The Homeschooler Next Door
In the last few years, respect and recognition for homeschooling has been on the rise. Still, many people have no clue how homeschooling works or, even worse, cling to the ideas fostered by TV stereotypes. Recently, however, some new studies concerning the benefits of homeschooling children have come to light which may help to erase some of the damage done by Mean Girls.
So, let the debunking begin!
Stereotype 1: Children homeschool because they need it. They had issues learning in school and require individualized attention.
While every child is different, studies have shown homeschoolers generally out-perform traditional students on standardized tests; have higher grade point averages, ACT scores, and graduation rates; and often win more scholastic competitions.
Stereotype 2: Homeschoolers are socially awkward.
Actually, an independent study found that homeschoolers are usually socially well-adjusted and have less behavioral issues than traditional students. Often, they are more confident, have higher self-worth due to family interaction, and receive lots of social experience from after-school clubs, sports teams, and classes/groups for homeschoolers. Studies showed that they are also more resistant to peer pressure since they are not exposed to drugs, bullying, and other acts of violence encountered by the traditional student until they are older and much less easily seduced.
Stereotype 3: Homeschooled students only stay at home.
In reality, results from KidsHealth.org have shown that homeschoolers tend to be more active in their communities than regular students due to hands on learning environments. The National Home Research Institute even showed that adults who were once homeschooled were more likely to take on leadership roles in their communities and workplace.
Families are like fingerprints: no two are alike. So, it comes as no surprise that homeschooling may not be the best situation for everyone. However, it’s important for every family to know that the idea is indeed a viable one. And not only is it viable option, but an effective one.
Take that Mean Girls!