Teaching kids at home can be done in one of two primary ways to ensure that families make the most of this kind of learning experience. There are pros and cons to each of the methods so it is important to do the research before you make a decision to ensure that you have the right setup for your kids.
The technique with the earliest history is the co-op homeschooling method. This can take various forms depending on the individuals involved but the goal is to share responsibility in teaching a group of children with the same curriculum. Parents are always the teachers and divide their time based on their subject specialty and availability which makes this personal and face-to-face interactive.
For some kids this is a great way to learn but it has its limitations in that you are not necessarily working directly with a school and their curriculum. Instead, typically parents are reviewing available options in the market and then putting together their own ‘curriculum’. The other drawback is that a co-op does not extend beyond its geographical region so families have to find a new group if they move or relocate.
Online homeschooling programs work a little differently in that they can be utilized no matter where the student is and remain consistent even with moves, illnesses and other events. Accredited schools (public, private and Christian) may offer an online program that allows the student to perform their work on the computer. Parents can teach full-time at the lower levels or work with professional instructors through the school to help with certain subjects but at the high school level it is all about the student’s interaction with the teacher. The curriculum is standard and mirrors what is being taught in the school so parents can choose a college preparatory institution that will set their child up for the next transition.
The decision to teach kids at home is a personal and important one to make because it affects the student’s educational journey from the very beginning and the steps that come after that. Online homeschooling programs can be more stable and structured while still providing the necessary documents and reports needed by parents while co-ops offer face to face learning that is better received by kids with that learning structure.