Home schooling
 

Popular Home Schooling Programs

There are many homeschooling programs parents can choose to pattern their methods after. Home schooling may make you think of children sitting at a table and writing feverishly in their workbooks, with Mom or Dad overseeing the process. However, that is only one of the more traditional methods. Your personal belief system, teaching style, and the child's learning style should determine which of the many methods you use in your home. Below are a few of the types and methods of homeschooling. If one of them grabs your attention you can check for more detail on other pages of our site, or research them online.

Classical Homeschooling

The "classical" approach has been utilized by some of the greatest minds in history. The purpose in the classical method is to teach people how to learn for themselves. It uses five tools/stages of learning: reason, record, research, relate, and rhetoric. Younger children begin with the reasoning stage, where they learn basic reading, writing, and arithmetic. The recording stage is next, which emphasizes grammar, compositions and so forth. Then comes the research stage, where serious reading, study, and other types of research take place. All the tools come together in the rhetoric stage, where communication is the primary focus. Popular books on the classical approach include The Well-Trained Mind: A guide to Classical Education at Home by Jessie Wise and Susan Wise Bauer and Recovering the Lost tools of Learning by Douglas Wilson.

DVD, Internet and Video Homeschooling

By accessing virtual tutors, virtual schools, online curriculum, and quality websites you are combining various types of homeschooling programs. You don't ever have to be stuck without the advice or resources needed to homeschool your child when you have access to the internet and other recorded learning. There is a wealth of cutting-edge online curriculum, distance learning schools, homeschool support academies and more. This approach can be used with all different styles of homeschooling. You can use these methods to help your child learn Science, Physics, American History, World History, Religion, Preschool skills, Music, Art or anything you desire to teach.



Waldorf Education Method

Another of the homeschooling programs, Waldorf education, can seem a bit complicated at first. It is based on the spiritual-scientific research of the Austrian scientist and thinker Rudolf Steiner and can be read about in greater detail online or at the library. In a nutshell, according to Waldorfs philosophy, man is a threefold being of spirit, soul and body whose capacities unfold in three developmental stages.

Eclectic (or Relaxed) Home Schooling

Webster's Dictionary says,  eclectic means "Made up of or combining elements from a variety of sources." So this means that an eclectic homeschool family is one that looks at the different approaches and methods of homeschooling and takes from each to form their own unique philosophy. The child's gifts, temperament, learning style and interests dictate the curriculum, often using a mixture of various home schooling techniques. The eclectic approach can also include developing moral character. Eclectic homeschoolers may choose the approach of the relaxed homeschooler, allowing the child to learn at their own pace at first and then to speed up as the child gets older, all the while participating in the computer age, selecting some quality software that is fun and educational.

Charlotte Mason Method

Charlotte Mason, an innovative educator, believed schooling could be a peaceful, rewarding educational experience. She was known as one of the founders of the home schooling movement. A home schooler herself, she was passionate in her zeal to lay out the foundations for an effective a complete home schooling program that is fun and educational at the same time.

This homeschooling program focuses on all the core subjects with emphasis placed on classical literature, poetry, fine arts, classical music and craft. Mason used a variety of books from classical  literature, which she called 'Living Books'. This method encourages a passionate awareness of literature, which she believed should begin at the age of six. Mason also advocated the use of 'Nature Diaries'. After each short and interesting lesson, the child is asked to go to Nature and draw observations from Nature. Thus the child also  gains a sense of respect for her environment. Mason believed that development of good character and behavior was essential to the complete development of the child's personality.

Unit Studies Homeschooling

Unit studies takes a child’s interest and ties that interest into all subject areas (math, reading, spelling, science, history, etc). For example, if you have a child who is interested in ancient Israel, you would learn the history of Israel, read books about Israel, write stories about Israel, do art projects about the temple in Jerusalem, and learn about their artifacts, etc.

Unit studies are already prepared and available on popular topics like patience, trust, and obedience and many more. The advantage of this homeschooling method is that it recognizes the fact that people learn best when they are interested in the topic. If you choose this method be careful not to make a unit study out of everything and thus scare your child off from new interests they might have.

The Montessori Method


Unschooling

A Boston public educator name John Holt laid the beginnings of the unschooling method. He believed that children learned best when they are free to learn at their own pace and when they are guided by their own interests. His message was to 'unschool' the child. This method is a hands-on approach to learning, where the parent takes definite cues from the children.  (See our page on the Unschooling Method.)

These are some of the homeschooling programs available. Whatever method you choose, one of the most important issues is flexibility and a keen interest in the needs and desires of the child. Our goal as parents should be to use the child's desire for knowledge to further his education and love of learning.

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