Homeschooling is an alternative to school that some parents turn to for many different reasons; perhaps they don’t like the curriculum public schools create, or maybe they want to keep their child close to home, or maybe one of the parents has a job that causes the family to travel often. Whatever the reason, homeschooling is a viable option for educating a child.
Still, there is a lot that goes into homeschooling and building a curriculum, so we’ve listed six things to keep in mind.
6 Considerations to Keep in Mind
Building a homeschool curriculum doesn’t have to be challenging, especially when you keep these considerations in mind.
Organization and Record Keeping
When homeschooling your child, you want to be organized and maintain a record of their curriculum. In the beginning, you can create a description of every course and the assignments that will go along with them, as well as any resources or materials you plan to draw on. You can either update the description as you teach or at the end of your school year.
Keeping this record is important for several reasons. One, you can keep track of what materials are useful and what works for your child so that you can share with other families or utilize them more in the future. Two, if you decide to re-enroll your child in school, you have the records to demonstrate what they have learned. And three, when the child is older, this record keeping will help you create your child’s high school transcripts.
The purpose of homeschooling is to educate your child and to do this, you have to understand the knowledge you are trying to impart to them. By homeschooling your child, you are in charge of creating a curriculum; the curriculum is the books, activities, assignments, and media you are going to use to educate your child.
While you are putting this curriculum together, not only do you need to familiarize yourself with the standards your state has set for your child’s grade, but you also have to familiarize yourself with the material you want to teach. It is only when you are educated on the topic that you are able to properly educate your child.
When going over your state’s learning standards, you can work backward from them to create learning experiences. If not, you will need your own homeschool learning outcomes, but you still need to be aware of the state standards.
Understand What Homeschooling is
While the concept of homeschooling may seem fairly simple, there are homeschooling laws, which vary by state. Homeschooling can occur anywhere and at any time, at the convenience of your family, but these laws must still be followed. When deciding to homeschool your child, research the laws in your state; you can start at the state’s Department of Education website. These requirements change fairly often, so you will need to check on them regularly.
Consider Joining Local Homeschool Groups
Homeschooling can be challenging to do alone, but there are local homeschooling groups that can help. They can be useful resources; not only do they have information and encouragement about homeschooling, but some groups may also offer classes for homeschoolers, as well as group field trips and other forms of socialization, which is important for a developing child. Many individuals within these groups have insight and advice from their experience homeschooling, and they are a useful tool to be able to turn to.
Creating your own curriculum can be difficult, especially when you yourself are not familiar with many of the different topics and subtopics. Fortunately, there are homeschooling sites that can assist you; these sites can cover math, science, social studies, and other subjects. You don’t have to use them for your entire curriculum; you can utilize homeschooling sites for subjects that are challenging for you so that your child can learn them.
Involve Your Child
Most importantly, involve your child in the development of their curriculum. As a parent, you know what knowledge is best for them, but that doesn’t mean school can’t also be fun for them. You can have them help you decide on activities and reading materials so that they, too, enjoy the process.
As long as you keep these considerations in mind when building your homeschooling curriculum, you should have no problems homeschooling your child.