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Homeschooling - Is It a Good or Bad Thing?

Aug 10, 2008
Up to 150,000 families in the UK have chosen to educate their children at home, a figure that has almost tripled since 1999. So why is homeschooling becoming so popular?

There are a number of reasons parents are deciding on educating their children at home.

Many parents are disillusion with state schools, some parents are concerned that our free education system is badly performing and their children and not challenged. When children are bored in lessons they will often start to misbehave and become disruptive.

If children are misbehaving in class this will not only affect their learning but also their class members too. If a teacher cannot control their class then time is often wasted and learning tasks not completed.

Kids with learning or behavioral problems can often disrupt classes simply because they don't know how to learn in the same ways as most kids and can't sit through a lesson. They are not only stopping their class from learning but they are not learning themselves, and often taking them out of a normal school atmosphere is beneficial for them and their classmates.

Unfortunately, bullying happens everywhere, both boys and girls falling victim to harassment. Although this is something that schools are very aware of and often do their best to rectify it can sometimes get to the point when a child just simply will not go to school for fear of his or her life. Homeschooling gives the child the chance to still get their education, but in an environment where they feel safe and comfortable to learn.

Other reasons for homeschooling include children living in remote locations, sick children and children cannot get to school for various reasons.

According to the first study into the benefits of home learning, primary-aged children who are taught at home actually learn more than those in schools.

Many people have concerns that children who are taught at home miss out on the social aspects of school, and will be less confident and more shy around other kids their age. However the study showed that children taught at home were actually found to be more confident than those taught at school. When children are taught at home, there is more emphasis put on learning life skills - such as communication, interpersonal skills, as well as self-esteem and responsibility - than in schools.

The study also showed that children do not need to socialise all the time to become well-adjusted adults. Home schooled children have good relationships with other children of all ages because they mix with them quite frequently and also they have good relationships with adults and are able to communicate with them well.

Just because a child is home schooled does not mean that they avoid interaction with other children, many parents who home school their children often find that getting together with other home schoolers can be greatly helpful for both parent and child. It is good for children to know that they are not alone in this way of education.

Is has often been said that the greatest example to your children will be the way you live your life. Involve your children is your everyday tasks, teach your children to ask questions. Encourage your children to read from an early age, begin reading to young children long before they can sit still, make it daily habit, a routine part of the day.

One of the negative aspects of homeschooling is that it is pretty hard work. When your child is at school it can give you time to yourself, to complete jobs, to have a job of your own. If a child is home schooled then you have them with you 7 days a week and this can often be quite draining. It can also be expensive, as you have to pay for educational materials and extracurricular activities. Also, one parent often has to give up their job to home school so families can often be faced with a loss of income. Children can find it hard to adapt to 'normal' school after being home schooled; many parents home school their kids through primary school and then they join a secondary school at 11.

Going to school teaches children routine and prepares them for going to work later in life. It is often said that not only do children find it difficult to adapt to going to school once they have been home schooled but they find it difficult to adapt to university and work.
Most children are extremely happy going to school 5 days a week, socialising with other children, working with their parents when they need help with their homework, talking to their family about their day at school over dinner and it is perhaps healthier for a child to mix with his piers rather than spending all the time with their parents. There is no 'right' or 'wrong' way to educate a child, all children are different and all children learn in their own way. It is up to the parent to work out what is best for them and how to help their child learn.

Worksheets are used frequently by schools and parents alike. A worksheet is a piece of paper, designed to help organize material for learning or clear understanding used by teachers to review what has been taught in class or used by parents to help their children learn. Worksheets are meant to provide extra skills practice using problems to solve, 'fill in the blanks', crosswords and puzzles to make learning more fun. They are organised by key stage and subject so it is easy to find something that will be at the right level for your child.

Many websites offer a wide range of downloadable worksheets to meet your child's needs. EdPlace is one of these sites but offers something slightly different. Each worksheet can be refreshed upon completion to include new problems, a feature unique to EdPlace. And, members enjoy free feedback to all their questions from a trained teacher.
About the Author
John McE writes for Edplace offering a comprehensive online source of colourful automated worksheets in Maths, English and Science. http://www.edplace.co.uk/
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