Return to the home page

Article by Laurie Block Spigel

10 Steps to Successful Homeschooling What's Free or Cheap in NYC? Ask Laurie / RAQ Travels with Laurie Newsletter
Laurie Block Spigel
Classes & Lectures
Photo Gallery           
Poems by Laurie
Contact Laurie
FAQ (testing etc.)
Articles & Reviews       
Books & Resources
Favorite Kids' Books
Language Arts
Math & Economics
Critical Thinking
Social Studies
Foreign Languages
Art & Architecture
Standards, etc.     
Activities & Crafts
Special Ed
Gifted & Talented
About College/Teens
NYC High Schools
Art by Kids
Poems by Kids
Reviews by Kids
Other Sites           

Questions about Homeschooling new

Why do people homeschool?

The dominant reason people in NYC choose homeschooling is dissatisfaction with the schools. There are many reasons for this dissatisfaction such as safety issues, overcrowding, standardized curriculum, focus on testing, lack of arts and sports, and unhappy children who have lost their yen for learning. Some families choose homeschooling without ever considering school, wanting the freedom to tailor the education and learning environment to their child.

What are some of the pros and cons of homeschooling?


  • If a child is too young to travel or work independently, then an adult must be available to the child at all times, making it hard for working parents to choose homeschooling for their young children unless they have help.
  • Homeschooling parents may have to deal with questions and criticism from people who do not understand homeschooling.
  • Parents must file paperwork with the DoE. This feels daunting at first, but gets easier quickly.


  • Education can happen with a lack of pressure, with less testing and an absence of passing or failing on exams.
  • There is the freedom to choose what a student wants to learn and how s/he wants to learn it.
  • There is the ability to tailor education to the child and his/her learning style.
  • There is the freedom to create your own schedule for each day and week, and to change it as needed.
  • There is the ability to use the entire world as a resource, to not be stuck in one place, homeschool while traveling, to use the amazing educational resources of NYC and your community.
  • The ability for a child to be heard and to receive one-on-one instruction if needed. Homeschoolers in NYC are socially sophisticated and diverse. There is an absence of age prejudice, since children work together most often in mixed age groups, and have social interactions with all ages and various walks of life.

See also Homeschooling Myths Explained

Back to top

What does a typical homeschooling day look like?

Each homeschooling family or student might have a different approach to education, and a different schedule. Here are some of the things I have heard (tired) homeschooling parents say:
“We’re homeschooling which means we are never at home.”
“The problem with homeschooling is… too much social! Too many events and things to do! My kid has too many friends!”

I often advise new homeschoolers to make sure that they keep one day to stay at home and relax and catch up on everything. My kids were out of the house every day, as are most other homeschoolers. They each had a different schedule, went to different classes and activities. Ask any one of my students where they were before my class or where they are headed after, and you will hear a variety of answers: “science class just around the corner,” “rehearsal for South Pacific,” “teen gathering at Lincoln Center,” “a class at Different Directions,” “history class in the Metropolitan Museum,” “going home to practice the violin,” “hanging out with friends,” “I’ve got to study for the SAT,” “running track,” and so on. Everyone’s day is different, full of friends, activities, and constant learning.

Back to top