Homeschooling has been around for ages. But the modern homeschool movement we know today is rooted in the 1970s.
It all began when educational theorist and school reform supporter John Holt argued that the focus of formal schools created an oppressive classroom environment that led children to becoming compliant employees. His early followers were parents who wished to liberate their children from the chains of formal education, choosing instead to educate their children at home.
Fast forward to 2020, and homeschooling is an openly acceptable choice for many parents. The latest stats put the number of homeschooled children all over the world at under 3 million, with the vast majority (about 2.5 million) in the US.
It is even more relevant in the current health crisis we are facing, with schools and universities closing due to the COVID-19 global pandemic. With the idea of home education, children can still keep up with their lessons and ensure they don’t get left behind.
And that’s not all.
In fact, many parents prefer to homeschool their child for a variety of reasons, including the following:
- General dissatisfaction with the traditional school system
- Concern about the school environment
- Religious reasons
- Desire for a non-conventional approach to education
- Specific needs of a child
- Occupations of parents where they need to move from place to place or constantly travel
The Benefits of Homeschooling
Homeschooling is not unusual in many households. Parents who wish to homeschool their children can do thorough research, examining the vast and easily accessible materials on home education from the growing homeschool community.
If you are unsure of what homeschooling has in store for you, then you should know that providing your child’s education at home ushers in a wealth of benefits beyond what typical classrooms could offer.
Every child has different learning needs and methods that are unique to their mental capacities. Sometimes, traditional classrooms fail to recognize these differences because they issue a uniform curriculum, often disregarding a child’s learning pace.
With homeschooling, you can make sure that you are tailoring your child’s education to the best of their abilities. It doesn’t matter if they are ahead, behind, creative, quiet, gifted, or active. Their lessons can be adapted to their skills and temperament.
After all, you will be taking care of everything that their education entails, from their schedules, grade levels, learning approach, curriculum, and even their graduation requirements. You can also provide for their current needs, prioritizing their mental, emotional, and physical health.
Since you can devote all your attention to your child, it is easier to ensure that they receive a more efficient and meaningful education. You can even avoid the common pitfalls of formal education, prioritizing their learning and understanding over arbitrary standards like standardized tests and grades.
You may determine your child’s milestones beyond their test scores. After all, it is more important to know that they understand what they are learning and why they need to learn it. To this end, homeschooling can also give you more opportunities to make time for creative play, outdoors and physical activities, and arts and crafts, allowing kids to gain a more well-rounded education.
Focus on Life Skills
Most schools fail to teach children the ways of life, as they are often more focused on academic achievements. However, we can’t deny that life skills are just as important. Apart from their educational learning, you can also provide children with the necessary knowledge and skills that can help shape them into more responsible and capable adults. This can include lessons on cooking, budgeting, and other skills that should be part of everyone’s learning.
Students who are homeschooled have unique experiences that can help them navigate through college with greater ease and more confidence. They go through their education at their own pace and preferred approach, avoiding burnout from hectic schedules and too much schoolwork.
Compared to their traditional counterparts, they are also better prepared for their choice of degree because they had plenty of opportunities to explore their interests in greater depth. They can devote most of their time and attention on subjects that really matter, enjoying more freedom to nurture their passion.
While the decision of whether to homeschool your child or not largely depends on your personal preference, it is still important to think it through and weigh your options carefully before taking the plunge. Even if you don’t have a background in teaching and child development, there are a lot of available and accessible materials that you can learn from. Additionally, you can get support from the homeschooling community and other homeschooling groups willing to impart their knowledge and experience.
Remember, however, that you need to check with your local council and state about the existing laws and regulations on homeschooling. Some states require parents to notify education officials of their decision to homeschool with varied requirements. In some cases, parents may need to meet basic educational qualifications like a high school diploma or GED.
It is also a good idea to watch out for perks like special discounts for homeschooling parents in local stores and supplies. Last but not least, homeschooled children can also avail of regular college scholarships on top of the special scholarships offered to homeschooled students alone.
The bottom line is:
Homeschooling is a growing trend in 2020, and it’s likely to stay with us as we prepare ourselves for the post-COVID-19 “new normal,” whatever shape or form it might take.