Would you homeschool if you only had one child? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 25 Old 05-27-2013, 08:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My husband and I feel strongly about homeschooling our kid(s). We aren't sure how many children we plan on having, and probably won't know until sometime after this one is born. I feel it would be odd for me to devote my life to homeschooling one child, and I feel it would be unfair to them to be stuck with nobody but me all day. Obviously this is a silly thing to be thinking about, and obviously we wouldn't have more children just so the first wouldn't be lonely during their homeschool career. And heck we may want 3 or 4 kids. What do you think? Do any of you homeschool with only one child?

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#2 of 25 Old 05-27-2013, 08:12 PM
 
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Well, hypothetically, I would HS one child. He or she won't be alone all day if you get the child involved in homeschool groups, clubs, extracurriculars. In fact, he or she could be very social. You would have plenty of time and more resources to do more for that one kid. I don't think the fact that I only had one kid would stop me from homeschooling. smile.gif

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#3 of 25 Old 05-27-2013, 08:56 PM
 
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Our reasons for homeschooling didn't change because of the number of children. And going to school is not automatic socialization. Some kids don't fit in, and are loners. So, for me, the number of children is not a deciding factor.

I am curious about *why* you plan to homeschool.
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#4 of 25 Old 05-27-2013, 09:18 PM
 
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I'm homeschooling an only child. From what I've read in this forum, it seems a lot easier to homeschool one than more than one. Its easier to support her to pursue her interests, for example. If she wants to find out about clams this instant, we can go to the beach this instant. She probably gets more socialization with a variety of other homeschooled children than siblings might, since it can be an expedition to get a bunch out of the house at once. The only time homeschooling one child is a problem is when I would like some "me" time and she's used to having me always paying attention to her.

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#5 of 25 Old 05-28-2013, 11:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Our reasons for homeschooling didn't change because of the number of children. And going to school is not automatic socialization. Some kids don't fit in, and are loners. So, for me, the number of children is not a deciding factor.

I am curious about *why* you plan to homeschool.

I understand how public school isn't an automatic fix, although I hadn't quite thought about it that way.

 

There's a few reasons why we want to homeschool, but we need to do a lot more research and we have a couple years to make a decision. One reason being my husband and I didn't have the best school experiences, and feel we could teach our child in a way that better fits their needs. I really like the idea of them getting more individual attention, and being able to teach them at a pace they are comfortable with. Of course, as our children grow we may decide homeschool isn't the best option for their needs.

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#6 of 25 Old 05-28-2013, 01:13 PM
 
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I don't know what I would do. I imagine we would still homeschool, unless we had a really great affordable private school or charter school nearby.


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#7 of 25 Old 05-28-2013, 10:16 PM
 
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I homeschool my only child and love it. We have a blast together most of the time, and he can explore his interests and passions freely and with lots of support. Travel and all kinds of activities (movies, sports, museums, galleries etc) are more affordable with one kid. And of course there are lots of other kids and adults around that he can get together with when he wants to, so he isn't really just stuck with me all the time-- and I work part time from home (am a writer, so work very flexible hours). For us, it works really well. 

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#8 of 25 Old 05-29-2013, 07:08 AM
 
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I am homeschooling an only child. The decision was made because it's what is best for him. But it does have it's perks. It is easier to do things with one child. But I feel like people with more kids don't need to get out and be with other people the way we do. So we had a hard time getting people to meet us at the playground and such when ds was younger.


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#9 of 25 Old 06-01-2013, 06:20 AM
 
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I also homeschool and only, and love it.  I wouldn't have it any other way!


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#10 of 25 Old 06-19-2013, 02:42 PM
 
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I homeschool an only child and love it. I find it easier for me to concentrate on her needs and her challenges instead of being pulled in many directions. I just couldn't handle that... I admire the women who can ;-) We go to a lot, go to classes, have playdates, and attend playgroups so there is a good balance of alone time as well as social time. I don't see her only being with me at all.

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#11 of 25 Old 06-19-2013, 04:34 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CLplus1 View Post

My husband and I feel strongly about homeschooling our kid(s). We aren't sure how many children we plan on having, and probably won't know until sometime after this one is born. I feel it would be odd for me to devote my life to homeschooling one child, and I feel it would be unfair to them to be stuck with nobody but me all day. Obviously this is a silly thing to be thinking about, and obviously we wouldn't have more children just so the first wouldn't be lonely during their homeschool career. And heck we may want 3 or 4 kids. What do you think? Do any of you homeschool with only one child?

 

I'm homeschooling two kids, with a third little one at home. She's not officially a homelearner yet, although she learns a lot at home. (My oldest is 20 and was public schooled.) I'd absolutely homeschool with just one. It would be so much easier in some respects, especially in terms of scheduling.

 

If I only count dd1's activities, there was a point this year when she was at:

 

Monday - gymnastics (classes specifically for homelearners, grouped by age)

Tuesday - piano lessons (private)

Wednesday - economics class (homelearning group class), Tae Kwon Do (group classes)

Thursday - ice skating (group classes)

Friday - alternating between homelearning group (biweekly social group - parent led, with workshops of various kinds) and chess club/art class (held back-to-back in the same location - large group of homelearners, also parent led)

Saturday - ballet lessons (group classes)

 

She had no scheduled activities on Sundays, except for birthday parties and such. She played with neighbourhood friends after school and on weekends. She was about as far from stuck with nobody but me as it gets...even without figuring in her siblings. She has a very busy social life, with friends from two separate homelearning communities, our neighbourhood, and various lessons and activities.

 

DS2 isn't as social as dd1, as he has boundary issues and behavioural problems. However, he was in all the above classes, except ballet and ice skating (plus he did swimming), and spends quite a bit of time with people outside the family. Our schedule didn't work this year, but he's also going to join the local Boys & Girls Club again next year, which means he can drop in after school any day he wants to.

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#12 of 25 Old 06-20-2013, 09:10 AM
 
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I LOVED homeschooling my only. I just had twins and I'm a little worried about what it will be like when they are older. It's a lot harder to just get up and go when there's more than one. With just dd we were able to do so many things. We both learned so much and had such a great time. I really cannot express in words what a wonderful experience it was. I'm sure homeschooling all three will be wonderful too - just in a different way.

I think think in the end the benefits of homeschooling for the whole family are worth it no matter how many kids you have! 


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#13 of 25 Old 07-09-2013, 08:41 AM
 
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I homeschool one and I totally agree that it's easy to get-up-and-go.  Regular peer interaction is a challenge for us, though. There are a lot of homeschooling groups where we live but he has some special needs and I don't always know how to advocate for him and get him involved to the point where he's feeling safe, accepted and competent. We're working at it, though, trying to set up playdates and get him involved in social skills and communication therapy and that kind of thing. It isn't easy but it's worth it. Ours is an atypical situation, though.

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#14 of 25 Old 07-09-2013, 11:45 AM
 
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I HS three, and I often think longingly of my friends who only HS one...not that I regret my situation by any means, but my goodness, they have it so easy!  They are not pulled in many different directions, and they can do whatever they want, when they want.  Such freedom!  My kids are out and about constantly, so socially it would make no difference to only have one child. 
 


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#15 of 25 Old 07-09-2013, 07:41 PM
 
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Well, I was an only child and homeschooled, and I loved it. Besides my DH, my mom is still my best friend. We had a blast. I was involved in lots of groups, so "socialization" wasn't a problem.
I understand that in quantitative terms, homeschooling just one doesn't seem as "worth it," but one child is just as valuable and needs you and your attention just as much as many. Busy-ness does not create or equal value.
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#16 of 25 Old 07-10-2013, 12:25 PM
 
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I homeschooled one child, now grown, but I don't feel it means devoting your life to homeschooling one child - it just means there's only one child in your family as you all live your lives together. We had wonderful times together, and he's always valued the freedom he had through homeschooling. Here's an article from years ago in which he makes his own comments about that.

It did mean going out of my way to find social outlets, though - I was appalled at times how insular some families with multiple kids were. I remember having conversations with other moms of only children about that. One woman phoned me when my son was in his late teens to tell me that her older son had decided to go back to high school and she had only the younger one left at home, so she finally understood why I'd always made such efforts to create social opportunities. It kind of seemed like an apology  - she was a self described introvert who had been standoffish and always told me they were too busy to come to little get togethers I was putting together, and now she understood. 

Anyway, that's one thing I feel passionately about - it's important to keep searching and creating social opportunities. I new several moms who had only children and enjoyed their time with them so much that they declined opportunities to get together with other families or to get their kids together with other friends - and those kids ~demanded~ in their early teens to go to school, because they really craved friendships with peers. We hear a lot about how homeschooled kids can and do become friends with people of all ages, and that's true, but most of them also very much want and need same age friends and buddies, "best friends," and it's easiest to get those possibilities started at a young age and really work at keeping those connections. People often forget how important friends were to them when they were children and teens - but it's easier today than ever to have a large social network.

 

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#17 of 25 Old 07-10-2013, 04:24 PM
 
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While we're on this subject, can any of you speak to your own experience (rather than your kid's)? It just feels weird to stay at home, forego a career or whatever else, for one child. How did that end of things work out (for those who've done it)?
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#18 of 25 Old 07-10-2013, 11:28 PM
 
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While we're on this subject, can any of you speak to your own experience (rather than your kid's)? It just feels weird to stay at home, forego a career or whatever else, for one child. How did that end of things work out (for those who've done it)?

 

Ok, so not a mom of an only, but I wanted to add that I am not staying home full-time anymore (though I did in the early years of our homeschooling) or foregoing a career. I am a home birth midwife who also takes the occasional doula client.


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#19 of 25 Old 07-11-2013, 12:36 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post

I'm homeschooling two kids, with a third little one at home. She's not officially a homelearner yet, although she learns a lot at home. (My oldest is 20 and was public schooled.) I'd absolutely homeschool with just one. It would be so much easier in some respects, especially in terms of scheduling.

If I only count dd1's activities, there was a point this year when she was at:

Monday - gymnastics (classes specifically for homelearners, grouped by age)
Tuesday - piano lessons (private)
Wednesday - economics class (homelearning group class), Tae Kwon Do (group classes)
Thursday - ice skating (group classes)
Friday - alternating between homelearning group (biweekly social group - parent led, with workshops of various kinds) and chess club/art class (held back-to-back in the same location - large group of homelearners, also parent led)
Saturday - ballet lessons (group classes)

She had no scheduled activities on Sundays, except for birthday parties and such. She played with neighbourhood friends after school and on weekends. She was about as far from stuck with nobody but me as it gets...even without figuring in her siblings. She has a very busy social life, with friends from two separate homelearning communities, our neighbourhood, and various lessons and activities.

DS2 isn't as social as dd1, as he has boundary issues and behavioural problems. However, he was in all the above classes, except ballet and ice skating (plus he did swimming), and spends quite a bit of time with people outside the family. Our schedule didn't work this year, but he's also going to join the local Boys & Girls Club again next year, which means he can drop in after school any day he wants to.

This is exactly how I'd love to HS my children!!! Why do people think HS means isolation? It really doesn't have to. The public school structure creates (IMHO) a rigid "socialization" that doesn't tailor to the child at all. It tailors to the school and the overall achievement of the children. I'm really not looking forward to that type of experience for my DD. But this is off-topic.

My DD is only 3 and I'm really worried about caving and sending her to public school. Her being my only right now (#2 is coming in Sept./Oct.) means I can focus on her. I'm so worried when #2 comes I won't have the time to properly research school. Reading this thread makes me feel like its possible to homeschool but a bit harder when you have more then one.

We plan on having just the two. Being both from huge families we decided two is the maximum mostly due to financial reasons and quality of life for everyone. Do you think just HSing two would be *that* much harder? I don't think so, especially if you had the resources Storm Bride has above.

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#20 of 25 Old 07-11-2013, 08:44 AM
 
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Do you think just HSing two would be *that* much harder? I don't think so, especially if you had the resources Storm Bride has above.

It could very well be easier homeschooling two. It will depend on their personalities, of course, but it's hard having it just be me and ds all day. We aren't in a good community for homeschooling (our style of it, at least) or a good neighborhood for making friends. I've always felt like we needed to get out and do things more than the families with more kids. Their kids got their interaction needs filled without leaving the house. 


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#21 of 25 Old 07-11-2013, 09:00 AM
 
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Originally Posted by newmamalizzy View Post

While we're on this subject, can any of you speak to your own experience (rather than your kid's)? It just feels weird to stay at home, forego a career or whatever else, for one child. How did that end of things work out (for those who've done it)?

My career is in the art field which I entered knowing it wasn't going to be much of a career in the typical sense. I had to substitute my preferred medium for more accessible ones when ds was younger. I do have a need to create but can channel it in different ways when I can't do what I'd prefer. So I've managed with a bit of frustration to get through the young years in a personal fulfillment sense. And getting in a well paying position was never really on the table. I always expected to be a mother and not work when my children were young. I did know women who felt guilty about not earning a paycheck. I never did. I would have gotten a job solely to pay school tuition if ds had gone to school. The public schools here are pretty bottom of the barrel. Now I'm working as an independent contractor in my field. It's part time and flexible. I could even bring ds along.


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#22 of 25 Old 07-13-2013, 11:44 AM
 
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Absolutely. :-)

 

There is a great homeschooling community here so my only child would not be lacking in opportunities to socialize and engage with the community. 


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#23 of 25 Old 07-13-2013, 02:21 PM
 
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My daughter is only 3, but we will be homeschooling her. I had my reservations at first (and still do some days) and my husband really does. But we have joined a local homeschool group which has small play groups set up so we get together with the same two families almost every week. She is already forming friendships. In addition to our little play group, we have the opportunity to go to homeschool events pretty much every day (although at this point we don't). Between that group, running errands, playing with neighbors and other friends, she has plenty of socialization. I worry this will change as she gets older and most kids are in school, but we will address that as we get to it. If my daughter ever decides she is lonely and wants to go to school, I will let her.
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#24 of 25 Old 07-13-2013, 02:22 PM
 
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Although I should add that I don't believe going to school fixes loneliness or anything, but I guess I mean if she feels like she would rather be around a bunch of people all day rather than just me.
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#25 of 25 Old 07-13-2013, 04:54 PM
 
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Right now, we homeschool two teenage boys and love it.  I love working with both of them.  I love the way they bounce ideas off each other, work on projects together, help each other, etc...  Some days, I let them play scrabble or other educational games.  Its nice that I am not their only play mate.  In the future, we may be homeschooling an only child (we have a  1 yr old), although I would much rather homeschool two kids.  We would love to have 1 more baby to round out our family and to give the baby a play mate.  The boys love their sister dearly, but they will be going off to college in a few years, and won't be able to spend so much time with her.

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