The prospect of educating one’s children at home can be simultaneously thrilling and frightening. The truth is that in order to approach the possibility with confidence, a good deal of advance knowledge and information should be obtained. Continue reading the article that follows to get some great advice about how to avoid common homeschool pitfalls.
Every state has specific laws regarding homeschooling. It is up to you to understand what your state requires of you as a parent, and your child as a student, when it comes to homeschooling. Look at your state’s educational website, as well as your county school board’s site to fully understand the expectations.
When you have a variety of ages in your homeschool environment, you can use older students to teach the younger ones. This is especially true of reading, where those who read well can read to the younger kids, pointing out words they may not be able to read on their own yet.
Find a homeschooling support group. While homeschooling might be very appealing, it can also be very lonely for both you and your child. Check community bulletin boards or the internet to find other families in your area that are homeschooling. Parents can get together to discuss methods that are successful and offer each other support. Children will benefit from group activities such as local field trips or projects.
Before you even begin your child’s homeschooling year, decide how many weeks you would like to accomplish the school year in. You can then break your courses up into weeks to set even tighter schedules. Do not forget to pencil in any vacation time that you will be taking so you do not forget to account for it.
Find out what your state has in place as far as homeschooling regulations. Some states have very strict rules with many hoops you have to jump through, so you must find out what your state requires of you before you get started. Some states are more lax, so start researching today!
Be flexible. If a teaching method doesn’t seem to be working, try something new. Sticking to something that is not working does neither of you any favors. A new approach can help your child see the subject in a new way. This might help shed some light on a previously confusing topic.
Treat homeschooling like a job. You’re a teacher now, and that means you also have to seek out more education. Professional teachers take “PA” days to attend conferences and training, so you should, too! Find homeschooling events near you or even attend one as a vacation. You’ll find they teach you not only specific topics you might not know a lot about, but also how to be a better teacher and how to plan out homeschooling lessons like a pro.
If you have kids in the home that are not yet school age, spend some quality time with them prior to starting the day’s lessons with the older kids. If they can get their fill of attention time before you get busy with the older kids, they are likely going to be able to entertain themselves while you work.
Prior to making the decision to homeschool your child, evaluate the relationship that you have with them. If you do not have a great relationship, you are likely going to have difficulty in getting them to cooperate with homeschooling. Discipline in the home is critical if the child is going to do well in a homeschool setting.
Check your local library for resources. This is a free way to get material. Not only are traditional educational books available, you can also look around for other learning material. Find interesting books to share with your children. You will be amazed at how much the library has to offer!
Visit zoos and other attractions to expand what you are teaching your kids. Discuss the animals and their habitats. This could supplement a geography lesson. Additionally, you may think about endangered animals and what has happened to diminish their numbers. There are many applications to this, including observing the tourists!
It is important to incorporate recess into your homeschooling routine. Recess at public schools are becoming shorter and shorter, but it is an important time for your child. It is a time for them to expel their extra energy, which enables them to concentrate better while they are learning. Try to incorporate a few of these breaks in your child’s day.
When homeschooling, make sure everybody reads. Try making family trips to the library as part of the curriculum. You can require everyone to check out a book, even you and your significant other. When kids see their parent’s reading, they are sure to follow their lead. Older kids can read aloud, or you can read to the kids yourself.
If homeschooling your child is just not working out for them or for you, do not be scared to put them in regular school. Your child may simply be better off going to school, especially if they are not learning well from what you are teaching them. If this happens to you, do not blame yourself; this is simply how things go sometimes.
When you decide to homeschool, keep in mind that you do not benefit when you let your curricula be determined solely by books or purchased educational materials. These should be thought of as tools, not the final authority. Invest in great tools and use them in addition to the unique curriculum for your kid. Creating a personalized experience is one of the benefits of homeschooling.
An incentive-based homeschooling program can be very effective with students of all ages. The incentives offered should also be greater or smaller depending on how quickly and how well each goal is accomplished. That said, students that do not respond well to the incentives should be penalized with additional assignments or chores to reinforce the importance of their learning.
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