Not all lifestyles, or for that matter, not every child is right for homeschooling.
Here are a few tips on determining whether or not your child is a good candidate for home schooling.
1. Ask yourself why you want to home school. Be very honest and really consider this question carefully. Is it because you want your child to have a religious education rather than a secular one? Do you want to home school because you don't like governmental regulations? Did you have negative experiences in public school and want to avoid those for your child? Maybe the public schools in your area are sub-standard. Jot down your thoughts and give each one the time it deserves before making a decision.
These are all legitimate reasons, and you may have some others of your own. As long as you have a purpose and a reason (or several purposes and reasons) for home schooling, that is what matters.
2. Can you take the criticism and misunderstanding that will come your way if you home school? If you choose to educate your children at home, you are likely to hear all kinds of lectures about "socialization" and other negatives. Some people will suggest public school any time your child is less than perfect in his or her academic performance. Are you prepared to defend your choice to home school, and/or let such criticism roll off?
3. Consider how much time you have. Home schooling is not necessarily an all day, every day kind of thing, but it does take some time. It takes to plan lessons as well as actual teaching time. Don’t forget to factor in this timing as well.
4. Consider how much money you have. Home schooling does not have to be expensive, but it nearly always involves some kind of expenditure. School supplies and the curriculum itself will cost money - anywhere from $100 to $1000 per year. You don't have to spend a lot - the internet and your local library can do a great job of providing literature, worksheets, hands-on science experiments, and such. Just determine your budget and plan your curriculum accordingly.
5. Are there other groups and events in your community in which your home-schooled child will participate? In some areas, public schools may offer or even be the only group activity available. If your community has activities like Little League, Boy and Girl Scouts, a home-school co-op, then you may feel more confident in home-schooling knowing that your child will have opportunities to make friends.
6. Is your child unusually advanced or behind academically? These are understandable reasons to want to home school. In the case of the advanced student, you may not want your child to be held back in a traditional school setting because he is so far ahead of everyone. Or if your student is behind (by public school standards) and you want to give him individualized attention, then home-schooling may be right for you.
Ultimately, the more time you spend in the beginning evaluating your choices, the happier you should be with your decision in the end.