In this counseling answer:
•Historically, children have been successfully schooled using both options.
•To make the decision that is best in your case, consider your individual circumstances.
•You need to take time to really ponder over your options and which options you feel will work best for you in your circumstances.
Wa ’Alaikum Salaam wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh,
Whether to homeschool your child or not is an important dilemma that many parents go through as their children reach school age. There are many things to think about while weighing up the options. The decision is made more difficult by the fact that it is a decision that will affect your child’s future. The good news is that there are many benefits to both approaches. Historically, children have been successfully schooled using both options.
You have done the right thing in thinking about this important decision ahead of time. It will give you a chance to be fully prepared either way. To make the decision that is best in your case, consider your individual circumstances.
This will depend on your location and access to resources. For example, if you live in a rural area, then often homeschooling can be a useful option as it saves lengthy school runs on a daily basis. Likewise, if there are no good schools in your local area and you fear your child will be influenced in a negative way by their peers, then homeschooling can be a means to protect them from this.
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Homeschooling, however, is very time-consuming as you yourself will be the teacher. Therefore, it is a full-time job in itself which, obviously, will be very difficult if you work. You need to be very dedicated to homeschooling. You need to plan carefully which tasks your child will do each day that will be in line with their level of ability.
Homeschooling your children can be very challenging, but also incredibly rewarding. It might seem quite daunting at first as there is a lot to think about, but there are also lots of support groups for other fellow homeschooling parents like yourself. Depending on your location, you may even find such support groups in a face to face environment. Parents will often organize to meet up and do activities together.
This can be very useful as one of the concerns parents have about homeschooling is that their children might miss out on the social interaction that comes with attending a public school. Meetups like this allow children to have social interaction and for parents to exchange ideas. Alternatively, you can simply enroll them in clubs such as sports where they will be able to interact with other children also.
If you live somewhere more remote, this might not be an option, but there are many online support groups where you can get ideas from others. This will improve your skills and make homeschooling even more enjoyable for both you and your child.
The great thing about homeschooling is that you are the one in control of what is being taught. You can teach it in a way that you know will be more compatible with your child’s individual way of learning. In a public school environment, perhaps the child will not get the one-on-one attention that homeschooling can provide. Maybe the style of teaching will not work with their child. Homeschooling overcomes these difficulties.
However, as you can see, homeschooling can be a real hard work. Sending your child to a public school would save the stress and give you reassurance that they are being taught according to the national curriculum. They will also have the chance to interact with their peers on a daily basis as well as having access to multiple resources and books to assist their learning.
Whichever choice you make, be patient with it for a time. In sha’ Allah, it will work out. Also know that if it really doesn’t work out, then you can always switch to the other method of schooling.
Ultimately, you need to take time to really ponder over your options and which options you feel will work best for you in your circumstances. Whilst you consider these options, pray istikharah and ask Allah (swt) to guide you to make the best decision.
May Allah (swt) reward you for looking out for your child’s best interests. May He (swt) bless you with a pious child that will be a righteous, upstanding pillar of the community.
Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, its counselors or employees be held liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.