Looking around at the homeschool families you know in your co-op, support group, or church, you might observe that most consist of more than one child. In fact, a 2006 National Center for Education report found that families with three or more children make up 62% of the homeschool population. If you’re one of the few with an only child at home, you may be asking yourself the question, “Can I homeschool my only child?”
The emphatic answer is yes, you can. Only-child families reap the same benefits homeschooling provides to larger families. A friend who homeschooled her only son until the age of 10, when their family miraculously grew in size, reminded me that homeschooling, like anything else, is what you make it. If you sow good seed in your homeschool, you will reap an abundant harvest, regardless of the number of children in your home.
My husband and I set our hearts to homeschool our kids before we even had any. We’d been introduced to homeschooling just before our now 12-year-old was born. Our reasons for homeschooling mirrored those of most families: to educate the whole child, to keep her heart at home, to raise her with a strong Christian worldview. We paid little attention to her being an only child until I joined a homeschool support group and realized we were in the minority. Only two of the more than thirty families in my support group—including ourselves—were only-child families.
I didn’t panic. Our convictions hadn’t changed. We had a God-given vision for our family. I rejoiced in the benefits of only-child homeschooling I could see immediately: an abundance of one-on-one time, more freedom in choosing curriculum and activities, and more flexibility in our schedule than that already afforded by homeschooling.
But first, let’s consider some of the trials you might face as you endeavor to homeschool your only child. Homeschooling an only child does provide some unique challenges, but none of them are insurmountable.
Source: Crosswalk | Pamela Greer