After considering factors such as time, passion, temperament, and resources, you’ve decided to homeschool your child. What’s next? Well, you might already be aware that the transition can be difficult and overwhelming. No surprise, as the home learning environment’s order and structure is far different from a classroom setup, rendering it challenging, especially for your kids. Not to worry, though! Just take a breath and review tips as it tackles everything you need to know to prepare your child for studying at home and keep his or her learning on track.
Create a dedicated learning space
Does your child have a designated studying area to study and do their homework? If none, then you need to set up one to avoid confusion. Living and learning inside the same structure may result in disorientation as it can be challenging for children to differentiate study time. However, having a learning hub complete with the necessary supplies and books gets them in their learning zone, allowing them to focus and study efficiently.
Make a daily schedule and adhere to it
Indeed, the freedom and flexibility homeschooling provides to your kids’ education is awesome. Yet, children thrive with habits, and without any clear structure, they can quickly get distracted, affecting their motivation.
With that, you need to make a daily structure, stick to it and make it a routine. Once set, make the schedule work using flowcharts, color codes, or diagrams to teach your kids about their schedule. Allot time for breaks, and screen or playing time so they can have something to look forward to within the day.
One major battle for parents and kids doing homeschooling is distractions. Homes have lots of them from TV, toys, pets, video games, computer games, and social media, quickly getting kids preoccupied. So, look for ways to limit distraction during your child’s learning time. First, observe what diverts his or her attention. If social media and online games get the best out of your child when doing schoolwork, try blocking the sites on the device. If the cat or dog is sneaking into the studying area for some snuggles, try asking a family member to bring them out for a walk or put them in a different room to allow your kid to focus on the work.
Set goals together
A significant advantage of homeschooling is that it provides parents and kids the chance to customize learning. To do that, you first need to know your goals and where you want your kid to go in terms of education. Then, ask for their fair share of input, and work on aligning your curriculum to your desired learning outcomes. Work together to set objectives by year, semester, and months – things will be when you have a clear vision.
Eliminate learning barriers
If you know your child has learning barriers, address them beforehand. Review all the learning material and content you receive from the institution, and see if it will fit your child’s learning style. If it won’t, try to ask what other alternatives the school offers so your kid can cope up. Is your kid struggling with written content? You may ask the teacher to send videos instead. Also, remember that not all kids may appear struggling, though they actually are. Get constant feedback with your child to identify these learning barriers and work together on solving them.
Prepare to take education beyond the traditional way
Homeschooling doesn’t mean parents and children need to follow the same classroom. Truth to be told, one of its significant bonuses is the flexibility it offers to learn beyond the traditional way. Remember that not all things can be learned in textbooks. Be prepared to teach your child skills, such as doing the laundry, baking, cooking, and even simple budgeting. If possible, you can also visit local businesses, markets, museums, zoos, and parks. Incorporate these into the schedule and curriculum and see how it will change your child’s mindset about homeschooling for the better.
Talk with other homeschoolers
Simply because you’re now in charge of most of your child’s learning means you need to do it alone. In fact, the more help you get, the more things can be easier. Talk with other homeschoolers around your area or join forums or groups online. Through that, you can ask about their experiences and the strategies they took to make homeschooling for their child work. Who knows? You find individuals you can share resources with, which can help your child a big way. There are many homeschool communities across the world, and it’s only a matter of reaching out to them for your kid’s education.
Accept pitfalls, adjust and provide feedback
Things won’t work as smoothly as they could on the get-go. Instead of being discouraged, accept that pitfalls are part of the homeschooling process. What matters most is that you work on these drawbacks and find new approaches to learning. Once there’s an improvement, provide immediate positive feedback from a simple sticker or a star or checkmark. Celebrating wins will fuel kids and help them learn and grow.
Homeschooling can be intimidating at the beginning. However, with the following steps, added with innovative thinking and effort, you can surely make it work and foster a great learning environment for your kid under the roof of your home.