Posts Tagged ‘Eclectic Homeschooling’

Apr 2009
24

The Best Homeschooling Methods

Paul Hata asked: For many people, homeschooling may call to mind the picture of two or three children sitting at a table and writing feverishly...
Paul Hata asked:


For many people, homeschooling may call to mind the picture of two or three children sitting at a table and writing feverishly in their workbooks, while mom or dad stands nearby. This is the not entirely true. There are different methods of homeschooling, and the method you choose will decide the curriculum and your style of teaching. The section below will help you to familiarize with some of the better known methods of homeschooling.

The Charlotte Mason Method

Charlotte Mason is known as the founder of the homeschooling movement. A homeschooler herself, she was passionate in her zeal to lay out the foundations for an effective a complete homeschooling program that is fun and educational at the same time. This method focuses on all the core subjects with emphasis placed on classical literature, poetry, fine arts, classical music and craft. Mason used a variety of books from classical literature, which she called ‘Living Books’. Since this method encourages a passionate awareness of literature, the child is read to daily from the ‘Living Books’.

After this, the child is asked to narrate what she has heard. This process begins at the age of six, and by ten the child is expected to write her narrations in her book. Mason also advocated the use of ‘Nature Diaries’. After each short and interesting lesson, the child is asked to go to Nature and draw observations from Nature.Thus the child also gains a sense of respect for her environment. Mason believed that development of good character and behavior was essential to the complete development of the child’s personality.

The Eclectic Homeschooling

This is a mixture of various homeschooling techniques. Here, the innovative parents trust their own judgment and pick out the topics that make the best curriculum for their child. Such parents continuously look out for the best products that will meet the needs of their homeschoolers. Most Eclectic homeschooling curriculums are improvised. This means that the basic curriculum is ready-made. The parents then make changes in the curriculum to accommodate the individual needs and interests of their children. The child’s gifts, temperament, learning style and interests dictate the curriculum. Eclectic programs include visits to the museum, libraries and factories.

The Montessori Method

This method began in Italy, when it was observed that children have acute sensitive periods, during which they undergo periods of intense concentration. During such phases, a child will repeat an

activity till he gains a measure of self-satisfaction. The Montessori method depends on a prepared environment to facilitate learning. All the materials used in this method are designed to satisfy the inner desire for spiritual development of the child. The materials used progress from simple to complex, and are rather expensive.

The Unschooling Method

A Boston public educator name John Holt laid the beginnings of the unschooling method. He believed that children learned best when they are free to learn at their own pace and when they are guided by their own interests. His message was to ‘unschool’ the child. This method is a hands-on approach to learning, where the parent takes definite cues from the children. There is no definite curriculum, schedules or materials. This method is the most unstructured of the various homeschooling techniques.

These are just a few of the methods of homeschooling. Whatever the method, the underlying factor is flexibility and a keen interest in the desires of the child. The secret is to use the child’s desire for knowledge to further his education.

The Waldorf Method

The Waldorf homeschooling method was popularized by Rudolf Steiner in Europe in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The Waldorf approach is a holistic liberal arts education where subjects are not separated from one another and education covers the mind, body and spirit. Early education is focused on activities and experiences rather than head learning and in that regard.Textbooks are not used until the children are older and even then,only infrequently.Moral qualities are subtly emphasized through life.Discovery is the focus of the middle years and experiences relating to finding one’s place in the “real world” are the focus of the upper grades.



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Apr 2009
22

Methods To Use In Homeschooling

Kenneth Scott asked: There are a variety of methods that can be applied in the area of homeschooling. The method you select will have an...
Kenneth Scott asked:


There are a variety of methods that can be applied in the area of homeschooling. The method you select will have an impact on the curriculum and style of teaching. The following are some of the most popular homeschooling methods.

The Charlotte Mason method is named after Charlotte Mason, who is known as the originator of the homeschooling movement. She herself was a homeschooler, and she wanted to establish a basic plan for a complete and effective homeschooling program. The Charlotte Mason method emphasizes poetry, fine arts, classical music, crafts, and classical literature.

This method is designed to encourage an awareness of literature and involves reading to the child every day. The child is then asked to tell what he or she has heard. This starts at the age of six. By the age of ten, the child is expected to write narrations in a book. Mason encouraged the use of nature diaries as well. The child writes observations of nature in the book as well. This creates a sense of respect for the environment in the child. Mason thought that good hehavior and character were critical for a childs complete personality development.

The Eclectic Homeschooling method is a combination of several techniques. Innovative parents rely on their own judgment to select topics that make up the curriculum for their own child. These parents are always looking for the best products they can find to help them meet the needs of their homeschoolers.

Many of the curricula in this method are improvised. This means that, while the basic curriculum is established, parents change it to adapt to the individual needs and interests of their children. The curriculum is generally established according to the temperament, learning style, and interests of the children. These programs typically include visits to libraries, factories, and museums.

John Holt, a public educator in Boston, developed the unschooling method. Holt believed that children learn best when they learn at their own pace and are guided by their own interests. He wanted to unschool the child by requiring parents to take their cues from the children. This approach has no set curriculum, schedules, or materials. It is the most unstructured of the homeschooling techniques.

The Montessori method had its start in Italy. It was found that children go through extremely sensitive periods in which they experience periods of intense concentration. In these phases, children will repeat an action until they receive some measure of self-satisfaction from it.

This method relies on prepared environments to facilitate learning. All materials utilized in this method are meant to satisfy the childs interior desire for spiritual development. Materials for this method range from simple to complex, and they are relatively costly.

Whatever method is selected, the underlying concept is flexibility and a strong interest in the childs own desires. The key is to use childrens desire for knowledge to further their education.



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