Home Schooling As An Alternative To Formal Schooling
Home schooling is fast gaining popularity among families across the globe for the numerous advantages that it has to offer. It has become one of the best alternatives to formal schooling because of its flexibility, minimal cost, excellent academic framework and safe environment.
Different Learning Behaviors
Studies over the years have shown that a person’s learning behavior differs from that of another. One person may learn better by listening or by seeing something demonstrated to him or her. Another may learn better by reading and writing. Not everyone can benefit from a single structured method of teaching. Public schools and private schools teach based on a single method or form of teaching. They cannot provide custom-made teaching methods to fit the learning behavior of every child. The child is forced to adapt to the particular teaching method being used in the school, regardless of whether or not such a teaching method is the best manner by which to educate the child.
Home schooling gives children the opportunity to maximize their learning potential, by providing them with the best possible teaching method to meet their needs. This makes children learn their lessons easily because they are learning through a method that is more comfortable to them. This, in turn, boosts up a child’s self-confidence, increases his or her sense of security, and improves his or her emotional and mental development.
Unavailability of Formal Schooling
Home schooling is the only alternative in situations where the option of formal schooling is not available. This usually occurs where a child has learning disabilities or requires instruction that is more advanced than what children of the same age require. It also takes place in the case of missionaries, military families, or other families where the parents’ occupation or profession require them to constantly travel from one place to another. There are also situations where the family’s religion does not permit them to enroll their children in regular schools or require them to teach subjects which are not offered in regular schools. In these situations, home schooling provides educational stability to a child. It is flexible enough to meet the special needs that children and their parents may have.
Formal Schooling’s Disadvantages
Studies show that through the years, the increasingly earlier enrollment of students in schools have led to juvenile delinquency, increased enrollment of students in special education classes, behavioral problems, and even nearsightedness. These studies confirmed that young children may suffer mentally, socially, psychologically and academically if they are exposed to school at an early age.
Contrary to what most people believe, home schooling does not obstruct the development of a child’s socialization skills. In fact, it does the complete opposite. When children are educated at home, they are exposed to people of different ages and maybe even different backgrounds. They learn to interact with these people and develop their social skills. On the other hand, children’s socialization skills may not be as developed in school. In school, they are exposed to children within their own age group other than their teachers. The environment is controlled and artificial.
The option to resort to home schooling children has been available to parents for years. However, it was not as popular as formal schooling. Today, millions of families all over the world resort to home schooling to educate their children. The rise in its popularity may be attributed to better awareness of children’s educational needs.