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4 Practical Tips to Make Home-Based Education Work for Your Child

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As a family life and child development expert, JP has devoted years in nurturing students and strengthening family relations.

Make home-based education a productive and meaningful experience for your child.

Make home-based education a productive and meaningful experience for your child.

The education of students has evolved from the traditional classroom set-up to home-based education and an assortment of other modalities. Learning at home seems to be a practical mode of learning. Apart from having a comfortable place to study, students can enjoy security in home-based learning systems. However, it is not perfect. Parents need to follow these tips and suggestions so that children can fully enjoy the benefits of home-based education.

Tip 1: Keep the Education Mindset

Understandably, home-based education may seem like a relaxed alternative to the traditional educational setting. Unfortunately, having this mindset is detrimental to your child’s learning. First of all, education requires focus and attention. This is not a vacation from your child’s teacher and books. Sure, the child may have alternative learning materials, and face time with teachers may be limited – even none. But the dedication that is put in is the same or even more. You and your child must realize this from the start. Second, home-based learning is not something your child must do to get them out of your way. Your child’s education should be at the top of your priority list. It will offer knowledge, skills, and a multitude of experiences that are essential as the child grows up. So, no, home-based education is NOT a way to occupy your child while you do something else. Third, education regardless of the learning modality requires commitment from the child as well as the parents. I even go as far as saying that the whole household must work together so that the child will take full advantage of the benefits of home-based learning.

Quick parenting tips:

  • Provide what is necessary for your child to learn – books, modules, internet access. You may want to look for cost-efficient alternatives so that you can provide your child with a better learning experience without draining your wallet dry.
  • Get the best home-based learning program: there are numerous home-based educational programs out there. Find one that will suit your requirements and the child’s learning style.
  • Talk to your child about home-based learning. Discuss what they can expect and more importantly what you expect from your child. When expectations are set, it is easier for anyone to set goals.
  • Set learning goals with your child. The home-based learning teacher can also weigh in on this.
  • Motivate the child. This is easier said than done. Among many other factors, your child’s character, values, study habits, motivations are essential. Learn how to motivate your child to study in a home-based educational setting.

Just remember, even if it is done at home, it is still the education of your child. This means you should give it the same weight as that of having to send them to a school setting. Home-based education gives you the advantage of monitoring your child while having his/her classes.

Create a learning environment that is conducive to studying.

Create a learning environment that is conducive to studying.

Tip 2: Set a Time and Place

There is another way you can help your child succeed in home-based learning. This is providing a place and time that is most conducive to his/her learning. Let’s face it; children have different routines at home. Some wake up early others wake up late. Some children learn best in the morning while others are most effective at some other time of the day. But one thing is common for all of them, they love to play. So how can you make your child study at home when their home is seen as a place to rest and play? Here are some tips that you can employ.

Quick Parenting Tips:

  • A quiet place: Find a quiet spot where your child can focus on studying.
  • Away from distractions: Another important consideration when looking for your child’s study area is the number of distractions. The fewer the distractions the better. So what distracts your child? It can be television, toys, the barking dog, or something else. The trick is having your child focus on the activity for the school and not something else.
  • Set routines: Home-based schooling requires strict adherence to schedules. Your child follows routines at school, why not at home? Of course, you don’t remove other activities like playing, eating, and resting. What is essential is that you create a schedule that your child must follow. Moreover, set a time where you can discuss what your child learned for the day. Consider this as your child’s review or study time. Just to be clear, school time is different from review time.
  • Give your child his/her privacy: Allow the child to study with his/her classmates during the online activities. I know some parents who hover around their kids and even prompt them to answer and participate. The worse I’ve observed is that they even give answers to the teachers’ questions.

Your home (or at least a part of it) is now a school. This is why you need to designate a specific place and time so that your child will fully reap the benefits.

Home-based education becomes more meaningful with you as your child's learning partner.

Home-based education becomes more meaningful with you as your child's learning partner.

Tip 3: Take an Interest in Your Child’s Education

The education of your child is not merely an expense that you have pay. Likewise, it is neither a way to get keep your child focused on something else when you need to do some work. Education is a necessity in your child’s life. Taking an interest in your child’s cognitive development is essential to ensure that they get the best educational experience. Also, taking an interest in your child’s learning will help you gauge how effective the home-based learning program you got for him/her. Here are some practical ways to keep tabs on your child and the learning modality.

Quick Parenting Tips:

  • Look at your child activities: Make some time to go over your child’s activities. Take a look at the child’s notes and activities sheets. And while you’re at that, squeeze in some encouraging words and praises. This will motivate and inspire them.
  • Help your child study: Just like when your child is going to the traditional school setting, you also need time to help your child study. Set aside some time to talk to your child about the learning activities. Find out which ones are difficult and help your child learn it. Likewise, ask about how the class is going. Learn what the child likes about it and what they don’t.
  • Learn with the child: Admit it, when was the last time you dissected a sentence? Some of the most common tasks we do no longer require a detailed look into how they are done. So, learn with your child. It is a review of the fundamentals. So next time you are asked to differentiate transitive and intransitive verbs you can answer with confidence.

If you noticed giving time for your child’s educational development is a must. Make sure your child knows that you are there. Although he/she may have time with classmates and teachers, it is often in the virtual classroom. Your child requires an actual connection. This is where you come in and help. Make every moment a bonding moment with your child.

Take the time to communicate with your child's teachers and school admins.

Take the time to communicate with your child's teachers and school admins.

Tip 4: Constant Communication

Ensuring that your child gets the best education entails close communication with the school. This means you have to set some time to communicate with the teacher, the school administrators, and other people necessary for your child’s education. Here are some important

Quick Parenting Tips:

  • Know more about the program: Of course, before you enrolled your child you already have an idea of what to expect. But once the class starts it is prudent to learn a little more about the program. Learn more about assessment methods, instructional strategies, and even supplemental learning activities.
  • Know the progress of your child. Ask about how your child is doing. Learn the difficulties of your child and how you can help him/her. Moreover, inquire about how your child is interacting with others. All this information will help you help your child.
  • Get to know if they have extracurricular activities. One drawback of home-based education is the limited interaction with other people. Actual interaction with other students is an important part of growing up. So it is prudent to ask if the school has extracurricular activities that focus on socialization. It is still a good idea to have diverse experiences to reinforce the child’s learning.

Communication is an integral part of ensuring that your child learns in the best way possible. When both the teacher and the parents work together closely, the child benefits more from the learning experiences. Remember, feedback is essential to improve.

The changing educational platforms have opened up creative ways of learning. But with these changes come new challenges. But if parents focus on the fundamental – development of their child, these challenges will be met with solutions. Home-based learning is taking a huge leap and it requires parents, teachers, and students to work cohesively. In the end, all these are for the benefit of the child.

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This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 JP Carlos

Comments

JP Carlos (author) from Quezon CIty, Phlippines on August 11, 2020:

Hello Eric Dierker, Every country has a unique curriculum. Schools in the Philippines are tweaking the learning modalities due to the pandemic. Public schools offer online instruction. I think they are using Moodle. I hope you son enjoys summer. In a few weeks it'll be the start of the new school year.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on August 10, 2020:

I am not so certain about timing. Our son is flourishing with this right now but very little that must happen at a certain time. But it is summertime. During the school year some "zooming" is quite required.