The Ways Families Homeschool
Every homeschool is unique. One of the best things about homeschooling is the freedom to choose the method that suits your family best. Every state has different requirements regarding accountability, and the choice you make to meet those requirements might determine the homeschooling method you choose. But even within that framework, there is often room for flexibility.
Things to Consider
- Traditional classroom at home. Some families choose to replicate the school classroom environment at home, often having a designated schoolroom, school desks, and even a chalkboard. Traditional homeschool often uses textbooks and follows a similar academic schedule as the local school.
- Eclectic. Many homeschoolers fall into the eclectic category, using materials from a wide range of styles. Some use a combination of resources, including textbooks, living books, unit studies, online seminars, and the public library, as well as a variety of teaching methods. Eclectic homeschoolers cater curriculum to meet their teaching and learning styles and incorporate what works best for them as they go.
- Unschooing. Unschoolers are diverse and handle homeschool as life schooling. They cater the learning environment to the interests of their children, often with no set curriculum, but rather moving from one unit to another as the need arises. A typical misconception is that unschoolers don’t “do school.” In fact, many unschoolers almost fall into the eclectic category in their approach, and many children thrive in the unschooling environment, learning to work independently and explore topics in depth.
- Online courses. Some homeschooling families enroll in online programs that handle everything from teaching to testing and grading. Different options include full academic grades, à la carte classes, live streaming, recorded sessions, private tutoring, and interactive virtual classrooms.
- Co-op or Dual enrollment. Co-ops are available in most communities, where parents work together to provide classes for their children. These include everything from science and math to the arts and music. In addition, many homeschool high school students have the flexibility to enroll in dual college credit classes during their eleventh and twelfth grade years, earning both high school and early college credits.
Homeschoolers are a diverse group, and the freedom to choose a method based on your family’s strengths is one of the joys of homeschooling.