You have researched. You have prayed. You and your spouse have finally decided to try to homeschool your child, now what is the next step?
I am sharing the next steps you can take. Please take note that this is written intended for those in the Philippines.
1. Decide whether you want to do this independently or enrolled in an accredited home education provider. What does a home education provider do? Basically, they provide you the Department of Education accreditation and the report cards. I have a list of home education providers in the Philippines I made a couple of years back, you may browse through it so you can inquire the program of the different home education providers and how much their fee is. If you wish to homeschool independently, you may do so. If you plan to enroll your child in conventional schools later on, your child would need to go to DepEd to take PVT (validation test).
2. Locate a local homeschool support group. There are many homeschool families around and it is important that you get connected to at least one in your area so that your family will have friends who can help you along your homeschool journey. If you have social media accounts, you may join online groups in Facebook to find the nearest homeschool support group that meets in your area.
3. Set homeschooling goals. It is best to write down why you have chosen to homeschool your child. This will be your guide the whole year through. Also, it will help you decide which activities to attend, which curriculum to use and how you want to set your schedule as a family.
4. Find out your child’s learning style. There are 4 basic learning styles: the visual, the auditory or verbal, the read and write and the kinesthetic or tactile. Knowing this is vital before purchasing curriculum for your child.
5. Choose the method of homeschooling you’d like to use. Methods include Charlotte Mason, Classical, Eclectic, Montessori, School at Home or Unschooling. For first time homeschoolers, most choose school at home. This is because we are most familiar with this type of method from conventional schools. They get boxed curriculum for all subjects.
6. Attend homeschool conferences. Get to meet other homeschool families and continue your research about homeschooling. Read about other family’s experiences and get tips which you may find useful.
7. Set up a conducive learning environment. While you have the luxury of not waking up too early, it is best to stay in a routine so that the children will know what to expect during the entire day. Turn off the TV, computers or gadgets unless used for studies. Make books accessible for the child to reach.
Here is a reminder though. No two families are alike. So while we get ideas from other families, we must not copy what they are doing because we have to find out what will work for our unique family. Homeschooling is not just about the curriculum, but we should remember that homeschooling is a lifestyle.
Welcome to the wonderful world of homeschooling! If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment and I will get back to you shortly.