Choosing the right type of school for your children is very difficult. This decision will ultimately determine your child's success in the future. So, how do you choose? Each family and child is unique and has differences that play a role in this decision. In our family's case, homeschool was the best option when weighing all the factors. However, you may decide something entirely different. Here are some tips to help you choose between public school, private school, homeschool, or other options.
Public school is the most popular school choice and has been around for many years. One strength about public school is that most materials are provided free of charge. Another strength could be that most of your child's neighborhood friends will probably be there. If your child adapts well to a crowded environment and is not easily distracted, public school could be the right choice. However, not all public schools are crowded, so it may or may not be an issue. Check with your neighborhood school about student to teacher ratios before assessing that particular issue.
Look into the teaching methods to see if they are well-rounded. If your child has a hard time processing oral information, you'll need to be sure the school you choose teaches in other methods, besides the teacher standing in front of the class speaking. If higher learning is your concern, you may want to check national public school averages. While all schools will vary, this is something to consider.
Private School or Religious school
This choice is usually made by parents searching for better student to teacher ratios and higher learning standards. In many cases, private schooled students do have a better advantage. Although, you must be careful with this choice. Just because a school is private or tuition-based, it does not necessarily mean that the test scores are higher than those of a public school.
You should interview teachers and staff at public and private schools and determine, if based on your child's needs, they are best. Review private schools you are considering and compare them to each other in all areas. Keep in mind that if you want to make sure your child receives knowledge based on religious preferences, this will not happen in public school. They may be allowed to say a prayer, if they wish. However, religious-based instruction is generally found at a school specific for that.
Homeschooling or Private Tutors
Homeschooling is growing immensely. Much of it has to with growing parental dissatisfaction with public schools or the need for alternative methods on an individual basis. Some parents who choose to homeschool are tired of their children's individual needs not being met. This not to say that public schools are inadequate, just that the setup does not always allow for this extra attention.
While the teachers in public school are mostly wonderful, with classes so large, it is virtually impossible to pay individual attention to every child every day. Even the really good teachers can still face problems with this. There are just too many students for this to happen. If your child seems to fall behind due to lack of attention or if your child is way ahead of others his/her age, homeschooling may be the right choice for you.
Homeschooling can be done many different ways. One way is to teach all the core subjects at home and to send your child to public school for electives. Another way may be to hire a tutor for all subjects. There are many different ways to homeschool. There are even "virtual schools" online for homeschoolers. Choose from varied curricula or choose to form your own, based on your child's needs and abilities. Our family uses a combination of various resources. If you are looking for a flexible method, homeschooling is probably a good choice for you.
Making the Decision
Whatever method you choose, be sure it is right for you and your child. Your child only has one chance at school. Sure, a GED can be earned later in life, but wouldn't you rather your child receive a high school diploma? Also, keep in mind that when your child submits college applications, the grades throughout his/her life will be looked at, so be sure that whatever choice you make, it will be an environment in which your child can thrive and succeed well.
It is possible in the early years to try more than one method to see which works right. Just be sure your child makes any transitions gradually. Try using each method one school year at a time, so as to provide your child with security and stability.
*This article was written by a homeschool mother based on her personal experiences and is meant for informational purposes only. Be sure to do your own research as well.
When a parent chooses to homeschool, that decision is generally one of great importance to them. Unfortunately, not everyone will always agree on this issue, leaving most parents who homeschool vulnerable to questions, as well as disapproval by some. I’ve received several “Ask Lyn” inquiries about this dilemma, as well experienced it firsthand. This is simply something will occur with many major decision-making situations. Here are some ways to deal with the negative reactions you might face from others when informing them that you are a homeschooling family.
Stay Calm and Positive
The most important thing you can do when someone reacts negatively to your schooling choice is to remain calm. Staying cool and collected will not only represent homeschools in a positive light, but will leave your mind (as well as the other person's) more able to communicate effectively. Explanations will come out better and be better understood from a person who is calm and has a positive outlook.
Listen To Concerns
Even when someone has a differing opinion, it is still important to listen to their concerns. Consider why they might have certain thoughts about homeschool. Figure out a way to ease or resolve those concerns with helpful information on the concerned response. Don't be afraid to state your case, but at the same time, be understanding. Just because someone does not agree with you, it does not mean their concerns are not valid. It also does not mean they have anything against you as a person.
People make the decision to homeschool for a wide variety of reasons. It is common to research the reason you choose to homeschool. However, it will be to your benefit to also keep up with current information on the main topics that come up about homeschooling, such as socialization, test scores, a parent's ability to teach, and curriculum questions, to name a few. When you are armed with information, rather than just arguing or stating your opinion, it can be much easier to help people better understand your choice to school your children at home. Reading articles on homeschooling, studying current events and homeschool laws, and even keeping up with the most recent research studies on homeschool, can help you stay informed.
Let Your Choice Speak For Itself
This method works best for dealing with those who will be around you most often, such as friends, family, and co-workers. Generally, these are the ones who will be the most critical of your choice. This is because these are the people who care about you the most. They are not always questioning you to be nosy or to boss you around. Quite often, it is because they are concerned about your children. Instead of being offended, use the options above, but also let your choice speak for itself. Over time, as your children advance in their studies and also thrive in social skills, behavior, and other areas, the reason for your choice will become quite evident. When you are fully committed to your homeschool choice, most often the children will, indeed, thrive. While you may deal with some negative responses and reactions, the fruits of your dedication will show in time.
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
Lyn Lomasi is founder and owner of the Brand Shamans Content Community. Services include ordained soul therapy and healing ministry, business success coaching, business success services, handcrafted healing jewelry, ethereal and anointing oils, altar and spiritual supplies and services, handcrafted healing beauty products, and more!
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