Homeschooling Methods

Today there are numerous ways in which you can homeschool your children. The type of homeschooling method that you choose to use will impact your choice of curriculum and teaching style. Below are the methods that are most popularly used today.

The Charlotte Mason Method

This method takes its name from Charlotte Mason herself. She was a homeschooler who originated the homeschooling method. She believed that character and good behavior were an extremely important part of a child’s complete personality development. As such she desired to establish a “curriculum” for an effective, yet complete, homeschooling curriculum. Her method places an emphasis on classical literature, poetry, classical music, fine arts and crafts. It is designed in such a way that it encourages a child to be aware of literature since he/she is read to daily, starting at the age of six. After the child has been read to, the child then retells the story in his/her own words. By the time the child turns ten-years-old, he/she is expected to be able to write down what he/she has heard.

Nature diaries are also used by the Charlotte Mason methodology. This is a notebook wherein the child writes down anything about which he/she observes in nature. These are used to encourage a child to respect the environment.

The Montessori Method

This homeschooling method started out in Italy. It is based upon the fact that children go through periods in which they are extremely sensitive and thus they are able to intensely concentrate. While going through such a phase, a child will continue to do an action until they get some sort of self-satisfaction. This method relies upon environments that have been prepared to facilitate learning. The materials that are used in this environment are meant to satisfy a child’s inner desire for spiritual development. They range from simple to complex, but they are relatively high in price.

The Unschooling Method

John Holt was a public school teacher in Boston who developed this method of homeschooling. His belief was that children are able to learn best whenever they are allowed to learn at their own pace. This method of homeschooling also requires parents to pay special attention to their child in order to see what their child’s interests are. From there, the child’s curriculum is developed based upon these interests. There is no specific curriculum, schedule or materials used with this method. Thus, this method of homeschooling is actually the most unstructured method out there.

The Eclectic Homeschooling Method

This method of homeschooling combines several different methods together in order to create a child’s homeschool curriculum. A lot of innovative parents use this method. Herein the parents must rely upon their personal judgment in order to select what topics their homeschool will consist of. Parents who use this method are always hunting for those products that best meet their needs in their homeschools. Therefore, a lot of the curriculum that is used in this method are actually improvised. What exactly does this mean? It means that the basic curriculum is established. However, parents are able to change parts of the curriculum in order to best meet their child’s personal interests and needs. Therefore, this homeschooling method’s curriculum involves looking at the child’s personality, how the child learns best, and what the child’s interests are. With these in mind, a parent can include such things as visits to libraries, museums and any other place where a child may be interested in visiting. This is something that is oftentimes utilized in this homeschooling method.

Whatever method you choose to use, your choice will be based upon the amount of flexibility that it offers your family. Your choice will also be based upon your high interest in learning about what your child’s desires are. Remember, the key to homeschooling is your desire for furthering your child’s education, based upon their desire for knowledge.

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