Monday, August 27, 2012

Basic Statistics of Homeschooling in the USA

Homeschooling in the USA has grown considerably from its once obscure beginnings to its present status as a justifiable alternative over the regular academic environment.
In 2007, it was estimated that 1.5 million school aged students are being educated in their homes. This number has an estimated growth of 2.9% from the last survey made on 2003. Presently, the statistics of homeschooling in the USA continues to grow.
The parents' decision is the major factor of this increase. There are many reasons considered why they have decided to pull their children out from their corresponding schools.
According to a study done by the National Household Education Survey (NHES), there are three major reasons why parents have decided to put their children in homeschool.
The biggest factor is the parents' growing concern about the country's worsening school environment. These parents felt that they can do a better job in teaching their children from the safety of their homes, away from the poorly controlled environment that most American state schools have today.
The second factor is their religious and moral obligations to teach their children the lessons that are acceptable to their chosen faith. Religion in the USA is widely diversified making it hard to tailor fit the lessons that will be acceptable to each student's religious orientation.
Lastly, the third influence would be the poor perception of parents about the school curriculum. They believe that their children are not being challenged enough which results to a lower performance as compared to the standards set by other first world nations. This greatly affects their children's competitiveness and proficiency.
Another American school, Trinity, did a survey which greatly reflected the same sentiments of the parents. These are the same sentiments that drove them to put their children into homeschool. The factors are as follows:
• 48.9% of parents are confident that they can provide a better education to their children with a better curricula, social programs, and moral developments.
• 38.4% of parents are compelled to give their children secular education because their religious beliefs are not being tackled by the available schools in their area
• 25.6% of the schools in the US today are perceived to have a poor learning environment; therefore they tend to stunt the growth of the attending students. The school is trying to accommodate everybody making it crowded for all the students. This in return results to an unfocused learning environment
• Family reasons are cited by 16.8%of the parents.
• 15.1% of parents are also concerned that the school is not developing their children's moral being
• 12.1% of parents strongly object the school teachers method of teaching
• 11.6% of parents believe that the school is not challenging enough for the student making them intellectually inferior if compared to the students of other nations.
• 11.5% say that there are problems left unidentified by the parents with the schools available in their area.
• 9.0% of the parents have observed that the students attending the existing school in their area have different behavioral problems uncontrolled by the school's disciplinary committee
• 8.2% of those have kids have special needs or disability that cannot be addressed by regular schools.
In conclusion, homeschooling in the USA have grown much because of these factors. Currently, this matter is still being debated whether if it's really beneficial for the homeschooled children while not being able to experience the social interaction that is being promoted by the state schools. Meanwhile, the parents who decided to teach their kids at home must be greatly committed in order to give the quality education that their children deserve.

Monday, August 20, 2012

The Elements of a Successful Home Study Program

It is not easy to decide whether or not a home study program is right for your child. There are many considerations that you will have to weigh in order arrive at a logical choice. This decision is a consideration of many factors like the necessity of the program to the well-being of your child; the level of competence that your child have; the teacher's skills and credentials; and the willingness of both parent/s and child to share the experience of homeschooling.
Each decision has two sides that will have to be carefully deliberated. There will always be gains and losses - the secret lies with how much do the gains outweigh the losses?
One should always bear in mind that no matter how good a lesson plan is, it can never take the place of social interaction and emotional training that typical schools normally offer. If this is remembered, a good planner can actually make a home study program successful by trying to introduce innovations that are designed to compensate the training gaps of home schooling.
One major factor that can greatly affect your home school decision is the child itself. It is very important that the would-be student is willing to take the home study challenge. A child that resents the very idea of home schooling is a disaster recipe that is about to be cooked.
The child should be determined to learn his lessons even if the homeschooling program has its limitations. He must have the emotional maturity to understand the reason of the new study program and why was he pulled out from his former school.
These limitations can be resolved by the introduction of varied activities that will stir his interests; it will also make up for the drawbacks of being homeschooled. These activities may include sports, arts, music, and other outdoor activities.
The success of the home study program doesn't rely alone on the student but the educators were also asked to play their vital part. If the teacher is also one of the parents, he will have to sacrifice a great deal about his social life in order to provide the best education for his children.
It is also important to assess if the educators are capable to teach the required curriculum. It will be such a waste if it will be discovered later on that the kids have not learned enough from the program. Attendance is also a must. It is advisable for the parent or teacher to set a regular schedule for the class and a different time for doing other things. This will set the kid's minds about consistency and regularity of the set-up.
Aside from these mentioned advices, a successful home study program greatly relies on the commitment of parent/s and the children. Focus is undoubtedly needed in order to finish whatever both have already started, even if distractions will come to your way.
Lastly, it is important to always seek what else can be done better when you're homeschooling. Above everything else, homeschooling is being proposed if there is something you could do better for the child. Always make sure that the kid is really getting the best education as it should be.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

A Glimpse of Homeschooling Online: Factors That Needs to Be Considered

With the dawn of modern technology, the world has become more and more connected through the use of the internet. Today, the worldwide web is beginning to be an alternative medium in the field of education. Homeschooling online is a growing trend that is expected to become even more popular in the coming years.
This newest way of learning can have a number of advantages for parents who are considering enrolling their children in a homeschooling online course. In this article, the factors that need to be taken into account are further discussed.
Alternative Learning Medium
Homeschooling online is a good alternative to regular school. It provides opportunities for children to learn at the comfort of their home with a computer and an internet connection as a sole requirement. Further, homeschooling parents can find support in certain subjects that they find difficult to teach. Through homeschooling online, busy parents can also have their children enroll the whole course online which lessens the responsibilities that they have to attend to. It also avoids homeschooling burnout since parents will only give minimal support in their children's learning.
Age-Appropriate Instruction
It is necessary to keep in mind that the age of the learner enrolling in a homeschooling online program is a factor to be considered. Children who can work independently, access the web on their own and follow specific instructions are the ones who are recommended to take a full course that is internet-based. Younger kids may not learn effectively from online education because they need to have more interaction and are easily distracted. However, parents can choose to have younger kids take a subject online and combine it with parent facilitated instruction. In this way, close monitoring of performance can still be done and an introduction to computer-based learning started. There are a number of online programs that are dedicated for the young nowadays. Interactive and fun activities are also being prepared by online teachers which parents can make their kids try.
Available Resources
Homeschooling online also provides opportunities to access a number of resources which they can use for learning. Majority of these learning materials are of good quality and follow the standards. Online teachers also have plenty of creative activities for learners that can elicit meaningful learning. With the vast collection of educational resources that homeschooling online can provide, parents will be able to acquire additional support for their teaching and enable their children to become more engage in studying. These selections can help kids to fully enjoy learning and acquire more information regarding the lessons they are taking.
Online-based learning can have a lot of benefits for both learners and their parents. In considering this option, it is vital to think about how an alternative learning medium that is internet-based will affect children's education and overall development. Not all kinds of learners can succeed in such a methodology and the learning medium must suit the children's character. In many cases, a blended approach to learning will still be the best. In this way, not only does kids get to experience independent learning through homeschooling online but also direct instruction from parents.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Facts About Homeschool: Staying Connected

One of the downsides of homeschooling is that it fails to provide opportunities for children to interact with peers and build valuable relationships with them. As parents, it is essential to provide them these opportunities in order to foster a healthy development. Aside from constant monitoring of the lessons given in homeschool, staying connected with social groups is important. There are a variety of means where parents can foster a positive social development for their children. Some of the suggestions enumerated below are proven to work well by many homeschooling parents.
Scheduling Play Dates
A regular interaction with age-mates is necessary for the overall well-being of a child. Mothers can participate in play dates with friends having children of the same age or neighbors. Scheduling play dates will help your children enjoy the company of other kids and enhance important social skills that are necessary for dealing with others. More than that, kids will have the chance to build friendships with other children which can aid in maintaining social interaction between them. Engaging in social play also poses numerous advantages for socio-emotional development.
Visiting Adult Relatives
Visit other relatives and have children socialize with other adults. Trips to an aunt's house or an uncle's farm will help children not only in getting to know other members of their family but also get involved with them and, possibly, what they do. This will be a unique experience for kids.
Joining Groups
It is also an additional advantage for a parent to join a group of other parents who have children taking homeschool. Staying connected in this way will benefit them greatly since they can get support from other parents. Often, these groups schedule group instruction where other homeschooling children can participate. Group instruction provides an alternative from the usual one-on-one instruction for kids and will also give opportunities for them to interact with other children. Children are able to share their views and talents with others during group instruction. It is also through this means that they get to experience working with other people and effectively communicate with them.
Attending Classes
Enrolling kids in various classes like painting, ballet, football and swimming is also helpful. These classes will hone the hidden skills and talents of children which can also stimulate their emotional well-being. Other than that, socialization with different kinds of people becomes more possible through these classes. They can develop the value of respecting others, camaraderie and effective communication as they go through these programs. Although said to be expensive, the lessons they will learn in taking up classes like those mentioned will definitely foster total development and the enhancement of their talents.
Social development is an area that must not be taken for granted by parents. It promotes total well-being and the ability to deal with other people which is an essential trait needed in adulthood. It is necessary to review options for fostering social interaction that is most available to parents and children for effective promotion of these skills. Interacting with other people is not really provided through homeschool. Staying connected with social groups, however, is a way in which parents can support total development for their kids.