Posted in Home School, Inspiring, Sayings, Wisdom

Do NOT Try Homeschooling.

I often get asked about the one piece of advice I would give to all home schoolers. Probably folks want some type of motto that fits all situations and clears the air about many problems. I have thought and thought about this, and—for now, anyway—I think the best I can do is to say: “DO NOT TRY HOME SCHOOLING.”

Surely, you think, this advice does not belong on a blogsite dedicated to the advancement of the home school experience. However, it is enlightening to look at what happens when we try home schooling.

First, a definition.

“Try” is a worn out word. An example of good usage is in the old saying, “If you don’t at once succeed, try, try, again.” We can learn a lot from this adage. For instance, we can learn that the purpose of trying is succeeding.


How many folks say they have tried the idea of home schooling, when actually, they only dropped the H-bomb at the dinner table and met with opposition from some child who is badly in need of it? Or maybe they bought an inane, dime-store book or two, and someone worked the first few pages and became disenchanted. Who wouldn’t.

Encountering resistance is not the same as trying.

Pressing against the resistance, with the determination to overcome it, is what trying really is. If a child balks, a relative whines, or a neighbor threatens, what makes us think it’s suddenly time to stop? We must see that type of trying is really just letting those around us dictate our convictions to us. If we are not trying to succeed, we have missed the whole idea.

The goal is not to try; the goal is to succeed.

Once I realized that, I could think of several great sayings that belong to real success in home schooling. Check here for more about goals!


Katharine is a writer, speaker, women's counselor, and professional mom. Happily married over 50 years to the same gorgeous guy. She loves cooking amazing homegrown food, celebrating grandbabies, her golden-egg-laying hennies, and watching old movies with popcorn. Her writing appears at Medium, Arkansas Women Bloggers, Contently, The Testimony Train, Taste Arkansas, Only in Arkansas, and in several professional magazines and one anthology.

29 thoughts on “Do NOT Try Homeschooling.

  1. You certainly can’t “try” homeschooling! You either do or you don’t. There is no in between or “let’s wait and see what happens”. When asked, I advise possible “newbies” that it can be a wonderful experience, but it’s not for the faint-of-heart or anyone looking for the easy way out! You fight many battles, both in your classroom and in your immediate world. But they see when you succeed.

  2. Hey, Teach!
    Thanks for this great comment, and welcome to Home’s Cool!
    Although I do know folks who homeschooled on a wait-and-see basis, I do NOT recommend it! Riding the fence does not produce the lovely results we hope for, at all.
    And for us, it was the easy way out, compared to trying to raise kids who were druggies. (We faced Skoal, in the 2nd grade, with our children.) The very possibility made home schooling a breeze for us. And now that they all live upright lives and bless us continually, it definitely is the easy way, in our opinion.
    The beginning, though, was — pure culture shock! 😉

          1. Southern Arkansas. Sorry. My brother used to live in PA, but was transfered to TX. I truly am sorry and would love going along. Well, would rather just have Ray back. You know.
            BUT! I can pray before and on Aug. 8. I can be with you in prayer. God can do all kinds of things, when we least expect it. You may email me if you like. 🙂

            1. I will keep all the friends informed. Last time we went the 2 hour drive to find the “hearing” was postponed.
              Thank you for your prayers, we need them. I wish I could have a camera in the court room – no one can imagine the disorganization in that room. The judge has no control.
              I thank you for your input and interest. It is friends such as you that keep us going. We have little family, just my daugher Katharine and me here in MD and more in NC. I will continue to look for justice as long as I breathe.

  3. I’m sending my older ones to parochial school this fall thanks to some generous scholarships–and my eldest will be taking some college work, as well. (I wouldn’t send them to public school if someone tried to force me.) We’ve home-schooled for a long time and will continue to home-school, even if they are “in person” somewhere else during part of the day. Parents are the primary educators of children. If parents don’t take on this role, no one else will. This is why so many children are struggling. All parents are home-schoolers, but only a few know it.

  4. I do want to note, I’m favoring the parochial school because I genuinely the religious order affiliated with the school, and it’s our parish. This increases our presence at church and builds a stronger bond with the community–something important. But, again, I’ve never stopped teaching them, and won’t now, either.

    1. I understand. And I sincerely hope you will find the parochial experience satisfactory. We tried two times in that direction before we gave up on ANY “public” type of education, including that narrow subset of the “public” that we call “private”. I guess we found the teachers, the children, and the curriculum to be of the same quality as “public” or “secular” and our children were the ones who were ostracized for objecting to Biblical untruths presented. Sighs.
      Home’s Cool! 😉

      1. It’s possible we’ll find we don’t like it, but daily mass attendance and the recitation of prayer throughout the day are part of this school. There is very strong religious presence and identity at this school, but I fully expect to supplement the curriculum. We’ll see 🙂

        1. Glad you are taking the “wait and see” approach! Our schools had lots of prayer and Bible memorization, to no avail. You cannot make kids OR teachers walk in it, if they don’t want to.

  5. When friends asked me this question, I always replied that, if God called them to homeschool, they would be able to do it. But if they weren’t sure, or if only one parent wanted it, it would be better not to homeschool.

  6. Those I’ve known who ‘tried’ always quit.
    God doesn’t tell us to do something and then NOT tell us how to do it. He expects us to listen! I still believe parents learn more than the children. 🙂

  7. We lived in Florida for 15+ years some of those years were next door to grandparents who had adopted their grandson and were homeschooling him. The young man was so advanced for his age, but another neighboring family had children (4) in public school – their children were agressive and ill behaved compared to the neighbor child who was homeschooled. Oh well, it takes all kinds I am told.

    If I had children today I would definitely home school. I understand the commitment, but for the child, anything is worth their future.

    1. Oh, don’t I know! My own were like that before we removed them. We mustn’t blame the poor children. They are terrified and rejected almost daily, if not oftener. It just is not a workable plan to do what the public does. A few children come out reasonably sane, but the rest . . .
      And yes, they are worth a bit of commitment!!!

  8. As Yoda would say “There is no TRY. Only DO.” Sage advice, I think.
    We are currently in the countdown to our escape from public “school”. This morning as I dropped Peanut off, she said “how many more weeks mom?” Five. Five more weeks. That is hard for me. I think I’ll blog about it to help process our family feelings on the subject! In the mean time we are getting our homeschool in order and are continuing to “after school”. I think the transition for us will be painless since we never were able to assimilate to the institutional direction of public school.
    Thank you again for your inspiration and support Katharine!

    1. What a great start to your schooling and to your site! A wonderful idea! And as you blog your progress into homeschooling, be sure to add Peanut’s comments–They’re priceless. I could just imagine the tiredness in her voice.
      And why? Because I’ve been there–12 years of public schooling–and I had that tiredness. Often wanted to stay home, knew of the possibility of home schooling in our (then) state of Missouri, but had parents who both worked outside the home. Not a great scenario…
      Cannot wait to read it! 🙂

  9. You’re so right! My oldest is in kindergarten finishing out her year in public school then will be homeschooling. We are counting down the days till our freedom!

    1. Hi, Tiffany, and WELCOME to Home’s Cool! 🙂

      Just starting! How fondly I remember those days! I pray you will find the joy and peace we found, as you walk through the maze of learning how! 🙂

      If you have not noticed, there is a LOT of info here to help you get started and stay the course. Check this page: I think maybe it’s not all the posts, but is a list of many of them.

      Help yourself! 🙂

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