What You Should Know Before You Start Homeschooling

by Peter Brimham
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TIP! Don’t limit yourself only to studying textbooks with your kids! Children should be reading all types of materials, including newspapers and periodicals. Encouraging them to read an array of different material can really help them to become more well-rounded.

While homeschooling is not by any means easy and can be downright frustrating at times, it will also bring about amazing moments and memories for both you and your children. Homeschooling is not a decision to be taken lightly, so be sure to learn all of the laws, time requirements, costs and benefits before making that decision. The following article will offer you some solid advice for homeschooling.

TIP! Go on field trips with other families who are homeschooling their children. This will be a lot of fun for you and the other parents, as well as your children who need the much needed socialization with kids their age.

Plan field trips and activities with other homeschooling families near you. Your children will have a marvelous time socializing with other homeschoolers. It’s also a great way to cut back on expenses since group rates are always much cheaper.

TIP! Perhaps you want to avoid bad friendships, but you can’t avoid all socializing. Schedule play dates with family members, neighbors or friends.

When your kids do not attend school with other children, it’s important to ensure that they still receive some social interaction. Organize play dates with families and friends who have children. The park is a great place for kids to get exercise and meet other kids. Go out of your way to get your children involved in ballet, sports, 4H, or other clubs where they will be able to interact with others.

TIP! Think carefully about where to hold your homeschooling lessons in your home. It must be a comfortable place for the children without distractions.

It is important that you familiarize yourself with local homeschooling laws. Homeschooling rules change in different states, so you need to know what you are required to abide by. There are some states that require prior evaluation of the parent’s abilities. Some states even require you to register your house as a private institution.

TIP! Find out more about homeschooling laws in your state. States have vastly differing legislation regarding homeschooling, and you need to make sure that you are following your state’s regulations.

Learn the homeschooling laws that apply to you. You can visit the HSLDA’s website to find out about your state’s laws. Being a member of a local organization can be helpful if you run into trouble with a Board of Education or CPS. You have to pay dues, but the help you get will be well worth it.

TIP! If you’ve got a mix of older kids and preschoolers, make sure you create time for one on one education. Keep an area filled with toys and crafts for them.

Be sure your child is able to have a distraction-free, quiet environment for study and learning. Pick a space that is away from where they play. Try your best to keep school supplies separate from your child’s own personal play supplies.

Academic Studies

TIP! Use your kids to complete chores or bring in someone paid to assist you. This will take off some of the pressure while homeschooling.

While your child’s academic studies are extremely important, don’t forget life skills! It is important to include both academic studies and life skills as part of your lesson plan. Life skills include things like cooking, driving and gardening. By incorporating both, you can give your child both sets of skills simultaneously. Use gardening as a lesson in the life cycle of a plant, fertilization, chemistry, and photosynthesis.

TIP! Set up a budget for your homeschooling expenses. This requires that you plan out what resources you’ll need ahead of time for field trips, supplies and more, so you can plan ahead for the budget.

Use the unit study technique to assist your children in learning as much as possible. Unit studies allow you to take up one topic to study with your child. This method allows you to immerse your child in the subject at hand and to give it time to sink in and be processed. An example would be six week sessions of learning about a particular topic. When done, take them to an actual performance so they can experience the music live. Your child will remember the special event as well as the lessons that preceded it if you make an impression on him or her this way.

TIP! Make a list of positives and negatives about homeschooling and one for public school. Use this list to create a lesson plan that ensures your kids get everything from homeschooling you felt they missed at the public school.

Meal planning is a huge part of organizing your homeschool. You can cook in bulk and freeze your meals for future use, or plan one meal ahead for use the same day. Cooking meals in advance is a good way to eliminate stress when things get busy. Write down a plan for a week’s worth of meals and set aside one day to prepare the food in advance.

TIP! Give your children a break so they can burn off some energy and include some exercise in their day. This also prevents your kid from getting too bored and restless throughout the day.

Lecture classes are for traditional classrooms, not homeschooling. This method is efficient with children old enough to take notes. There is also the fact that your children most likely tune you out during a lecture, as you have likely seen for yourself in the past. Instead, read along with your child, and put yourself in his or her shoes. The good thing is that you can learn a lot in the process.

TIP! Go for a walk in the woods. You can use them for many different purposes.

Trying to maintain a parent/child/teacher/student relationship can be quite stressful and challenging at times. Dedicate your time in the classroom to learning and leave all other issues at the door. Take a break if things get too tense in your classroom. You will find this helpful for your whole family.

TIP! A home school is only as good as its teacher, so make sure you have the proper qualifications to homeschool your children. Reflect on your relationship with your children to determine if there are any issues that need to be addressed before you start homeschooling.

The great benefits of homeschooling override the controversy which surrounds it. If homeshooling is to work well, parents must fully understand the curriculum and have excellent teaching skills. The information you learned here is a great starting point for any family considering homeschooling.

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