Should you home school your child? It’s a question many parents ask, if concerned with education and social life. Many parents wish to have their children deviate from the national curriculum (like private schools), to raise children to learn about the world (Beatrix Potter was home-schooled). Learning from home depends on the child: issues like parenting relationships and bullying can influence choices. Some parents prefer to home-school for smaller classes & outdoor education. See what we can learn from Montessori schools.
- It’s legal to home-school in most cases, though you must provide education for children over 5. Schools can refuse to take children part-time, and children with special needs or attendance orders need permission. Local dyslexia associations can help.
- Adventure Travel Family is a site run by a home-schooling family, with resources for good books and sites. Her family’s ‘curriculum’ includes read-aloud, maths, park visits, gardening, caring for animals, Montessori-science, swimming, beach visits, riding bikes, Cubs & play-dates with other children. They take forest holidays (in term-time, when it’s more affordable).
- Find good books for children on nature, wildlife, animals, science.
- You can find online tutors at Tutorful, Exemplar Education (English & Math) & Oxford Home Learning (Key Stage 3, GSCE, A-Levels).
- Subscribe to Aquila Magazine (a magazine for curious children) and design a creative space for your child.
- The Home Education Handbook is full of tips and guidance, covering education and play. Dumbing Us Down is a book by a teacher who concludes that treating children like ‘cogs in an industrial machine’ has led to bad literacy and sometimes learning disabilities.
Politicians and educators consider the use of technology, more exams and tests, more certification for teachers, and less money for art. All these responses come from the place where we want to make the child into the best adult possible; not in the ancient Greek sense, but in the sense of one who is an efficient part of the machinery of society. But on all these counts, soul is neglected. Thomas Moore