It is no secret that psychologists have seen a rise in the number of children who deal with mental health issues. In our neighborhood, for instance, there’s a 10-year-old girl who has been caught by her parents self-harming. Then, my son’s classmate in fourth grade is talking about dying early because he feels insignificant.
What’s scarier than such situations, however, is when a depressed or anxious kid gets bullied at school as well. Some of their older schoolmates may poke fun at their glasses or clothes almost every day, for example. Others may pull their hair or, worse, hit them when the teachers are not around. Going through similar incidents repeatedly is usually enough for some children to assume that death is the answer to their problems.
Whenever stories about bullying come to light, some parents think that the solution is to either have the bullies expelled or transfer their kids to another school. The former option can be a long process, especially if their families decide to bring the case to court. The latter is more of a quick fix, but it’s still no guarantee that the history won’t repeat itself.
For such reasons, some institutions talk about the possibility of homeschooling children. Granted, it is not the most conventional education system. You may not know a lot of moms and dads who homeschool their kids as well. However, it comes with a few mental health benefits that regular schools may not be able to provide to anyone.
1. The Children Can Always Be Around Their Loved Ones
Assuming bullies have already victimized your kid, know that they need your support now more than ever. It is not the right time to say, “You’re strong, my dear. You can stand up for yourself.” Perhaps they may be able to do that in the future, but they are still at a vulnerable phase. If you keep on making them go to the same school where the bullying has taken place, the emotional wounds may not heal well. Thus, it may be best for them to be around their loved ones for as long as possible.
According to Gordon Neufeld, PhD, “excessive peer orientation undermines the natural authority of parents and thus impedes the natural course of the child’s psychological development. By contrast, not having excessive peer orientation to contend with, homeschooling parents retain the ability to guide their children gradually to a connected type of independence by way of the natural dependency of childhood, which is what children are developmentally supposed to have in relation to their parents, in whose care Nature/God has placed them.”
2. They Can Study Without Extreme Pressure
In reality, bullies are not the only causes of mental health problems among kids. Some of them can get very competitive at school, to the point that they take it personally if a classmate gets better grades than them. The emotionally weak ones, on the other hand, tend to feel so sad and mad at themselves when they cannot keep up with the rest of the class. Jessica Levetan, PsyD, says “Pressure can make kids feel unable to live up to expectations.”
What’s great about homeschooling is that it eliminates such pressure. For one, your kid does not have classmates to compete with. If they do not understand a lesson, they can ask the tutor without the fear of the others think that they’re dumb. Furthermore, the grading system does not have to be too strict. It is even possible to focus on one or two subjects at a time so that they don’t have to study everything every day. Homeschooled kids can only have all these perks and more.
3. There Is No Risk Of Running Across Bullies
Of course, since most of the lessons take place in the comforts of your own house, the children do not have to worry about getting bullied. As mentioned above, there is no way to guarantee that enrolling them to different schools can save them from mean people. It may not sound nice, but some kids can indeed be toxic to others.
4. They Gain More Freedom To Be Who They Are
When you homeschool your children, you give them the freedom to hone their intelligence in various aspects of life. After all, you can schedule their lessons for several hours anytime during the day. It then allows them to try new sports and other hobbies, and this is something that may be difficult for them to do if they go to a regular school. Child psychologist Seto Mulyadi, Psi, M.Psi, states “Moreover, homeschooling doesn’t force children to study. They study because they are motivated to do so, not because they have to, and it leads to them being a more creative individual in the future.”
Homeschooling is an education system that has been created for children who can excel more when the student-to-teach ratio is merely 1:1. It is also popular among parents who want to shield their kids from terrible situations, such as being made fun of or getting bullied at school. After all, some folks believe that dealing with similar hardships can tough up their children, but many others are starting to see how unnecessary that is. Kids are innately smart — you can brace them for the future even without putting them in an environment where they may get hurt.
Try to consider homeschooling your kids when you notice that the regular education system is not beneficial for them.