As a homeschooling parent, you’ve probably had people question your qualifications to teach your kids. If you’ve got a teaching degree, you’re good to go (in that area, at least – you’re likely to get another objection or 20 thrown your way).
No teaching degree? Guess what. You are still uniquely qualified to teach your children. How? Well, for one thing, if they can walk and talk and feed themselves, that’s a good indication that you’ve been teaching them since the day they were born just fine.
Need a few more reasons? How about five of them?
1.You have a vested interest in their success.
You have a vested interest in your child’s academic and personal success. He is your child. Of course, you want him to be successful.
As a new homeschooling parent, I spent a lot of time worrying about the curriculum we were using and whether or not we were doing enough. Some wise, more experienced homeschool moms assured me that if I was worried about it, I was probably okay.
Because you’re shouldering the responsibility for your children’s educations, you are going to do everything in your power to ensure that they get a quality education.
You’ll learn alongside them so that you can help them understand concepts that may be foreign to you. You’ll look for ways to help them succeed in areas that are difficult for you, such as finding the right tutor or signing them up for private lessons.
2. You can provide a vast array of educational resources.
Sometimes we worry about limiting our kids’ options because we homeschool. Like, maybe they don’t have easy access to art class or the drama club, or perhaps we don’t know how to teach a specific interest.
Although our kids may not be able to participate in such classes in a convenient, all-in-one spot place, homeschooling means that our resources are limited only be our finances. Even location isn’t much of a factor in most cases thanks to the Internet and the availability of online classes.
Our kids can learn foreign langue from a native speaker. They can take art and photography classes. Homeschooled kids can participate in group classes, have their specific learning challenges addressed, or invest in their unique interests.
They can participate in community theater, recreation, and educational classes. With a little research and intentionality, homeschooled kids have a whole world of resources available to them. And those resources are being provided by you, their qualified instructor.
3. You can tailor their education.
How many times have you heard of an advanced learner struggling because they’re bored in class? What about a struggling learner who can’t get the help she needs?
When you homeschool, you determine the course and pace of your child’s education. Your advanced learner can move quickly through the material, diving deeper when the topic captivates him. You can provide the appropriate accommodations for your struggling learner without all the red tape and bureaucracy.
In addition to tailoring the education based on your child’s academic strengths, you can customize it based on her interests. You can use LEGO blocks, Minecraft, or American Girls to captivate your fan.
Your high school student can earn elective credit by digging into her interests. She can choose any foreign language, rather than being limited to just two or three options.
As a homeschooling parent, you are in the enviable position of being able to easily offer differentiated instruction to each of your students.
4. The statistics are in your favor.
If you’re a homeschooling parent without a teaching degree or even a high level of formal education, you may worry that you’re not qualified to teach your kids. Statistically, you have nothing to worry about. According to the National Home Education Research Institute:
- The home-educated typically score 15 to 30 percentile points above public-school students on standardized academic achievement tests.
- Homeschool students score above average on achievement tests regardless of their parents’ level of formal education or their family’s household income.
- Whether homeschool parents were ever certified teachers is not related to their children’s academic achievement.
- Degree of state control and regulation of homeschooling is not related to academic achievement.
There is a lot of research on homeschooling that bears out these same results. Your educational pedigree does not determine your ability to successfully homeschool your child; your willingness to invest in him does.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Homeschool success isn’t based on a parent’s educational pedigree, but their level of commitment.” quote=”Homeschool success isn’t based on a parent’s educational pedigree, but their level of commitment.”]
5. If you’re qualified to help with homework, you’re qualified to homeschool.
Studies on academic success have shown that the most accurate predictor of a child’s success is parental involvement. Kids whose parents don’t spend time with them reading aloud, helping when they struggle to understand a homework, or otherwise getting involved in their education tend to struggle much more than kids whose parents do.
Do you know who are really involved in their kids’ educations? Homeschooling parents!
My oldest child attended public school for two years. In first grade, we were working on two and three hours of homework every night. My husband and I finally decided that we could put another hour or two with that and be done for the day if we homeschooled.
If you can read to your children and help them with their homework, you can homeschool. In fact, homeschooling is often easier because your kids don’t argue that, “That’s not how Mrs. So-and-So does it.”
You know, because you are Mrs. (or Mr.) So-and-So, and this is how you do it.
[clickToTweet tweet=”You know and are willing to invest in your kids. That makes you ideally qualified to teach them. ” quote=”You know and are willing to invest in your kids. That makes you ideally qualified to teach them. “]
The fact that you know your children better than anyone and are willing to invest your time and attention to homeschool them makes you ideally qualified to teach them. Your love for your them absolutely makes you the best teacher for your kids.
In what ways have you found that you are uniquely qualified to teach your kids?
Kris Bales is a newly-retired homeschool mom and the quirky, Christ-following, painfully honest founder (and former owner) of Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers. She has a pretty serious addiction to sweet tea and Words with Friends. Kris and her husband of over 30 years are parents to three amazing homeschool grads. They share their home with three dogs, two cats, a ball python, a bearded dragon, and seven birds.