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Why Homeschool? - Homeschool Advice

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Dear Helping Hand,

I'm a student and I want to learn more about home schooling. Is home schooling mostly about parents not liking for their kids to grow up with different customs ( religion) than theirs? I don't understand. I want to take home schooling because I feel that I would learn more at home, I could concentrate more without any interruptions. I know I can do the work, I just need to concentrate, but when I'm at school it's like a zoo. Am I thinking about taking home schooling for the wrong reason? In home schooling can you have tutors that come to your home, or are parents supposed to teach the material? Where could I get more information?

Answer:

Parents choose the homeschooling option for a variety of reasons, one of which you’ve pointed out: the ability to efficiently accomplish educational goals without unnecessary interruptions or distractions. That’s an excellent reason to begin! Here are some other Beginner’s Basics you’ll want to add to your list:

Find some homeschoolers in your area and begin talking to them. Ask lots of questions!
Find out about the legal requirements for your particular area.
Begin sketching out some basic goals and objectives for yourself. Simple is fine at first: Do I want to go to college? Do I want to begin vocational training? Is there an area I’ve been dying to delve into? All these are questions that will help you get started.

What materials you actually use is a matter of personal preference, to be decided between you and your parents. If it helps put your (and their!) mind at ease, be assured that the older most homeschooled children get, the less actual teaching is done by their parents. In my experience, as homeschooled children grow up, you see them taking a greater interest in the content and the organization of their course of study. Here are some of the many options available:

Student works through material via correspondence course. Parent supervises but actual work is sent off to be graded by teacher. Look into Keystone National High School, School House Station, 420 West 5th Street, Bloomsburg, PA 17815, (800) 255-4937 or www.keystonehighschool.com.
Student takes classes via the internet. Check out Schola Tutorials, or PA Homeschoolers websites: www.schola-tutorials.com, www.pahomeschoolers.com
Student uses videotaped presentations to work through materials. See Chalk Dust Video for examples of higher level math classes. www.chalkdust.com or (800) 588-7564, weekdays 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central Time.
Student gets together with other homeschooled students for more "traditional" classroom experiences, usually with a teacher hired by the homeschooling parents. This arrangement has worked very well in our family and is a far cry from typical jr. high or high school classes. Instead we see teachers who enjoy teaching well-behaved, motivated students and parents who are thrilled not to have to grade English essays.
One of my favorite resources for finding out about many of your options is Debra Bell’s The Ultimate Guide to Homeschooling, (Tommy Nelson, 1997). This is one of the most comprehensive, reader-friendly, "all-in-one" guides I’ve seen in years. I think you’ll find most of your questions answered there.

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