Homeschooling: The Parental Choice


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Overview:

Homeschooling, also known as home education and home learning, is what the title suggests-the education of children at home. While homeschooling is often administrated by the parents, it can be managed by a private tutor. Homeschooling is a legal option in almost all areas of the United States, and provides a way for parents to play a bigger role in their child's education.

Before the laws of compulsory school attendance, education was achieved through the home, family and community; homeschooling allows modern families an alternative to public or private schooling and a process of childhood learning that gives sanction to education as it was in the past.

Today, homeschooling is not as popular a choice, but it has caught the attention of state and federal officials. In many states, there are minimal requirements as to what parents need to send-in to the state to ensure their child was developing and learning over the course of a school year. Below is an image from the Department of Education identifying which states require what from students who are being educated through homeschooling:

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Why homeschooling:

There are many motivators for parents to participate in homeschool activities. The first, and most common is religious reasons, but other reasons include: better academic test results, objections to curriculum matter in public and private schools, more efficient use of time, improved student character development, avoidance of poor education environment found in schools.

Tips for Homeschooling:

1. Start the school year off right, and set the homeschooling schedule to be similar to the calender of local schools. Just remember to stick to your schedule.
2. Understand your state's homeschooling laws.
3. Getting together with others families that have chosen alternative student education can be very beneficial. While it may be difficult to find a support group that matches your families ideas, when found support groups can offer encouragement, help choosing curriculum, meeting state laws, and providing unique and new ideas for projects.
4. There are many methods
5. Remember to keep it fresh. Just like in institutional learning, ideas and subjects should be kept fresh for students to still learn while their minds are engaged.

External Resources:

http://homeschooling.about.com/cs/homeschoolmethods/a/methods.htm (This may be an About.com site, but from my research it has some great resources for those seriously interested in this alternative education, and how all of our famous ISMs can be found in this unique learning style)
http://www.hslda.org/laws/default.asp (Whether you're considering homeschooling, or you're just interested, the state laws and regulations can be found here)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homeschooling (It may be wikipedia, but since it is built by those who are homeschooling right now, it is interesting to see what they have to say on the topic)










This page was created by Katelyn Peterson