Homeschooling with Special Needs: You can do it!

Taking on the full responsibility of your child’s education is nothing to take lightly. But it is a joy, and it is good work. Being a parent to a child with special needs who then chooses to homeschool is a journey that is not only beautiful but can also feel intimidating.

As a mother of three neurodiverse children myself, I know the joy and struggles of this daily life firsthand!

The joys of having your reluctant reader finally find a topic they are passionate about and suddenly it clicks. The day where handwriting just makes sense. Seeing progress being made by working together with an occupational or speech therapist and seeing your child gain confidence to do things that most people take for granted every day. 

Homeschoolers are less than 20% of the population of school aged  children. It can be lonely sometimes until you find your footing and your community. But even among us homeschooling families, there is a  feeling of being misunderstood as a parent of a child with special needs, and the methods we choose to teach our children in the best way  possible.

We get accused at times of being too accommodating of their needs. We are told that the curriculum we chose is too simple and not rigorous enough. People are confused at how many days a week are not spent in front of a table and books, but at therapies. We have to adjust the curriculum that our friend swore by because her child grew by leaps  and bounds in just a few months by using it; but when your child tried it, you were met with more challenges than before, or had to split one  lesson into two or three days.  

Any homeschool parent will tell you that you must do what is right for your family. This is true for all of us. But when your child is  differently wired, there is an even more unique touch on your  homeschool– and you must flow with that and not fight against it. 

Homeschooling with Special Needs

To the parent that wants to homeschool but you don’t feel like you can because you have a special needs child: you absolutely can. You can  still get an IEP from your child’s school if you need it (please check your local district for instructions on how to do this, because it varies). You  are not alone as you teach your child. In fact, start imagining the  freedom you will have to teach and lead your child at their own pace!

Whether your child has an official diagnosis or not, you know as a parent that your child is not wired like most children. That is  perfectly okay. The goal is for your child to thrive in their education and find something they love, not to learn in the same way as another child.

Special needs homeschooling parents are kind, accepting, and always  ready to support you and share anything along the way that has helped. You would be surprised how many resources there are in your area to  walk along beside you. You are always your child’s biggest advocate as  a special needs parent, and through the strength of tailoring their  education, you will be stretched in new ways for the better. It is such a  rewarding journey for you and your child. You can do this!

For more on homeschooling in Southwest Ohio and Northern Kentucky, visit here!


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