How to Homeschool Your Children
Parents who are dissatisfied with public schools, and cannot afford private schools, may decide to homeschool their children instead. Knowing how to homeschool your children may seem confusing at first, but is easier than you may think. One of the advantages to this approach is that you can design a homeschool curriculum that's tailored to the individual needs of your child. This allows your child to work ahead in subjects that they show an aptitude for, and slow down in subjects where they need further attention.
If you're wondering how to homeschool your kids, the first thing you need to keep in mind is that you need a detailed plan. While you can base your lesson plans on standard grade-by-grade curricula already in place in public school, the point of homeschooling your children is to expose them to educational materials and ideas that transcend the traditional.
Any complete homeschooling program includes exposure to the traditional subject areas, including mathematics, language arts, science, fine arts and physical education. Even if you're designing a homeschool artist curriculum for a budding painter or musician, or a homeschool science program for your little chemist, it is of the utmost importance to include all subjects. If your child shows an aptitude for a given subject, encourage him or her to go further – but make sure your child isn't behind in other areas.
Many parents homeschool children up to the middle school or high school level. If you're going beyond this, make sure you know what standardized tests your child needs to write. After all, even homeschooled kids have to write the SAT to get into college.
Free Homeschool Resources for Parents
Homeschool books can help you form your plan. Borrow books from your local library or scour used book stores to find good deals on used homeschool books. You never know — you might even find a complete used homeschool curriculum for a great price.
You can also find free, premade lesson plans online which you can use as a guideline for self-educating your kids. Structure is extremely important in a homeschooling program, and your kids need lessons, exercises and homework assignments to work on independently, just like in regular school.
Purchasing a New Homeschool Curriculum
If you choose not to rely on your local library to borrow a free home school curriculum or a used book store to buy a used home school curriculum, you aren't out of options. There are many excellent companies that sell complete curricula, complete with all the home school forms and tests that you will need.
We recommend taking a good look at each of these companies and finding one that fits your family's values. While it's true that there may not be major differences between a Konos homeschool curriculum and a Keystone homeschool curriculum, there are differences nonetheless.
If you like, you can supplement your efforts with in-home school tutoring provided by a private company.
Home school associations are another great resource for parents. The website of the American Homeschool Association is a great place to start. The Association has been assisting homeschooling families since 1995, and its site offers news and discussion forums that can be a tremendous help for parents with questions (or who just want to chat with like-minded parents).
These resources will help you figure out how to homeschool your children in an appropriate way that fits their educational needs.
If meeting others and discussion homeschooling is something you would rather do in person than online, we recommend making plans to visit one or more home school conventions in your area. Conventions are a fantastic way to open yourself up to new ideas and learn tips and tricks from experiences homeschoolers.
Children who receive a homeschool education have enhanced opportunities to explore their academic strengths. It can also create a special bond between parent and child that will enrich your relationship for your lifetimes.