Which Homeschooling Method Is Right for You?

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Some of you are choosing to homeschool for the very first time ever, and you don’t know where to even start. Well, first you’ll want to check the homeschool laws for your state to see what is required.

Then you need to decide on what method of homeschooling works best for you and your children. Sometimes parents choose different methods for different kids. That is the cool thing about homeschool, you can choose a plan that works best with how your child learns, because kids are all very different!

To help you understand the different methods that are available, I will go over some of them here for you. Sometimes you need to switch it up, I can not even tell you how many times we changed how we did things with our kids.

Some terms you may hear being thrown around are School-at-Home, Montessori, Unit Studies, Classical, Charlotte Mason, Unschooling, and Eclectic.

You now will have the freedom to choose what works best for your child’s learning style!

Types of Homeschool Methods

School-at-Home is basically just what it sounds like. Traditional school, only you are doing it at home instead. You can purchase an entire curriculum that will cover the entire school year. Also, this is a category where a program like K12 would fall in to. You may like this program if you prefer the structure of a regular school.

Your local school may also be offering online/virtual learning this year so make sure you ask about it.

Montessori is a method that helps prepare students to succeed in general life skills. Learning is usually set up into blocks. It is child-centered learning, which means a lot of what you do will be designed to fit their needs and interests to help them develop as a whole person.

A child is not a stranger, one simply to be observed from the outside. Rather, childhood constitutes the most important element in an adult’s life, for it is in his early years that a man is made… Whatever affects a child affects humanity, for it is in the delicate and secret recesses of his soul that a man’s education is accomplished.

Dr. Maria Montessori, The Secret of Childhood

Unit Studies are FUN! I love doing unit studies with the kids. The idea behind this way of homeschooling is to take something that your child is interested in and use that one subject to incorporate every subject. For example, say your child is really interested in Vikings!

You use Vikings as your base. They can study what they ate and prepare some of the meals. You can read about their history. You can learn about how they built longboats. How they navigated, built weapons, hunted, everything! This lets you pull in world history, math, science, astronomy, health, cooking, survival skills, art, etc.

For Kids That Love Books

Classical is a great method for children that love to read. Classical homeschooling is based on the three stages of learning which are the Grammar stage, the Logic stage, and the Rhetoric stage.

Charlotte Mason is another great homeschool avenue for children that love to read and also love to be outdoors and in nature. The Charlotte Mason uses what we call “living books” instead of textbooks. Textbooks can be super boring for many kids. “Living books” are normally books that are written in a narrative or story form.

I love the Charlotte Mason method. If you want to try out this method, Ambleside Online is a great free resource!

My Two Favorite Methods

Unschooling can be anywhere from child-led with some guidance and rules, to what some call radical unschoolers. We pretty much fall into the unschooled category, but we are not radical unschoolers by any means.

My kids are all very “artsy”. They have so many interests and unschooling is just what works for us. The way we do it is I allow my kids to pursue what they happen to be passionate about at that time.

For instance, when my kids were interested in farming, we got dairy goats and chickens. This covered so many subjects. Health, biology, science, math, history, and so much more.

With unschooling, my kids are free to head in whatever direction their interest leads them. They know so much about so many things and it happens naturally without pressure.

Radical unschooling is a bit different though. Radical unschoolers don’t really have rules, bedtimes, chores, consequences like punishment, etc. We are not that type of unschooling family. But it does work for some people.

Eclectic homeschooling is basically pulling from all types of learning and teaching methods to accomplish your homeschool needs and goals. We also fall in to this category!

When my kids need textbooks for something, then we get them. When my kids are super interested in something, we can do a unit study. They love to read, so that pulls in the Classical and Charlotte Mason methods as well. The only method we don’t use is School-at-Home.

How Your Child Learns

Really paying attention to your children’s learning style will help you decide on which method or methods will help them best. I really do think the majority of homeschool families are Eclectic but they can pick and choose to help their children learn the best way that they can. You got this!

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