I Can’t Homeschool Because I’m Not a Certified Teacher
When people ask me about homeschooling, I often hear the “But I can’t homeschool because I’m not a certified teacher!” excuse for why they can’t homeschool their children. It’s baloney.
I’m a certified teacher, and it has been more of a hindrance than a help. My teacher certification meant that I was trained in classroom management (aka crowd control), how to handle the dozens of transitions in a day, and how to keep accurate records of everything from attendance to discipline issues to lesson plans. Yes, I did learn some about how to teach academic lessons to children, but that was a small part of my formal “training.”
And none of it helped me with homeschooling my own children. It has taken years for me to move past the way I was taught to “teach” and the way I was taught myself and settle into homeschooling.
This quote by Tricia Goyer sums up the way I’ve discovered good homeschooling works:
Yes, we have lessons from books. Yes, I expect my kids to learn the basics, and we work on them every day. But I’ve found that the learning they retain, the learning that brings real joy to our household and inspires even more learning, is the kind we stumble upon while living our lives together. This includes: finding an unusual insect and researching until we find out what it is and find answers to all the questions we have about it; watching documentaries we find interesting and then looking up and reading more about that topic, discussing it until we’ve completely exhausted the idea; taking field trips at nearby state parks, festivals, zoos, and museums where we see science, history, music, and more come alive; volunteering in the community; having almost-daily read aloud times; and more.
My kids learn from their formal academic lessons, but they learn so much more from the things we do together in the course of our days, when the learning is spontaneous and so much fun they hardly realize they’re learning.
You don’t need a degree or teaching certificate to live life with your kids, to learn alongside them.
If you really want to homeschool, go for it! Don’t let a little thing like a teaching certificate stand in your way.
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