Making Your Child a Part of the Homeschooling Process
There are a myriad of different reasons why people choose to homeschool their children: there is the economic
benefit of avoiding high private school fees; there is the convenience of scheduling schooling around other family
activities etc. . . . One of the most important benefits of homeschooling is the flexibility with which you
can tailor your child's education. It is a well known fact that every individual has individual
needs, and homeschooling allows you to create a learning environment that suits your child particularly.
When you undergo homeschooling, it is important that you have a clear curriculum and mind and a plan to execute
it. But within that plan, you should understand that you have a tremendous amount of flexibility: there are many
different ways that a child can learn something, and many different things to learn in a given subject.
One of the best ways that you can ensure a high level of learning retention is to encourage your child to take a
personal interest in his or her education. Although this may seem obvious, many people growing up who went though a
traditional school system will probably agree that their education was received in an authoritative way: schooling
and your education was something that was done to you, not with you.
When homeschooling, however, you can take advantage of the almost unlimited flexibility at your disposal and let
your child take a more active role. While you can't, obviously, let your child do whatever he or she wants
education-wise, you should always explain to him or her a given education plan, and see what he thinks.
For example, when you start your school day, outline the plan for the day with your child. Depending on his or
her age you can also explain the reasoning behind the plan. If there are any things the child seems averse to
doing, try and take them seriously. You should not, of course, avoid certain subjects or activities simply because
your child doesn't like them. You should, however, ask your child why he or she doesn't like something in the day's
plan, and to suggest alternatives. In many cases you will be pleasantly surprised by what your child comes up with,
and be able to incorporate it into the day's work.
As much as possible, you should have a list of alternatives in mind for assigned activities. The idea is to try
and think of alternative activities that accomplish the same task. If your child protests against a certain
exercise, then, you can offer them an alternative. This can be extremely effective in getting your children to
learn material that they dislike.
Oftentimes the child simply has to feel that he or she is more in control of the situation to enjoy it. Even
though you are ultimately controlling your child's education, by granting them small allowances and choices, while
still sticking with the larger picture, everybody wins: your child feels he is doing what he wants to do, and you
are still teaching your child what you want him to learn.