How to Homeschool: Finding your Why

image of a woman's hands writing in a notebook with a pen. they're wearing a dark yellow sweater.

Whether you’re new & just figuring out how to homeschool, or you’ve been homeschooling for years, finding your why can make a world of difference when it comes to staying motivated and focused.

Having been an entrepreneur for a number of years, I’ve always been instructed to identify my “why.” While my “why” has changed over the years, it’s always been super helpful in my success (and my sanity!).

Not sure what a “why” is? And why it’s so important? You’re in the right place! Today, I’m sharing my experience with thus far with homeschooling, what a “why” is, and why figuring it out (and re-evaluating) is a must-do.

What’s a Homeschool Why?

Plainly said, a homeschool “why” is quite literally the reason your family has chosen homeschooling. There are numerous reasons why a family may choose homeschooling over traditional schooling.

When my family and I made the decision to start homeschooling, it wasn’t a decision we took lightly. Deciding whether or not to homeschool was going to set the scene for all our lives for a number of years if not a lifetime.

photo of a partially completed multiplication worksheet
Photo Credit: Chris Liverani

Someone may choose to homeschool their children because they

  • want more quality family time together
  • want control over the content their children learn
  • value alternative methods of education more than traditional
  • don’t want their child to endure bullying
  • have concerns over the safety of traditional schools
  • value learning through experiences and travel and don’t want to be limited to traveling only during school holidays
  • have philosophical or pedagogical reasons that don’t align with traditional schooling
  • have religious or cultural values that don’t align with traditional schooling

There are so many reasons someone may decide to homeschool that, if I were to attempt to list each and every reason…you’d be reading this article for hours upon hours. Who’s got time for that? Mmmm….nope!

Just as there are reasons why someone would decide to homeschool, there are also reasons why someone might choose to send their kids to traditional school instead.

blurred image of two children completing a worksheet at a wood kitchen table
Photo Credit: Jessica Lewis 🦋 thepaintedsquare

Someone might choose to send their kids to a traditional school because they

  • know their kids will be around other kids
  • have work or scheduling obligations
  • need their child to have access to specialized services
  • prefer the schools to take care of the legal requirements and educational accountability
  • aren’t familiar with or interested in homeschooling because of a stigma, prior experience, etc.

The one thing all parents have in common? We all have a reason for making such educational decisions for our children. We all have a “why” for what we’re doing…or not doing.

Please note, this all is not to start an argument or cause tensions between various forms of schooling – everyone’s different and every family is different. What works for one family may not work for another and it’s important that we respect the various decisions.

click here...to find your new homeschooling community in our FREE Facebook Group! That Homeschool Family Hangout. homeschooling our kids, one adventure at at time

Figuring out your Homeschool Why

Before you dive right in to figuring out how to homeschool, homeschool curriculums, joining a co-op, and how to keep accurate homeschool records, I just want you to take a deep breath.

Sit down. Breathe in. Breathe out. Why is homeschooling even on your mind? Is there something you want your kids to have more of? Something you want them to have less of? What is making you think “hmmm…maybe we should homeschool the kids?”

That. Right there. That is your homeschool why.

photograph of a bookshelf filled with homeschooling books and supplies
Don’t be surprised if your bookshelves start looking like this! There are so many fun homeschooling materials out there! Photo Credit: Taylor Heery

Hold onto that thought. Write it down on a piece of paper or save it as a note in your Google drive or on your phone. Something. Record why homeschooling would be the right decision so you can always refer back to it when needed.

Speaking of…

Why oh Why is the Why so Important?

Why is it important to keep your homeschooling “why” on your mind? Well, I hate to break it to you, but homeschooling isn’t always a walk in the park.

Yes, deciding to homeschool was one of the best decisions my husband and I ever made. It wasn’t an easy decision, but it was one that we don’t regret one bit.

And, while we love homeschooling, we don’t always love the stress and chaos that sometimes comes with homeschooling.

Just as with traditional schooling, there are great days and not-so-great days of homeschooling. There are days where we wonder “did we make the right decision? Is this really what’s best for the kids?” There are days when we worry and (many more) days when we celebrate.

.

That is completely normal.

Being able to refer to our “homeschool why,” though, reminds us of both the end goal and why we even started homeschooling in the first place. It reiterates what’s important to our family.

It helps us to remember how our kids felt during their traditional school days. It helps us to remember that we made the decision to homeschool because we wanted the best for our kids.

woman helping a young child with a math assignment

You Got This

It may feel like a silly step in the homeschooling process but, I promise you, finding your why for homeschooling is 100% worth the time and effort.

Every homeschool experience is different, but I’ve found that we’re all here to help each other out no matter the differences in beliefs, selected curriculum, and such.

Should you ever have any questions about homeschooling, feel free to send me an email or leave a comment. Even better? Join That Homeschool Family Hangout on Facebook and get input and such from a community of homeschoolers across the globe!

You got this!

Until next time, stay safe and enjoy quality time with your family,

- Elizabeth (and the kids. and the husband. even the dog.)

Elizabeth Dukart is a proud Georgia-based born and raised Jersey Girl, wife, and mom of 2 human boys & 1 canine boy.

Created in 2021, Elizabeth owns and publishes That Homeschool Family: a free resource for homeschooling parents and beyond! A seasoned blogger, Elizabeth previously published a popular location-specific family resource blog, but decided to “Pivot!” her blogging focus after she started homeschooling her two boys in 2020. In addition to this blog, you can follow Elizabeth’s homeschooling and family adventures on Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, and Pinterest. She can also be found in her Facebook Group: That Homeschool Family Hangout.

When she’s not busy taking over the world or homeschooling, Elizabeth can be found listening to music (especially The Beatles & Harry Styles!), being silly with her boys, watching movies with family, shopping, or traveling!

Have a question or want to work with Elizabeth? Send her an email!

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