Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Different Homeschooling Approaches

Homeschoolers are wonderfully diverse in all ways, including the ways in which they approach teaching and learning. Below are some of the most common homeschooling approaches. Head on over to the blog's Facebook page to participate in a poll on which homeschooling approach you identify with most!

1. School-at-home – This traditional approach uses purchased, packaged, often level-specific curriculum that can be religious or secular, online and/or workbook-based.

2. Pedagogically-influenced – This approach is informed and inspired by a particular pedagogical philosophy such as: Waldorf-inspired homeschooling, Montessori-inspired homeschooling, Classical education, and Charlotte Mason.

3. Unit studies – Unit studies present a multi-disciplinary approach to learning by focusing on a particular subject, for example, “the solar system,” and incorporating most subject areas (e.g., math, science, reading, writing, history, social studies) when learning about a particular subject. Unit study programs can either be purchased or developed naturally within a family.

4. “Eclectic” homeschooling – This is a hybrid approach to homeschooling with families choosing structured curriculum for certain areas (e.g., math), and unstructured or alternative learning approaches for other areas.

5. Unschooling – An increasingly popular homeschooling approach, unschoolers don't adhere to a prescribed curriculum and instead follow their child's lead when deciding what and when to learn.

How does your family approach homeschooling?

7 comments:

  1. I love the diversity I find in homeschooling communities! We are definitely eclectic homeschoolers here. Very relaxed, but not quite unschoolers. We rely very heavily on online curricula and resources, but do a lot of experiments, projects, field trips, independent reading, etc.

    Looking forward to reading more of the responses...it's always fun to get little glimpses into other families' homeschools. :)

    Thanks for sharing!

    Katie
    A computer junkie, workbook hating, TV watching, iGadget addicted, eclectic homeschooling, soccer mom of 2 boys.

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    1. Thanks for your response, Katie! I agree that it is so fascinating to get glimpses of the various ways different families approach homeschooling!

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  2. If I home school my little ones, I will choose a mix of eclectic and unit-based. If you had told me ten years ago that I would home school my kids, or even five years ago, I would have considered you crazy. But the closer I come to shipping off my eldest, the more and more open to the idea I am becoming. Proof: I subscribe to this blog and read it religiously! haha

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    1. I am so glad you are enjoying this blog. As I always say here, homeschooling isn't for every family but it should at least be "on the menu" of education options to consider. I'd love to hear updates on your decision-making process!

      Kerry

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  3. I think we are more “Eclectic” homeschoolers. Yes! we use a online program for everyday lessons, but we also add to it, with a lil of this and that ;)

    Keri- A Christian home-school mom, who LOVE'S hersecular curriculum online program!

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  4. Probably eclectic! We tried to be very structured for years. It was so discouraging as circumstances peculiar to our family sabotaged our efforts over and over. Finally I decided recently that I just have to relax and unstructure some areas. It's made our learning much more peaceful, and more effective.

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    1. Thanks for the comment, Stephanie! It seems that many homeschooling families begin the process with more structure and, for a variety of reasons, become less structured as time goes on. Thanks for sharing!

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