Home schooling is slowly becoming more popular in India, especially in large cities and metros, where the parents have the ability to guide their children and also have the access to study material of their choice.
Home Schooling, as the name suggests, is a term used in which parents educate their child at home instead of sending them to regular school. This method of home schooling started and began to grow in the 1970s and the trend is increasing by 7 to 15 percent each year for the past decade.
In fact great numbers of successful people off late are emerging from among those who have been home schooled.
Choosing Home Education
There may be many reason that drives parents towards opting for home-schooling for their child such as
Ø The need for parents to travel a lot.
Ø The parents might themselves would have been home schooled.
Ø The child might have special needs to be taken care of.
Ø Feeling of the parent that the current method of education at school is not suitable and better education can be provided at home.
Ø Learning can be customized according to the child’s interest.
Ø Parents prefer home schooling if they are not able to find a school of their choice.
Whatever the reason is, the prerequisite for home schooling is that the parents should be dedicated to the educational process and should be ready to like the company of their children, their presence throughout the day (and night) and appreciate the energy of the kids. They should be able to answer the child’s question and interact with them more willingly.
Home Schooling Styles
There is a general view that home schooling is to buy the books that are prescribed for the age of the child and teach them at home, well, it does not just mean that, there is much more to it than following books.
Following a Curriculum
You as a parent can actually formulate a curriculum for your child, making sure to cover all the areas that would be necessary for the child to appear in exams or competitions in the future. This way you can make sure that if at any point of time your child would want to join the main course education system like appearing in the board exams or Olympiads and so on, he/she could easily jump in.
Choosing a particular stream for pursuing higher education would also be easy when you follow a curriculum.
This method is actually easy and makes you follow a schedule that is formulated according to your convenience.
Child Learning Method
In child learning system, there are no such agendas or a set curriculum beforehand. The parents’ or the carer’s role is to help the child to discover his own interest and provide learning opportunities by motivating him/her.
This is more often followed by parents who want their children to focus in a particular subject or a career such as singing or dancing. This way the child gets knowledge of overall subjects but is not exam ready at the stages he/she needs to be.
Sometimes, children with special needs also follow this pattern.
Eligibility for Home Schooling
Though there is no special eligibility for home schooling, patience, creativity, teaching ability and also lots and lots of energy to home school your child.
Some concerns of experts are that they think kids who are at the risk of neglect or with parent who have psychological problems should not take up home schooling. Also, for home schooling kids, parents need to devote a lot of time and be sensitive to their learning needs by attending to them.
The First Step towards Home Schooling
If parents are really interested in home schooling their kids, the first step is to network with other parents who already home school their kids. The social media has a number of such groups of likeminded parents, which not only supports one another but also helps them with study tools and methods that would help the parents to teach their wards better.
Home schooling is done better with lots of support and swapping of ideas. It also helps the children to socialize among themselves.
With a big community and lots of support/ideas from people, the home schooling journey is for both the child and the parents.
Pros of Home Schooling
Ø Home schooling gives freedom to the parent to teach subjects that actually are of interest to the child.
Ø There is no peer pressure to the child and hence the child id not affected by anxiety or other pressure related side effects as other children.
Ø If you are a traveler, you just don’t have to wait till your child gets his holidays to go on vacations.
Ø There is no need to get up too early of miss other vocational classes of interest.
Cons of Home Schooling
Ø Parent needs to spend more time and energy than other parents who send their children to regular school.
Ø You need to update yourselves regularly so that your child does not miss out on any subject.
Ø You need to give extra importance to studies because you are solely responsible for your child’s future, this may create a pressure on the parent.
Common Myths about Home-schooling
Myth-1: Home Schooling is certainly not for parents who want their kids to score high in board exams.
There are quite a large number of home schooled children who have entered the IITs, so scoring is not a problem for the rightly taught child.
Myth-2: Home –schooled children do not socialize.
This again is not a reality, children do not tend to become loners at all, they too socialize like every other child when in a group.
Myth-3: Home schooled children learn less
Well, this is not at all true; situations and environment decide the level of experience and knowledge gained by the child.
Home schooling is aimed at personalizing a child’s education based on their interest in a friendly environment away from the pressure of peers and other people. It is best suited for children if parents are able to guide them correctly.