Home-based learning is often associated with home-schooling where a conscious decision is made to formally educate a child at home rather than enrol them in a public or private school. However, there are many examples of great home-based learning taking place whether we formally set out to do so or not.
One of the most important things learnt in the home is a sense of self-worth. When a child is loved by their parents or guardians, cared for, provided for, played with and appropriate disciplinary boundaries are set the child is in a great nurturing environment to learn important lessons in self-worth. Some great examples of learning self-worth occur every day in ordinary homes where children are cared for in the various ways that they need. The lessons of appropriate care and nurture learnt in the home will inform their self-worth for many years to come.
Learning social rules
It is in the home that the important social rules of society are learnt. When children experience a home that upholds the laws of society they will better understand the importance of those same laws in society – from respecting other people’s property and not taking it, to telling the truth and not lying about events. Sadly in homes where the laws of society are not upheld the children will just as quickly learn to dis-respect authority and the social rules that govern society.
The home is a great place to learn language. Those bilingual children who speak more than one language will have generally learnt in the home from a relative or friend who regularly cares for them and makes the effort to use the alternative language. With young children no formal teaching is required, just using the language regularly (see the many resources on raising bilingual children, such as Multilingual education, for some tips on how to achieve this even if you do not speak a second language yourself). Children who are regularly exposed to a second language and have a chance to practice it in the home have a great environment to acquire some seriously useful language skills for later life.
It is in the home that musical ability is cultivated and stimulated. Children who receive formal music lessons know that the few minutes spent with a teacher is just the start; the bulk of learning happens during their own practice at home. Parents do not need to know music themselves but can provide an environment where learning music is possible. The suzuki method of musical education encourages parents and young children to learn together. Relationship is important “where love is deep much will be accomplished” rings true for so many parents and children who have sat together for many pleasurable hours making music.
There are so many great examples of home based learning from music and language, to vital social skills and the sense of self-worth carried for life. Much learning takes place simply because a child is being loved. This relationship is the key to all great examples of home based learning.