What qualifies a homeschooling parent to teach? Many critics suggest that a parent without teaching credentials who perhaps only have a High School diploma or GED should not be teaching children at home. Yet would having a teaching credential really help a parent to teach their children at home? Teaching credentials primarily focus on classroom management for group settings. They help teach how to handle special education situations, how to keep children on task and other group techniques that would have little use in a home situation where typically only a few children are involved.
Teaching credentials would do little to prepare one for teaching within a home environment where education is tailored for the individual needs of the few children involved. While it may show a parent has been taught for proper grammar and basic math skills, it would do little else to aide them in their ability to teach their own children. A parent’s desire and love for their own children can lead to a stronger and more balanced education than a stranger perhaps would be able to provide for them.
A parent that has been guiding their child from the day they were born knows that child’s weaknesses as well as strengths. They know the child’s personal interests and what the underlying motives of behavior are. They know the child’s interests, dislikes and likes as well as learn how that child learns best. They know what challenges each child faces and personal capabilities in any circumstances they must face. A parent is a child’s first and most important teacher, there is no reason why this can not continue on through elementary and beyond years.
Holding teaching credentials does not make one a great teacher, there are both great teachers out there that have credentials and that don’t have it. Being a great teacher involves knowing the children and what motivates those children with a desire to learn. It also takes the ability to be innovative in order to meet children’s individual needs. It takes great dedication and time commitment. It takes creativity in knowing how to present material in a way that will have meaning to a child where they may retain the information. A great teacher inspires their students to have a passion for learning.
These are all qualities a piece of paper does not guarantee a teacher will have. Great teachers can come from a variety of walks of life and be of any age. I have met some children who adults would do well to listen to their teachings of wisdom and perceptions. A great Teacher can be of any age when the right mix of qualities is inherent in their composition of capabilities. Simply a piece of paper from a college does not equal the ability to be a wonderful teacher or one who knows all the material they end up teaching.
While not all parents are suited or capable of homeschooling their children, the majority who do so, do with the child’s best interests in mind. Homeschooling parents who truly care about their kids are more than capable of teaching them. They can offer learning experiences in a safe setting that is not overcrowded while being highly attentive to the child’s needs. What takes an hour of time to teach a group of 30 children, some of which continue causing distractions within the class, only takes a fraction of the time to teach a couple of children without any distractions. In conclusion one must take it for what it is, that you have good teachers and bad teachers whether they have teaching credentials or not and whether they are a homeschool teacher or a public school teacher. Without any arguments, it is not the paper that makes or breaks the teacher. The makings of a good teacher is all about a love for children and a desire to learn and a desire to teach in a way best suited to children as individuals.