How does it feel like to be homeschooled?

What is your daily routine? Is it easier or harder than going to a public/private school?

Here’s a parent’s response for our 11 year-old daughter. We’ve been homeschooling her now for almost two school years.

For a while, we let her set her own sleep schedule. She stayed up late (usually midnight), and woke up between 10:00–11:00. Lately, we have been requiring her to wake up at 9:00, since she has several activities that start at 10:00. Bedtime is still a struggle.

Schedule

  • Daily
    • Waking up at 10:00. Getting breakfast. Checking messages, etc. from her friends
    • Practice violin & piano
    • Complete homework for next couple of days
    • Additional violin & piano practice
    • Bedtime usually between 11:00 PM – midnight
  • Mondays
    • Reading class at 3:00 PM
      • 1–2 hours / flexible
      • Online (Skype) with her tutor
  • Tuesdays
    • Latin class 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM
      • Online (Skype)
      • 3 students
    • Mandarin class 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
      • In person with tutor
  • Wednesdays
    • English grammar / writing
      • Online (Skype) with tutor 1–2 hours
  • Thursdays
    • Violin lesson 1000 – 1100
    • Piano lesson 1600 – 1700
  • Saturdays
    • Art class 1130 – 1230
      • In person with one other student (good friend)
  • Sundays
    • Badminton class 1330 – 1500
  • Open gym 3–4 times weekly (mostly just playing with friends)
  • Currently studying math and chemistry online (Khan Academy). However, will soon switch to tutor for math.
  • Free time
    • Drawing / animating on computer
    • Playing games / texting with friends
    • Reading

So, is homeschooling really easier?

I don’t think that is the correct question. Any learning activity can be easy or hard, depending upon the effort. However, with homeschooling, we have the option to choose not only the content, but also the manner it is taught and learned. This makes it more likely that the student will be engaged. In our daughter’s case, she has substantial input into these decisions. Therefore, homeschooling is more interesting, challenging, and engaging.

Certainly, the schedule fits our family life better. I think most homeschool families will agree with this one. It also gives us more flexibility to travel throughout the year.

I believe the most important aspect of homeschooling (concerning learning), is that it minimizes the trivialities, and frees up much more time for personal pursuits and leisure. Our daughter spends ours each day drawing and animating. She is part of a community of artists (online) that collaborate and share their ideas and work. She routinely mentors others (teens and adults). I don’t think she could pursue this passion to the same extent as a traditional student.

Is homeschooling easier? Not really.

Is homeschooling better? Yes.