about the book
"There is no harm in doubt and
skepticism; for it is through these that
new discoveries are made."
-- Richard Feynman (1918-1988)

"Sometimes the questions
are complicated and the answers
are simple."
  -- Dr. Seuss
"...every expression of love towards
children heals society and moves it in
unexpected, wondrous new directions..."
- Lloyd deMause

"Cowardice asks the question,
'Is it safe?'  
Expediency asks the question,
'Is it politic?'
But, conscience asks the question,
'Is it right?'
And there comes a time when one must
take a position that is neither safe, nor
politic, nor popular-- but one must take it
because one's conscience
tells one that it is right."
--Martin Luther King, Jr.

The Homeschool Diner's Guide to
Homeschooling Basics

Why Homeschooling?  Why do it?

by Julie Shepherd Knapp, copyright 2006

Homeschoolers are a very diverse crowd.
 They come from all walks of life, all faiths, and all
political affiliations...  but they are united by several common beliefs.  Most importantly, homeschoolers
believe that parents have the right to choose what is the best educational situation for each of their
children -- that institutional learning should not be the only option available to families.  They also
believe (and have proven over the years) that concerned, dedicated parents are quite capable of
providing their children with a decent education based out of their homes.  

Some homeschooling families would put their children back in school if the school systems would make
changes to their liking.  Others would choose to homeschool, no matter what changes were made in
the school system... because they feel that the family learning environment provides the best possible
option for their particular children.

Ask 10 families why they homeschool, and you will get 10 different replies, but the article below,
"55 Reasons to Homeschool", probably includes most of them.   The other articles express diverse
opinions as to the benefits of homeschooling.  Maybe one of them will echo your sentiments, address
the concerns that have lead you to consider homeschooling, and help you decide if homeschooling
makes sense for your family.

55 Reasons to Homeschool by the National Home Education Network

18 Reasons Why Doctors and Lawyers Homeschool Their Children from Children's MD
For Professors' Children, the Case for Home Schooling -- an article by W.A. Pannapacker,
Professor of Engish
Why in the Hell Would You Homeschool? by rosabw at the Daily KOS
Why Homeschool? from the Unplugged Family Blog
Why Homeschool? advantages of homeschooling from the Washington Homeschool Organization
5 Reasons Why We Choose to Homeschool by Jennifer Bly for the Huffington Post
Why we chose to Homeschool in the middle of the school year from Weed 'em and Reap
Living the Outlaw Life: An Education in Freedom by Claire Wolfe, Backwoods Home Magazine
The Main Reasons People Choose to Home School in the UK from AHomeEducation website
African-American Home School from Successful Homeschooling

55 reasons why kids like homeschooling by Kris Bales at Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers
Biblical reasons to homeschool  by Chris Klicka at the HSLDA
Understanding Christian Homeschoolers by Jim Muncy

Why We Continue to Homeschool  by Mrs. G

Home Room: Debunking the Myths of Homeschooling  by Lisa Rivero, author of "Creative
Homeschooling for Smart Families"
I Am What I Am by Anne Ohman -- discusses the joys of homeschooling a twice exceptional child
(gifted with a learning disability)

Homeschooling Comes of Age by Isabel Lyman for the Ludwig von Mises Institute

Top 10 Gems: What I Wish Someone had Told me During My First Year of Homeschooling by
Linda Dobson, author

Things I Didn't Learn by Rebekah Baglini -- a college admission essay

School's Out by Daniel H. Pink, "...Home schooling has become perhaps the largest and most
successful education reform movement of the last two decades..." from Reason Online

Related Issues
Why Homeschool? To give your kids more time to be kids!

Let The Children Play: An Essay on Homeschooling by Jim Muncy
Confessions of a home-schooler: Call us crackpots, but our kids spend their days at
beaches and museums, not in school by homeschool dad, Andrew O'Hehir
Doctors Urge More Playtime for Children
Old-Fashioned Play Builds Serious Skills by Alix Spiegel
Walled Gardens by Bruce Van Patter -- striving to preserve childhood
Raise Children with a Wild Streak by Mark Pruett
The Wild Child a "deep thought" by Scott Noelle

Why Homeschool? Because it's healthier for them!

Do Schools Today Kill Creativity? -- a talk by Ken Robinson, author of  Out of Our Minds: Learning
to be Creative and Epiphany, which explores how highly creative individuals first discovered their
unique talents, and how all of us can unlock our own.    

Why Schools Don't Educate -- a speech by John Taylor Gatto, accepting the New York City Teacher
of the Year Award on Jan 31, 1990

How the Public School System Crushes Souls by Steve Olson

Teens and Sleep from the National Sleep Foundation -- most US teens suffer from sleep deprivation
from rising too early  

Snooze or Lose by By Po Bronson -- Overstimulated, overscheduled kids are getting at least an hour’
s less sleep than they need, a deficiency that, new research reveals, has the power to set their
cognitive abilities back years...

Myths and misperceptions about school bullying. "Bullying is part of life in the real world"... and
other myths about bullying from Bully Online

No Breathing in the Aisles -- study finds that excess exhaust levels on school buses were 23 to 46
times higher than levels considered to be a significant cancer risk, kids at greater risk for asthma and
lung cancer

Captive Kids: Report on Commercial Pressures on Kids at School.
The Next Niche: BusRadio advertises to Students
Billboard Advertising INSIDE school buses, lovely

Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling by John Taylor Gatto, a
collecton of writings from a man who was an award-winning public school teacher for 26 years,   An
excerpt  of one essay, "The Six Lesson School Teacher" is available.

High-Achieveing Students in the Era of No Child Left Behind by The Thomas B. Fordham

Parts Is Parts - Intelligence Revisited by David H. Albert

Pinky's Scary School Nightmare -- this is an excerpt of a quirky YouTube video that refers to the
book "Deschooling Society" by Iavn Illich. I hope they re-upload the original again!

A Vision of Students Today -- put together as a class project by Michael Wesch in collaboration with
200 students at Kansas State University
School Daze -- an excerpt from "Chalkbored: What's Wrong with School and How to Fix It" by Jeremy
Schneider, a former high school teacher

"Hold on to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers" a book by Gordon
Neufeld, PhD, a developmental and clinical psychologist, here is an
interview with Dr. Gordon and a
discussion of his book

Boy Trouble? We're cheating all students. Girls may just put up with it better. by Nick Smith

Taking Charge: Hanging On To What Makes Homeschooling Distinctive by Larry and Susan
Kaseman -- The Kasemans address a common question, "We pay taxes to support schools!  Why
shouldn't we homeschoolers be fighting for the right to take classes and use school facilities and
services?"  -- understanding what is distinctive about homeschooling can help us prevent
homeschooling from being reduced to nothing more than alternative type of "school"

Other Resources

"Homeschooling and the Voyage of Self-Discovery" a book by David Albert, author and
homeschool parent

Family Matters: Why Homeschooling Makes Sense" a book by David Guterson, high school
English teacher and homeschool parent

"A Patchwork of Days" and the follow-up book "Homeschool Open House" a book by Nancy Lande
-- share a typical homeschool day with 30 US homeschool families

"Homeschooling Our Children, Unschooling Ourselves" a book by Alison McKee, explains how
"natural learning" works

Deschooling Gently by Tammy Takahashi -- great suggestions and advice for helping parents get
out of a school mindset

Creative Home Schooling: A Resource Guide for Smart Families" a book by Lisa Rivero, a great
resource guide

OK, but will homeschoolers survive in "The Real World"?

Check out The Homeschoolers Guide to the Galaxy for  "getting started" information
and advice
Homeschool Diner logo - 1960's style sign with atomic starburst
Copyright 2005 Julie Shepherd Knapp
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Copyright 2005-2012 by Julie Shepherd Knapp,
unless otherwise noted.

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