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For various reasons, more and more families have opted to teach their children at home. Parents are dissatisfied with the quality of education in the public school system and concerned about the safety of their children. Here’s a brief summary based on my own experience with my daughter from kindergarten through third grade.

Social Development: You, as the parent, need to schedule a lot of play dates, plan various field trips, and do as much as possible as a family to ensure that your child will be well-rounded socially.

Qualification: Even when you feel you are lacking in some way or another, your child will benefit fully from that ‘one-on-one’ education.

Options: Each state has different requirements but I will explain a few types of homeschooling that I am familiar with. Regardless of where you live, there are several support groups to help you along.

1) Fill in and submit a form that you are a private school and do all your teaching on your own.
2) Go through a public school that has an independent study course (they will provide all the textbooks, homework, etc. and you bring your child in the school weekly).
3) Use an online course in which your child does all their work on the computer and also communicates with their teacher online.
4) Use a charter school. This is the program that works best for us. Once a month, a credentialed teacher meets to check on her progress and gather samples. We get an allotted amount of funding to spend on various activities and my daughter takes all the state tests.

Further Education: In most cases, homeschool children excel academically. Therefore, the number of colleges and universities that accept them is increasing.

Affect on the Family: Patience will be tried often and expect to have days that you and your child just don’t get along well. That being said, you will build a greater bond than ever before and your family will benefit greatly.

Homeschooling may not be the right fit for every family and every child. But, don’t let that discourage you from trying to provide superior education for your child that you, as a parent, might be able to provide.

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Comment by TerriAnn van Gosliga on May 24, 2010 at 12:48am
If you base your lesson plans on the state standards, they should be fine academically if not more advanced. I suppose that the social adjustment would depend on your child. As far as I know, many parents prefer their child homeschool in high school even if they were in public school previous to that. These days, high school is about peer pressure, dances, experimenting with drugs and sex, and shootings/bombs.

Keep in mind that there are many types of homeschooling. There are programs designed specifically for the higher grades. For examples, when in the elementary grades - you can teach them yourself. As they progress to 9th grade, you can enroll them in an independent study course through the local high school (if available) or in a charter school in which they go to a school to see a teacher once a week to get homework and do tests. You supervise and assist only. I know many who have done this, graduated, and gone onto college.
Comment by TerriAnn van Gosliga on May 23, 2010 at 2:04pm
I'm glad you and your daughter are doing well with homeschooling. There will be MANY times you want to send her back to school but the pros usually outweight the cons. Thanks for reading!
Comment by Liz Garland on May 23, 2010 at 1:48pm
I am a proud homeschooling mom! I never thought id be homeschooling my daughter but when faced with the choice of sending her to a sub par school with violent classmates and a teacher she hates thus making a child who used to love school start to dislike it...we took the plunge! and im so happy we did! She is excelling and I am enjoying being able to teach her things she would not be learning in a public school.

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