Whether you are considering homeschooling for the first time or have been homeschooling for a while, you’ve most likely asked yourself the following questions…
- When and how should I begin?
- What do I need to teach?
- What are the best programs to use?
In part 1 of this series, I answered question #1, “When and how should I begin?”.
In part 2 of the series, I’m will answer question #2, “What do I need to teach?”
Before I begin, here is a recap of my qualifications:
As an educator with over 30+ years of experience, I’d like to help you answer these questions! But before I do, let me give you a little more insight into my background…
As I previously stated, I have 30+ years of experience in education. I hold two Bachelor of Science degrees, one in education and the other in psychology and have completed multiple postgraduate courses. I’ve worked in the public school system in the U.S. and Japan before becoming a full-time homeschooling parent. I also served as a founding member and coach for the 10 Greatest Gifts Project and am owner of and content creator for My Teaching Library.
…and my beliefs on education:
My educational journey and teaching experiences have only solidified my belief that every child is a masterpiece. All are unique. Trying to teach all children all the same isn’t the answer. We should nurture every child as a unique learner. I also believe, both as an educator and a parent, that no one knows a child better than an engaged parent.
So, now that you know who I am and my beliefs, I’ll answer the question…
What do I need to teach?
My answer: Teach the skills and concepts needed to be successful in each major subject, (Language Arts, Math, Science and Social Studies). Beyond that, you should also teach whatever else is required by the law where you live, (see part 1 for a link to check U.S. State laws) such as foreign language, P.E., etc. States will often differ in what is required for classes outside of the four major subjects.
A child’s educational journey is 13 years long (Kindergarten – 12th grade) and throughout that journey, many skills and concepts will be introduced, reinforced and built upon over several grades. To help guide educators, these skills and concepts are typically given by grade-level. However, always remember that every child is different.
Some children may not be ready to learn and master certain skills or grasp certain concepts during the given ‘grade’ where the skill is listed.
Some children may be ahead by a grade (or more) in one area and yet not in another. So, as you homeschool your child, always remember that these given skills and concepts are only meant to help guide but should never be used to compare. Meet your child where they are and go forward!
Haven’t ‘standards’ (skills and concepts) changed through the years?
Yes! Over the 30+ years I’ve been in education, those in charge of public education have changed (and will continue to change) grade-level skills and concepts and the ‘way’ things may be taught.
I began teaching long before ‘common core’ was developed and implemented. Not long after its adoption, many educators began screaming to do away with it. Today, after the lock downs of the pandemic and school children having lost a couple years of real, person to person instruction, many in education are now wanting to lower standards!
As a homeschooling parent, I urge you not to get caught up in the ever changing, landscape of skills and concepts (as defined by legislatures) but instead, find and use a solid, tried and true list of the most important skills and concepts that should be taught
Where to you find the skills and concepts that should be taught?
My Teaching Library offers everyone FREE ACCESS to an online, solid, tried and true list of grade-level skills and concepts for K through 12th grades for each core subject.
These lists can be found on the home page of My Teaching Library!
Now that you know how to access the ever important skills and concepts that should be taught for the four core subjects, I will address the last question in this series, “What are the best programs to use?” in part 3.
Read Part 3 now!
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TAKE AWAYS TO REMEMBER:
- Teach your child specific skills and concepts for a successful learning journey.
- Don’t get caught up in the ever changing landscape of public education’s recommended lists
- My Teaching Library offers an online, solid list of important skills and concepts to guide you through (K-12th grade)
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