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Deciding to homeschool your child can be a daunting choice. There are so many questions that need to be answered. How will I make time for teaching and my work? How will I be able to teach my kids about more complicated subjects? Is this really the best choice for me and my child?
One of the best ways to make peace with your decision is to take a good look at all the homeschooling advantages.
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Advantages for the Child
Personal Attention: When homeschooling your child you are able to give them the attention they need and deserve to thrive. Even if your child does some of their homeschooling in a group of kids they will get more personal attention than they would in a classroom of 20 or more students.
Appropriate Pacing: It is no secret that different people learn at different speeds. When homeschooling you are able to spend as much time as your child needs on concepts that are difficult for them, while letting them move quickly through easier material. They will never be left behind or have to wait for others to catch up.
Accommodating Learning Style: While there are many different ways to break down learning styles it is agreed that there are three main kinds: visual, auditory and kinesthetic. Homeschooling allows the parent to cater specifically to a child's learning style.
Deeper Learning on Subjects of Interest: Is your 7 year old really interested in astronomy or animal husbandry? With homeschooling those subjects don't need to be relegated to bedtime reading or weekend excursions. You child can spend as much time as they want exploring topics of interest to them.
Learning as a Part of Life: Before children go to school they are constantly absorbing and processing information on their own. Homeschooling continues this pattern, but traditional schools often can't. Learning is fun for kids who do not have to stress about tests and homework assignments.
Tailored Programs: Homeschooling allows for very specific programming to meet each child's needs. If your 15 year old wants to take a class or two for college credit they can and if your child really struggles in math there is no need to pressure them to learn any faster than they are ready for.
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Advantages for Parents and Families
Flexible Schedules: When you are homeschooling your children you make the schedule. This means that simple everyday tasks, as well as more occasional tasks like dentist visits, are easier to schedule.
Flexible Lifestyle: Whether you are a parent who travels a lot for work or a parent who is running a business out of the house, homeschooling helps to relieve some of the pressure of scheduling. Homeschooling also means that family trips and vacations are no longer confined to summer and other school breaks.
Quality Time: The nature of homeschooling means that as a parent you are enmeshed in your child's life. Not because you are asking them hundreds of questions after spending the day apart, but because you are there with them learning and growing together. Especially for younger children this quality time with mom or dad can be invaluable.
Parents Make the Choices: When it comes down to introducing certain topics or choosing books to use, homeschool parents are in charge. There are many different materials to use and times to introduce different subjects. Homeschool families can do exactly what works for them.
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Homeschooling is a very personal choice, but by keeping in mind these homeschooling advantages you can be happy about your decision to go a different way for you and your family.