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5 myths of homeschooling :: the teen version

5 myths of homeschooling :: the teen version

My 14-yr old freshman and I have been talking about her high school years and planning ahead.  I often ask for her thoughts, what’s going well or not.

While there are classes and activities, attending regular school hasn’t been a request.  She loooves homeschooling. 🙂  We recently had some fun compiling a short list of what her peers think about being a homeschooled teen.

Here they are for your reading pleasure (and because I really needed to laugh this week) —

Myths About Homeschooling

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1.  You choose what work you want to do (if any) :: now, there’s some truth here.  My 9th grader has plenty of input into areas of study, or how we might pursue a certain topic.  We rarely follow anything exactly.

But somehow her non-homeschooled peers think she gets up each day and simply decides if work is to be done or not.

Hmmm…interesting.  Her response?

‘You don’t know my Mom…I can’t do that!’   Good answer! 🙂

2.  Your siblings are your only friends ::  this one is quite hilarious because it often comes from those she knows fairly well and sees on a regular basis at group activities.

But, they are really close as brothers and sisters…

my friends really love me!

3.  You don’t use classroom supplies or electronics  :: most recently – you use a microscope and have lab work?  There’s even shock when mentioning sitting at a desk (Wow, you have a DESK!?).

This one is a mix from friends and from parents who might ask me questions about homeschooling.  A look of surprise often crosses faces if we mention Kindles, an iPad, lab supplies and more.  I guess it’s not common knowledge most science items used in a classroom can be purchased for home.

That’s okay, I really do get it.  But sometimes, I want to chuckle and respond – ‘and we have electricity too!’

4.  Your Mom must be really smart :: well, thank you! 🙂  But I’m not aiming to teach every subject – that’s not even how homeschooling works.  But others think I do.

For example, when my teen mentions studying Arabic, there are looks of awe my direction if I’m present.  What friends and parents may not know is how I responded to the request for this particular language study:

“Sweetie, I’m not really interested in studying Arabic with you – I’ll support you in every way I can, but we’re finding another teacher and a class.”

And we did.

deep, thoughtful reading at my ‘desk’

5.  And the #1 and often first response from peers is…You get to stay in your PJs all day ::  well…there is truth to this.

We do romp around in lounge wear on some days, especially in the winter (it’s just comfy)!  But no, pajamas are not everyday around here.  Not at all.

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I guess mystery will always surround the subject of homeschooling, and how families manage to do it so well.  So, keep following the blog – next year might bring new myths to discuss!


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  • LanaApril 19, 2013 - 7:52 am

    I have graduated 5 and I see that nothing has changed!ReplyCancel

  • TheresaApril 19, 2013 - 8:13 am

    thanks for sharing! I also have a 14 year old daughter with 3 younger siblings. I LOVE the picture of her “friends”! You have a beautiful family.ReplyCancel

  • HeatherApril 19, 2013 - 8:33 am

    Oh Danielle, this made me chuckle. I think my favorite was #2 – asked by friends at a group outing. lol. It shows the power of perceptions and how they cloud reality staring right at you.

    My favorite that I would frequently get at college (as a hs grad) was the comment that I was the first ‘normal’ homeschooler they had ever met. When I dug a little deeper it always turned out that I was the ONLY homeschooler they had ever met. They were just surprised to find that I was a normal college student who could carry on normal converstaion and had ‘normal’ interests… 🙂ReplyCancel

  • MelissaApril 19, 2013 - 9:06 am

    I had some similar experiences as a homeschooled teen. When I went to the public high school to take drivers ed, the principle said, “Wow! You’re a homeschooler? I heard of you, but I’ve never seen one before.” I reponded, “Did you think we had purple spots or something?” And when I was 16 and attending community college full time, one of my classmates tried to convince me that I had been deprived of a proper education, despite my young graduation age. When his other arguments failed he exclaimed, “Yeah, but what about learning how to socialize?” To which I replied, “I’m talking to you, aren’t I?”

    I have to say though, the ignorance and fear of homeschooling is not at all what it once was. Maybe our grandkids won’t be faced with questions like these. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Kara @ The ChuppiesApril 19, 2013 - 11:22 am

    Really appreciate this one…
    These have been some of MY OWN questions, to some degree, as we consider full-time-homeschool next year. Our oldest will be almost turning 13. Thanks Daniele… Love, KReplyCancel

  • JoyApril 19, 2013 - 2:17 pm

    My two older children have been asked the same things! Thanks for a good laugh today! 🙂ReplyCancel

  • ElizabethApril 20, 2013 - 7:29 pm

    Great list! One comment I wasn’t prepared for, though, came when my oldest was accepted to the college of her choice, Over and over people would offer their congratulations, but it was the sense of amazement in which the congratulations were said that grew tiresome. It was if, over and over, people displayed their notion that because my daughter was homeschooled that a) we would never let her go to college and b) she would never be able to get in. It was quite relevatory for many people.ReplyCancel

  • StephanieApril 21, 2013 - 9:16 pm

    So glad I happened upon your blog today from pinterest. Very serene. I’m a new follower!!! Great post!ReplyCancel

  • hsmominmoApril 22, 2013 - 9:43 am

    Thank you for the chuckles this morning – a great way to begin my week! I’ve had similar comments and questions directed my way. It’s a wonderful world we homeschoolers live in, isn’t it?
    Have a blessed week!ReplyCancel

  • Daniele @ Domestic SerenityApril 22, 2013 - 3:35 pm

    Thank you everyone for your reflections and stories – made us laugh too! 🙂ReplyCancel

  • MelissaApril 24, 2013 - 3:05 pm

    This was excellent! My favorite response, which I received several times, after pulling my daughter out of traditional school was a sympathetic and shocked, “Oh…what happened?” Followed by, “Well, this is just for year, right?” And now several of my friends will make broad statements about homeschooling or homeschool families and then apologetically say, “Well, you know I don’t mean you!” Um…yeah. I think you did mean me!ReplyCancel

  • Sarah Joy CaseApril 24, 2013 - 4:08 pm

    “How can you stand not having a social life?!” I would hear. I wanted to ask them how they could stand not talking to their parents every day. I had four siblings, a fun, close relationship with my parents, and a church where I was busy with responsibilities. But I had “no” social life. Ha!ReplyCancel

  • BobbieJuly 24, 2013 - 1:35 am

    I love the pictures! So funny. We’re still in elementary homeschool but so much of this does relate to us as well. I love it, thank you for the laugh and truth.ReplyCancel

  • DalyaOctober 8, 2013 - 5:29 pm

    I am new to your blog and have been encouraged. After church recently I had a couple inquire, scratch that; interrogate me regarding homeschooling. They were in disbelief when I responded that we plan to homeschool our children through high school. I think I will use some of your daughter’s rebuttals in the future. My Dad said it best, “It will probably take a generation to change the mindset of most Americans regarding homeschooling.” My parents are both retired public school and college educators and they are my biggest proponents. I feel we have already made great strides. Keep on blogging and encouraging the world.ReplyCancel

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Daniele Evans