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A home school is a school in which parents teach their children an academic curriculum at home instead of sending them out to a public or private school. Home schooling is legal throughout Europe, Australia, New Zealand, North America, Hong Kong, and South Africa. Home schooling is most popular in Canada, France, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Now, it is estimated that over one million families school their children at home. Most of these families include a breadwinner and a stay-at-home parent who does most of the teaching, although there are single parent families and dual career families who home school.
Home schooling education models range from unschooling to traditional classroom schooling. Unschooling is based on interest-based learning in which the child expresses interest in a particular subject, and the parents take steps to provide the materials for that subject. Most parents who home school, have a traditional setting in which the children are taught subjects such as mathematics, reading, history, science, grammar, and spelling within a structured schedule created by the parents. There are many vendors and satellite schools that provide a packaged curriculum, but many parents like to design their own curriculum with various books and materials from different vendors In most communities, the home school family can take advantage of a local support group. A home school support group organizes monthly meetings in which new and existing home school families discuss different home schooling issues.
The group may also arrange for cooperative teaching in which parents with different skills teach a group of home schooled children once a week in a rented or donated building. In few places, the home school group shares in hiring a professional teacher to teach a particular subject. The group may also arrange field trips and sports activities. A number of home school groups field sports teams that compete against each other or with local private schools. These activities are intended to provide socialization skills for the students Home school families take advantage of technology to supplement traditional teaching.
There are many educational software packages that enhance the curriculum and provide variety. The Internet is another useful tools that brimming with educational ideas and resources. There are online libraries, dictionaries, museums, and encyclopedias. Some home school families enroll their children in an online school or course as a supplement to their own teaching. Some home school families teach their children through high school graduation. Others teach their children until they feel they are mature enough to handle peer pressure and other social influences. If a family decides to teach their children through graduation, they must keep records of the schooling that vary from state to state. For those who home school through graduation, the home school community holds a ceremony complete with caps, gowns, and diplomas printed at the local print shop just as public schools do. Colleges do recognize a home school diploma, but most are more interested in high school transcripts and SAT and ACT scores. There are currently over 800 colleges that accept home-schooled graduates including Harvard, Yale, and Stanford. The military also accepts home-schooled graduates who meet the same requirements as those who were taught in conventional schools The home school movement is getting the attention of private and public schools. In response, some schools are providing support and materials such as books, videos, educational software, science kits, computers, field trips, workshops, and special classes.
There are many advantages to homeschooling children. These benefits are: Excellent education. The overriding goal of homeschooling is to educate children. Because of the many advantages offered by homeschooling, there is simply no better way to educate a child. First, consider the items in this list. Many of these benefits are easy to understand and the positive impacts they have on children are obvious. Second, home schooled children perform better on standardized tests. For example, in a recent comparison of SAT scores, homeschooled children averaged 568 on the verbal test and 525 on the mathematics; the national average was 506 on verbal and 514 on math. While those differences might not seem significant for individuals, as differences in averages for populations of students, they are very significant. Third, homeschoolers are becoming sought-after for higher education. Many colleges and universities have begun to modify their admission practices to not only allow for, but to encourage, homeschoolers to apply for admission.
Dedicated teachers with a great teacher-to-student ratio.
One factor that is known to be extremely important to educating a child effectively is the teacher-to-student ratio-that is, the number of students for which a teacher is responsible. Other factors include the degree of connection present between teacher and student and the amount of dedication a teacher has to a specific child. Homeschooling excels in both these areas. Who can be more dedicated to helping a child learn successfully than that child’s parent? Parents love their children and dedicate their lives to helping their children successfully grow to maturity. So, no one is more dedicated to a child than the parent. And, homeschooling is done largely on a one-on-one basis; there can’t be a better teacher-to-student ratio than that. In these two areas, which are both critical to a child’s education, homeschooling is simply the best scenario.
Education tailored to a child’s capabilities and personality.
Because home school is focused on children as individuals, a child’s education can be tailored to her capabilities and personality. If a child excels in a specific area, his education in that area can be accelerated. If a child struggles in a particular area, additional resources can be brought to bear to help. Also, the way children are taught can be based on how the child best learns because of the child’s personality. For example, if a child is a visual learner, more visual elements can be incorporated into that child’s instruction. Instead of the cookie-cutter approach to education that is required in an intuitional setting, home school provides the opportunity for a child’s education to be designed just for that child.
Integrated and consistent education.
Because a homeschooled child’s education is managed by the same person over a long period of time that education can be consistent with a long-term plan in which each topic taught and the experience gained benefits seamlessly with those that have come before. Because the parent is intimately involved with the student over that student’s life, the parent understands the child’s experiences and background and uses that knowledge to design future educational activities. Better teaching materials. Homeschoolers have access to the best teaching materials available. And, teaching materials can be selected based on a child’s individual needs and capabilities.
To sum up, in today’s situation, parents prefer to take home school because of high school fees, school activities, examination tensions and tuition classes. This emerging trend spread worldwide.
1. Bauman, KJ. 2002. “Home-schooling in the United States: Trends and characteristics.”
2. Lines, P. 2002. “Support for home-based study.” Eric Clearinghouse on Educational Management, University of Oregon. National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). 2001. Homeschooling in the United States: 1999.
3. ML. 2001. Kingdom of Children. Culture and Controversy in the Home Schooling Movement. Princeton University Press: Princeton.
4. For additional information from internet resources see: The National Center for Education Statistics at: http://nces.gov.in The Home School Legal Defense Association– a strong advocate for home school education– at: http://www.hslda.org http://epaa.asu.edu/epaa/v10n26.html http://nces.ed.gov/ Stevens http://nios.ac.in
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