Homeschooling could offer a bespoke and complete education package in its own right to target pupils’ needs
The COVID-19 pandemic has indeed thrown a wrench in the works of virtually all aspects of our lives, including education. With the global lockdown still in place in many countries around the world and schools been under locks and keys, there has been increasing concern about education for children.
With the pandemic still raging on, talks about homeschooling have never been more pronounced, and so many questions trail it. Some popular questions parents ask about homeschooling include but are not limited to: Is homeschooling effective, what are the pros and cons of homeschooling, and whether homeschooling is of benefit to students’ development and academic progress?
Having mentioned these concerns, let’s take a second to touch on homeschooling and its benefits. Shall we?
What are the benefits of homeschooling?
More kids and teens learning from home is arguably one of the benefits of homeschooling at these challenging times. Other advantages of homeschooling include flexibility in learning, efficient learning, and of course, the mental and social development that homeschooling offers.
Let’s take a closer look at these factors
Homeschooling allows students to learn at their own pace. Parents get to help their kids decide on their schedule, speed, and grade level that’s convenient for their kids.
Homeschooling offers custom learning
Homeschooling provides educators with an opportunity to customize learning for their students. This way, every kid, including those behind in learning, is gifted or advanced, and those with special needs are catered to.
Homeschooling helps students learn at their pace
Speaking of learning at their own pace, the parents can decide on the best choice of education for their kids. For instance, parents get to choose both the curriculum and resources they feel are suitable for their kids.
Also, homeschooling allows students to learn at their own pace; a student can be at level one in reading and level two in math or any other subject.
In some states, parents also get to decide on the graduation requirements for their kids. This helps students maintain a balance between academics and other aspects of life. They also get to plan how long it will be before they get into college or university.
Homeschooling offers efficient learning
Considering that teacher ratio to students in homeschooling is low, homeschooling allows for an efficient learning environment, which helps a lot with time management.
Beyond the academic benefits of homeschooling, other advantages of homeschooling include mental development and social development. But homeschooling doesn’t end with kids or students alone. Parents also have a lot to benefit from homeschooling.
What are the benefits of homeschooling for parents?
You have probably been wondering what are the benefits of homeschooling for parents?
Here are some of them.
1. Homeschooling presents parents with an opportunity to continue learning.
Since your kid will be learning from home, you can learn alongside your kid — you may decide to learn a foreign language, have another go at that math problem from when you were in school, or take up coding classes.
2. Homeschooling saves money
Unlike traditional school learning, homeschooling eliminates the costs of buying school clothes, school trips and vacations, and other tuitions.
3. Share hobbies with your kids
Homeschooling allows parents to partake in activities they have in common with their kids. If you share the same interests and passion with your kids, you will have enough time to keep each other’s company. You can go hiking, study constellations, discuss business or investing, or make music together.
4. Homeschooling gives you freedom from the routine school schedule
Since you are not tied to a regular school schedule, homeschooling allows you to plan and tailor your learning schedule to your convenience. You may decide to homeschool at night or over the weekend — whatever time is convenient for you.
5. Homeschooling promotes personal growth
As a parent, homeschooling can be a special time to interact with your kids and learn new means of communicating with them. It gives you better insight into nurturing your kids, helping them learn new things while also improving yourself.
Homeschooling is not all rosy!
Like every other thing we do in life, homeschooling also has its cons, and it doesn’t always work for every kid. Just kids who attend regular school have challenges with learning, homeschooled students also face particular challenges.
Having mentioned that, it will be best to have it in mind that the effect of homeschooling varies from one kid to another. To help your kids make the most of homeschooling, here are some tips you should consider.
Top tips for effective homeschooling
From spending more time with your kids, learning new things together, and showing them that learning can be fun, we have highlighted a good number of homeschooling benefits.
To make homeschooling fun for kids and to help them make the most of it, here are pointers you should consider as a parent.
1. Set up a conducive learning environment
As we mentioned earlier, every child learns differently, and they learn more in an environment that suits their learning style and creativity.
One way to create a conducive learning environment is by creating a designated reading area at home. Having a designated space helps with concentration and helps them focus – it also helps them perform better.
2. Create a daily schedule
School is synonymous with routine and schedule, and students have adapted to such a setting. Having a schedule around your kid’s homeschooling will make taking lessons less stressful. You could have TV breaks and lunch breaks to help them managed time.
3. Leverage online resources
It’s almost impossible to discuss homeschooling without mentioning the use of online resources. Tons of excellent sites and platforms that provide free educational resources for kids to get a hand of their studies and help with school work.
4. Make learning fun with activities
In addition to bonding with your kids, you can also leverage leisure times during homeschooling to teach your kids new things. You could spend some time doing cooking together or play indoor games.
5. Help out and support with passion projects
Homeschooling provides enough time for kids to undertake projects they have always wanted to do and pursue their dreams. As such, you should support them with whatever project they pick interest in, such as painting, learning to play a new instrument, or doing craft.
Indeed, students may initially find the idea of homeschooling a bit alien and May struggle initially. However, with time they will come around and engage with other students to learn. As a parent, you should support your kids with whatever (resources or assistance) they need to adapt to this new learning model and environment.
We are rounding off!
Before we conclude the effectiveness of homeschooling, it will only be right to mention that homeschooling also has some disadvantages. Having highlighted the pros of homeschooling, let’s take a minute to touch on the cons.
What are the cons of homeschooling?
According to a recent UNESCO report, some of the adverse effects of school closures include stress and confusion for teachers, decreased learning time for kids, parents being unprepared for homeschooling or distance learning, social isolation, and interrupted learning.
Homeschooling often involves planning — planning your activities around your kids’ learning schedule. This means that you have so much time to yourself, and there is potential for more stress associated with carrying the responsibilities of teachers and that of a parent.
Homeschooling can cause a reduction in your working hours, which will eventually reflect in your earnings. And since you won’t be able to earn as you used to, you may have to tighten your family’s budget.
Other cons of homeschooling include kids having a small circle of friends because of the effect of homeschooling on children’s socialisation — students don’t get to interact with their peers. Lastly, there are less recognition and acknowledgment of good work outside the home because of fewer award ceremonies.
Homeschooling is essential in keeping kids engaged with their education. It may be challenging to keep up at first, but both kids and their parents will adapt with time. Parents should support their kids by keeping them engaged and helping out with their homeschooling routine.
While you are at it, remember not to push your kids with high learning standards and too much to expectations. Allow for a relaxed homeschooling environment, encourage your kids and let them adapt. So, to answer whether homeschooling is effective, the answer is yes, homeschooling is effective in children’s education.
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