Apart from business operations, the education of children has also been greatly affected by the COVID19 pandemic. Experts say that it will take a few months before a cure can be devised and approximately a year or more for the development of a vaccine. One thing is for sure, this crisis will leave a great impact on the way we live: the way we work and the way we educate our children.
Few weeks of lockdown have passed, preparation of a system or a framework for your children could help you set up a goal for their education at home if the situation will not get better as soon as possible.
A lot of things must be considered before starting homeschool for your children. Reading and evaluating information about homeschooling can be a great help for you to have an overview of this system. Children have different learning stages,so we should have different ways of teaching them.
We’ve listed down 5 things you have to consider before starting a homeschool:
1. Know the local law about the homeschooling.
You can ask your government or research about the law of homeschooling in your country. In the Philippines, homeschooling is legal based on Article XIV, Section 1 (2) of the Philippine Constitution, which states that the country will “Establish and maintain a system of free public education in the elementary and high school levels. Without limiting the natural right of parents to rear their children…” The Department of Education also has accredited homeschool-providers that help parents get accreditation for their homeschooled children. However, others choose to take the “independent” route wherein parents do not enroll their children in any institution and use their preferred curricula and resources.
2. Choose a homeschool curriculum that would suit your objective for your child’s education.
Department of Education’s accredited homeschool-providers have a list of curricula parents can choose from. For parents who would go for an independent route, there are also a lot of educational approaches to consider and evaluate that would correspond with your goal for your child’s education. Blending several homeschool programs and technology types can add variety to your child’s schooling. Few of many education styles are:
- Montessori Style (applicable for pre-school and elementary) – a framework where children can choose from various activities that can enhance useful life skills and understanding of different concepts. Principles of this style focuses on simple, clean organization; real-life application.
- Charlotte Mason – an education style which do not focus solely on academics but in every aspect of life. It encourages the production of quality rather than quantity.
- Project-based – a framework whereby children are helped by adults to facilitate projects based on their interests.
A successful homeschool curriculum can also be made up of the following approaches (refer to the information below) which you can mix and match to help maximize your child’s understanding and reach their full potential based on their learning needs.
- Set of subjects or courses to study in improving your child’s skill set can be reviewed
- Follow a guided learning program or roadmap to meet your child’s learning objectives
- Use creative and technological (safe, secure, ad-free online learning environment) materials to develop your child’s learning experience.
- Include engaging activities for your child: communities or group-based learning
- Develop their interpersonal skills by guided communication with their siblings or other homeschoolers
3. Set realistic goals for you and your child.
Establishing a goal will help you set the expectation for you and your child. However, you may want to set realistic expectations since you are both still adapting to the new system. This will avoid homeschool burnout. There will be days where you will lose your patience or your children may not meet the goals you had for them, and this is perfectly normal. It is ten times more essential to inspire a love of learning than to cram their head with facts that will most likely be forgotten in a week.
4. Know the benefits and potential drawbacks of homeschooling
Homeschooling can mean that you can personalize a one-on-one learning opportunity for your child, or you get to spend more time with your children, and you are able to protect them from negative influences they may encounter outside the home. But there are also possible drawbacks of providing your child with a homeschool framework. It can cause financial restraints; it also limits your child’s opportunities to participate in team sports or other extra-curricular activities. And it requires a lot of time, energy and resources for you and your partner. Preparing for these potential disadvantages will help you, your partner and your child in implementing and adapting the homeschool framework.
5. Set a routine depending on your homeschool curriculum
Identify your learning styles (visual, auditory, and kinesthetic) so you can come up with an effective routine that is based on your chosen homeschool curriculum. Schedule properly the subjects and activities your child will do for the whole week. You would want to think about how you want your days, weeks and months to look like. Having a routine will eventually help your child build a habit of learning productively.
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