Here’s Why You Should Provide Homeschooling For Your Child

You really should be aware of the advantages of homeschooling over the more traditional forms of education. It should be one of the options that you should look into if you want to get the best kind of education for your child. We have created a list here describing those advantages:
1.In a classroom, there are a lot of students that all need attention when it comes to education. A teacher would have to pay attention to each and every one of them and should provide for their educational needs. Obviously, no teacher would be able to provide that level of attention to all his or her students.
In home schooling a parent would be able to pay attention to the special needs of his children. The added advantage there is that since a parent knows his child on a personal level, he can help them out based on that.
2.In a traditional school, a child would have to undergo the same curriculum that all students are following. The subjects taught there are according to the academic needs of the students. All other considerations such as philosophy are left out.
By getting a home based education for your child you can choose to emphasize subjects based on your personal belief and what you would like to pass on to your child. You can choose to focus more on Christian values for example and mound the way that you teach other subjects around that.
3.You have gone through schooling yourself, so you would know that not all of the time spent by children in school is used for studying. A great deal of their time is wasted in waiting for a lot of things. And that is not bound to change anytime soon.
When you go for home schooling, you can cut down on the waiting time and put more focus on teaching. Students can accomplish the same amount of studying that they do at school for the whole day in just two or three hours of home schooling.
4.Studies have proven that students who undergo home schooling perform better academically when compared to students in traditional schools. The involvement of their parents in their education pushes the students to perform a lot better.
5.The study time can also help make the family relationship and bonding stronger. The children can also stay away from the unwanted and negative influences that they could from outside their home.
6.Children are exposed to others of their same age at school, but contrary to common knowledge, this is not exactly a positive thing. It is far better for them to have a more varied interaction with people of different ages. That can help to develop a healthier social interaction.
7.Home schooling can also be a positive learning experience for you. Many parents who have tried it say that it is a life changing experience because of the way that it has expanded their minds and the way that they view things.
Those are just some of the advantages of homeschooling today.

Homeschooling And Efficient House Cleaning

Homeschooling is a full-time job, but so is keeping your home and family clean and organized. Homeschooling families have a wonderful opportunity to involve children in the daily cleaning routine. It takes a lot of work to run a household, and it usually takes a family working together to make it run smoothly. (And when I say “family”, I mean “Mom telling everyone else what to do”!). From a young age, children are capable of helping around the house. After all, they make most of the messes, so shouldn’t they be part of cleaning them up? The trick is to find jobs that are compatible with your child’s age and ability, teaching them the correct way to do it (and you sometimes have to teach them several times), and setting up a regular routine with clear expectations.

The Right Job
Every child that can walk can help! Even toddlers can be taught to put toys away. Preschool and kindergarten aged children can do tasks that do not involve cleaners or electrical equipment. You might want to consider: sorting and putting away clean silverware, dusting, taking clothes out of the dryer to a designated spot for mom to fold, cleaning up crayons and markers from school areas, feeding pets, unloading groceries from car, and putting away all stray stuffed animals and dolls.

Younger elementary aged children are capable of a bit more. They can be in charge of the bookshelves, making sure all the books are put neatly away. Consider letting them do all the things a younger child can do, plus: clean toys out from under the bed; clean up floor, checking for all small toy pieces before Mom runs the vacuum; fold a load of towels, socks, and underwear, then put them away; sweeping the kitchen floor, taking out the recycling; keeping their closet floor clean; and helping rake leaves.

Older children can do all this, and more! They can vacuum, clean mirrors, clean litter boxes, take out the trash, be in charge of trash cans for trash collecting days, weed, and so much more!

Work with your children, and get to know their skill level and ability. Then find household chores that they can do themselves or participate in. The whole family benefits!

So, what is a good approach to house work when homeschooling? Here are a few things to get you started in organizing your time in an effort to keep your housework from interfering with your homeschool and your sanity.

1. Not so great expectations
Obviously, if you want perfection in your home, homeschooling may not be the choice for you. Kids at home all day, learning in various ways in different parts of the house; well, it just does not lend itself to a magazine perfect home.

2. Make a plan
The best way to keep a hold on this problem is organization. Make a reasonable weekly plan that allows for smaller bits of cleaning throughout the whole week. For example, clean bathrooms on Monday, clean floors of Tuesday, do laundry on Wednesday, and so on. Breaking it down helps take pressure off. However, stick to the plan! If cleaning the bathrooms does not take long, so be it!

3. Be Flexible
If anyone ever makes a theme song for homeschoolers, I think the title should be “Be Flexible”! It is our anthem, isn’t it? Like in everything else in life, be flexible with housework. Something may interfere with your cleaning schedule (illness, holiday, special event); adapt. Either do a shorter, quick clean of that area, put it off for a day, or catch it the next week around.

4. Get Help
If you can afford it, have a cleaning service come in once a week or even once a month. Even if all they do it clean the bathrooms, you will find it money well spent.

Alas! For many of us that is not an option. Even still, help it at hand. Our children, almost regardless of their ages, can help in our housework. Spouses, too, need to lend a willing hand. After all, homeschooling as a family lifestyle.

Essential Tips For Choosing Homeschooling Programs

With the rising popularity of homeschooling, parents have many choices when selecting commercially provided homeschooling programs. Having a balance of structure and spontaneity is important when designing a homeschool curriculum, and like a restaurant menu, many homeschooling programs provide both a full course or an a la carte option. Parents will need to make some decisions about which type of program to pursue.

Curriculum material can often purchased separately and then combined to create a cohesive program. Usually, the more curriculum materials that are included, the more expensive it will be. Many homeschooling programs will include weekly lesson plans, grade record sheets, an attendance log, an activities agenda, reading list forms, and other tools, such as awards or certificates. Many programs also come with an online interactive element, where the child can do many of their lessons online, or use as a basis for further exploration in their subject area. A successful homeschooling program combines elements of a traditional education with other types of unstructured learning exercises, and hands-on activities, such as field trips.

Specific learning objectives for a particular unit or subject are also an important consideration in choosing a homeschooling program. It is usually best to define specific learning objectives for each subject or topic being covered. This allows children to learn at their own pace, and even excel at a subject at a more rapid rate than they might in a traditional school setting. Having learning objectives also allows for creativity in meeting the objectives with different materials and learning experiences.

In addition to specific educational content, homeschooling programs may also emphasize certain values in their curriculum. Many homeschool programs are based on the Christian faith, which is often incorporated into the material, but there are also many programs that convey a humanist or non-religious perspective. It is important that parents review the underlying messages in any program or curriculum they choose, and make sure it is agrees with the values they want to impart to their children.

When choosing a homeschooling program, a parent will have many resources available, and by being clear about their intended outcome, will find the material that best serves their child. They can commit wholeheartedly to a since program, or pick and choose out of many models that will meet their children’s educational needs. With so many resources available, they will have assistance every step of the way.

How To Homeschool Your Child Successfully

There are many benefits to homeschooling children: as costs of private schools continue to climb, homeschooling is a more affordable option; homeschooling allows more educational flexibility and can be scheduled conveniently around other family activities; and the curriculum and learning environment can be tailored to suit your child’s individual needs.

When you decide to homeschool your child, you must have a clear curriculum, plan and goals. Homeschooling allows you a great deal of flexibility, in that you can teach a child something in many different ways, and teach many different things for a given subject. However, this very flexibility can also be your downfall if not handled properly, as you run the risk of providing an inconsistent and sub par education that leaves your child lagging behind his or her peers.

Setting a clear educational plan means you have a better chance for effective homeschooling. To set your plans and goals, it is a good idea to first take a look at your child’s standard curriculum for his grade in a public or private school. See what the standard expectations are for a given subject level, then set your targets, timeline and curriculum for your child. Once you have decided what your child is going to learn, you can allow for some flexibility in how your child will learn best.

Homeschooling also requires discipline, as it can be difficult drawing a distinction between home and schooling at home. There are plenty of distractions in any household and when you get busy you may be tempted to try and multitask, that is, to educate your child and also do some other chores at home. Parents may even be tempted to give an assignment to their child and then leave to complete some other activities. By doing so, you are sending a negative message that his schooling is not a high priority for you, and this will seriously undermine the child’s attitude towards his own education. So make sure to do household duties “after-school” hours and when “school is in,” you and your child are both focusing 100 percent on learning. This will communicate to your child that education is important and top priority.

Homeschooling not only allows you to tailor education to your child’s individual needs, something that is lacking in both the private and public school systems; it also allows you and your child to learn together, thus helping to create a valuable learning experience, and also to strengthen family bonds.

Creating An Effective Homeschooling Schedule

Today, every homeschooling parent encounters a challenge when it comes to creating a schedule. While some resort to using computer programs like MS WORD, others make notes in notebooks or take the help of software. Irrespective of the medium, parents should to follow certain steps to ensure they get a workable homeschooling schedule, making judicious use of all the available resources.

While creating the schedule, parents should take into consideration the age of the student, areas of instruction and the family schedule on a day-to-day basis. All these are an integral part of the creation of a schedule and go a long way into regulating the daily study schedules.

Before creating a homeschooling schedule, parents should determine the mission statement or the main purpose of the homeschool. If you are a parent, you should consider various questions like- what are the intellectual abilities of your child? What is he/she interested in learning? What study resources are available?

After determining the mission statement, you would have to do some groundwork, like collecting information about the various subjects you intend to teach and the gradual developmental changes in your child. The internet is a ready database of all the information you would ever need. Also, refer to the present teaching standards and laws pertaining to homeschool for a particular grade in your country/state. Juxtapose the given standards with the determined mission statement and cross out topics that do not adhere to the standards.

For instance, if you strongly feel about religion, add that to your list of priorities, according to the standards put down by your state. You can also incorporate the topic into the existent standards by imparting the necessary information about the people who have revolutionized religion and inculcated various teachings into the tradition and culture of your country.

Now comes the time when you actually sit down and formulate a homeschooling schedule. At first, create a weekly schedule with the meal, nap and snack timings for the child and the family as a whole. Thereafter, include the regular family activities like sport-practice, church commitments or weekly trips to the local store. Bear in mind that these activities can also be incorporated into the study schedule and become a part of the current learning milieu. Determine how many hours a day would you wish to dedicate to instruction and what time of the day would be perfect for practice.

It is a general practice for parents to include 2 to 2 1/2 hour per day for language and communication studies. This includes writing, reading, and spelling, grammar, speaking and listening. Next, devote an hour for math the remaining time should be employed for teaching all the other subjects. There are some who prefer teaching every subject everyday; then again, there are those who teach one particular study material for an extended period.

Last but definitely not the least; your homeschooling schedule should include physical activity. Treat this as every other subject and set aside an hour or two of the week for a particular sports activity. However, it is advisable to indulge on a daily basis rather than weekly. This would not only integrate the short spurts of physical activities throughout the day, but would also help your child to concentrate better.

Make sure you abide by the proposed homeschooling schedule. It sure is important, but don’t hesitate if you have to deviate from the designed plan to attend to an urgent issue or unforeseen opportunity.

Homeschooling Critiques Are Unfounded

The debate over homeschooling has been going on for years, and will continue to persist as parents look for viable alternatives to public school education.

Proponents of homeschool activities say that their children are allowed to work at a much faster pace, can receive much more individual attention, and are free from possible negative influences that may be present in a public school setting. While those against home schooling say that it stifles creativity, socialization, and can potentially set a child down a more difficult road toward the future.

In truth, there are pieces of each of these arguments that are valid, but nonetheless, they are all also somewhat misleading. A more objective approach to home school education reveals that there a both great benefits and great challenges facing parents and children who choose a home school curriculum for their education.

The argument that homeschooled children can work at a faster pace, and are therefore not “stifled” by the pace of a 30 child classroom is definitely valid, but it must be said that, in truth, a child is really only held back – or allowed to move forward – by his own abilities. If a child is particularly bright, then a home schooling environment does indeed allow him to work at a faster pace than he would be able to in a public classroom. However, some children – that would ordinarily not move at a fast pace – may benefit from being pushed by the pace of a classroom. So, while some may thrive, others may fall back to work at their own pace.

In a related argument, it is true that home schooled children can receive more attention than they would in a classroom. The benefits of this are obvious – more individual attention from your teacher means more opportunity to have in-depth discussions about school work, have your questions answered, and feel a sense of comfort and accomplishment that a traditional classroom might not allow.

The most difficult obstacle for homeschoolers comes in the form of socialization. For years, homeschooled children have faced the stigma of being socially inept and less able to function outside of the “bubble” provided by their parents. This is probably the most accurate of criticisms when it comes to homeschooling. However, much has been done throughout the years to combat this. Involvement in scouting, church groups, and after-school groups comprised completely of homeschoolers, can strongly help combat the socialization challenges.

In short, homeschooling is just like any other culture – it works for some people, and not for others. The results will always be mixed, but so to, are the results from private and public schooling.

Homeschooling While Living On One Income

In the majority of homeschool families, one parent stays at home to teach the children. This can make saving money on your children’s curriculum without sacrificing the quality of their education of the uppermost importance. Homeschooling can be an expensive adventure but it doesn’t have to be. If one does their research and is willing to take some time to plan and put together a curriculum it can be very cheap compared to purchasing a “packaged” curriculum. Putting together and eclectic curriculum in this manner can also benefit your child as each child has their own unique learning style. You may find when you purchase a ready made curriculum that the language arts works well with your child and the math does not.

Where To Start?

The first question a parent usually has when deciding to put a curriculum together on their own is “What should my child be learning for their particular age?” World Book’s Typical Course of Study at http://www.worldbook.com/wb/Students?curriculum has always been a popular resource. Also, try visiting the website for the education department in your state. This can be another great resource. They usually list the state standards in detail. A visit to the library should also yield books on the subject of what your child should know at a particular age.

Where Do I Get The Lesson Plans?

The second question is usually. Where do I get all the curriculum or lesson plans cheap or free? There are many places to get textbooks and lesson plans cheap or even free.

The Internet

One of the best sources for this endeavor is the Internet. Start with a search for “used textbooks” or “used curriculum” and you will find many sites where other homeschool families list the books they no longer use for sale. Another great resource is Ebay and other auction sites like them. Next, try a search for “free lesson plans” and you will find that there are literally thousands of them available. When you’re focusing on a particular subject simply refine your search to include the subject you are interested in. Don’t forget about unit studies. There are several sites that sell unit studies for relatively cheap and some that offer them for free.

The Library

Obviously, it would be a little difficult to find textbooks at the library that one could keep all year long. But, the library is a great source for reference books when you’re studying a particular subject and don’t forget about all the classic novels your child will read throughout the years.

A Little Help From My Friends

Some of your most important resources can be family and friends. Do you know someone else that is homeschooling? Would they be willing to sell or lend you books they no longer use?
Encyclopedias, reference books and classic novels your local library doesn’t carry can make great gifts for your children or family.

Support Groups

Local homeschool support groups are great for many reasons and they sometimes have a book swap program.

Other Places

How about your local school district? They sometimes sell textbooks they are no longer using.

Putting It All Together

By now your head should be spinning with all the possibilities. I know your itching to get started but remember, focus and a plan are the keys to doing this successfully. You can become overwhelmed very easily with all the great resources out there.

Make sure there’s ink in your printer and start with a plan. Decide what your child should learn for that particular year. Start with one subject at a time when you do this plan. Write it all down and develop a plan of study. http://www.donnayoung.org has always been one of my favorite sites for free printable forms that deal with planning and managing your home school. Once you are satisfied with your plan of study, search the Internet for lesson plans and curriculum, work on one subject at a time. Remember, you don’t necessarily have to plan an entire year before the school year starts. You can plan a few months at a time and work on the rest as the school year continues. This can be a preferred method as plans tend to change throughout the year.

The most important thing to remember is that homeschooling should be a fun and rewarding experience for you and your children. So most of all, relax and have fun!

The Pros And Cons Of Homeschooling

Homeschooling is the fastest growing phenomenon in America today. Every parent has the ability to weigh the pros and cons of homeschooling for their family. While we are homeschooling advocates, understanding the pluses and minuses of it can make the decision to homeschool that much better for the children.

Deciding to homeschool your children is no easy task and should be taken seriously. But there are some compelling reasons to consider, so take a look and decide for yourself.

Homeschool Pros
1. Homeschooling is more flexible.
No getting up at a certain time everyday and having lessons done on schedule if that is not the way you want to do it. Should you work late at night and need to get some extra rest in the morning, you will be able to with homeschooled children. No buses to catch and no lunches to prepare. Just rise when you and your kids are ready and begin class in a more leisurely manner.

2. Your children can advance at their own pace.
If you are concerned about any of your kids needing extra attention and feeling like a formal school structure won’t provide it, then homeschooling could be the answer. You can take your time teaching in the pace that your children are most willingly to learn with. Pushing them to excel beyond their current potential will only serve to frustrate them. Consider this a great reason to homeschool if you think any of your children might need additional attention for learning.

3. You are the one to decide what interaction your child has with peers.
In the school system, it is an unknown who your child might encounter and what will go on between them. There is plenty of life ahead of your children for them to learn how to adapt to difficult situations. Being forced in with a group of children who treat your child poorly will serve little instructional purpose and is potentially damaging to your child’s long-term self-esteem.

4. If you want you can add religious instruction to your daily school routine.
No one will tell you otherwise and you have free rein to incorporate as much or as little religion into each day.

5. There are more opportunities for homeschooled children to learn how to interact in our world.
Even trips to the store can provide valuable learning experiences while having fun with the family. The food pyramid can be taught in the grocery store. Science and lessons about insects can be taught in your backyard. Career options can be explored with trips to the doctor, dentist or auto mechanic. More diversity can encompass your children’s lives just in living and doing what you do every day.

Homeschooling Cons
Are there potential disadvantages to homeschooling? Absolutely! Stdying these disadvantages can help you make the right decision.

1. Burn Out
Burn out is a very real risk, particularly for the parent who bears the main responsibility for educating the child. It is crucial that this parent (usually the mother) schedule nurturing and renewing activities for herself, including down-time, EACH DAY. Don’t be afraid to use the resources available in the community such as classes and activities for the kids. Develop, and rely on, a strong personal support network.

2. Adult Social Isolation
Spending the entire day with kids can lead to social isolation from other adults. It needn’t. Nearly every town has a homeschooling support group. Schedule outings with friends. Make opportunities for social interactions with friends.

3. Financial Burden
The parent bears the full responsibility for purchasing educational materials for the child. Depending on the path chosen, these costs can be considerable. Purchased curricula are generally rather expensive. Costs can be reduced through extensive use of the library and careful planning.

The internet is a tool that should not be overlooked. There are many thousands of web sites offering worksheets, lesson plans and ideas for activities. Adopt a plan of strategic gift requests. Ask grandparents to give gifts that help meet some homeschooling needs: a membership to the Mineral of the Month club, for instance, or season tickets to the ballet.

4. Parent May Have To Carry Cost Of Therapies
Services through the school system may not be available to the homeschooling parent, depending on the state and the local school district.

5. Possible Legal Consequences
School districts have harassed parents who choose to homeschool children with special needs. The risk is slim, but real. Parents living in areas where the school system is known to be hostile to homeschoolers would do well to prepare themselves. Membership in the Homeschool Legal Defense Association could be useful. They will provide legal defense for parents who encounter legal difficulties related to homeschooling.

6. Difficult Without The Full-time Commitment Of One Parent
Homeschooling is difficult without the full-time commitment of one parent. There are families that homeschool in their after-work time, but this is rare, and probably not workable for a family dealing with special needs. Having one parent available full-time can lead to some significant changes in terms of finances and scheduling (parents working opposite shifts, for instance).

Regardless of your decision as a parent, make your educational choice on solid pros and cons of homeschooling.

Parental Advantages To Homeschooling

Homeschooling is an ideal teaching and learning enviromnement. It gives parents many advantages. First, it is a nurturing environment rich with opportunity.

The homeschooling parent has many opportunities for one-on-one interaction with her child. Making the most of these opportunities make it possible to develop an intimate knowledge of the child’s academic strengths and weaknesses. This gives the parent great flexibility in tailoring each child’s work to that child’s particular needs.

This one-on-one time also has pay-offs for the family itself: strengthening bonds, developing intimacy, nurturing deep relationships.

The parent has a unique advantage compared to the best of trained teachers. No one can possibly know a child like his parents. This intimate knowledge is the most solid foundation possible for guiding a child’s education.

Parents also have a deep investment in their child’s success. Homeschool parents can develop a broader sense of what a child’s “success” means, even way beyond standardized test scores.

A homeschool parent’s deep investment will lead him or her to search further for alternative strategies, experiment when current strategies are failing and persevere through difficult times. Realistically, no school and no teacher will ever have that level of commitment to a child.

Homeschooling offers great flexibility in making changes to the physical environment. Move to a comfortable room to work with the child, or turn the t.v. captioning on. There are no IEP meetings, monitoring, or budget battles are necessary.

While it does take some planning, the homeschool parent can also customize the curriculum. There is much greater flexibility when incorporating field trips, outings and hands-on work than is possible in a school setting. A customized curriculum might mean working on 4th grade math and 6th grade reading and college level science experiments, or it might mean significant use of hands-on activities. The parent has many choices that are simply not available within school structures.

This advantage is inherent in the nature of homeschooling, but still worth pointing out. The child will never be left “behind” the other students, nor will he have to sit through boring reviews of material he understands well.

There are many time saving activities associated with homeschooling. There is no commute time transporting children to and from school, no evening homework time, No parent-teacher meetings or PTA events and no time spent stressing over the deficiencies of educational services provided.

A wide variety of social opportunities are also open to homeschoolers. They have the chance each day, to interact with people of all ages in a variety of settings. Homeschoolers, through local homeschool groups, also have the opportunity to develop long-lasting, intimate friendships.

How much of an advantage homeschooling has depends upon the family’s level of involvement with the local public school system. If significant services are being provided, then, obviously, there will be much more interaction with the school system. For the most part, however, there will not be struggles over appropriate goals, issues over implementation of the IEP, monitoring to ensure services are being provided, etc.

The communication method that the family chooses to use will be the communication method used. No argument, no battle, no struggle.

Deciding to homeschool your children is no easy task and should be taken seriously. But there are some compelling reasons to consider, so take a look and decide for yourself.