Homeschooling has become increasingly popular in recent years, with an estimated 2 million children – nearly
5 percent of school-age students – being educated in the home in the United States. From the decision to pull a child from their traditional school setting, to homeschooling a support system of family, friends, and other homeschoolers is essential. That support system can answer questions, offer advice and provide timely resources.
As parents become increasingly aware of the benefits and convenience of homeschooling, many are asking themselves if it is too late to switch to homeschooling.
1: Reasons to Homeschool
Parents have many incentives to choose homeschooling as an alternative approach to education. The benefits of homeschooling make it appealing to time-starved parents or families that desire a highly personalized approach to education. With homeschooling, parents can structure the school day and create individual learning plans that are tailored to their child’s interests.
Homeschooling is also able to focus on positive character trait development and teach practical job skills, such as bookkeeping and financial responsibility.
2: Economic Benefits
It is quite cost effective to homeschool as compared to traditional school. Prices for supplies and curriculum can vary greatly, depending on the type of education and the family’s budget. Homeschooling does not require fees for registration, tuition and extra-curricular activities.
With homeschooling, all of the schooling expenses are taken care of upfront. Additionally, parents can buy curriculum and supplies secondhand, allowing saving on the costs of providing their children with an education.
3: Flexibility of Schedule
Homeschooling also gives families lots of flexibility. Home-schooling allows parents to set their own schedule by controlling the amount of time children spend on their studies. Families can also take educational field trips or include other family members in the lesson plans or even take extended vacations in the middle of the semester.
Homeschooled children have opportunities to select courses not offered at traditional school – like foreign language, photography, theater and the like.
4: Challenges Associated with Homeschooling
Despite the convenience and benefits of homeschooling, there are some challenges that come with it as well. Choosing and mastering the right curriculum for each subject can be a challenge for some families. For parents who may not be as educated or confident in certain subject matters, teaching the curriculum can be daunting.
Additionally, even if parents are qualified to tutors their children, they may not have the time or energy to do so and may require outside help or they may need access to tutoring programs.
5: Challenges Associated with Transitioning from Traditional Schools to Homeschooling
For parents who are thinking about transitioning from traditional schools to homeschooling, there are a variety of challenges that could result from that transition. Transitioning to homeschooling could be difficult for children, as they will miss their friends and the structured environment of traditional schools.
Additionally, transitioning to homeschooling could be stressful for parents, as they will have to learn how to create a curriculum and how to manage the homeschool curriculum. They will also have to overcome any fears that they may have about homeschooling, such as ensuring their kids are comprehensively educated.
6: Strategies to Successfully Transition to Homeschooling
Transitioning to homeschooling can be stressful but it becomes significantly easier when parents have strategies in place. Preparing ahead can minimize the stress of transitioning to homeschooling. Parents should make sure they have the materials and resources they need (e.
g. , books, worksheets, learning apps).
Additionally, parents should consult with parents who have already homeschooled or rely on established homeschool organizations. Finally, parents should create a curriculum that can accommodate their child’s learning style and interests.
7: Establishing a Support System
Establishing a support system is an important step in successfully homeschooling a child. Support may come in the form of family members, friends, other homeschoolers, or even online homeschooling communities.
These support sources can be used to answer any questions, answer challenging curriculum materials, and provide encouragement to parents and children alike. It is important to find support from sources that are knowledgeable, experienced, and can be trusted.
8: Understanding State Homeschool Laws
Each state has its own laws and regulations regarding homeschooling, and it’s important for parents to understand their state’s laws. Some states require paperwork to track student grades and attendance; other states have more flexible regulations.
Parents should research their state laws to determine what protocol needs to be followed. Understanding these laws also ensures that parents are following the required protocol and that their children can participate in special activities (e. g.
, sports or extracurricular activities).
9: Making the Most of Homeschooling
Once the transition to homeschooling has been made, parents will want to make the most of it. This might include pairing different types of learning activities together, providing support and checking in throughout the school day, and incorporating everyday life activities into their learning.
Additionally, parents should keep in mind that homeschooling doesn’t have to be all work and no play. Children should also have time for activities, such as field trips and play dates, as it is important for children to socialize and be exposed to new environments.
10: Reevaluating Homeschooling
Parents may find themselves re-evaluating their decision to homeschool after their first year. It is important to remember the reasons why the decision to homeschool was made, and to assess whether their child is truly learning and growing.
In some cases, parents may find that they need to switch to a different method or approach. It is important to find a method that works best for the family and that can accommodate their individual needs.
11: Resources to Consider When Homeschooling
There are a variety of resources available to help parents while they are homeschooling their children. Parents can look for online curriculum, which provides structure and lessons plans, as well as project-based learning resources that are fun and engaging. Additionally, parents should take advantage of the various online resources, such as online tutorial videos, online tests, and online learning activities.
These resources can be used to supplement the homeschool curriculum, as well as provide additional learning opportunities for the child.
12: Challenges with Distance Learning During COVID-19
With the COVID-19 pandemic, homeschooling is becoming increasingly more popular in light of the transition to distance learning at traditional schools. However, there are a few challenges that come with distance learning, such as managing students’ attention, connecting with all students, and providing the necessary materials and resources. With distance learning, parents may need to look for outside support and help, such as online tutors and mentors, in order for their child to get the most out of their distance learning experience.
13: Benefits of Homeschooling During the Pandemic
Despite the challenges, there are some benefits of homeschooling during the pandemic. With distance learning, students can have more control over their studies and can have a more personalized approach to learning. Additionally, students can avoid being exposed to the virus while they are at home and can avoid the potential safety concerns of traditional schools.
Parents also have more control over their children’s education, which may make them feel more comfortable and secure.
Transitioning to homeschooling can be overwhelming, and there is no one size-fits-all solution. However, with a bit of preparation and a good support system, homeschooling can be a great alternative to the traditional school experience.
It is important for parents to understand their local regulations and create a personalized curriculum that best meets their child’s needs. Additionally, in the age of the COVID-19 pandemic, many parents are finding that distance learning can be a great option for their families. Regardless, with the right support and resources homeschooling can be a worthwhile experience for parents and children alike.