Homeschooling has been around for 25 years. It is has been exceptionally gaining popularity in the past few years as more students are choosing to become homeschooled. It is indeed extraordinary to be able to learn what is being taught in a classroom without having to step a foot inside. Homeschooling can be considered a type of self-study program that is done independently at the pace that suits the student; also, the student has the complete authority to choose the subjects they are interested in and pursue them. This idea of students getting an education from home rather than physically attending a school has been controversial for so long. Is homeschooling, in effect, truly better than regular schooling?
No matter how powerful a system is, it will always have some drawbacks that can negatively influence it. Regular schooling, as well as homeschooling both, have their benefits and disadvantages. In the case of home-schooling, students have a flexible schedule, this enables them to also focus on other things like practicing a sport or developing a talent. Regular schools, however, have a strict schedule, and most of the time, students do not have enough time to truly devote themselves to a certain hobby. Public schooling is offered for free in some countries and is supported by the government in many other countries, furthermore, the education they get is not cheap but rather is really strong which is a big plus point. Most schools provide their students with a variety of extracurricular activities and after school clubs and sports practices. This feature allows students to mingle more together and share things outside of the classroom, something that is not provided by homeschooling. On the other hand, the large classes at schools have a negative impact on the attention span of the students; they also get less assistance due to the ratio of students to teachers in a classroom. At home, students are more focused on and accommodated easier and more efficiently. Not all students are equal, so the system can be unfair to others and does not match the levels of all the students.
Many reasons can be the driving force behind students preferring to be taught at home rather than in a classroom. Do their choices have some long-term consequences? Parents are the ones who have the biggest authority in choosing the method, the system, and the location of their kid’s education. They have the final say in setting the whole future of their child. Religion is proclaimed to be one of the main reasons behind that decision. Some parents prefer to teach their children about their religions and beliefs by themselves to avoid any misleading information they may get from their classmates or teachers at school. They believe homeschooling them will preserve their nature and reduce all the negative influences they may encounter outside. They believe that socialization actually is rather destructive and harmful since it may teach them about things they should not know about at their age. On the other hand, homeschooling is pretty tough; one of the parents must be completely devoted to educating their child, most likely giving up on his/her job. This decreases the total income of the family since the second income from that one parent is no longer available. Moreover, the process of homeschooling requires a lot of effort and planning. One-to-one studying is hugely beneficial for both the student and the mentor. It allows the mentor to know more about the student’s academic level and base the programs according to that. Unlike regular schools, where programs are universal disregarding the different academic levels of the students in the same class. Bullying is of the most dangerous experiences any person can go through, it has an enormously huge impact on a person’s mental and emotional state. It is also the main reason why parents are afraid of sending their precious child into an environment that might turn out to be hurtless hell for them. Many people assume that homeschooled kids become less successful than regular-schooled kids in terms of getting into college, finding a job, and being effective members of society. In fact, “researches suggests homeschooled children tend to do better on standardized tests, stick around longer in college, and do better once they’re enrolled. A 2009 study showed that the proportion of homeschoolers who graduated from college was about 67%, while among public school students it was 59%. Students from Catholic and private schools fell even lower in college graduation rates, with 54% and 51% of kids, respectively, completing all four years.” (Weller, C, 2018) Although they are more successful in terms of academics, they are more socially isolated compared to other kids their age. They do not get exposed to many different unusual situations or step out of their comfort zone. Schools are also confined in a way that disables students to fully engage in their community, home school students have more freedom in this area. “These days, colleges are making the process of admissions for homeschoolers simple and fair. In fact, many colleges are now seeking out homeschoolers themselves, as homeschooled students tend to be excellent college students.” (The Homeschooler’s Guide,2013) This shows that both kinds of students have equal college/university acceptance opportunities.
There are various educational methods that have an impact on how students learn and perceive information. This all ties back to how teaching was applied during the past years. Some teaching methods that I found quite interesting in the homeschooling system were computerized curriculum and video curriculum. As well as the traditional books, textbooks, and self-study books with independent seatwork and tests administered by parents. The various new educational that cope with the modern technological advances, I believe, strike more with the students and enables them to comprehend the information more easily. Using many techniques to teach students is a very powerful method to get them engaged rather than sticking to the same old systems and methods. Due to this, over the past 20 years, homeschooling has been gradually replacing public school education. Renovation is key in any learning process and is an important tool in developing cognitive abilities in children this aspect is a striking plus point for home school students.
Homeschooling is often judged and presumed to be less beneficial and weaker than regular schools; and that homeschooled students lack social skills since they don’t interact with other students. All those claims are often not true. I believe that each system is unique, and they both have a very powerful base and many followers. As I mentioned before, a system will always have flaws no matter how perfect it may seem. Understanding the drawbacks and benefits of each educates us about the strengths and the weaknesses and enables us to make a wise decision when choosing. Assuming things without confirming them leads to many misunderstandings and unspoken pre-judgmental opinions.
- Clements, A. D. (2002). Variety of Teaching Methodologies Used by Homeschoolers: Case Studies of Three Homeschooling Families. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.ezproxy.mohawkcollege.ca/login.aspx?direct=true&AuthType=ip,cpid&custid=mohawk&db=eric&AN=ED468436&site=eds-live&scope=site
- Guterman, O., & Neuman, A. (2017). The Role of Family and Parental Characteristics in the Scope of Social Encounters of Children in Homeschooling. Journal of Child & Family Studies, 26(10), 2782–2789. https://doi-org.ezproxy.mohawkcollege.ca/10.1007/s10826-017-0773-x
- Home-schooling. (2019). Times, The (United Kingdom), 18. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.ezproxy.mohawkcollege.ca/login.aspx?direct=true&AuthType=ip,cpid&custid=mohawk&db=rch&AN=7EH147963811&site=eds-live&scope=site
- Martin, M. (1997). Homeschooling: Parents’ Reactions. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.ezproxy.mohawkcollege.ca/login.aspx?direct=true&AuthType=ip,cpid&custid=mohawk&db=eric&AN=ED415984&site=eds-live&scope=site
- Pros and Cons of Homeschooling. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.classicalconversations.com/pros-and-cons-of-homeschooling/.
- Renata Królikiewicz. (2017). The Experience of Homeschooling and Traditional Education: A High School Graduate Narrative. Studia Paedagogica Ignatiana, (3), 161. https://doi-org.ezproxy.mohawkcollege.ca/10.12775/SPI.2017.3.009
- Romanowski, M. H. (2006). Revisiting the Common Myths about Homeschooling. Clearing House, 79(3), 125–129. https://doi-org.ezproxy.mohawkcollege.ca/10.3200/TCHS.79.3.125-129The Homeschooler’s Guide to Getting Into College. (2013, August 22). Retrieved from https://www.onlinecollege.org/2012/06/11/the-homeschoolers-guide-to-getting-into-college/.
- TripleAMom. (2018, December 5). Pros and Cons of Public Schooling, Private Schooling, and Homeschooling Education. Retrieved from https://wehavekids.com/education/schooltypes.
- Weller, C. (2018, January 21). Homeschooling could be the smartest way to teach kids in the 21st century – here are 5 reasons why. Retrieved from https://www.businessinsider.com/reasons-homeschooling-is-the-smartest-way-to-teach-kids-today-2018-1.