We had a lovely unseasonably warm day this week and headed out to the zoo after school. We enjoyed the mostly empty zoo at a leisurely pace. And I thought, why am I not homeschooling? I should pull him and homeschool. I see more signs pointing to this fact practically every day. Questionable things happening at school, more and deeper unhappiness at home in the evenings. I miss my son, and we’re experiencing negative behavior due to that disconnection between us.
I’m still struggling with the decision
I know all the above positives and negatives. And yet, I’m struggling to make the actual decision. Why? I’m still trying to figure that out.
Why am I struggling?
All of the reasons I laid out in this earlier post about why I sent him to kindergarten in the first place. They all still hold true. We are still figuring the whole school thing out.
My son has mixed feelings. I’m not letting my 6-year old make this decision alone. But I am discussing it with him, because his input is important to me. And he wavers, depending on the day, about whether he wants to continue or not.
We are having a really negative teacher experience. You might think that would make me run even faster. And it is definitely a push, as it is majorly contributing to the negative feelings surrounding school. But she’s new and might improve. And she is not the entirety of the school experience. I hate to let her make us miss out on any positives he’s experiencing. And I met with the principal just days ago. He seems great, and really seems to understand the issues we’re having. He has a plan to help.
We’ll see more if we stay longer. My son is excited for the art show at the end of the year, where he’ll have one or more projects on display. He’s experienced a school party, a school book fair, and a couple school fundraising events. He hasn’t been on a field trip, or seen an assembly. There are a lot of school things he’ll see just this year that he won’t experience if we pull him. Overall, I think that’s not a huge deal. But I do want him to experience some of these things to know they exist.
I worry both of us will have a hard time keeping up with friends we will no longer see every day. My son and I both have friends that we see because he’s going to school. We can try and keep up with them, but once schedules change and we no longer see them by default every day, that’s easier said than done.
And I’m overwhelmed…
It’s a hard decision and it feels more permanent that it really is. I know that we can change what we’re doing and make any number of different choices, including public and private school, part-time school, or homeschool. No choice is permanent. But every change requires a lot of thought and effort, at least for me.
It’s hard to be different and go against the norm. Ahh, the biggest reason. It’s hard to know that this non-mainstream decision is the right way to go. I don’t have any experience with homeschool outside of the past couple years researching it, and many acquaintances who are homeschooling. It feels really overwhelming to opt out of the choice that everyone else is choosing.
The Silver Lining
All that said, I’m fairly certain we’ve already decided we’ll homeschool next year. Full-day school (as opposed to this year’s half days) is just not something I want for my family at this time. Knowing that, I feel more comfortable with my current indecisiveness. If things get worse at school, we’ll pull him. But for now, we’re floating along a little further on the cloud of indecision.