5 Tips to Get Started in Homeschooling
The idea of homeschooling can seem overwhelming for new homeschoolers. However, homeschooling is easily achievable, if you plan and prepare before embarking on the journey.
Step 1: Find out the homeschooling laws in your ordinance (State or Country).
Homeschooling in the United States is mandated by the State and not the Federal Government so the rules and regulation will vary based on State.
Although the laws may seem confusing and hard to comply, they can easily be implemented. There are many support groups that are fighting for the rights of homeschooling every day.
Below are few links that will help you get started in finding out what the laws are for your state if you live in the United States. For other countries, you will need to contact your local Education Board.
Step 2: Find other homeschoolers or homeschooling groups near you.
Homeschooling can sometimes have a daunting feeling of loneliness. It may be where many of your friends are sending their children to Public/Private schools and you may experience lack of support. Specially in the early stages of homeschooling, it feels comforting to know others who are going through the same experience.
Homeschool Panda makes it an easy way to connect with other homeschoolers because the solution is made for homeschoolers. Easily search based on location and connect & collaborate with homeschoolers. You can also search in other social networks such as Facebook or Instagram.
Step 3: Do not try to recreate school at home.
It will put more pressure on you as the teacher and the children also may not find the joy in learning. Once you realize in your heart, you do not have to check mark every subject, you will feel more relaxed and at ease with homeschooling. As the “Teacher” or “Home Educator”, the more relaxed and confident you feel will resonate to your children.
Step 4: Identify the different learning methods and/or styles of teaching that fits your child the best.
The best way to acheive success in homeschooling is to realize and understand that every child learns differently and children should never be compared with one another.
There are various different styles of learning and knowing where your child falls will make it a more pleasant learning experience.
- Visual (spatial):Prefers using pictures, images, and spatial understanding.
- Aural (auditory-musical):Prefers using sound and music.
- Verbal (linguistic): Prefers using words, both in speech and writing.
- Physical (kinesthetic):Prefers using your body, hands and sense of touch.
There are also various different learning methods to achieve the learning styles:
- “Relaxed” or “Eclectic” Homeschooling: Uses different learning styles to fit the need of homeschooling so basically little of this and little of that.
- Unschooling: Learns from every day life experiences and does not use formal education methods
- Classical Homeschooling: the learning happens in stages and the goal of the classical approach is to teach student how to learn for themselves. The five tools of learning, are reason, record, research, relate, and rhetoric.
- The Charlotte Mason Method: its core belief that children should be respected and learn from daily experience. There is a lot of nature walks, play, narration and reading living books involved with learning.
- The Waldorf Method: Waldorf education is based on the work of Rudolf Steiner and stresses the importance of educating the whole child — body, mind, and spirit.
- Montessori: allows opportunity to learn at their own pace and is manipulative based so great for kinesthetic learners. Montessori approach limits use of technology and teaches discipline and tidiness by using wooden toys.
Step 5: Curriculums and Learning materials
Purchasing homeschooling curriculum can feel like an early christmas in summer for many homeschooling parents. However, too many curriculum can leave you feeling overwhelmed and stressed to complete them all. It is best to go over the above mentioned steps so you do not have abundance of curriculum that may not fit your family’s learning style.
Visiting Homeschool Conventions can be helpful in deciding and selecting the curriculums. You are able to see, touch and feel the books and learning materials as well as show them to your children to accurately justify the purchase. Conventions also has speakers and workshops so you get to learn more about the tools from the creators themselves.
In conclusion, Homeschooling is one of the best gift you can give your children and by following these steps it will make it easier and less stressful so you can teach the joy of learning to your children.