By: Guest Author – Aradhana
When I became a mother, there were two things I was certain about. One, that I would raise my little one up to be an absolute gentleman; two, that to be able to raise him to be a gentleman, I’d need to homeschool him.
I have always been a take-charge sort of a person. A perfectionist who likes to be in control of everything! No surprises I wanted my son to learn the best of values and morals in addition to all the worldly knowledge, and for doing that, I put myself in charge. Having seen, heard and read about the many repercussions of public schooling such as drug abuse, bullying and violence, I decided to keep my child under my wing and enlighten him with the best of learnings. My journey of homeschooling my child hasn’t been enriching for him alone, but also for me. Here are the five things that homeschooling my kid has taught me:
- There Are No Ground Rules To Teaching – An important thing that homeschooling has taught me about teaching is that there are no set rules that should form the basis of your instruction. There is no “specific” teaching mechanism or method that will work for a “certain” type of learner, as traditional wisdom suggests. You can use a mix of various teaching methodologies such as lectures, films, audio-tutorials, models, field visits and verbal instructions all together. Follow your instinct as to what you think is the best-suited medium for a particular lesson or subject rather than following books and articles on teaching.
- Patience Is A Respectable Virtue – Homeschooling has made me realize that we don’t give teachers enough due for their patience and perseverance. As teaching one child has been such a test of patience for me, now my respect for all teachers around the world has quadrupled for being able to manage a handful of kids with such composure! It is important to understand that not all children have the same learning and grasping capabilities and respecting them for trying their best is extremely crucial. Earlier I used to lose my cool easily with my child when he’d fail to understand simple concepts; today, I have come a long way with respect to my patience levels!
- Goal Setting Is Essential – I have always followed the practise of maintaining a diary. A diary where I extensively list down all my to-dos, aspirations and goals. I have understood that this practise works well for my child’s academic growth as well. Listing down weekly, monthly, quarterly, half-yearly and yearly learning goals for my child helps me streamline my lessons and ensures that my child’s learning is on track. Without an end goal, it becomes difficult to monitor progress, and the attempts of teaching may go futile. Spread across your child’s lessons, tests and other activities keeping in mind the end goal.
- Learning Is A Continuous Process – When I started to homeschool my three-year-old, I thought it would be a cakewalk to tutor him. How difficult can the lessons of a toddler be? Over the due course I realized that difficult or not, there’s immense scope for learning something new, even from the lessons you have to teach a child. Each day brings with it a whole new set of innovations, developments and game-changers that you may not quite be aware of unless you continue to learn and challenge your beliefs.
- Setting A Good Example Is Crucial – Homeschooling has taught me that in addition to being a loving mother, I also need to play the role of being a respectable teacher to my little one. It is important for me to be the ideal example of a contentious and responsible figure for my child to learn from. The positive values such as integrity and responsibility that I am trying to instill in my child should be practiced by me first and then taught to him. If you lose your temper and say something harsh to someone in front of your little one, it’s sure to leave a huge impact on his understanding of ideal behaviour.
Homeschooling my child is a personal choice that I made without undermining the authority of public schooling and other training methods. No matter whether you homeschool your child or not, it is important that you trust his ability to learn, grow and shine in everything that he does!
Aradhana is from India. She is a veteran writer on topics concerning parenting, child nutrition, wellness, health and lifestyle. As a regular contributor to popular sites like natural news, elephant journal, thehealthsite, naturally savvy, curejoy and MomJunction.com, Aradhana writes to inspire and motivate people to adopt healthy habits and live a stress-free lifestyle.