There are many reasons why you might consider homeschooling your children. Some children have difficulty learning in a school environment or they have a long term health condition. In other cases, parents feel that they can give their children a safer environment to learn in or they’re dissatisfied with the education available in schools. But for a lot of parents, homeschooling would be a last resort — you might work full time, or you might not feel like you are qualified to teach your children.
In the last few years, there’s been a steady increase in the number of kids being homeschooled, and recent coronavirus lockdowns have forced many parents to take charge of teaching their children at home.
There are now loads more teaching resources, ideas, and support available for parents making homeschooling more accessible than ever before.
Online resources for homeschooling kids
With pretty much anything and everything available online these days, there are endless resources that can help with homeschooling. If you don’t know where to start then you can take out some of the stress and sign up for online curriculums that cover all the key subjects such as math, language, and sciences.
These online curriculums will provide all the information, reading materials, and resources that you’ll need. There are also online schools that provide complete lessons that can be taken at your kid’s own pace.
For parents that want to put together their own learning plans, there are lots of online tools and blogs to help with kids learning. From more general sites such as Starfall that includes interactive activities to help teach reading, writing, and mathematics activities, to specialized sites that focus on learning different languages, or kid-friendly, educational science experiments you can do at home.
Resources such as Project Gutenberg, which is an online library with thousands of classic books available for free, are also making homeschooling more accessible.
Homeschooling can be adapted to your kids
All children are going to have some favorite subjects that they love to learn about and others that they want to avoid altogether. But homeschooling doesn’t have to be about following a strict schedule and teaching in a particular format anymore. There are many different ways to teach your kids that can be adapted to engage them in all the subjects you need to cover.
Work together with your kids and find a way to get them excited about the subjects that they don’t like. They don’t have to be reading and writing all day, use videos, activities, and more practical lessons to keep them switched on and learning.
For example, make math more engaging for younger children by getting them to count out ingredients to cook their favorite treats with. This also gives you an opportunity to teach them about healthy eating.
Learning through play
One of the big struggles for parents homeschooling their kids is finding ways to keep them occupied and learning all day. It can be difficult as a parent to find the time to do your own work or other household chores. But incorporating some playtime into your homeschool day gives you a break and can actually be educational for kids.
There is a lot of evidence to support the fact that play is important to kids learning. And it doesn’t just teach them key educational lessons, but it can help them to develop other key life skills such as problem-solving, teamwork, creativity, and self-confidence.
Incorporate regular play breaks into your homeschooling timetable and set kids up with tasks or activities that are fun but also teach them valuable lessons.
Make-and-play activities are a great way to fill these breaks and can be used to teach them about key topics. A kids subscription box like a Sago Mini Box is filled with engaging activities that can help them learn about outer space, fairy tales, and different animals. With a new activity each month, it keeps the kids’ learning fresh and exciting, but doesn’t require lots of planning and preparation from you.
Play can relieve some of the pressure from homeschooling while still making sure your kids are learning important lessons.
Homeschooling doesn’t just have to involve sitting down with a textbook and taking your kids through it page by page. It’s really easy for parents to teach their kids lots of important lessons outside, plus it’s a good chance for them to burn off some energy.
Get them exploring outside, learning about nature as part of a biology lesson. Or you could do some physical education lessons with them — follow a Joe Wicks video together. Spending time outdoors breaks up the day and also helps kids to concentrate when they’re back inside.
With endless online resources and teaching tools to support parents and lots of engaging ways to teach with flexible lesson plans, homeschooling is more accessible than it’s ever been before.