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Homeschooling Critiques are Unfounded

Jun 11, 2008
The debate over homeschooling has been going on for years, and will continue to persist as parents look for viable alternatives to public school education.

Proponents of homeschool activities say that their children are allowed to work at a much faster pace, can receive much more individual attention, and are free from possible negative influences that may be present in a public school setting. While those against home schooling say that it stifles creativity, socialization, and can potentially set a child down a more difficult road toward the future.

In truth, there are pieces of each of these arguments that are valid, but nonetheless, they are all also somewhat misleading. A more objective approach to home school education reveals that there a both great benefits and great challenges facing parents and children who choose a home school curriculum for their education.

The argument that homeschooled children can work at a faster pace, and are therefore not "stifled" by the pace of a 30 child classroom is definitely valid, but it must be said that, in truth, a child is really only held back - or allowed to move forward - by his own abilities. If a child is particularly bright, then a home schooling environment does indeed allow him to work at a faster pace than he would be able to in a public classroom. However, some children - that would ordinarily not move at a fast pace - may benefit from being pushed by the pace of a classroom. So, while some may thrive, others may fall back to work at their own pace.

In a related argument, it is true that home schooled children can receive more attention than they would in a classroom. The benefits of this are obvious - more individual attention from your teacher means more opportunity to have in-depth discussions about school work, have your questions answered, and feel a sense of comfort and accomplishment that a traditional classroom might not allow.

The most difficult obstacle for homeschoolers comes in the form of socialization. For years, homeschooled children have faced the stigma of being socially inept and less able to function outside of the "bubble" provided by their parents. This is probably the most accurate of criticisms when it comes to homeschooling. However, much has been done throughout the years to combat this. Involvement in scouting, church groups, and after-school groups comprised completely of homeschoolers, can strongly help combat the socialization challenges.

In short, homeschooling is just like any other culture - it works for some people, and not for others. The results will always be mixed, but so to, are the results from private and public schooling.
About the Author
Art Gib is a freelance writer and Heritage Home School Academy is a home schooling organization offering home school curriculums and homeschooling resources.
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