Terry and Tony in South Africa. Two South Africans working from home in East London in South Africa since early 2008.

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Should a Stay at Home Mom Send her Child to School?

Are you a stay at home mom who has a child that is now old enough to attend pre-primary school, and you’re wondering if you should wait until your child starts grade 1?

You chose to be a stay at home mom or work from home mom mostly so that you could spend more time with your child or children, but now you’re wondering if you should let your child experience some schooling ahead of grade one, or ahead of beginning home schooling with you.

Well, the decision lies with only you, but let’s explore this topic a little more:

If the only reason you don’t send your child to pre-primary school is so that people don’t say things like “Isn’t it awful that she stays home and can be there for her child, yet she sends her child to school?” then that’s the wrong reason to send your child to pre-primary school. You know what is best for your child, and for your relationship with your child. Do not let what others say or think concern you.

If you are planning on home schooling your child from grade one upwards, or, if you are planning on enrolling your child in a public or private school when they start grade 1, you may wish to just keep your child at home until then, because:

your child is already interacting well with other children;
your child is fairly regularly in the company of other children;
you are doing a good job of teaching your child yourself.

However, if you find that you don’t have as much time as you would like to spend teaching your child and to spend quality time with your child, then perhaps some regular schooling may be a good idea. So too, may it be a good idea, if your child does not spend much time with other children.

You are not a bad mom if you feel you need some quality time to yourself. If you do insist on feeling guilty about it, start your child at pre-school just two or three mornings a week. When you are comfortable that he or she has settled in nicely, up it to 5 mornings a week. If your child is having a good time and getting a good foundation in education, how could you feel guilty about that?

If you need to be a work from home mom as well as a stay at home mom, you may not get much work done if your children are in the same house as you all day long.

Being a stay at home mom does not mean that you have to be with your child all the time. If your children go to a public school, at any age, being a stay at home mom means that:

you don’t have to drive like a nut to get to work on time after dropping your child at school;
you can support your children at school when they are involved in sport, academic or cultural activities (that parents can attend);
you are free to take your children to the doctor when they are ill;
you are free to stay home with them when they are ill;
you are at home for them in the afternoons and early evenings to oversee their school homework, their studying, and their school projects

Try aim at a good balance when deciding if you should send your child to school or not: You should be happy, your child should be happy, the relationship between the two of you should not suffer, your child’s education should not be neglected, and your financial situation should be taken into consideration too.

© Copyright Teresa Schultz 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018

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