What are the advantages of home schooling?
It is reasonable to ask, given advances in education over the last century, what are the advantages of home schooling? What on the surface may look like an old-fashioned teaching method is increasing in popularity across the nation. Why is that? As it turns out, there are many good reasons for parents to home school their children, not the least of which is the fact that one-on-one tutoring has been widely recognized as the most effective method of education.
In a large classroom setting, even the best-trained teacher is incapable of giving the individual attention necessary to help each student excel. Parents are not only able to devote much more time to their children, but they also know their pupils on a personal level. They are able to tailor their curriculum and teaching styles in ways that are most conducive to their child's productivity. This individualized attention is one of the advantages of home schooling.
Because of the variety of curriculum choices available to home schoolers, parents have several options when it comes to the material used for instruction. Not only are they given the freedom to teach core subjects from a biblical perspective, but they can also incorporate their child's interests into the curriculum. Skills such as woodworking, cooking, managing money, and shopping for healthy food on a budget can be learned through real-life interactions and projects. The advantages of home schooling are both personal and practical.
The majority of time children spend in school is not spent focusing on academic subjects; it is spent waiting in lines, waiting for other students to be done with their work, waiting for the teacher to move on to another subject, waiting for recess, waiting for lunch. Home schoolers can cut out all of this unnecessary waiting, and get their work done within two or three hours. They can move at their own pace and still have time left over in the day to explore other interests.
Despite shorter schooling hours, home schoolers have consistently scored at or above average in virtually all subject areas on standardized tests. Studies have shown that children whose parents are directly involved in their education are more apt to excel in academics. Indeed, a home-schooled child is aware of the dedication of his parents to his educational success.
In addition to this, extended periods of time together strengthen family relationships, not only between the child and his parents, but also with his siblings. As they get to know each other, the family members form bonds that last a lifetime. Children tend to adopt the behaviors and values of those around whom they spend the majority of their time. Therefore, it stands to reason that home-schooled children are more likely than their classroom-schooled peers to value the views of their families over the views of their friends. They will find it easier to resist the pressure they get from their friends to break rules because they won't be spending hours of idle time together.
A home schooler's social experiences tend to be more positively influenced; they have the opportunity to spend time with children and adults of various ages, rather than thirty or more same-age peers.
This is by no means an exhaustive list of the many advantages of home schooling, but just because the benefits seem to outweigh the disadvantages does not mean that home schooling is for everyone.
There is more than one way for parents to educate their children; we should not assume that home schooling is right for every family in every situation.
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