If you are a Dad, you are the Ultimate Homeschooler.
What is Dad’s role in homeschooling?
The vast majority of homeschooled children are taught primarily by their mother. Currently, less than one percent of homeschooling families have a working mom and a stay-at-home dad, but with telecommuting becoming more common, and the increase in successful family businesses, it is expected that more fathers will be home for a significant portion of the day.
So, what are the dads to do? We surveyed homeschooling families to find out just what the father in their household did, and even asked moms to tell us what they wish their husbands would do to enhance their homeschooling experience. Our results are summarized below. Tasks for fathers ranged from the simple (“Please take out the trash, dear”) to the more complex (help the children build a tree house, or tutor an older child in calculus or chemistry). Dads fit a range of homeschooling styles, from unschooling to classical. They may be an engineer or a doctor, a hospital worker or a janitor. All dads have one thing in common: the inevitable responsibility to nurture and train the next generation. The homeschooling father has a great treasure: time with his children, and a greater knowledge of what to do with it, and an understanding of his unmatched opportunity to literally change the future by properly preparing his children for adulthood.
There isn’t a homeschooling mother who doesn’t want, wish, pray for, and plead with her husband to be more involved in the homeschooling venture. Yes, Dads, you are welcome and wanted.
Why do we say that Dads are the Ultimate Homeschoolers?
Because what you do and say, Dad, directly influences your wife, and she your children. If you are cheerful, witty and supportive (OK, we’ll concede the witty, if you’ll be cheerful and supportive), then your wife is empowered to nurture and care for your children in a much fuller and heartfelt manner. If you are not cheerful and supportive (taking the opposite view simply for illustrative purposes), then your wife feels deflated, discouraged, and less able to cope with the many demands that homeschooling brings.
Don’t leave her to flounder! Keep your head up, and check out our simple list below of proven and field-tested ways to involve yourself in your children’s upbringing and homeschool education. Step right up, Dad! Your family will welcome you with open arms. You don’t have to be a nuclear scientist to show them that you care. Don’t be shy. Your time and attention are two priceless gifts that only you can offer.
Practically speaking, what can a homeschool father do? See our compilation of survey responses for many ideas. One mom wrote: “Yes, I want my husband to assist in our homeschool. But if he could just realize that every time he hangs up his own shirt, or picks up his socks, or loads the dishwasher for me, he is assisting in a very real way! Yes, these little things do make a difference! He also is very generous in allowing me to buy books for the children. What do I wish he would do differently? I’d like to “begin with the end in mind.” We need to have more clearly defined goals for our homeschool, and I’d like his commitment and input on that.”