Everyone knows that it is impossible to homeschool a teenager, right? Wrong!
The fact is that not only can you survive homeschooling a teen–or even FOUR of them–but your family can truly thrive in this homeschooling lifestyle.
3 Myths About Homeschooling Teenagers
1. My teen needs to go to school to socialize.
Socialization is probably the most divisive topic of discussion between homeschoolers and non-homeschoolers. But really, nowhere in the world is the scope of socialization limited to a school setting.
Unless you happen to homeschool.
Then you’ll find many well-meaning people who seem to be convinced that the only acceptable means of obtaining social experience is to attend school. I don’t buy that.
Real social skills involve more than just the ability to fit in with a class full of teens. Socially adept teens should be able to converse comfortably with just about anyone–adults, new acquaintances, the docent at the museum–not just those who are their own age.
Homeschooled teens actually have more time for building genuine social experience, since they don’t spend seven or so hours each weekday within the four walls of the local school.
Real-life socialization opportunities may include:
- Involvement in a local homeschool group
- Participating in community service
- Attending co-op or community college classes
- Informal gatherings with family and friends
- Field trips
- Involvement in outside activities, such as Civil Air Patrol or 4-H
- Part-time employment
- Church youth group activities
2. My teen will be bored if he is always stuck at home.
If homeschooling meant that teenagers were unable to leave their homes, then yes, I suppose there would be a lot of bored teens out there. But homeschooling does not chain a family to their home.
In fact, quite the opposite is true. Homeschooling provides more opportunities for pursuing individual interests.
For example, my daughter has taken several online cake decorating courses. She uses her free time to develop her skills and learn more about the art of cake decorating.
My teen boys have had a wide variety of interests:
- Repair skills
- Airplanes and flight
Because of the flexibility of homeschooling, both of my older boys have also been able to find steady jobs while still completing their high school education.
3. My teen will never learn to get up early if he doesn’t go to school.
This is another big concern for those who aren’t familiar with homeschooling. (And yes, my teens LOVE to sleep in!)
Interestingly, studies show that sleeping late is actually better suited for a teenager’s natural sleep cycle. In out home, it has worked well to allow our teens to sleep until they feel rested.
However, my teen boys have jumped at the opportunity to take full-time jobs, and both of them get up early without any prompting from me. It seems that a paycheck is a big enough motivator to get them out of bed in the morning!
Think You CAN’T Homeschool?
Check out the advice from the iHomeschool Network bloggers!