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Homeschooling is Not the Answer

School is tough.
The pressure to be socially accepted is overwhelming. The need to be perfect is unbearable. The school year is a time in which you are enveloped in a realm of constant work, drama, and competition. Academics and homework are exertion enough. Socializing is work, too. In “the land of school” –so different from the security of home- socializing is a stressful and mentally-challenging prospect. The inexorable fact is that your friends are judging your every move. You cannot “let loose” around your friends. Rather, you have to prove your worthiness to join their crowd. Throw in the competitiveness of sports and activities, and BAM! You suddenly have a mountain of anxieties that last throughout the school year. An ongoing stress that is only soothed by weekends.
Life is tough.
Unless you are lucky- and not many people are- you will come to realize this unfortunate concept once you acquire responsibility for your actions. One will always have to deal with snobby colleagues. One will always have to say “no” to an unaffordable, coveted object. One will always have to work to get what they desire… and sometimes, sadly, just to get the bare necessities to survive. Drama does not end after high school. Answering to unreasonable authority does not cease after college. In the world of work, independence, and self-rule, nothing ever comes without persistence and hardship. Life is rewarding. Life is a gift. Life is a privilege. But…
Life is so, so tough.

Homeschooling is definitely a favorable alternative to public school. In fact, two percent of American children choose this option. Schooling at home is a great way to shelter children of the harsh, world-wide reality. Children can be cruel. Nice people get bullied. Honor-Roll students turn to drugs because of inevitable peer pressure. And what parent in the right mind would want their children to be exposed to such awful practices? What parent would want to subject their child to bullying, or social and academic stress? At home, a parent can control their child’s stress level. They can also cater to their student’s self- esteem, and give them a constant feeling of self-worth. A parent can work one-on-one with his or her child, and conveniently teach according to the special needs of their individual kid.

It is for these reasons that homeschooling is a horrible idea.
You may homeschool your youngster, and guard them from the insensitive reality of public school. You may not, however, “homelife” them.
“Homelifing” a child means that you control every aspect of their life just as much as you are in control of their education. You alter the job your child is employed in to fit their daily schedule. You soothe the child when they don’t get a desirable payment, and offer them some extra allowance. When an unjust boss takes control of your youth’s occupation, you “speak to him” about “taking it easy on your little one.” You make time for their every extra activity, and shelter them from the aggressiveness of the Real World.
Once your child becomes an independent adult, your power over these things becomes zilch. You have no control over what your youth will be exposed to, or over the hardships they will eventually cope with. You may not “walk them to work” and “speak to their boss” about “how your son or daughter is a new employee and a little nervous….” You cannot call the mother of a nasty colleague, and yell at them to “control their child!” When your kid has trouble completing a work project, you cannot give them hot chocolate, tell them “it’s okay”, and explain to their employer that “it was a very stressful project, is it okay if my child has an extension?”
School gives children the skills they need to cope with a diversity of personalities. It also teaches them to plan work according to activities, and not to succumb to the constant pressure to fit in, party, or forget their responsibilities. Public School allows children to learn how to act around different forms of authority. Be it the fun, lax science teacher or the control-freak, stringent history teacher who hates kids. Children will also learn how to say “no” towards offers that will hurt them academically, such as drugs… or simply going to a movie the evening before finals.
School is tough, but it is the vital component in make one succeed in life.
The harshness of public education is significant, but it seems as though this is the main aspect a parent will consider while making the life-changing decision as to whether they should home school their child, or not.
For school, “tough” as it is, tends to be rewarding, great, and a heck of a lot of fun. I believe that the experience of school can give you the best years of your life. Be it laughing with your group of friends at the lunch table, after a stressful test… or getting an A on your report card. The self-satisfaction one gets when a teacher genuinely praises them is irreplaceable. The thrill of starting a new grade, finding out your classes, praying you didn’t get “the mean teacher” is unique. Rolling your eyes at the obnoxious remark some student made, and then exchanging annoyed looks with your friends is self-satisfying. And learning, as much as students groan and complain about it, is priceless… especially when done in a challenging school environment.
Those who are homeschooled miss out on life-changing experiences. I would know. Being homeschooled for one year when I was six was an extremely tough time for me. My relationship with my mother- who served as my teacher- was tense. I disliked her for grading my work harshly, and for making me redo a sloppy worksheet. I also resented my younger brother- who learned with me- for having less work to do. I had a lot of activities, and constantly hung out with neighborhood friends, but my experiences were all very selective. I was absolutely protected from bullies, biased teachers, and the feeling of failure. Although I was homeschooled just for second grade, I went into school unsure of how exactly I should act.
Had I not homeschooled, and had just been thrust into public education like the majority of children, I would not have thought a place like school so awful. Indeed, during the beginning, I dreaded school. I felt as though every place should be like the safe, sheltered haven that was my home classroom. As I was only homeschooled for a year, and at a very young age, I adjusted quickly enough. But now I see that had I been put into middle school after years of depending on my sympathetic parent’s teaching skills, I would never have survived.
The concept of homeschooling is generally awful. There is, however, good reason to use this pleasurable alternative. If you have a child with a severe mental or physical handicap, sometimes it is best to teach them from home. However, it is still exceedingly important to expose those children to friends and activities. For, even with mentally-challenged children, life will constantly continue to be a challenge. Like a videogame, as a person becomes more experienced, there will only be more obstacles for them to conquer. Life is perhaps even crueler to special-needs people. That is why, while homeschooling may be a good academic option, sheltering is not the answer.
How I am psyched to start high school next year! Yes, I am going to have to maneuver through senior boys who weigh pure muscle. Yes, I will be exposed to gossip, drama, and cattiness. Not only will I hear about who got stoned and when, but I am sure I will be offered numerous drugs throughout the following years. But I will learn in classes of such variety, I will never cease to be interested. I will make friendships that will last with me throughout life. I will have the time of my life in school sports, even if I lack the capability to run fast or catch a ball.
Life is tough. Thank God I have school to lessen it’s callousness.



Join the Discussion

This article has 3 comments. Post your own now!

phillyphanatic4035 said...
Oct. 16, 2012 at 3:07 pm
I agree with what you said, sailerc. Homeschoolers should not be stereotyped as being totally sheltered from "the real world." I've been homeschooled since second grade (I'm a sophomore now) and I have had no shortage of life-changing experiences. I also have made hundreds of friends by homeschooling. Please don't write off homeschooling as horrible. You have an extremely slanted perspective, C_B_Mia, and I find it very offensive. 
 
sailercThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Feb. 16, 2012 at 7:55 pm
I think you are stereotyping homeschooling. I homeschool, but it was my choice, not my parents', and in no way are they sheltering me. I didn't feel challenged academically in school, and because I don't go to school, I have many MORE opportunities to interact with people, and not just high schoolers who are often ignorant. Although you have had experience homeschooling, it was when you were very young. I imagine that homeschooling as a young child requires a lot more guidance from a teacher, an... (more »)
 
ReflectionsofYou said...
Jul. 19, 2010 at 12:14 pm

I think you're probably right in that homeschooling can provide sheltering. I'v had several discussions about this with different people. I could argue that sheltering isn't always a bad thing.... but I won't.  I just want to say that homeschooling only provides more opprotunities for an already protective parent to take more control. Homeschooling itself doesn't actually DO the protecting. I think it comes down to the intentions of the parent. I hope that doesn't offend you or anything,... (more »)

 
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