- When people talk about teaching their children from home in the absence of any definite or structured curriculum, it is perhaps natural to think that homeschooling is cheap or at least a cheaper option that traditional or “structured” schooling or education. This is in fact far from the truth. Although homeschooling in general does not stick to any particular text, this is perhaps more of a bane than a boon, when it comes to finance.
- When you need to make sure that your children receives state-of-the-art education so that they can compete with regular school goers, expenses will naturally mount.
- The actual cost of educating a child at home is surprisingly high. Up-to-date textbooks, course materials, a library, computing equipment, lighting, specially designed furniture all cost money. In this case, the cost may be slightly lesser when it comes to homeschooling the second child. Add to this any additional tuition cost for tutors who come to teach subjects that cannot be handled by parents, like higher-level math or science. The total cost can be a bit mind boggling.
- If you take another important factor into consideration, homeschooling costs may effective triple. The need for having one of the parents tied to the house and fully dedicated to providing education deprives the family of a second earning member. The average homeschooling teacher is usually a lady with a college degree. This means that she can easily bring home a pay of $35,000 p.a. (R350,000,00) or more. It is also interesting to note that research in USA shows that most families that have more than 2 children do not opt for homeschooling at all.
- But, there are those who have been successful in carrying out homeschooling at low rates. This is dependent on the size of the family, the support group, and the type of materials used and the availability of the material. When successive children can reuse the materials, cost goes down. Much of the course material can be got from vendors of homeschooling materials.
- A membership in a public library, theatre, concerts, ballets and other cultural events also help in cutting costs. Sometimes, it is even possible to barter expertise. For instance, the mother of an 8-year old gives dancing classes, and her daughter receives drawing classes for free.
- Support groups allow you to divide the cost of field trips, science projects and fairs.
- Whatever the cost, advocates of homeschooling say that the benefits far outweigh these considerations. When you are able to decide what knowledge your child receives and when he or she should be taught and to what extent, it gives you a lot of freedom and a lot of power. Both the children as well as the parents benefit from this mutually enriching experience.
* Make extensive use of the internet and free resources. Download! Download! Download!
* Searching for free curriculum and free workbooks or worksheets on any particular subject will produce for you any number of age appropriate printable materials that will enhance your teaching experience.
* You will soon gain the knowledge and experience to create your own worksheets and before long have an on line storage system that will contain everything you need from A-Z.
* Although preferable, a 24 hour or super-fast internet connection is not vital.
* Utilise the resources you obtain from internet & library research and create your own workbooks, together with your children.
* This has proved for us to be the most effective way of including your child in the studies and promoting him or her to the position of author.
* By the time the child gets to actually work in the draft masterpiece he or she will have gained so much knowledge on the subject that going through the workbook or worksheets will be an easy task for your child, and one of which he or she will be proud of when showing you the final product, content in the knowledge that he or she has played a vital role in creating the learning material.
* Repetition is often necessary, be it in a certain subject on the whole or a certain aspect of a subject. Repetition does not necessarily have to mean monotony. Repetition does not necessarily mean printing out the same worksheet five times. An activity can be re-worked in such a way that the results aimed at can be achieved through use of the essential elements within a topic and disguised in various other formats.
* Make every activity fun. Fun worksheets, fun activities, field trips, fun discussions, working together as a team.
* Make a motto such as “Make learning fun” and in every aspect of homeschooling you are involved in.
* It is not necessary to purchase expensive Homeschool Curriculum if you are inclined not to do so or not in a position to do so. Everything you require is at your fingertips (or an internet search) and freely available or can be obtained at very minimal cost.
* Harsh criticism is never a good thing for any child in a learning environment and can discourage your child from a certain subject.
* Avoid criticising your child when he or she doesn’t quite grasp a subject.
* Make allowance for the fact that at least one parent will not be earning an income whilst homeschooling the child/children.