The online learning community is expanding at a sky-rocketing rate. It is heading towards becoming a mainstream education form. A majority of students vehemently look out for the feasible non-traditional schooling methods. There might be a bunch of varied reasons such as health issues, bullying issues, not able to match up with the pace or learning style of the classroom and many more. Virtual Homeschooling is the latest trend in the rapidly growing industry of online schooling that provides maximum flexibility to the students. It not only permits the students to create their own pace and schedule but also facilitates them with the power to fix their deadlines for assignment submission. The general homeschooling environment calls for parental indulgence. However, with the advent of online homeschooling, the need is eradicated by the involvement of professional online instructors and access to several smart virtual tools and resources.
Parents play a more important role in the academic progress of the homeschooled child than they actually think. However, for parents who are too busy to devote their full time to homeschooling their children, online homeschooling is the sole option. But, even in that case, parents should monitor whether their child is being regular at his online classes. It should be in the parents’ interest to track the child’s academic progress. They should also assist the child in building a feasible schedule. A bit of prodding in order to keep the child self-driven can be done by parents. Online homeschooling is the final resort for the self-motivated and self-disciplined crowd. However, no one is a born disciplinarian right from day one. He or she needs some form of inspiration from the people he or she sees around, in this case his or her parents. The sense of open-mindedness and ownership gets cultivated in the students, so much so that they adhere to their schedule. The consistency should be maintained even during the “lows” of his educational journey.
Here are some points to consider and contemplate over before selecting an online homeschool curriculum:
- Transitional formats of the curriculum
For students in lower grades of 3rd or 4th, a wholesome virtual platform for education might be a challenge in itself for some. So, look for online homeschools that support blended format for grades 3rd to 5th, so that children get a hold of the virtual environment and tools, managing some subjects through pen and paper. So, this helps in a smooth transitional phase, without putting too much load at the same time. They even get to practice handwriting for 1 more year! So, always choose an online homeschool that embraces many formats for the grades 3rd to 5th.
- Assessment testing
Academic standards for homeschooling varies from state to state. An online homeschool should always adhere to the set of basic standards. The school should make genuine efforts to self-assess for making amendments in its operating principles. Some states demand for assessment results. So, go for a homeschool that encourages testing. However, make sure the testing cost is not a supplementary cost that is included in the tuition fees.
- Maintaining child’s academic record
The homeschool is certainly recommendable if its Admission officials are co-operative in a child’s transition process from the previous school. It should be the new school’s responsibility to ensure that your present academic record is decent.
- Supplementary academic counseling
Some online homeschools put the entire responsibility of the coursework on the parents. It is fine for those parents who voluntary want to get fully involved in their child’s academic growth. But, in most cases these days, both the parents are working and so require online counselors and instructors to do a major part of the task. Look for homeschools that provide scores subject wise.
- Years of experience
It is crucial that the online homeschool has enough years of experience to reinforce its credibility and legitimacy. The Ogburn Online School has more than 10 years of experience and thus, is a credible online homeschool.
- Offering k-12 program
It is always a smart decision to select an online homeschool that offers all the grade levels. Once a child gets enrolled into the school in kindergarten, there is no need for another transition. As the learning environment remains constant for the child and his or her parents, it results into a smooth educational journey.
- Large homeschool program
If the online homeschool program is large enough, it indicates that it must be really good! After all, you always tend to go with the majority! You might opt for smaller programs only if you get strong recommendations from close ones. Also, the evaluation agencies give more weightage to the larger homeschools.
- Preparation for college-level work
Your homeschool should incorporate good lab work to train you for multi-dimensional college-level work. Science labs of online schools are examined more intricately by colleges. Accreditation does not ensure good lab-work either. You need to probe into the learning environment offered by the homeschool before making sure that it provides you with good lab facility.
Online homeschools can be an eye-opener for you as well as your child. It is the ultimate resort for many students who have been prolonged victims of the rigid traditional schooling system. However, you need to be 100% sure of the homeschool curriculum, before you get in. Each online homeschool offers manifold curriculums. Play your cards right and get enrolled into a virtual homeschool of your dreams!