Homeschooling IS FreedomSep 07, 2022
One of the primary principles of freedom is independence. The opportunity for independence, or self-reliance, in all areas of life is paramount to a free society. Food sources, energy, water, health, finances, housing, and education are just some of the areas where the opportunity to be independent must exist. Homeschooling is a perfect example, as it really demonstrates freedom in so many ways. Homeschooling really IS freedom!
The mere act of homeschooling fosters freedom in society.
School is Dependence
As a former public school teacher and having grown up in the system, I can tell you how dependent formal schooling is, no matter, public or private. In our “expert”-driven society, formal schooling leans heavily on those that develop the system, and I’m not talking about teachers. The entire system is driven from the curriculum developed by those “experts.” Test scores, school ratings, subjects, pacing and content are determined by a group of “educators” (in quotations for a reason as they may or may not be or have been teachers) and what they think is important to learn and at what age. It leaves parents with no control over their child’s individual needs, talents, gifts and readiness.
Not to say that this is all bad. Some parents need that support, and some kids need a safe place and a refuge from home or opportunities for new experiences that they would not have otherwise. However, for the most part, parents don’t have any freedom over what is taught or when, and most importantly, over the environment and culture in which their children are raised.
Homeschooling is Independence
Homeschooling is that freedom though! It is the opportunity to fully embrace all of parenting, including academics. Notice I didn’t say “education.” Education is everything that a person needs to know to function, communicate and fulfill their unique mission/purpose in the world. Academics is part of that and the only part that formal schooling focuses on.
Homeschooling is the freedom to decide what subjects, skills and curriculum your children need. It is the choice to include, leave out or postpone some subject areas. It is the ability to take your individual child’s gifts and talents and build on them through various learning opportunities. It is the option to ditch what isn’t working and embark on a new path. It is the freedom to cultivate and mold the culture, environment and association for your children!
And let’s not forget the ability to foster their natural curiosity and love of learning! You get to move in their interests. You get to build them up and present them with the opportunities to explore and devour life all around them, then dig as deep as you want until they’re ready to move on.
When I taught senior English, one of the biggest complaints of instructors at the college level was that students were coming to them not knowing how to synthesize information. They couldn’t take info from several different sources and topics and formulate it together. That is shocking. It is a natural skill that is present in all of us from birth! We naturally see the relatability in all things we learn. When you homeschool, you are free to combine subjects, to work on all of them together as life doesn’t separate them into parts. I am constantly amazed at how my son often says, “Oh yeah! That’s like in ____ book when they talk about…”
And in terms of synthesizing information, homeschooling freedom means you get to walk the talk as you teach them about who they are becoming and what are the models for behavior and character. You are free to combine those lessons with their academics with examples from classic works of all kinds and then deepen it with discussion.
Lastly, just by homeschooling, you are also teaching them through your example to be independent. You can back that up with study of the principles of freedom and constant discussion about their application in the world, but by the mere act of homeschooling, you are demonstrating independence. You are showing them freedom. And from that, follows a fostering of that part of human nature. Whether or not people actually live or act independently, most people truly believe they are. But it is your homeschooling example that will show your children what is true self-reliance and freedom.
And that is an example that helps build and preserve freedom for everyone.