Choosing to homeschool

Choosing to homeschool with Wolsey Hall Oxford

Karen, mum of 3 and member of Our Travelling Family, talks us through her family’s decision to homeschool with Wolsey Hall.

About 18 months ago my husband and I had, what at the time seemed like, a crazy idea. We had come to the end of a journey in Portugal and were set to return to the UK. We had got to a point in our lives where we decided we wanted more for ourselves and our family.

We wanted to escape the stress and constant rushing, we wanted to live our lives on our terms, we wanted to teach our children that kindness and empathy and experiences are so much more valuable than material possessions. We wanted to spend as much time as possible in nature and we wanted time to teach the children skills that today have gone by the wayside.

So in a moment of sheer genius (or madness) we decided that we would sell all our worldly possessions, move the entire family into a caravan and work as hard as we could to save enough money to fund a year’s volunteer tour of Europe.

Our Travelling Family, the Binedells

Sebastian, Aiden and Ella homeschooled with Wolsey Hall Oxford for 18 months while they travelled around Europe in a caravan.

The Binedell family

Sharing our plans with friends and family

After getting the children on board it was time to share our plans with friends and family.

Most were supportive and excited about what lay in store for us but the number one question or concern that cropped up over and over again was, ‘What about school?’ A valid question and one my husband and I spent many hours debating over! Are we making the right choice taking them out of school? Will a decision we make now negatively impact them later in life? If we homeschool them will they still be able to write their GCSE’s?

Luckily for us after much searching and many phone calls, we found an online college with all the answers- Wolsey Hall.

The practicalities

We have found that the kids will be able to continue with the UK curriculum via their online platform as we make our way around Europe. They will be able to write their IGCSE’s at one of many international test centres when the time comes.

They will have a dedicated Student Progress Manager, the lovely Tina (in our case), who will help them put together a timetable which will fit in with our family’s volunteer projects but will also enable them to complete all the necessary course work and assignments.

In the event that there is an area where they are struggling they will be able to contact their subject Tutor for assistance via email.

The Binedell homeschoolers

How has homeschooling changed?

In my personal opinion homeschooling has come a very long way since it’s humble beginnings.

The principles are the same, enabling children to learn in an alternate environment, at their own pace and in such a way that you can focus on their interests and strengths but with an absolute wealth of resources, support and structure.

For us it is the way forward in raising independent, open-minded and worldly individuals.

Sebastian is homeschooling his igcses

Why did we choose to homeschool?

People may decide to homeschool for a number of reasons, for our family it was to enable us to travel extensively while our children are at a crucial point in their lives without the worry that their education will suffer.

As parents of teens we will be more able to support them through what is a very tricky period to navigate.

We will be able to show them other ways of life, expose them to different cultures and hopefully instil in them that there is so much to be gained from helping others.