Homeschooling is definitely on the rise for many different reasons. Some feel like their children would flourish better in a home environment while others simply want to ensure that their children’s religious beliefs stay intact. Whatever your reason, it can be a daunting task to undertake.
Below are some helpful tips to point you in the right direction and make sure that you are helping your students in every possible way.
1. There’s no such thing as too much reading. But make sure that what you are reading is helpful and not making you doubt yourself. The best type of literature to read is ones that cover the subjects that you will be teaching your students. Things like history, natural science, and biology are a good place to start.
2. Know the difference between regular school and a school at home. One of the biggest advantages of homeschooling is that you can tailor make the lessons to suit your student’s personality.
Instead of sitting at the desk all day, you can take the lesson outside, or to the library. You can go on as many field trips as you like and the children can wear comfortable clothes.
3. Make sure you budget. Education is the single most important investment that you will make in your life. Just because your students aren’t in a mainstream school, it doesn’t mean that you can start to cut corners when it comes to investing in them.
Make a point of setting aside money at the beginning of the year or the beginning of the month for you to invest in your homeschool.
4. Have your reasons and your goals written down? When people find out that you have started to homeschool, you will have to answer questions about your intentions.
Before you embark on the homeschooling journey, write down your reasons for wanting to homeschool so that when you are poked and prodded, you are ready. While you’re at it, scribble down some goals for your homeschool as well as what you want your students to achieve in each subject.
5. Be realistic. It can’t all be fun, all the time. Sometimes you’re just going to have to push through the tough parts; this is also a good lesson for your students to learn.
6. Give yourself some time, at least a year. This will give you a clear indication of whether homeschooling is for you or not. If it isn’t for you, one year of homeschooling isn’t going to do anyone any harm.
7. Unit studies are a great idea. This way all of your students, regardless of their age, can study the same thing, just at different levels.
This makes your life a whole lot easier and makes it a lot simpler to maintain focus. You could do unit studies on specific countries, animals, a particular event in history, anything that tickles your fancy.
8. Don’t underestimate life skills. Things like doing your taxes, learning how to drive, or simple handyman chores aren’t taught at school but are core competencies that students need to know and are just as important as academic skills. Make a list of life skills you want to teach and slowly but surely cross them off as the year draws to a close.
9. Have a blast. This is not only the time to educate your students, but also to educate yourself. Most of us can’t say that we loved our time spent in the classroom, well why not have fun learning now while teaching your students at the same time?