Is Homeschooling legal?
Without a doubt, homeschooling is legal in all the 50 States of the U.S. But, that is just about where the similarity ends. Laws and regulations regarding homeschooling vary from state to state. Interpretations of these laws can vary from scholl district to school district. Additionally, these laws may change every year. The National Home Education network is a wonderful resource when it comes to the legalities of homeschooling. It has a listing of the actual state laws for each state in the U.S. Reading the laws that pertain to your state is perhaps the best way to get accurate information about these laws. But, most people need to get the laws interpreted by a qualified attorney. You can get valuable information from the support group at your locality. Additionally, many state education departments have online resources that will help you in interpreting the state requirements for homeschooling. The internet is also a good source of information. It is a good idea to check out your state laws regarding homeschooling before you start educating your child at home. This will prevent any nasty surprises on the way. If you have to move, you will need to be aware of any tests or exams that your child may need to take.
Disadvantages of public schooling
When we consign our children to public schools, we feel satisfied that they are receiving quality education'. But, are we really getting our money's worth? More importantly, are the children gaining anything from this kind of a learning procedure?
Socialization is hailed as one of the greatest advantage of schools. This is the place where the child picks up the rudiments of social skills that help him survive. But in truth, a regular school-going child can interact only with his peers. He may bully younger children or fear older ones. He does not know how to behave with an adult. This is because in the school environment he interacts only with his peers. A homeschooling environment brings in a more natural social environment.
A regular school going child cannot read literature. He cannot keep silent or think in depth about any one thing. The artificial 'busy'ness imposed upon him by the school disallows quiet
contemplation. Rowdy and destructive behavior, as seen among peers, is more noticeable in school-goers.
There is little long-standing knowledge among regular school goers because most things are learnt for the exam. There is no correlation of facts with life. The child may know a lot, but
understands very little. This is where the homeschoolers beat the regular school goers. Ultimately, homeschoolers emerge more adept at facing the outside world.
Benefits Of Homeschooling
Why let Tim and Lisa learn at home than send them to school? Well, first of all, you don't have to wake them up at 7 every morning and bundle them off to school with umpteen numbers of
instructions, and wait with an anxious heart till they return. Homeschooling gives you more control over the influences that affect your child. The growth and development of your child is removed from the realm of the unknown. You, and you alone can decide what your child needs to do or learn. Tailoring the curriculum to suit the needs and interests of the child is one of the most obvious benefits of homeschooling
Individual attention is another salient benefit of homeschooling. For instance, if Lisa needs more time to learn Math, then she can reduce the time for her English lessons. There are no fixed hours of learning per subject. This means that a child has the advantage of assigning more number of hours to the subject that seems tough WITHOUT any additional pressure. The amount of time needed to learn each subject will depend on the abilities and interests of the child.
The schooling of the child becomes an extended family activity. Parents get involved in every step of the learning procedure. Field trips and experiments become family activities. Thus, the child receives more quality time with his parents. The entire family shares games, chores and projects. Family closeness becomes the focus here. The child is also free of any negative peer pressure while making choices and decisions.
Competition is limited when it comes to homeschooling. The child does not need to prove his ability with regards to other children. His confidence remains intact. Since parents have a deep understanding of their child, they can plan the learning program to pique the child's interest. It is also possible to intersperse difficult tasks with fun activities. A tough hour with Algebra can be followed by a trip to the nearest museum. Learning becomes fun. Parents can also tailor the curriculum to suit the learning style of the child. Some children learn through reading, while others need to write, and still others need to see objects in action.
Homeschooling allows parents to take control over the moral and religious learning of the child. Parents have the flexibility to incorporate their beliefs and ideologies into the child's curriculum.
There is no confusion in the child's mind either because there is no variation between what is being taught and what is being practiced.
Lastly, more and more parents are getting disillusioned with the public school system. They believe that their children are being pushed too hard or too little. Other worrying issues pertaining to discipline and ethics also make the school system less welcome. Many repudiate the educational philosophy of grouping children solely on the basis of their age. Some parents themselves have unhappy memories of their own public school experience that motivates them to opt for homeschooling when it comes to their own children.
Homeschooling is the best way to teach a child if you have the time, the ability and the interest to follow through with his education. After all, nobody can understand or appreciate your child more than yourself.
How to Homeschool Your Child
Now that you have decided that homeschooling is the way to educate your child, get ready for the ecstasy and the anxiety - the road ahead is a bit bumpy, but the rewards more than make up for it. Producing a well-adjusted and well-rounded personality is no mean achievement.
First of all, it is important to check out your state laws on home schooling. Some states need an affidavit filed with the State's education department. There are basically 3 categories for
homeschooling laws. These are: private school laws, home education laws and equivalency laws. Find your state laws. You may also need to maintain a portfolio that records the child's educational progress. It is important to look into the legal requirements BEFORE you start homeschooling. Some States also stipulate a minimum educational qualification for the parent or teacher.
Next, look for a support group. If you live in a friendly or curious neighborhood, well-meaning friends will try to dissuade you. At the very least, they may put a lot of uneasy questions in
your mind. A support group that consists of like-minded people will insulate you from the criticism, pressures and questions of regular school-goers. Many groups organize fun events like visits to the zoo, museum, tours to the ice cream shops etc. And if your children hit it off with other homeschoolers, they will be able to build lasting relationships that do not fade when their friends change schools. These groups provide an important avenue for socialization.
The next important thing to do is to select a curriculum. Depending upon the method of homeschooling, you may choose various tools that aid you in this process. The internet is also a rich resource for homeschooling. Do some research and look into the material that is available.
Set certain ground rules. Homeschooling requires a lot of self-discipline and hard work. Here is a comprehensive list of the things you will need:
1) Eagerness to learn
2) Hard work and effort
4) Time and patience
Consider why you want to opt for homeschooling. Your motives and your reasons are important pillars on which the whole edifice of your child's lessons depends. Also, consult with your children.
Ask them what they feel about homeschooling. Select a curriculum or custom-make a curriculum that best suits your child. Record keeping is an important part of homeschooling.
Look into the various methods of record keeping. Set up a schedule. Your child does not have to learn 6-7 hours a day. Allow him or her to dictate the time. Flexibility and fun are the cornerstones of homeschooling. Do not stuff too many skills into a single term or year. Prepare a skill list. Make the child learn the skills that he is ready for.
Gentle parenting is the secret to successful homeschooling. Children make great advances in learning and show more enthusiasm. They also turn out to be surprisingly well balanced and well informed when they are taught at home.
Homeschool - Field trips
Why not? Regular schools have them and so why shouldnt you? If you are going over a particular subject with the family and feel that a field trip would be beneficial, then that's what you should do - go for a trip. If you are attached to a support group, you can plan to include other children too.
Here are some guidelines that will help you plan:
1) Collect the rates
2) Allowed ages
3) Special highlights
4) Size of the group
6) Eating facilities
Inform your support group of all these details well in advance so that the necessary circulars may be sent out. On the appointed day, arrange to meet with other parents and children in a
particular place. Plan the mode of travel and reach the place at least 10 minutes in advance.
The field trip is not just fun. So, let your kids bring their writing material. Allow them time to stare and admire. Do not hurry them along. Collect data beforehand so that you can clear doubts. Get help from a guide, if necessary. And most importantly, have fun and enjoy the time you spend with your children.
Maintaining Discipline in Homeschooling
When the child stays at home all day, and mommy is the teacher, there are certain issues of discipline at stake. It is easy for he child to misconstrue the freedom he has at home and feel that homeschooling is just a long summer holiday. This is a potential landmine and children need to be disciplined right at the start.
Homeschooling gives you and your child a truly immense amount of flexibility. You and your child decide where to learn, how much to learn and when to learn. But,these should be decisions made at the beginning stages. If your child is too little to take an active part in the decision, chart out a few hours of the day for the various activities, and stick to it. When there is no outside agency to supervise and no exams to answer, it is easy to get sidetracked. If your child is old enough, consult him and find out when he wants to learn. Apply your parental discretion and come up with a timetable.
Homework is also a part of homeschooling. What this means is that once lessons have been taught, the child should be asked to do some part of the course work by himself without your guidance. You will need to make sure that your child sits willingly and finishes his work.
Courtesy, manners and punctuality are some of the various facets of discipline that a child has to imbibe in the early years of his life. The school where he interacts with his peers, his seniors
and juniors and his teachers mould these values quite automatically. At homeschool, the child should be taught the importance of speaking and behaving in a proper manner and appropriate corrections need to be meted out if behavior is unsatisfactory.
It is advisable to keep aside a particular room or a part of the room for your homeschool. The child should be expected to reach his desk at the appointed time, in proper attire with all the
necessary material. It is easy to allow the school to become an extension of play if these ground rules are not laid out and followed. As the teacher, supervisor, principal and janitor rolled into one, you should also approach the study area with a cool professionalism.
Homeschooling is doomed to fail without patience. In spite of all the precautions and steps one takes, it is easy for a child to get familiar' at homeschool. At such times, it may be difficult to
discipline the child and get him to listen to you attentively. When this happens, switch to something new. Allow the child to take a breather and enjoy a break yourself.
Homeschooling is not easy. It requires a lot of hard work and patience. The very informality of the whole procedure sometimes works against it by making it too easy. If you take steps to
establish rules at the very beginning and adhere to these rules, your homeschooling experience will be a huge success.
Wide experience on many things and just publish information for fun.Experienced Salesperson and marketeer, both internet and non on-line. Web designer, very knowledgeable on PC and pc related issues, both hardware and software. Parent, driver and blogger.