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How Homeschooling Can Be A Great Choice For Your Family
Deciding whether or not to homeschool your children is a big decision. The question is not “can you homeschool.” The question should be “is homeschooling best for you and your family?” As with anything, there are advantages and disadvantages with homeschooling, and you should weigh your educational options and research homeschooling curriculums.
Homeschooling is hard work, but it is rewarding hard work. And remember, you don’t need to know everything in order to teach your children. There are curriculums that will guide you every step of the way as you teach your children. You are already your child’s teacher. You don’t have to have any special training or education to parent, and you don’t have to have any to teach your own child — you know your kids best.
It is important to remember that any child can thrive in a homeschool environment. Your child doesn’t have to be exceptional or have any extenuating circumstances. Most teachers acknowledge they would love to be able to have the one-on-one time with their students that can be given by homeschool parents.
The thought of homeschooling your children can feel a bit overwhelming, but keep in mind that although you certainly can, you don’t have to teach every subject yourself. You can find great curriculums on video, online, or on CD. Some programs give your child lectures, lessons, and tests and even do the grading for you. You can also find tutors or mentors for things like science labs. Homeschooled high school students can even take college or university classes for dual credit, therefore, earning high school credit and college credit at the same time.
Is homeschooling expensive? The answer is that you can spend as little or as much money as you want. With the resources at your local library coupled with free resources online, you can homeschool practically for free if needed. You can also buy expensive, boxed curriculum. Most families fall somewhere in between, with the average homeschool parent spending about $500 per child per year.
While thinking about whether or not homeschooling is right for your family, you may be wondering if you need to live in an area that has a big population of homeschooled students. Although having the comradery of a community of homeschooled kids, it’s not necessary in order to be successful at homeschooling. You can find support and associations in homeschooling communities online and extracurricular activities that are developed through homeschool programs.
You may also wonder if you really have the room to homeschool your children, but your children can learn anywhere. Whether they are sitting at the dining room table, outside in the back yard or at a park, your children can learn in as many creative places that you can think of.
Because you have the freedom as a homeschool parent to really get creative in your teaching, you may want to think of some ways that you can read and learn together as a family. You can use your homeschooling time reading together in front of the fireplace on cold winter days or on a blanket in the back yard on warm sunny days.
Another great idea to make homeschooling more enjoyable for you and your children is by baking together. Baking together will provide opportunities for younger children to practice real-life math applications such as adding and subtracting fractions, following directions, and basic kitchen chemistry. It also allows the older children to learn home-making skills in a real-world environment. In addition, it provides discussion time for kids of all ages and allows your entire family to bond and create memories together. Remember to involve your children in your everyday activities such as grocery shopping, running errands or even voting. You don’t want to overlook the educational value of everyday life.
Many homeschool organizations offer homeschool field trips, but it is just as easy to take your own field trips. Kids can perhaps learn more because they are not distracted by too many other kids. Family field trips also provide the non-teaching parent a chance to get involved with what the kids are learning.
An important point to keep in mind is that as homeschool parents, you can decide how to handle everyday situations and allow character training to take the place alongside academics. It is inevitable that as a family you will face life events such as death, a birth, moving, or an illness. The best thing to do is to not consider these occasions as disruptions in learning, but rather opportunities to learn and grow together as a family.
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