Homeschooling? Not schooling? Charlotte Freemason? Waldorf? Part time? Full time? The variations within homeschooling can be overwhelming. But don’t worry – it’s not as scary as it seems at first glance.
Consider these common curricula and educational philosophies used by homeschoolers. This is by no means a comprehensive list, but it covers many notable programs and should help you feel more comfortable deciding what kind of homeschooler you are.
In unit studies, he focuses intently on one topic at a time. This can teach the ability to compartmentalize and synthesize information. Examples are doing an in-depth study of US presidents or spending the month before an ocean vacation studying the sea and weather. Unit studies can also use a child’s interests to study a broader subject; for example, studying fashion trends through the ages to see how major events in history affected daily life.
The Charlotte Mason Method is based on the work of British educator Charlotte Mason. She believed that “education is an atmosphere, a discipline and a life”. She believed that atmosphere was one third of a child’s education, that cultivating good habits was another third, and that children should be taught living ideas and practicalities rather than dry facts.
Waldorf education aims to educate the whole child, “head, heart and hands”. Waldorf seeks to encourage a genuine love of learning in every child and incorporates arts and activities to create students who are able to create meaning in their lives without outside help.
The Montessori method focuses on student-directed learning which aims to support a child’s natural way of learning. Montessori involves individual attention and observation from the teacher and emphasizes all five senses rather than just the visual and auditory senses used in reading, listening and seeing.
Multiple intelligence education is based on Dr. Howard Gardner’s eight areas of intelligence and learning styles: linguistic, logical-mathematical, spatial, bodily-kinesthetic, musical, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and naturalist. Everyone has strengths in one or more of these intelligences, and the multiple intelligences method involves discovering those strong areas and teaching through them (for example, a student strong in bodily-kinesthetic, or body-related knowledge tact, will be more likely to learn by doing, while a linguistically strong child will learn better through reading, writing and word play).
Classical education uses three age groups or periods of learning, called the “grammar period” (which focuses on the building blocks of instruction, memorization and rules of basic mathematics, phonics, etc.), the “stage logical” (when cause-and-effect relationships are explored and the child is challenged to ask “why”, engage in critical thinking and synthesize ideas), and the “rhetorical phase” (when the student learns to use the language to explain his ideas clearly and powerfully, and begins to focus on areas of knowledge that are of interest to him; this stage may sometimes involve internships, apprenticeships, university courses, and other forms of higher/specialist education).
Education of Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson Education, also known as “Leadership Education”, also follows three periods: the “Foundation Phases” (which focus on core values and a love of learning), the “Education Phases” (which teach study skills and discipline; in this phase students engage in a mentor-led program such as an internship or setting and achieve a personal goal) and “application phases” which exist after formal instruction and last for the rest of the student’s life (during which the student focuses on contributing to the community, and serves as a mentor or community leader). Thomas Jefferson’s education has a strong focus on a love of learning, a commitment to values, and the seven keys to great teaching.
Accredited curriculum/Distance learning/Internet
This type of homeschool, sometimes referred to as “public home schooling,” is highly structured and uses state-approved curricula that mirror the curricula used in public schools. The parent acts as the teacher and there is usually a satellite teacher or mentor to whom the student reports. Examples include K12.com, LUOnlineAcademy.com, and various university-affiliated high school programs such as Penn Foster High School and BYU Independent Study.
This type of education follows the belief that children are not ready for formal education until the age of 7-9. This approach encourages play and natural curiosity in the early years and moves into more formal learning as the child reaches age 7 (with flexibility depending on the child). This philosophy, although sometimes contested, is also becoming commonly accepted in some mainstream schools, particularly in the UK, and is quite common among the out-of-school.
The Principle Approach to education, which is based on the writings of Rosalie J. Slater and Verna M. Hall, examines all subjects and information through a Christian worldview. The Bible is used as an important textbook, and the student creates notebooks that incorporate both the school supplies and their own thoughts and meditations. The principles-based approach uses “the 4 Rs”, Research (finding the word of God and identifying religious principles), Reasoning (uncovering cause and effect relationships), Correlating (applying information to the student), and Recording (writing or recording otherwise the student’s questions and impressions).
Based on faith
Similar to the principled approach but more flexible and not specific to any belief system, faith-based homeschooling incorporates both secular and religious knowledge, and religious beliefs and family values are freely incorporated into learning and practices. discussions. While this admixture is a natural side effect of homeschooling in a religious household, faith-based education more obviously links academic knowledge to religion. Spiritual beliefs and experiences are considered as or more important to the child’s education as secular knowledge, and the parent actively seeks to incorporate religious beliefs into the student’s educational curriculum/experience.
While not often used as a full-time replacement for public or private schooling, many homeschoolers find it helpful to supplement their curricula with classes and/or mentoring at learning centers such as Kumon, Sylvan, and Huntington. These centers can be especially helpful as a student approaches college, as many of them offer ACT and SAT prep classes.
As always, homeschooling is a deeply individual business that should be modified to fit your family. As long as your homeschooling method works for you, keep it, love it, change it as needed, and enjoy the adventure.