Considering homeschooling? Already decided to homeschool and have questions? Get answers to the top homeschooling questions!
- When and how should I begin?
- What do I need to teach?
- What are the best programs to use?
I’d like to help answer these questions for you buut before I do, let me give you a little more insight into my background…
My name is Lynda Ackert and 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.
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 strive to 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.
Now that you know a little about me, let me begin answering the first ‘top homeschooling question…
When and how should I begin?
First, let me say that you as a parent, began the day you began talking to your child. Every interaction is a learning experience for a child. Every time you play with them, read to them and simply share life with them, you are teaching. As a parent, you are your child’s primary teacher and you always will be.
The question you are really asking yourself is, “When should I begin formal education?” Some will tell you age 5-6. However, that isn’t my answer.
WHEN TO BEGIN:
If you are an engaged parent, which I believe YOU ARE since you are even asking the question, you are the best person to make the determination when to begin formal education. That may be as young as 3 or 4 if your child is demonstrating a desire. Your state law will set an age when you must begin, but that doesn’t mean you cannot begin earlier if your child is ready. If your child isn’t ready, that’s ok. Simply begin when the law says you must.
Again, remember that every child, your child, is unique. Unique from their peers and unique from siblings (if they have them). Do your best never to compare. It isn’t easy but don’t go down the comparison road. Love and honor your child for where he or she is at any given moment.
HOW TO BEGIN:
Taking into account that you’ve already begun from the first day you interacted with your child, let me address HOW to begin formally and legally.
The first thing that should always do is check the homeschooling laws where you live. If you live in the U.S., the best place to get this information HSLDA.org/legal. Homeschooling laws vary widely so always stay informed of what your requirements are wherever you live.
Once you understand the law, then you can begin to move forward with the next question, “What do I need to teach?”
Go to part 2 now to read!
TAKE AWAYS TO REMEMBER:
- Every child is a unique learner, never play the comparison game.
- An engaged parent is a child’s best teacher and knows their child better than anyone else.
- Before and during homeschooling, always know and follow the laws where you live.