Should I Homeschool My Children?
Wondering how to homeschool?
You, as a parent, are the most qualified person to make that decision. God has blessed you and entrusted you to provide education.
Here in Ontario, home education is a viable and growing alternative. Often, it is wise to seek the counsel from others who have research and experience to offer. Here are a few steps to help you evaluate your decision making process!
Find Your ‘Want-To’
Each family must make an informed decision based on your own unique family dynamics and convictions.
Many common questions of why someone would want to are related to the legitimacy: Can it be used to form upright, intelligent citizens?
Other questions relate to the Christian life and mandate from both government and Bible: Is it legal and is it biblical?
Is homeschooling legal?
Yes! Ontario enjoys one of Canada’s least governed provinces.
Is homeschooling biblical?
Yes, homeschooling is biblical. A clunkier and more academic title for this article would be, “Discipleship, Education, and Schooling of Children: A Biblical Perspective.” I kind of like it but I am not writing for a philosophy journal right now. On the other hand, Christians must be scripturalists. That means, they must be philosophers because they must love wisdom.
What are the benefits?
Since the privileged responsibility falls to the parents, so does the flexibility to customize your home discipleship, unencumbered obedience to God’s charge and unique opportunities of blessings and unity.
What about socialization?
Although a seemingly relevant question, it is based on a subjective argument comparing large peer groups vs family environments. Usually the real concern is having friends and finding community. OCHEC alone has over 40+ groups. Connecting you to others in your area has been a priority for over 25 years.
How much does it cost?
This answer is as varied as one’s own parameters. Many have experienced an affordable yet rich education for less than public school and certainly less than private school. The focus shifts largely from expenses of mandatory dress code or clothes expectations, packed or bought lunches, and transportation to quality books, reusable/resalable curriculum and life experiences.
Choose Your ‘How-To’
Once you’ve decided your Want-To, not much can prevent you from putting your convictions into action! It’s time to consider the How-To. Honestly, there is a dizzying amount of solid resources out there!
Many common categories are relating to method, philosophy and of course, your own unique teaching style and giftedness. Notice we’re not talking about qualifications! You as a parent are qualified to teach your children.
No one knows them better or loves them more! Have confidence!
What are my philosophy and method options?
Allow yourself to think out of the box. Many view homeschooling as an opportunity to nuture your child in a life-giving environment. Sometimes this means choosing a method different from the traditional textbook curriculum.
Where can I learn about my teacher role?
If you’ve chosen homeschooling, you’ll likely want to learn all there is to know! Here is a book list intentionally curated to equip, inform and encourage you!
How does my child learn best?
As you become acquainted with your endeavour, you will also be incorporating how your child learns best. You’ll most likely already have seen this but sometimes can be overlooked when employing a curriculum or method.
What if my child has learning differences or special needs?
Again, you are the best person to nurture, build confidence and discern how and what your child needs. Because of the allowance to customize your child’s education, an overwhelming number of parents with special needs students have remarkable and encouraging experiences.
Connecting with a local support group can help you in this journey, providing you, your child and your family with support, encouragement, shared experience, references, and “how to’s”.
Do I have to follow a curriculum?
Curriculum is a tool much like a calendar. Don’t let your calendar enslave you and don’t let your curriculum be burdensome. Learn the different types of curriculum styles and methods to find a good fit.
Beyond the Basics
Let the immersion begin! Diligent planning, educating yourself and connecting with others will be enriching and rewarding.
Set realistic, measurable goals for yourself and your children for the first year of homeschooling. Write them down and pull them out from time to time in order to keep yourself on track and to monitor progress. These goals could be in the area of academics, character traits, work skills, physical fitness or any area you believe you need to concentrate on.
Just remember all of life is learning!
Is there local support?
Belong to a network of like-minded homeschoolers in your area.
While so much is digital an instant, we thrive on personal interactions.
We have over 65 year-round Group Leaders and Area Reps! These trained leaders have a heart to serve and invite you and your family to share the road of home education.
How do I join the OCHEC community?
OCHEC Membership is your connection to Community, our Educator’s Circle Benefits Program and more.
Can I start an OCHEC Support Group?
OCHEC proactively supports the growth of local connections. Please consider registering as a Support Group with the intention to receive members as God sees fit.
You can register – no minimum number of members to start!
We gladly support your interest to serve!
Do you have a Facebook group?
Ask your questions! Our attentive moderators have a wealth of experience in the Ontario context on all things homeschool!
Discussions in a secure environment to share our struggles, dilemmas and encouragement.
Our Admin Team requires your response to the questions and rules.
Do you have a newsletter?
Yes! We invite you to signup for our eNewsletter. Receive our digital newsletter twice a month with promotions, news and all things homeschool!