Differences between Homeschooling and Traditional Education

Homeschooling is growing in leaps in bounds all over the world as more parents are recognizing that institutionalized education simply isn’t working for many children.  Sitting in a classroom all day long with same-aged peers does not guarantee a good emotional or intellectual educational experience.  One look at the news reports about children being bullied and tortured by their schoolmates should be enough proof that traditional schools are dangerous places to be.  Not only do traditional schools put your child’s safety at risk, they lack in the ability to provide your child with a customized education that is suited to your child’s individual needs and interests.

Homeschooling is not a one size fits all process.  There are homeschooling methods you can use.  Unschooling is a type of homeschooling education that focuses on learning without a specific learning method, structure or schedule.  Unschooling focuses on following your child’s lead- if your child doesn’t feel like doing math work that day, there’s no pressure to do it.  Children who are unschooled learn what they want when they want to and how they want to learn it.  Parents who unschool look at unschooling as a means of learning without the trappings and restrictive boundaries that traditional schools offer.  Parents who unschool also tend to view the traditional educational system’s way of forcing a child to learn specific things as a condescending approach.  These families believe that children learn instinctively and if left on their own, they will do just fine.  Just as birds learn how to fly because it is an innate part of their genetic makeup, children will learn the same way whether they learn sitting at the kitchen table or on a swing set.  Looking at unschooling does seem to make a lot of sense because in life, we really do learn as we go.  We learn something new every day and each new piece of information counts towards our education, whether we learn in a classroom setting or not.

The unschooling method of homeschooling doesn’t work for all homeschoolers.  Other homeschoolers follow a learning schedule and curriculum similar to methods used in traditional schools, except that homeschoolers learn at home with their parents or with tutors.  Homeschooling parents come from all walks of life and have their own reasons for taking their child’s education in to their own hands.  Some families homeschool because of religious reasons.  Some homeschool because their children have difficulty coping in traditional schools.  Most homeschooling parents have three or more children and at least one of the parents does not work outside of the home.  Some homeschooling families have both parents working.  Because you can set your own school hours in your own home, school need not begin at 8 am and finish at 4 pm.  School can start at 4 pm and finish at 8 pm- the choice is yours and your child’s.  Because of the growing popularity of homeschooling families, there are many homeschooling community groups they can join to give their children opportunities to interact with other homeschooled children.  The community groups organize many field trips, social events, and educational groups for children and parents to meet, learn and bond together at their own leisure. 

There are so many benefits that come as a result of homeschooling that it is difficult to think of many negatives.  Any concerns that parents and children have about homeschooling can immediately be quashed by the positive benefits outlined in this article.  Homeschooling provides a safe place for your child to learn (your home) with people who love and care for your child (you) and opportunities to develop a stronger bond as a family.  If you are considering homeschooling but aren’t sure if you are capable of doing it, there is plenty of support, both locally and globally from millions of homeschooling families that can offer you support and information.   Education is not a one size fits all experience, nor should it ever be.  Traditional schools don’t work and have not worked for a long time.  Before attending institutionalized schools became mandatory, children were taught at home by governesses and tutors.  Homeschooling is not new, but it has made a comeback, with studies proving that homeschooled children are outperforming in tests over children education in institutionalized schools.  Homeschooled children are also being sought after by ivy league universities because they do so well.  Take some time to research homeschooling and consider that it might be the best option for you and your child.