ childhood?
We don’t really put a lot of stock in “normal” in our home.
In our house, we celebrate differences (our own and others’) and homeschooling is a great place to foster independence and confidence in being different.
We definitely rock our freak flag here.
I happen to like that my child has an abnormally unique childhood.
I think it’s going to make her a way more interesting adult with a different outlook on life.
Common Questions About Homeschooling #2. Are you going to homeschool the whole time?
This is a regular question that is perplexing to me.
When my daughter was younger I actually had someone tell me, “Oh, it’s OK to homeschool her now while she’s at this [preschool] age, but as she gets older you’ll need to put her in school.”
For different homeschoolers, this answer will vary.
However, our answer is that we intend to homeschool as long as it is working for us.
If, one day, my daughter wakes up and says “I think I would like to go to traditional school,” then we will explore that option.
For now, she’s happy and we’re happy.
And, people do really homeschooling the whole time — all the way through high school (and many even watch their kids go off to college!).
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Common Questions About Homeschooling #3. How can your child be socialized?
Homeschooling families don’t enclose our house in a plastic bubble or embark into a biodome where we shut ourselves away from the world for years on end.
In fact, we even go out with our kids.
We even let them play with other kids!
My child has opportunities to be with other kids quite often (and so do other homeschoolers). She attends regular classes outside of the home–Spanish, swim, music, AHG, sewing, cooking, and more–as well as many other activities (both with homeschoolers and traditionally-schooled kids) where she gets to “socialize” quite often.
Many homeschooling families spend a great deal of time outside the home in other classes and activities.
Common Questions About Homeschooling #4. Oh, so this is a ‘religious’ thing.
(Sometimes there are even air quotes on the “religious” part.)
For some homeschooling families it is about religion.
But, you may be shocked to know that for many others it has nothing to do with religion and there are many secular homeschoolers out there now.
For us, it was a mix or reasons.
We did want to incorporate Christian teachings into our curriculum, but that wasn’t the only thing.
My daughter is also highly interested in many things that are being removed from public schools like art and music.
I happen to think that those things are important in learning and expanding your mind, so that was a big reason for us to homeschool, too.
Today, there are a mix of homeschooling families with all different belief systems and reasons for homeschooling.
Common Questions About Homeschooling #5. Are you really qualified to teach your children?
I would say I’m about as qualified for homeschooling my child as I am for parenting.
You don’t need a college degree or a teaching certificate to homeschool.
Some people who don’t completely understand homeschooling may not realize that most homeschool parents spend a great deal of money buying homeschool curriculum and countless hours planning out homeschool classes, schedules, and more.
We do our homework, yo.
Common Questions About Homeschooling #6. Aren’t you afraid that your homeschooled kid will be behind in their studies?
Sometimes, but that’s only because this way of learning is so outside of what I knew growing up as a publicly schooled kid. So, those methods creep in sometimes and trigger anxiety until I remind myself that this is not regular school.
(I needed to do a better job deschooling myself, to be honest . . .)
The great thing about homeschooling is that you can speed up or slow down based on how your child is learning. This not only helps them in the long run, but also gives them the time to develop confidence in their own skills.
Homeschooling allows us to give one-on-one attention and also personally tailor learning to our kids’ needs.
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Common Questions About Homeschooling #7. Wow, your kid is so outgoing for a homeschooled child!
OK, this really isn’t a question, but it is a statement I get all the time about my daughter.
I have a very outgoing child who basically never meets someone she doesn’t feel like she knows. She talks a lot. (I mean, a lot!) And easily carries on conversations with adults and kids of all ages.
For some reason, mainstream public perception is the homeschooled kids are backward, shy, and introverted.
However, homeschooled kids are just like traditionally schooled kids–some are shy, some are outgoing, and some fall somewhere in between.
It really has nothing to do with where they “school.”
What are some of the weird questions you’ve been asked?
Or, if you don’t homeschool what are the things you’ve always wondered about homeschooling?