I’ve heard it more than once: “Don’t you have to have a license to homeschool?” or “I don’t have a degree in teaching, so I can’t homeschool, can I?” Short answer; Yes! You Can Homeschool Without a Degree in Teaching! In fact, many homeschoolers who were/are licensed teachers will tell you that most of their education was focused on classroom management strategies and they find their degree doesn’t really help much in homeschooling.
It’s quite sad actually, for far too long, parents have been sold the lie that we need to let the “experts” handle our children because they are “licensed” and they know what’s best for your child. Give yourself some credit as a parent and an adult that you ARE equipped to teach your own children. Today’s post gives some advice if you’re nervous about teaching certain subjects or just not confident in your abilities yet. Read on!
Cooperatives are usually set up from a group of homeschool parents as non-profits and will offer classes to homeschooled students for a fee. They can use the funds to pay licensed teachers for a certain subjects or they may have all of the parents share the load. For example, a mom who was a literature major in college and might offer to teach a class on British Literature. Maybe a dad who is handy with tools offers to teach a shop class to a group of middle schoolers. Each co-op is different, so you may have to do some looking around to find one that fits your budget, schedule, and teaches the subjects you’re looking for.
Tutors are an excellent way to help your student if you’re struggling to teach a concept to them. This can be anyone knowledgeable in the subject matter, even your spouse! In our house, I’m not strong in algebra. My husband is a whiz when it comes to anything math related. So, he takes over that subject when the kids get to that level. There are many services out there offering tutoring as well. A quick google search will locate many options if your looking to hire a professional tutor. The internet is your best friend, especially YouTube. Chances are someone has a video on the very topic you’re struggling with. Even Khan Academy does a great job of walking through many different subject areas!
Learn Alongside Your Student
What happens if you can’t afford a tutor or co-op to fit your needs and you’re still unsure of the material you need to teach? Then simply learn along side your student. This is a concept that seems to escape nervous parents. Take some time ahead of teaching the material to read through it and do the lessons yourself. You used to be a student at one point; change the atmosphere in your home to an educational one for all. I think it surprises people when they actually enjoy studying with their kids. I can attest to the fact I didn’t have an interest in history until I started teaching it to my kids and I realized how much more I wanted to dive in to it! Learning can be exciting again, you just have to let it.
You Are Capable!
The bottom line is this: You Can Homeschool Without a Degree in Teaching. With a little effort you can tackle the material presented to your child in K through 12th grade. You don’t need to be an all-knowing being to give your child a quality education. Statistics even show that the level of education the parents have bears very little on how well a homeschool student turns out. So, take a deep breath and turn off that panic button. Stop listening to those voices that insist you aren’t qualified, whether they come from your self doubt or from another person. You CAN do this! No one on this planet cares for your child like you do. Find peace in that and you’ll tackle anything this homeschool journey puts in front of you.
Read More on the New to Homeschooling Series
Be sure to read the other posts in this series New to Homeschooling? The Most Common Questions. I am still writing this series and hope to have the most common questions answered by the fall. Just in time for a new school year! Stay tuned!