Now, more than ever, our children face a number of potential challenges in their education. Any number of obstacles may be "working against" them: learning disabilities, bullying, anxiety, special needs, physical illnesses, short-term crises or simply being labeled as "too smart" (aka eccentric) to fit in with their peers.
The great news?
It doesn't have to be this way! You have options!
Have you considered homeschooling? The term "homeschool" can instill fear in even the most confident parent, but what scares us about educating our children at home? We're already doing this every day! We're responsible for teaching our children right from wrong, proper hygiene, how to maintain a clean home and how to realize their potential while contributing positively to our society. On top of all that, we're already helping them with mounds of homework nearly every night.
Home education allows you—the parent or legal guardian—to meet your children wherever they may be in their educational journey.
Let's say your son is in fifth grade. He's reading at a seventh-grade level at home; in school, however, he's stuck reading at the same level as his classmates because, well, uniformity. Home education allows him to excel in areas that are his strong suit. For example, he or she can maintain "on-par" grade levels in history and receive more focused attention in math.
Maybe you're asking yourself: "Can I do this?"
Yes, of course you can! Many myths surround home education. Folks assume that, to homeschool your child, you must quit your job, give up your social life and sit at the kitchen table with your child from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday.
That's simply not true! Yes, you can have a very structured day if that suits your family. Otherwise, you can set your own schedule. Your options, especially here in West Michigan, are wide open!
So, exactly what resources are available to you when it comes to homeschooling?
That's where we come in. HSB, Inc. is an educational resource center located in Wyoming, near Metro Health Hospital. Founded in 1999, we're a nonprofit organization with the vision to come alongside home educators and help them find what's best for their children. Over the years, we've widely expanded our reach to offer support, materials and council for families of all educational choices.
We also offer a wide variety of academic and enrichment classes. The options for structuring your children's school year and summer, utilizing our resources, are limitless! We offer a wide array of sports and enrichment programs to work in conjunction with the academics for a well-rounded educational experience. We offer a driver's training program, an Honor Society and so much more! Believe it or not, we even have a fiddle club! Aside from classes, we have a massive library where you can check out books and materials. Your child can get their student IDs on site, too.
Last, and most exciting, we have a fabulous Bookstore! We're talking the mother of all educational bookstores. You don't have to be a homeschooling family to shop! We stock a large selection of tutoring materials, ACT and SAT test prep materials, reading books, arts and crafts supplies, gifts and puzzles.
HSB, Inc. is here for you. We can answer your homeschooling questions. No appointment or membership required. Stop by, call or e-mail us. We've heard all of the questions before and we're here—ready to help you!
Hundreds of single parents, full-time working parents, doctors, lawyers, world travelers and even celebrities across the United States have chosen to homeschool their children. That doesn't mean that homeschooling is the only way, or that public school, private school or even unschooling are bad. On the contrary, it's really about finding what fits your children's learning needs and what allows them to flourish!
Written by Whitney Timmer, media coordinator, HSB, Inc.