Homeschooling is sometimes also called home education and is a form of education where students are taught from home or a variety of places other than school.
Homeschooling is usually conducted by a parent, tutor or an online teacher.
Many families who homeschool their kids use less formal ways of teaching.
The term homeschooling is commonly used in North America whiles in United Kingdom it is often called home education.
History behind home schooling
Before the introduction of the compulsory school system, most childhood education was done by families and local communities from home. That is why home-schooling has become a legal alternative to public and private schools in many developed countries.
Families choose to homeschool for a variety of reasons, including dissatisfaction with the educational options available, different religious beliefs or educational philosophies, and the belief that children are not progressing within the traditional school structure.
The homeschooling system began growing in the 1970s, when some popular authors and researchers, started writing about educational reform.
In their writings, they suggested homeschooling as an alternative educational option.
According to research, there are now more children being homeschooled with the percentage rapidly increasing year by each year.
More parents are now choosing to homeschool instead of sending their children to public or private schools.
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A successful homeschool curriculum can be made up of the following approaches:
Reviewing a set of subjects or courses to study to improve a skill set
Adhering to a guided program or roadmap of studies to meet learning objectives
Tangible, creative or technological materials to enhance the learning experience
An engaging learning environment that includes external activities, communities or group-based learning
Communication lead by parental guidance or interpersonal relationships with siblings or other homeschoolers.
Individual learner experiences as a result of homeschooling.
What most families discover is that their family’s educational needs cannot be met by a single curriculum.
Because of this, many parents end up using multiple types of homeschooling programs in order to maximize their child’s understanding and retention of the material.
This mix and match homeschool curriculum to many helps each child reach their fullest potential according to each of their learning needs.
Homeschooling in Ghana
The truth is that, Ghana has not yet caught up with the “homeschool craze” but rather the traditional form of learning are still embrace by many.
So if you are going to go ahead with it you have to be pretty strong on your feet and not be shaken by nay-sayers.
If you are seriously thinking about homeschooling, go for it! Just jump right in there.
Most parent that start homeschooling never really knew what they were doing at first but with time, you will soon learn what works best for you as a family.
Read Also: What is Homeschooling?
Today with the growth of the internet, a new range of possibilities is open to those looking for something other than traditional schooling.
Take a look at the following home school programs:
- SchoolhouseTeachers.com: Online Homeschool Classes for Everyone (SchoolhouseTeachers.com)
- Abeka: Bible-Based Homeschool Curriculum (Abeka)
- Time 4 Learning: Online Curriculum Provider (Time 4 Learning)
- BJU Homeschooling: Online Christian Education (BJU Homeschooling)
- IXL Learning: Homeschooling K thru 12 (IXL Learning)
- Sonlight: Literature-Based Curriculum (Sonlight)
- Monarch Online: Christian Homeschooling Program ( Monarch Online)
- Easy Peasy : Preschool Homeschooling thru High School (Easy Peasy All-in-One Homeschool)
Free Homeschooling Online
Homeschooling doesn’t have to be expensive. Thanks to the Internet (along with smartphones and tablets), high-quality, low-cost homeschooling resources are available to anyone anywhere.
Khan Academy has a long-standing reputation as a quality resource in the homeschooling community. It is a non-profit educational site started by American educator Salman Khan to provide free, quality educational resources for all students.
Organized by topic, the site includes math (K-12), science, technology, economics, art, history, and test prep. Each topic includes lectures delivered via YouTube videos.
Students can use the site independently, or parents can create a parent account, then set up student accounts from which they can track their child’s progress.
Easy Peasy All-in-One Homeschool is a free online resource created by homeschooling parents for homeschooling parents. It contains full homeschool curriculum from a Christian worldview for grades K-12.
First, parents choose their child’s grade level. The grade level material covers the basics, such as reading, writing, and math. Then, the parent selects a program year. All of the children in a family will work together on history and science covering the same topics based on the program year chosen.
Easy Peasy is all online and free. It’s all planned out day by day, so children can go to their level, scroll down to the day they are on, and follow the directions. Inexpensive workbooks are available to order, or parents can print the worksheets from the site at no cost
Ambleside Online is a free, Charlotte Mason-style homeschool curriculum for children in grades K-12. Like Khan Academy, Ambleside has a long-standing reputation in the homeschooling community as a quality resource.
The program provides a list of books that families will need for each level. The books cover history, science, literature, and geography. Parents will need to choose their own resources for math and foreign language.
Ambleside also includes picture and composer studies. Children will do copywork or dictation on their own for their level, but no additional resources are needed since the passages can be taken from the books they’re reading.
Ambleside Online even offers an emergency-plan curriculum for families homeschooling in the midst of crisis or natural disaster.
YouTube isn’t without its pitfalls, especially for young viewers, but with parental oversight, it can be a wealth of information and a fantastic supplement to homeschooling.
There are educational videos for nearly any topic imaginable on YouTube, including music lessons, foreign language, writing courses, preschool themes, and more.
Crash Course is a top-rated channel for older kids. The video series covers topics such as science, history, economics, and literature. There is now a version for younger students called Crash Course Kids.
Read Also: Home Tuition: 8 Reasons Why It Works
- The Library
Never take for granted the gift of a well-stocked library – or a moderately stocked one with a reliable intra-library loan system. The most obvious use for the library when homeschooling is borrowing books and DVDs. Students can choose fiction and non-fiction books related to the topics they’re studying – or those about which they’re curious.
Consider the following series resources:
- The American Girl, Dear America, or My Name is America series for history
- The Magic School Bus series for science
- The Magic Treehouse series for history or science
- Discover America State by State for geography
- Life of Fred for math
Some libraries even stock homeschool curriculum.
Many libraries also offer fantastic online classes through their websites, such as foreign language with resources like Rosetta Stone or Mango, or practice tests for the SAT or ACT. Also, many libraries offer other onsite resources such as information on genealogy or local history.
Most libraries also offer free wi-fi and make computers available to patrons. So, even families who don’t have internet access at home can take advantage of free online resources at their local library.
With the popularity of tablets and smartphones, don’t overlook the usefulness of apps. There are several language learning apps such as Duolingo and Memrise.
Apps like Reading Eggs and ABC Mouse are perfect for engaging young learners.
Apple Education is an excellent resource for iOS users. There are over 180,000 educational apps available.
Starfall is another free resource that has been around as long as my family has been homeschooling. Launched in 2002, the website now includes an app for smartphone and tablet users.
Originally started as an online reading instruction program, Starfall has expanded to include math skills for young learners.
- Online Education Sites
Many online education sites such at The CK12 Foundation and Discovery K12 offer free courses for students in grades K-12. Both were started to provide access to a quality education to students everywhere.
CNN Student News is an excellent free resource for current events. It’s available during the traditional public school year, from mid-August to late-May. Students will enjoy using Google Earth to study geography or learning computer coding through Khan Academy or Code.org.
For nature study, the best free resource is the great outdoors itself. Couple that with sites such as:
- Local Resources
In addition to the library, keep other local resources in mind. Many homeschooling families like to suggest museum and zoo memberships as holiday gifts from grandparents. Even if parents purchase the memberships themselves, they can still prove to be inexpensive homeschooling resources long-term.
Many zoos, museums, and aquariums offer reciprocal memberships, allowing members to visit participating locations at a free or discounted rate. So, a local zoo membership may also provide access to other zoos throughout the country.
Sometimes there are also free nights for similar venues within a city. For example, years ago when my family had a membership at our local children’s museum, there was a free night which allowed us to visit the other museums (art, history, etc.) and the aquarium using our children’s museum membership pass.
Consider scouting programs such as Boy or Girl Scouts, AWANAS, and American Heritage Girls. While these programs aren’t free, the handbooks for each usually contain very educational material that can be incorporated into the lessons you’re teaching at home.
A public school teacher has to focus on all the children in the class, while in homeschooling, the parent mostly focuses only on one child.
A school teacher cannot always help a student when he or she needs it. But in homeschooling, your child gets help with the subject immediately.
With homeschool, you can be 100 percent certain that your child will be in a safe and calm environment daily.
Research has also shown that children who are homeschooled succeed better in a comfortable and a safe environment.
When a child is homeschooled, they do not have to worry about dealing with peer pressure; it also gives the children a chance to focus more on their studies.
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