Education is a critical aspect of a child's development, and parents play a vital role in shaping their educational journey. At a traditional school, parents aren’t required to be heavily involved in the educational process. Generally, they must ensure that their children do their homework and check their reports to determine whether they are progressing sufficiently.
Homeschooling is slightly different. While your child will most definitely receive a better education, it will also require more effort from you to ensure they are doing well and succeeding.
In this article, we’ll discuss parental involvement in homeschooling and how you as a parent can help your child flourish in this environment.
How Does Homeschooling Work?
Depending on the curriculum and whether you decide to opt for a traditional homeschooling system or an online school, homeschooling can be a little different for each household.
If you decide to enrol your child in a traditional homeschooling system, you’ll purchase and receive the relevant textbooks, and have to work through them independently.
An online school provides more support than traditional homeschooling options, as children will be able to attend live lessons and watch recordings of those live lessons when they are unable to attend a live lesson on a specific day. Children will also be able to attend live Q&A sessions, where they’ll have the opportunity to ask questions and discuss challenges they might be facing. They’ll also have access to a chat feature where they can contact teachers to ask questions and receive clarification on certain topics.
However, traditional homeschooling and online schooling do have something in common. Your child will complete their schoolwork at home.
The Importance of Parental Involvement in Education at Home
If you decide to enrol your child in an online school, the responsibility of homeschooling will not weigh as heavily upon your shoulders; however, the importance of parental involvement cannot be underestimated.
Active parental participation in homeschooling plays a crucial role in ensuring a successful and enriching educational experience for children. This manifests in a number of ways.
- Ensuring active learning: it’s unrealistic to expect your child to monitor and motivate themselves to learn and put in the necessary work. This is especially true for younger children. Therefore, it’s important for parents to help motivate their children to attend live lessons, Q&A sessions, and complete their schoolwork each day.
- Noticing struggles: parents should keep an eye on their child’s progress and whether they are struggling with certain subjects or concepts. If you as a parent are present, you’ll be able to notice the difficulties they are experiencing and provide them with help.
- Providing emotional support: we all experience patches of demotivation and frustration. Parents can identify these emotional slumps in their children quickly and guide their children towards a positive mindset, where they are motivated and excited to learn.
- Instilling values and character development: the beautiful thing about homeschooling is that you as parents have full control over the values that are instilled in your child. The more involved you are in your child’s educational journey, the more you’ll be able to utilise this time and process to instil values, such as being independent, dedicated, and hardworking.
What is Required From Homeschool Parents?
It’s not necessary for you as a parent to become a teacher and constantly hover over your child. However, in order to get the most out of the homeschooling experience and ensure that your child succeeds, there are certain things you can do to assist them on their journey.
Create a Routine
Parents should play a vital role in establishing a structured learning environment at home. This involves setting daily routines, creating a designated study area, and ensuring a conducive atmosphere for learning.
This involvement will help your child develop discipline, time management skills, and a sense of responsibility. While these skills and values will be beneficial in their educational journey, it’ll also be advantageous in the workplace and other areas of life.
Use a Homeschool Planner
In order to keep track of assignments, exams, and study schedules, you can make use of a homeschooling planner. This will help your child stay on track and teach them how to plan for deadlines and work towards goals.
If you are not sure of how to create an effective study planner, you can download the one we have created, which specifically caters to homeschooled children.
Monitor and Assess Progress
Parents need to monitor their child's progress and assess their understanding of the material covered. This can be done by checking if they are on schedule and meeting their deadlines. It’ll also be beneficial to check the grades they are receiving on assessments and exams.
This will allow you to identify areas that require additional focus.
Seek Support if Needed
If you have noticed your child is struggling, we suggest considering enlisting the help of a tutor. This will ensure that your child remains on track and can progress well creating a solid basis of understanding.
Ultimately, you want to provide your child with extra support as soon as you notice them struggling, as this will ensure that they stay positive and continue to believe in themselves and their ability.
When your child writes exams, you’ll have to act as the invigilator. This serves as a way to ensure that your child does not make use of unauthorised materials, such as textbooks, and that they complete the exam in the allotted time.
Facilitating Learning Experiences
Parental involvement extends beyond monitoring your child and setting up a routine. You can organise field trips, conduct hands-on experiments, or seek out real-world experiences to enrich the learning process. It’ll also be helpful to bring resources, guest speakers, or community programmes into the learning space, which align with the curriculum and provide practical applications of knowledge.
Prioritise Social Engagement
One common concern regarding homeschooling is the potential for limited social interaction. However, parent involvement can address this challenge effectively. Parents can actively seek out socialisation opportunities for their children by organising or participating in community groups, sports activities, and cultural events.
These activities allow homeschooled children to interact with peers, develop social skills, and foster meaningful relationships. Parental involvement ensures that children receive a balance of academic instruction and socialisation experiences.
Overall, parental involvement in homeschooling is essential for creating a customised, supportive, and enriching educational experience.