What’s the best way to homeschool? The way that works best for your family, of course! Homeschoolers have many options when it comes to adopting a homeschooling method, model or style.
Which one will you choose?
Typically, though not always, here is what happens. Parents begin by using traditional school-like curriculum products for their homeschooled children. Then, as a little time passes, they sometimes mix and shake things up a little bit.
There is a reason for this pattern, and it makes perfect sense when you sit back and think about it. Most of you were raised in a fairly traditional family, attending fairly traditional schools. For obvious reasons, that is just what everyone did. So, based on your experience, it’s only natural that your perception of school is based on what you already know. That includes classrooms, daily lessons, textbooks, homework assignments, writing papers and taking exams. Therefore, when starting a home education program, it’s understandable when you try to duplicate as closely as possible what you think school should be like at home. Most often, this duplication involves using a curriculum-based school model.
Often, curriculum products work well for years and years, maybe even your entire family’s homeschooling experience. But, sometimes they don’t. It all depends on the family. In some families, as parents become more comfortable with the homeschooling process, they begin to experiment a little bit more. Over time, after becoming more familiar with the market and watching how other families do things, homeschooling moms and dads think about trying new things. Confident that they probably won’t ruin their children any more, and knowing that curriculum products will always exists as a back-up plan anyway, homeschooling parents are willing to give something else a try. This may not always be a dramatic shift (though it could), but could be something as small as adding in some unit studies now and then. Or looking into the concept of teaching multiple children at once, rather than each working individually. Or maybe allowing a child to choose which topics he studies in science, instead of choosing for him.
It’s common to base the foundation of your home education program on standard curriculum type products. These are extremely popular for a reason and can work very well throughout an entire child’s education. There are even ways to use curriculum and customize it, so that it doesn’t always look so school-like. If this is where you choose to begin, you join millions of families who are doing the very same thing. If you decide to change things up a few months or years, later, that’s fine too.
The best homeschooling method is the one that, ultimately, works best for your family.