I Can’t Homeschool Because I Have 4 Teenagers

I Can't Homeschool

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:

  • Hunting
  • Archery
  • Repair skills
  • Building
  • Guitar
  • 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!



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One Comment

  1. Robin Liner says:

    I have homeschooled 9 kids . 6 are now adults. Concerning point 1- Unless you keep your children locked in their room they will socialize. Just today my 23 year old son heard an elderly friend was in the hospital. He went to visit him after work all by himself. How did he possibly learn to be so social?
    Point 2- Yes, anyone can find opportunities to stay busy. But who is to say that simply dealing with boredom isn’t a good thing? We all have times of boredom. I used to get bored at school . The idea that we have to be active every moment of the day seems a bit self absorbed . Are we creating a culture of children who feel entitled to being entertained? Experiencing the mundane sometimes is what lets us appreciate fun.
    Point 3- If I could sleep until I naturally woke up every once in a while I would. The day will come when responsibility will remove the option of that luxury and my children have gladly risen to the occasion when the time arrived. So for now, let them sleep.