Homeschool Domination

Homeschool Domination
Created by: CollegeAtHome.com

Dispelling Homeschool Myths

Like many homeschoolers my days can become monotonous. Our family likes to break the routine with an impromptu fieldtrip or just a change of scenery. However, sometimes on our adventures we run into people that just don’t understand why we are homeschooling. Just last week I encountered a woman at the dentist office with a barrage of questions based on her stereotypical views of a proper education. I recognize that this is what currently works for us and many of you. I ran across this great infographic about homeschooling today. It shares tons of statistics about homeschooling and it’s benefits. Be encouraged and enjoy!

Homeschooling
Source: BestMastersinEducation.com

Homeschool Statistics

Home education has constantly grown over the last two decades. The growth rate is 7% to 15% per year, according to Dr. Brian Ray, president of the National Home Education Research Institute (Worldwide Guide to Homeschooling).

Despite what you might read in the media, home education is growing rapidly in the United States and is becoming more and more popular in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Mexico, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and Japan. Why? There are many reasons why homeschooling is on the rise.
Homeschool statistics reveal the following as the most popular reasons parents decide to homeschool their children:

  • Can give child better education at home
  • Religious reason
  • Poor learning environment at school
  • Family reasons
  • To develop character/morality
  • Object to what school teaches
  • School does not challenge child
  • Other problems with available schools
  • Child has special needs/disability
  • Transportation/convenience
  • Child not old enough to enter school
  • Parent’s career
  • Could not get into desired school
  • Other reasons


 

There are as many different styles of homeschooling as there are reasons to homeschool. Some of the more popular are:

  • Classical Education, including the Trivium
  • Montessori Method
  • Unschooling
  • Radical Unscholing
  • Waldorf Education
  • Charlotte Mason
  • A Thomas Jefferson Education
  • Theory of Multiple Intelligences
  • School at Home
  • Accidental Homeschoolers
  • Eclectic Homeschoolers

Which style do you currently subscribe to, or are still in the “hunting” phase? It is not uncommon for parents to spend a few years trying on different styles of schooling and different resources before they zero in on the ones that work for them. I say “ones” because many times homeschoolers use multiple resources even if they subscribe to one particular style of homeschooling. In my personal experience we tried many different types of home education until we finally landed on what I call semi-eclectic unschoolers. I say semi because we are not totally unschoolers (definitely not radical unschoolers), and we are not totally traditional school at home folks either.  Many subscribe to a healthy, eclectic blend of student led and parent required. It is important to test drive theories, styles, and resources before settling on a style.

But what about socialization?   This question comes up far too often as far as homeschoolers are concerned.   How many times have you had non-homeschooling families ask you about your children being isolated?   Data on homeschool students’ activities and community involvement reveal that, on average, homeschool children are engaged in 5.2 activities outside the home, with 98% involved in two or more.  Still concerned?

HSLDA published an excellent article on Academic Statistics on Homeschooling.  A-Z Homes Cool also has a very current article about homeschool statistics.

Ideas for Streamlining Your Lesson Planning

You have chosen your curriculum and you are all ready to dig in.  Right?  Nope!  All of that great curriculum is useless if you do not have clear and concise plans for how and when you will use it.  Organizing all of the resources and materials that create a value added experience for both you and your child or children is like putting a puzzle together.  It can be frustrating when your time or space are limited.  This can be a challenge for any educator.  Often, homeschool parents have far fewer resources with which to plan.  But, never fear!  Here are a few online resources to assist you with streamlining the planning process.

PlanbookEdu.com offers free lesson plan resources as well as a premium service that allows uploads, Common Core Standards, and much more.  As far as value goes, this one was not my absolute favorite, although the interface was nice.

LearnBoost.com is one of my top three online lesson planning tools.  It not only allows you to plan your lessons in “the cloud”, it is also an online gradebook too.  Need to generate some reports or look for trends?  It has all of that too!  Best of all, it is completely free!

ClassConnect.com is all the rave among tech savvy educators.  The interface is easy to navigate and it allows you to link to your Pinterest, Sparkpeople and other accounts too.  All accounts begin with 1GB of free storage and there are a couple of ways to get ore without spending a dime.  You can share your lesson plans with others as well as get some wonderful, complete, lesson plans from other educators.  ClassConnect is my personal favorite :)

These are just a few suggestions, and new apps, websites, and other resources are popping up everyday.  Stay tuned!

 

 

 

 

Learning to Embrace Teachable Moments

Many new homeschoolers are often driven to stick to rigid school hours. Admittedly, when our family began, that was exactly what we believed. It took some time, observation, and the sound advice of some seasoned homeschoolers that helped us see the light. I had to ask myself why I was so resistant to changing in the first place. The answer was clear. Institutionalized thinking.

Institutionalized thinking is the idea that something cannot be done because it has never done before within a given set of parameters (i.e. classroom, industry,etc.). Most of us that are products of the public school system, universities, corporate America, etc. are victims. The side effects can linger long after we have been exposed and indoctrinated. Here are just a few of the symptoms:

  • Following rules, black and white thinking (not flexible, unable to perceive the value in gray areas).
  • Making assumptions – about others, about the world, about ideas, about the expectations you feel weighing on you, about your own abilities.
  • Over-reliance onlogic, along with assuming you have an accurate grasp of what is logical.

I realized that just because” it” had always been that way, didn’t mean that “it” had to continue to be that way. I began my quest to be more flexible by alternating our school hours. I introduced more field trips and unique ways to approach lessons. I began to embrace every teachable moment that I could.

So what is a teachable moment? A teachable moment is that moment when a unique, high interest situation arises that lends itself to discussion of a particular topic. For example, you are teaching a lesson about the seven continents and your child expresses a particular interest in the Panama Canal. You can embrace this teachable moment and delve deeper into the area of interest. You begin to talk about imports and exports and so on. Is it a tangent? Sort of, but your child is more likely to retain what he/she learns because of their interest in the subject.

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

~Steve Jobs, 2005

Teachable moments can occur at any moment, any place, anytime, so embrace them! They help restore the zeal for teaching your child and affirm you as a capable educator.

Happy homeschooling!

–LaToia Brown

Social Skills and Homeschooling:Myths and Facts

by Isabel Shaw

The Debate

I’ve heard it a hundred times. If you’re thinking about homeschooling, it probably troubles you. “What about socialization?” is the major homeschooling question people have about a homeschooling lifestyle.

Professional educators, who don’t fully understand the many styles of homeschooling, often raise this issue. They believe school is the only place children learn socialization skills. But it’s just not true!

The socialization myth was born out of a misconception of what it’s like to homeschool. Many educators and critics of homeschooling still believe homeschoolers hit the books at 9 a.m., work all day at their kitchen table till 3:00 p.m. or later, and spend their day isolated and alone. This, of course, is ridiculous!

The homeschoolers I know are out and about every day, enjoying museums, beaches, parks, and shows without the crowds. They travel often. The kids participate in Girl and Boy Scouts, 4-H, and sports. They take art, dance, drama, language, and music classes, to name a few.

Dr. Raymond Moore, author of over 60 books and articles on human development, has done extensive research on homeschooling and socialization. His book, The Hurried Child,

should be in every homeschooler’s library. “The idea that children need to be around many other youngsters in order to be ‘socialized,'” Dr. Moore writes, “is perhaps the most dangerous and extravagant myth in education and child rearing today.”

Children often do not respond well to large groups. They become nervous and overexcited by noise and too many people. Learning becomes difficult. Behavioral problems develop. After analyzing over 8,000 early childhood studies, Dr. Moore concluded that, contrary to popular belief, children are best socialized by parents — not other children.

What kind of socialization occurs when 20 or 30 kids of the same age are placed in a classroom together day after day? Peer pressure is enormous. Kids feel like they need to look and sound and be like everyone else, at the risk of forgetting or never discovering who they really are. This results in rivalry, ridicule, and competition – hardly the environment for healthy socialization.

A homeschooler who interacts with parents and siblings more than with peers displays self-confidence, self-respect, and self-worth. She knows she’s a part of a family unit that needs, wants, and depends on her. The result is an independent thinker who isn’t influenced by peers and is self-directed in her actions and thoughts.

Do tests bear this out? You bet!

The Research
In July 2000, the Discovery Institute, a Seattle-based think-tank, published an extensive report on homeschooling written by Senior Fellow Dr. Patricia Lines. She describes several controlled studies comparing the social skills of homeschoolers and nonhomeschoolers.

The homeschoolers scored as “well adjusted.” In one study, trained counselors viewed videotapes of mixed groups of homeschooled and schooled children at play. The counselors didn’t know the school status of each child. The results? The homeschooled kids demonstrated fewer behavioral problems. Dr. Lines’ conclusion? “There is no basis to question the social development of homeschooled children.”

Homeschooling parents know kids need blocks of quiet time alone. Time to dream and grow and find out what it is they love to do. This is something few children enjoy today. They are never alone at school, and their after-school lives are packed full of activities, as well.

If you are considering homeschooling and are still concerned about socialization, I suggest the following:

1. Find other homeschoolers in your area and strike up friendships. This can be done via the Internet, your place of worship, a food co-op, or library. Put up notices on safe billboards in your community.

2. Join a group like 4-H. 4-H is a youth development organization. Your child can choose one of their many clubs, based on his or her interests (rocketry, crafts, environment, animals, dance, and many more). All are welcome, and it’s free.

3. When you meet families out with kids during school hours, ask them if they homeschool. I know of many friendships that started that way!

4. Find out about the sports programs available through your local parks and recreation department. Team sports give kids the opportunity to meet peers with common interests.

5. Volunteer your services. Visit local nursing homes, shelters, etc. One young homeschooler regularly visited a nursing home with her mom and gave elderly women manicures. Giving unselfishly to one’s community sets a good example and develops true socialization skills.

Socialization, like learning and life, takes place every day. How you interact with your kids — and how they watch you interact with the outside world — teaches them all the social skills they’ll need to know. Stop worrying about socialization. It’s a “problem” that never existed!

Copyright: Family Education–

Read more on FamilyEducation: http://school.familyeducation.com/home-schooling/human-relations/56224.html#ixzz1vBvv7RW8

Seven Tips for Homeschool Success

With the right kind of help, any parent that really wants to home school their child can be very successful with this endeavor. To determine what is correct for your child and yourself read through our 7 homeschooling tips for success.

If you think home schooling is the most beneficial choice for your child, never allow disparaging remarks deter you. Just keep going after the ideas and thoughts you find on web sites such as this one until you are confident you are prepared to start. Just take one-step at a time and success will follow.

  1. Homeschooling Tip #1 – Prior to starting your home school program, go over your state’s homeschooling laws and legal requirements. These requirements will be different in each state and you will be able to discover additional information on them from our local education department.
  2. Homeschooling Tip #2 – You, the parent, should have basic educational skills such as adept writing, reading, and math. If you do not have these basic skills, you can learn them through adult education courses until you are up to par and able to follow the curriculum with your child. Almost all the subjects your child must learn will demand a healthy want to learn from you, instead of you requiring full knowledge of them in advance. You might have to commit time and effort tp learning the material before and after your home schooling classes, so you are prepared to effectively teach your child.
  3. Homeschooling Tip #3 – The success of your home schooling endeavor will also depend on the working relationship you and your child have together. Being able to engage the interests of your child and have good communication with your child will make any of your home schooling goals easy to accomplish. If your communication skills or relationship is poor or unhealthy, then a home schooling setting will be very hard. You can solve this problem with counseling from your church or other counseling resources.
  4. Homesch


    If you do not truly believe in the reasons you are home schooling your child, you might become disheartened and doubt your choice halfway through. This can be damaging for your entire family. Just be ready for negative criticism and be prepared to defend your decision.ooling Tip #4
     – Have you done all the necessary research and are you fully committed to home schooling your child? This homeschooling tip is to ensure you know that people will probably make disparaging remarks on how you are ruining your child’s life with home schooling. Just remember that most people incorrectly believe that public school’s are the only way to really educate and will try to convince you of their opinion.

  5. Homeschooling Tip #5 – You need to be very observant of your child, as well as responsive to their feelings and needs. This is very important to your child’s home schooling success. You are the only constant supervision they have in the classroom of the home and they will need you to be aware of whether they are making healthy progress, are in need of extra help, or are struggling and perhaps needing a change.
  6. Homeschooling Tip #6 – Having a good sense of humor along with patience are very crucial qualities needed by any parent, especially ones that are home schooling their child. Flexibility is needed when things go a little astray and you may need to take extra time out for difficult areas. Using creativity is a way to help your child understand the subject that they are having trouble with. You need these qualities during the entire home schooling process. Your home schooling experience will be more enjoyable for you and your child as well if you remain patient in stressful times, laugh during awkward times, and just keep everything interesting, stress free, and fun.
  7. Homeschooling Tip #7 – Organizing effectively is one of the most important parts of home schooling. Having daily lesson plans, schedules, family time, activities, etc. are routine weekly duties. You need to be adept in this to keep a healthy balance and make sure everything stays manageable and productive. You can find free sites online and even local classes that can help you improve your organizational skills if needed.