Have you spent more than an hour locked in a death struggle “helping” your child through a homework assignment? Did the battle end because of fatigue and frustration and not because your child had mastered the task? Then you are homeschooling—you are just doing it the most difficult way. You are trying to teach your child at home—at the end of the day when everyone is exhausted—and without the teacher’s edition of the text, solutions manual, objectives, course description, or even a syllabus.  You do not even know which skill or what particular knowledge the child is supposed to take away from the lesson.

As things are, you are expending all that energy after a full day’s work and when the child is seeking relief from a full day’s regimen. When your child comes home you do not know if you will be confronted with an application of the associative property of addition that you have not troubled yourself with in twenty years or asked for a literary interpretation of an obscure work from the latest tween reader’s collection. You just know that it must be accomplished while getting supper on the table, paying the bills, hopefully having enough interaction with family members to know what is going on in everyone’s life, and getting everyone ready for the next day. No wonder you think you can’t homeschool. The way you are doing it is senseless. You are working in an absurdly compressed time allotment with multiple distractions and no teacher’s materials. If you ever have any success with that method then you will make an excellent homeschool parent.

A lot of considerations go in to a decision to homeschool. We raised six children to adulthood. For some of our children homeschool was the best logical and moral choice. For others, it was not. The only consideration addressed here is the false idea that has been placed in your mind that you cannot do it. If you have repeatedly spent those difficult hours at the kitchen table, then you have the heart and devotion to homeschool. As I said, you are already homeschooling. If you can read and understand this article, then you have the requisite education. Twenty-first century curricula provide all the resources a parent will need, and they are written for those who do not live in the world of the professional educators’ vocabulary. There are now support groups in every community to help you through this. Contact me if you like, and I will help you get started. Your decision ought to be made on what is best for your child. A false sense of inadequacy on your part should be neither a barrier nor an excuse. Of course you can. You probably already are.

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