4 Reasons Why We’ll Continue Homeschooling After the Pandemic Ends
If you’re like us, the pandemic was one of the reasons you started homeschooling and now you’re deciding if you’ll continue homeschooling after the pandemic ends. It’s a big decision, I totally get it!
Before we started homeschooling, my youngest had just started full-day kindergarten and my business was finally starting to become profitable. It seemed as though everything was falling into place. Both boys were in school from 9-3:30 and I was at home typing away on my computer or getting together with business clients to discuss our next project or how my business could help theirs. After I picked my boys up from school, we’d rush to their extracurricular activities, sometimes grabbing dinner at a drive-thru because there wouldn’t be enough time to eat at home.
When the after-school activities were done, we’d head home so the boys could get their homework done. My husband would come at home from work around 7:30pm with just enough time to give the boys a bath and put them to bed.
We’d start the cycle over again the next day. Again and again. It was exhausting, but that’s how raising kids was supposed to be, right?
Then, school’s closed and the whole world was turned upside down in so many ways. After doing virtual learning for a few months through our public school, our family made the decision to withdraw the boys from public school and homeschool them instead.
Now, we’re finishing up on our first official year of homeschooling and, let me tell you…it’s been an experience! It hasn’t been without it’s bumps in the road, but homeschooling, in general, has been a very positive experience for our entire family. Because of that, we’ve made the decision to continue homeschooling after the pandemic ends!
If you’re considering starting to homeschool or are struggling with making the decision about continuing homeschooling after the pandemic, these are some of the reasons we’ve decided to continue homeschooling:
4 Reasons Why We’ll Continue Homeschooling After the Pandemic
More Family Time
As I mentioned before, my husband doesn’t usually get home from work until around 7:30 pm or so. When my boys were in public school, they didn’t really get to see my husband much during the week. They’d have to go to bed around 8:30 pm because, if they wanted time to enjoy their breakfast and get ready without rushing, their alarms would go off at 6:45 am.
Since we homeschool, we are free to create our own daily schedules. We’ve been lucky to have my husband working from home for the past year, but, when he goes back into the office, I have a feeling we’ll appreciate the luxury of running on our own schedule even more.
Now, it’s ok if the boys don’t go to bed early. It’s ok to stay up later for extra family time or to listen to yet another bedtime story. Since we make our own schedule, the boys can wake up when their bodies tell them to do so (which is usually around 8am or so) and don’t have to wake up to an alarm clock.
We will continue homeschooling after the pandemic because doing so allows us to spend more quality time together as a family. Those kids don’t stay little for long, so might as well get that family time in while they want it, right?
More Opportunity for Travel
We are totally a “see and do” family meaning we love to see and do new and fun things as a family. Thing is, when the kids were still going to public school, we’d have to take day trips or vacations during the summer, during a school holiday, or (gasp!) pull them from school. Now that we homeschool, we can travel on our schedule.
So far, we’ve been able to take the boys to Disney World twice. We had a great time on each trip, but my husband and I felt guilty taking them out of school and we had to make sure to schedule our trip so it wasn’t too close to winter break (a busy time at Disney) or a major holiday (also typically busy times at Disney). We ended up going in February both times and, while the Florida weather is typically perfect during February, it’s nice that, if we would like to go to Disney again, we could go in the beginning of September (when school’s start in New Jersey) or even right after the holidays in January!
In addition to having freedom when scheduling family vacations, by continuing to homeschool, we’ll also have more opportunities to take educational day-trips with the kids! If we’re learning about the American Revolution, we won’t be limited to reading about it in books or watching videos because we could take a drive over to Philadelphia or even New York City! If we want to delve even deeper, we could take a road trip to Virginia to see where George Washington and Thomas Jefferson lived. (Did I mention we’re big Hamilton fans?? Yep!)
By continuing homeschooling after the pandemic, we’ll have so many opportunities to travel and see the world and there is nothing quite like a hands-on experience like that.
A Customized Education
While it’s important to teach kids the basics of math, reading, and writing, I have enjoyed that homeschooling allows for a customized education. For example, my oldest is very interested in the culinary arts and says he’d like to be a chef one day. Well, if my boys were to continue in public education, they probably wouldn’t have an opportunity to learn culinary skills at school unless they opted to take a cooking class (do schools even do that still?). Another option would be to take an after-school cooking class, but, let’s be real…do we really want to add another extra-curricular activity to the list. That’s a big fat ol’ NOPE.
To encourage my son’s love of the culinary arts, we’ve subscribed to Universal Yums, we’ve watched documentaries about certain cooking styles and skills, and we’ve even incorporated a culinary education into our history and reading lessons.
If your child is interested in learning, why wouldn’t you want to take advantage of that “thirst” and provide and education?!
When I was a special education teacher, one of my favorite parts of the school day was when I’d teach my students social and life skills. It’s momentarily beneficial when a child can memorize and use the Pythagorean Theorem, but when the heck are they going to use it in real life?! Here I am, almost 20 years since high school graduation, and A2+B2=C2 has yet to serve a purpose in my life. (I still remember it, though!)
What do kids need to know? They need to know how to order a meal at a restaurant. They need to know how to fix a flat tire. They need to know how to manage their money and how to budget. They need to know skills that can be useful to them throughout their lives and not just skills that will help them to perform well on a state-mandated test. (oh, did I go there?? #sorrynotsorry)
We will continue homeschooling after the pandemic because my kids will have the opportunity to learn about topics they’re interested in and information that can benefit their lives in the long-run.
A Healthier Learning Environment
Without getting into too much detail, my boys had some experiences that were “not so great” while they were in public school. Don’t get me wrong, they had plenty of wonderful experiences, but the “not so great” experiences have left a lasting impact. While we somehow found a way to turn those experiences into teachable moments, as a mama, I do wish we could’ve avoided some parts of their public school education.
My kids do know how to stand up for themselves and are typically super happy and positive individuals, but it’s still easy to get brought down by bullies.
In addition to social and emotional trauma brought on by bullying, one of my kids also experienced hair loss brought on by stress-induced alopecia. While some people thought they might have been being funny during the school day, their antics were damaging my sweet boy from the inside out. When virtual learning started, skin issues and anxiety eased up and I don’t believe for one second that the two weren’t related.
It is hard us to protect our children, but still let them learn and grow. As for us, we will be homeschooling after the pandemic because it is ultimately a healthier way of life for all of us.
Homeschooling After the Pandemic is a Big Decision!
As with so many of the decisions we, as parents, make for our children each and every day, making the decision to continue homeschooling after the pandemic is a big one! Making the decision could result in some pretty drastic changes to your daily lives, but, if you have the opportunity to homeschool and it’s a way of life you and your kids would like to pursue, might as well give it a chance, right?!
If you decide to homeschool your kids after the pandemic, but find that it’s not working out, you can always enroll them in public or private school. You gave it a chance and there is no shame in that.
If you decide homeschooling after the pandemic is your choice and it goes well, then that’s wonderful! There are so many different ways to parent, so many different ways to raise and teach our children and this seems to be what’s working well for us!
If you have any questions that I can help out with, please email me! Making the decision to homeschool is, as I said, life changing. I’m happy to help out in any way that I can.
Until next time, stay safe and enjoy quality time with your family,