Is Homeschooling Hard? Honest Answers

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Is homeschooling hard? Perhaps you’ve found this post because you did a quick Google search in a moment of frustration with your current school. Or maybe you’re already homeschooling and you’re wondering if anyway else feels the way you do. Whatever the reason that brought you to this post, I’m glad you’re here! As a Mom of 5 who’s been homeschooling for over a decade, I’m happy to share my honest opinions on homeschooling! Is homeschooling hard? The short answer is YES! Is it worth it? YES Are there things you can do to make it less hard? ABSOLUTELY! Keep reading to learn more.

is homeschooling hard answers

What’s Hard about Homeschooling?

The answer to this question varies from family to family. Clearly, when you choose to homeschool as a family, it usually means that only one parent can earn a full-time income. You are choosing to sacrifice the earning power of one parent in order to educate your children at home. Of course, this is a huge time commitment! In today’s world, there are many more opportunities to work from home, and that is a possibility for many homeschool parents. But there’s no denying that homeschool life means one parent needs to be home with their child during the typical work week.

“I Could Never Homeschool My Kid. We’d Fight Too Much!”

In addition to the time commitment for the parent, homeschooling can also cause friction between a child and a parent. I find this is particularly true when a family is transitioning from being in school full time to being at home. In times of change, there’s always growing pains. And learning to homeschool is no different! It takes time to adjust for both the parent and the child. 

I’ve often heard parents say that they could never homeschool their child because they would fight too much. And I’m not debating that it’s true that the parent and child might fight! But I often find that the first semester of learning at home is hardest on the relationship between parent and child. And this is true whether the child is in preschool or high school. But after you push through this transition period, there comes a deeper relationship and peace at home. You connect with your child over this shared experience and shared commitment to education. You become a team that is working towards the best educational outcomes together. No, it’s not easy at first. Is homeschooling hard? Yes, especially at the beginning. But it’s worth it. 

Pregnancy, Medical Issues, Life Transitions

There are many life circumstances that make homeschooling more difficult. I have 5 children, and I’ve homeschooled for my children’s entire education. That means that I’ve had many pregnancies while also homeschooling! I understand completely! However, there are many aspects of being at home that actually make things easier than being in full-time school. There’s no rushing around in the morning to get out the door. And there’s no making lunches or car lines. With home education, you can have a slower pace of life. In fact, that’s one of my favorite things about a homeschooling schedule. When your family is in a phase of life that means you could use some slower pajama days, you can take them when you’re homeschooling!

is homeschooling hard

I’ve heard many wise homeschoolers say that homeschooling is hard because parenting is hard. This is so true! When you’re a parent, you are managing so many different people’s needs and schedules. Each stage of childhood brings new challenges as a parent. But when you’re homeschooling, you get more of a front row seat to your child’s unique abilities, talents, struggles, and needs. You GET to have a more active role in their daily lives. Is homeschooling hard? Yes it can be. But life is hard. And homeschooling can enrich your life as a family. 

I have some awesome products that make my life homeschooling life easier. In fact, I have a whole post about it! But here are some of my faves:

Hybrid Homeschooling Makes Things Easier

If you’ve been following along for a while, you know that we are a hybrid homeschooling family. Before 2020, not that many people had heard of this type of schooling. However, now the world is much more open to different school options! There are so many more students who are doing school at home, only going to school for certain classes, and many other options. In fact, even some public schools are using a temporary hybrid homeschooling schedule! It’s a brave new world in education, that’s for sure.

What is hybrid homeschooling? 

This is an educational model that is sometimes also known as the University Model where students attend a school two days a week, and then are homeschooled three days a week. Usually, all of the other students at this school are on the same program. Some hybrid homeschools offer 3 day a week programs or just 1 day a week, but the most common schedule is 2 days at school and 3 at home. We have been a hybrid homeschooling family for 11 years. So when I’m asked, “Is homeschooling hard?” I am answering through the lens of my experience as a hybrid homeschool Mom. However, there are many aspects of homeschooling that are common to all homeschoolers, whether you participate in any supportive program or not. 

is homeschooling hard
Why is hybrid homeschooling easier? 

To put it simply, it’s because you get a break as the parent! With kids at school two days a week, you can work during that time. Or you can do your grocery shopping, get your own appointments done, and more. Also, hybrid homeschools usually provide lesson plans for the 3 days a week you are at home. So this allows the parent to have support with curriculum planning, scope and sequence, and testing. I’ve often said that hybrid homeschooling is like VIP homeschooling. It’s homeschooling, but with a support system in place.

Find a sample homeschooling schedule you can print and personalize!

But is it Worth It?

We could go on and on about why homeschooling is hard. I could make a list of 50 reasons very quickly! But it also has so many joys! And if you decide homeschooling is what’s right for your family, you don’t owe anyone any explanations. People will ask you about socialization. They will ask you about high school. And you’ll want to try to answer their questions. But in reality, in this brave new world post 2020, we are all more free to choose what works for our family. No educational model is perfect. Homeschooling isn’t perfect and it’s not for everyone. But it has the potential to be perfect for your family. Here are some of my favorite joys of homeschooling:

  1. There’s more time for play. 
  2. You can have more time outside.
  3. You can have more recess and music.
  4. Or you can have more art and less recess if that works better.
  5. You have more time to give back to your community as a family.
  6. There will be a wonderful community if you find it.
  7. You can spend all day in your pajamas.
  8. The baby can nap on their own schedule.
  9. The teenager can sleep until 10 am.
  10. The Mom can sleep until 8 am.
  11. Teens can explore work opportunities.
  12. There’s more time for reading. 
  13. You can world school and travel for learning opportunities.
  14. There’s more time for unstructured play.
  15. Elite athletes can manage their schedules.
  16. High schoolers can complete their college degree at home.
  17. Hobbies can become part of a high school transcript.
  18. Children can learn more life skills like cooking.
  19. Parents can fully direct their children’s education. 
  20. Children can have more say in their learning.

We’ve explored the many reasons homeschooling is hard! But this is just the start of why homeschooling is worth it. I don’t want to sugarcoat things and make it sounds like homeschooling is all butterflies and rainbows. It’s not! We have plenty of days that include tears, raised voices, and a messy house. But there’s joy in those messes. If homeschooling is right for you, you’ll find that it certainly is hard at times. But it’s also certainly worth it. 

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