But What About…?

Ah, summer.

Swimming pools and beaches and fun-in-the-sun. Carefree, happy, content. Spending June and July and August in the shade–Oh no! School’s starting soon! We all know what it’s like to dread having to go back to school in the fall, but what if there was another option? Here, I’m talking about homeschooling. While homeschooling is not exactly typical, it’s a non-traditional and beneficial approach to classic schooling that should be considered by more people. Homeschooled children have more educational freedom than those in public schools, and by that, I mean more field trips.

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Everyone loves field trips, but it seems that despite popular opinion, they remain a rarity. At my school, we’re only allowed 2 field trips per year and there’s a limit to how many miles away the destination is allowed to be. That’s just ridiculous! Field trips are so much more beneficial to visual learners than just sitting in a classroom. Because of the flexibility of a homeschooled curriculum and because students have more of a say in how they learn, the field trips that they go on really add to the learning experience. If that’s not enough to convince you, homeschooled children generally recieve a better education since everyone learns differently and homeschooling caters to that better. There are 3 types of learners: Tactile (learns by doing things), Auditory (learns by hearing things), and Visual (learns by seeing things).

Public school tends to cater to auditory and visual learners, with lectures and powerpoints, which may leave tactile learners like me a little confused. If you’re the type of person who can’t stand boring lectures and sitting still for hours on end, homeschooling may be a good fit for you, because your “teachers” would know you better and understand that. After all, they’ve raised you all your life–they would know your learning style better than any other teacher. Further, evidence shows that homeschoolers really do get better grades, or at least do better on tests. On the new SAT (minus the optional essay), the average homeschooled student will score a 1083, where the average public school student will score a 950. Based on those scores and factoring out a student’s GPA, a homeschooled student would stand a greater chance of acceptance to colleges.

Most Ivy Leagues want a score of at least 1400, which means that both the average homeschooled and public schooled student still have to work hard for acceptance, but the homeschooled student is 113 points closer to that goal. So, you say, a more interesting class experience, a teaching style catered to me, and better grades–but what about my social life? Won’t I miss that? While I won’t say that isn’t one of the major drawbacks of homeschooling–and it is–homeschooled students are far from sheltered. One of my good friends is homeschooled. He’s one of the nicest, most sociable people I know. Because homeschooling is so much more common now than it was before, homeschoolers tend to form groups with others and connect via social media. There’s also friends in the neighborhood and community, as well as the people you’ll meet from all those field trips you’ll be taking.

So, consider it. Consider that already 1 million students are beig taught at home. Consider that 58% of them, more than half, prefer being homeschooled to public school. Think long and hard about the pros and the cons, no more excuses, and I hope you’ll come to the same decision I have: Homeschooling’s the way to go!