An overview of homeschooling
In these uncertain times, many things that we have always taken for granted have been challenged. The way in which our children have been traditionally educated has been radically modified, so many parents are looking for alternatives beyond the traditional.
Homeschooling has been with us for a long time and its applicability is extremely relevant today.
My wife and I homeschool our 3 children for a large part of their school years. Everyone eventually went to school in grades 11, 9, and 8. If the goal of high school education is to gain acceptance into a “good” college, our efforts were successful.
This is how we approach the problem
First, why not give it a try? School can always be the default option.
Second, don’t we learn to walk and talk without “school”? It seems that learning beyond these basics could take place without it as well.
Homeschooling is highly individualized, all 3 children learned differently, and homeschooling allowed us to address their unique needs and build on their strengths.
We consider the goals of education and feel that it should instill a sense of intellectual curiosity and present learning as a good thing.
We viewed the experience as a “child-led” learning in which we would provide extensive exposure in the hope that students would stick to areas of great interest. It worked.
We also consider the school environment and find it a bit artificial. In life, we are not restricted to interacting only with our peer group. We work and play with people from 9 months to 90 years. In light of this, is school a “real world” process?
It seems that “virtual learning” will accompany us for many months. It can even become a standard part of education. Homeschooling is very flexible and could be used to enrich the virtual experience, creating a highly effective hybrid.
Does Homeschooling Work?
For us, the answer was a resounding “yes”. If college is the goal, it was achieved. But not everyone should see college as the ultimate prize. It is expensive and does not guarantee a satisfying career.
Does your child show a great interest in computers? Is your child not a great reader but more of a visual and practical learner? Homeschooling allows for a more intense focus.
I hope this article gave you an idea of how we developed our homeschooling philosophy and makes you think about how it can work for your family too. There are no correct answers. Each member of the family should think about the pros and cons of this approach.
In my next story, I’ll discuss a standard evaluation process and some questions to consider as you begin to seriously consider this approach and decide if homeschooling might work for your family.