The term ‘homeschooling’ refers to the process in which one or more children of not more than two families are instructed by parents or legal guardians or a member of either household. Instead of sending their children to a public school, parents make their own curriculum and teach their children in ways that are best suited to them.
For most children, the actual process of learning begins long before they go to school – many children already know their alphabet, colors and numbers due to the hard work of a member of the family who has taken the time to teach the child. Homeschooling is can be considered a natural progression from this.
If you are considering homeschooling then there are certain matters you need to consider:
- The Pros and Cons of Homeschooling
Homeschooling involves a lot of added responsibility and hard work. As a homeschooling parent, you are in charge of planning, implementing and measuring your child’s education. That being said, having control comes with certain benefits, such as the ability to teach your child at their pace and tailor attention to subjects they are struggling with. For instance, if your child has a hard time with math, you can spend more time of the day on that subject and less on a subject they are stronger in. You can also design your learning plan to pique your child’s interest by including activities they are passionate about.
Homeschooling can also be good for your child’s confidence. Competition is limited when it comes to homeschooling since your child does not need to prove their ability with regards to other children. It may seem detrimental to remove your child from a social environment but according to research such as this one performed by Dumas, Gates and Schwarzer (2010), homeschooled children perform just as well on tests of social competency as children from public schools.
- The Expenses of HomeschoolingHomeschooling can cost anywhere between a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars every year. Also, committing to homeschooling means shutting down job opportunities for one of the parents since one parent will have to stay at home full time to manage the homeschool. Homeschooling parents are responsible for materials, curriculums, testing fees, resources and field trips.
However, like anything that involves spending, there are always many options to help save money and cut costs.
- Are You Qualified?
Teaching is a continuation of your own learning process and with the advent of the internet, information is aplenty. There are various books and resources for those interested in homeschooling. Because you know your child best, you do not need teaching qualifications to homeschool your child. All you need is an understanding of how to implement curriculums, the academic expectations of your child from year to year and how to determine the best teaching methods that suit your child.
If homeschooling seems like the best choice for you and your family there is no reason not to explore this option. If successful, homeschooling will forge a strong bond of love and respect between you and your child while providing your child with a strong form of education.