50 Reasons Homeschooling Special Needs Works!September 26, 2019
Special needs can feel like a different world of parenting altogether. Indeed, it has its own amazing moments, as well as its own struggles. If you have found yourself evaluating your child’s education choices and wondering whether homeschooling would be a good fit, you’re in the right place. Or, perhaps this is your first time genuinely reading an article about the possibilities of homeschooling your special needs child. Either way, regardless of whether this is the first time you’ve considered homeschooling, or the fiftieth post you’ve read, we want to help put your anxiety at ease.
But first, we have to agree. Homeschooling is not a walk in the park. It’s a lot to consider. You are taking your child’s entire education into your own hands. That’s a lot of pressure, and what if you forget something?
That’s the joy of homeschooling! It’s okay to forget something. We all forget things at times. It happens. The good news? You can catch it next year. It’s okay to not know everything; there are innumerable resources available to help. It’s okay to feel extra apprehensive because your child has special needs, regardless of whether your situation involves Prader-Willi syndrome, ADHD, or anything else. Thankfully, several amazing parents have shared their experiences with homeschooling their own gifted learners!
5 Homeschooling Resources for Special Needs
Homeschooling is an education choice, but it’s also a lifestyle. In fact, the benefits of home education can be felt by nearly any child, and that includes gifted learners. Whether your child has Down Syndrome, an autoimmune disease, or anything else, they are absolutely remarkable. The freedom and individual focus of homeschooling can help these children thrive where they previously struggled. As you research further into special needs homeschooling, these are five of our favorite resources for more information.
50 Convincing Reasons Why Homeschooling is a Good Choice for Gifted Learners
Special education comes with many unknowns, labels, rules, and restrictions. Therapy, doctors, and counselors will still be available if you homeschool! It’s understandable to feel nervous, considering you’re “just” the parent, and “not a professional.” However, you love your children more than anyone else, and you know your child best. You can learn, and you can help them learn. There are many benefits of homeschooling for special needs learners, and here are our top 50.
- Focus on strengths.
- Keep a flexible schedule.
- Surround social experiences with positivity.
- Work on decreasing anxiety.
- Create your own Individualized Education Plan.
- Help your student work at their own pace.
- Build on existing skills.
- Explore hobbies.
- Encourage children to learn through exploration.
- Allow for curiosity and enjoyment-led learning.
- Bully-free education.
- No limits on bathroom breaks.
- Start school as late in the day as needed, especially after a stressful night.
- OR, skip school when needed.
- Focus on life skills.
- Naps are available as desired.
- A controlled environment: no loud bells or triggering behaviors from other children. This can be specifically helpful for kids with autism.
- Similarly, homeschooling avoids overwhelming the senses.
- No need to worry about who is caring for your child.
- No cruel laughter when they struggle, a frequent issue for children with special needs such as dyslexia.
- Reduced test anxiety.
- Homeschooling eliminates toxic competition.
- No stress over before-school or after-school care/routines/schedules.
- As much time as needed to work through challenges.
- For advanced learners, there is no need to continue in easier, boring classes.
- You won’t need to worry about uniforms — or the issues they sometimes create.
- Similarly, shoes aren’t required.
- Zero shame, regardless of levels.
- Lack of restrictions, especially those that don’t apply to your child; a great highlight for children with ADD symptoms.
- Bonding time as a family.
- No need to break the bank over private school education.
- As parents, you won’t just see the exhausted leftover hours at the end of the school day — you’ll experience every great hour with your child!
- You will learn alongside your child.
- You’ll be able to experience the good hours before any medication has worn off, such as ADD medications.
- Don’t worry about a doctor’s note for excused absences again.
- No pressure for perfect attendance.
- Homeschooling provides more flexibility for your own job.
- You won’t need to spend a small fortune on fancy new clothes each year for back to school.
- Your child won’t be bringing home notes from the teacher, and you won’t be getting calls from the office.
- Your child can fidget, move, and jump as much as their heart’s desires. Children with ADHD symptoms often excel with this newfound freedom.
- If something doesn’t work, just try something else.
- No packing or planning for special diets.
- No worries about discussing medications, or nurses administering those medications.
- Schoolwork doesn’t need to continue if it’s a bad day.
- Learning is possible thanks to several mediums, such as YouTube, audiobooks, movies, or even jumping on the trampoline!
- No need to rush.
- Friends don’t disappear when summer comes around.
- Visit public museums or parks during off-peak hours, which means admission is less expensive, less busy, and less stressful. Again, no need to rush.
- Have as much outdoor time as they like.
- Sign language can easily be incorporated into homeschooling for children with learning impairments.
There you have it! 50 reasons why homeschooling is a good choice for your special needs student. And while we could continue to list even more, but this is a good start. Indeed, there are numerous benefits of home education for gifted learners, and most of it revolves around providing an environment and pace that works for each individual. Every child is different and though our society likes to think there is a standard that students need to meet, there’s hardly such a thing as an average student. Every student learns differently.
We hope this post encourages you to consider homeschooling for your child with extra needs. The thought of homeschooling is intimidating, and the preparation process often involves many sleepless nights of researching, endless questions, and a bit of trepidation. At the end of the day, though, you know your child better than anyone else, and you can learn right alongside them!
Courtney Newman is a homeschooled graduate with a love for writing. She is currently pursuing her undergraduate degree in Health Science at University of the People. Other than writing, her hobbies include reading, yoga, visiting the beach, and meditating. She lives with her husband and pets in coastal Virginia.