Homeschooling While Unemployed? – Q&A July-August 2010

HEM’s Questions & Answers for the July-August, 2010 issue:

Should We Homeschool While Unemployed?

Should we keep on homeschooling? My husband has been out of work for almost five months and I’m working two jobs to make up the difference. We don’t want to put the kids back but in school, they’re doing so well here, but maybe it will relieve some stress. Wynne, Louisiana

Please use the comments section below to share your response. Our deadline for answers to this question is March 15th. Please recognize that your submission may be edited for length or clarity, and indicate how you would like your answer signed.

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5 Responses to Homeschooling While Unemployed? – Q&A July-August 2010

  1. Carol J. Alexander on March 31, 2010 at 9:06 am

    Hi Helen,
    My husband has been unemployed for over a year. In an effort to keep him in school, I’ve
    worked temp/part-time jobs. Home for a few weeks, working for a few.
    He holds the fort down along with my 17 yo daughter. My teenagers
    are self-sufficient. My daughter helps my youngest ones with the basics.
    I just wrote a post on this topic on my blog. You can read it at:
    Blessings to you,

  2. Simply Sonita on April 1, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    No one can decide that but you. Some family would continue, others would quit. It’s such a personal decision.

    We are just starting to homeschool. My oldest is in public school in kindergarten right now (though we’ve been supplementing his public school education with some homeschooling all along), but we are going to pull him out of public school next year and homeschool. I’ve always been a SAHM since he was born and hubby got laid off a year ago.

    What’s right for one family isn’t right for every family. I wish you the best in your decision. It’s very hard trying to figure out what is best for your family sometimes.

    Maybe making a pro/con list would help?

  3. CeAnne on April 12, 2010 at 4:55 pm

    If the kids are doing so well homeschooling I would keep them there. I would look at different avenues to take care of the financial side of things. What does your husband enjoy most? Can he make a living doing that from home? Or perhaps you could do something for home allowing him to find work else where. I’m a fan of making both things work, visit for some great business ideas! Dan Miller is wonderful!

  4. Shay Seaborne on April 12, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    I’m a recently unemployed single parent who has homeschooled 2 children (youngest now 17) their entire lives. Enrolling your children in school might relieve some stress, but it could also create more. There will be a different set of stresses: homework, forgotten milk money, permission slips, incompatible teachers, peer problems, missed buses…
    Furthermore,a radical change in the children’s environment–even when it’s for the better–always causes undesirable changes in behavior. This is because such a large change is stressful for children. They may become whiny, querulous, obstinate, aggressive. You may find yourself spending what used to be homeschooling energy on breaking up fights, nagging about homework, and so on.
    No doubt your family has a lot of stress to handle right now, but quitting homeschooling might not be the relief you seek.
    You didn’t give the ages of your children, but if they are old enough, you might consider a family meeting, during which you discuss the stress and ways to relieve it and pull together as a family. Your kids might surprise you with some terrific ideas!
    Trying this option will give your children an object lesson in family cooperation and working together for the good of the family.
    The decision to homeschool or enroll your children in school is entirely yours. You need to consider both sides of the question. Best of luck to your family in this difficult time.

  5. C. Trzasko on April 12, 2010 at 10:17 pm

    I’ve known some homeschoolers in similar situations who’ve put their children back in school until their finances were back under control. It creates a lot of other stresses. Schedules that will be dictated by schools. Trying to get the kids to do homework, get to bed at a certain time and up and ready for school on time, and more. Perhaps worse is the stress that comes with children who have already had their world changed drastically (by parents changing roles, stress in the home, uncertainty about what else will change in their lives) and will now have it changed even further by having to go to school.

    I’m not saying to not send them to school. Sometimes you might not have a choice. But I am saying that doing it to relieve stress won’t work. If that’s the main reason for doing it, you might want to first consider other options. Do you have someone to watch them during the day (whether your husband or a family member or a neighbor or a friend)? Can that person homeschool them? (It might not be the kind of homeschooling you would do, but that’s still okay.) Or can they design their own lessons? Or better yet, can they find a way to do some things to help the family financially, something that will help earn a bit of money and teach them, at the same time, about economics and working together as a family? Perhaps they can do odd jobs? Or help scour advertisements for jobs that Dad might be able to do?

    In the end, you’ll have to make the decision about what will work best for your family. Good luck!