Home-schooling is a concept based on ensuring that children can learn naturally based on daily activities. While home-schoolers are guided by their in-house teacher, external tutor or parent on basic academic concepts, and are evaluated by open methods of assessments of affiliating bodies, they are largely devoid of any structured, formal, accredited, or mass ways of learning, which are also the most aligned, accepted and observed ways of learning from a higher education point of view.
While no official home-schooler counts are available in India, it is estimated that this population of home-schoolers is at-least in thousands, if not lacs.
The digitalisation of education has opened an opportunity to augment home-schooling with the elements it lacks through online e-learning platforms, and the online school curriculums disseminated over the online media.
Home-schooling combined with online school platform learning helps in:
1. Augmenting natural learning process
The lack of a necessity to be physically present, and be at any location, synergistically supplements the home-school process. While home-schooling as a concept is based on self-directed learning at any place, at any time, what it clearly lacks is the structured method of learning of key long-term academic and non-academic concepts.
Online schooling has the ability to not disturb or disrupt the home-school pedagogy, and retain the natural process of learning, while alongside directing the child towards formalised levels of education.
The time saved by better lesson planning, short lectures, and no need for travel, makes online schools perfect to be fitted into the daily routine of any home-schooler. Added to it is the flexibility of live and self-paced programs that can help students structure their day, and get best of both worlds
2. Countering isolationism and promoting collaboration
Home-schooling has long been avoided due to factors such as reduced social collaboration, and leading to an isolated growth of an individual, that too involving elements which may not be present en-masse.
Through its method of assessments, group discussions, group mode of activities and project planning, online school platforms in India today offer the scientifically designed curriculums that entail enough opportunities for:
a. Peer-discussed learning – Teacher supervised sessions wherein students are encouraged to come up with answers and ideas to broad based questions factoring in viewpoints of the student sets
b. Group study sessions – Activities and assignments which require students to work in groups to come up with presentations and class activities. Teamwork, leadership, accommodative stance, and compromise abilities come to play
c. Collaboration based assessments – Some of the assessment elements require students to come up with joint solutions to tests, and assessment books. Exposure to different viewpoints, one’s own strengths and weaknesses and delegation power come to light during such exercises
d. Classroom Participation – Points are scored every time students raise their hands and contribute to the subject being taught in the classroom.
e. Listening to others – The ability to listen and respond are key qualities that come to test in any classroom session and is key to becoming a better communicator and collaborator.
Home-schooling is devoid of any advanced or mature resources to help the child’s learning process. Any home-schooling process plans to leverage on the natural learning process and may be augmented by external tutors or resources gathered by the parents.
In the process, what is missed out are ancillary and augmenting resources which play key to expanding one’s horizons.
Aspects such as coding, wide libraries, encyclopaedias, competitions, community celebration of festivities, and participation in school events.
Some of the best online school platforms in the country offer:
a. Coding platforms such as code monkey to help your children learn coding and further their computer science interests.
b. Online libraries that include virtual titles replicating an offline school library with anytime anywhere access.
c. World almanacs and encyclopaedias that include all latest general awareness topics that your child may otherwise not have access to
d. Art platforms that help your child bring out their creative sides
e. Virtual laboratories such as science labs and math labs where one may read both theory and practical of science experiments per grade
f. Formalised trainings on Dance, Music, Instruments, which may otherwise not be available in home-schooling or the areas you’re living in
g. Competitions across the domains of public speaking, singing, dancing which help students reach success in the domain of their creative excellence
h. Celebration of festivals which may otherwise have been conducted in the home environment within a limited pool of people. Students will get to celebrate such festivals in a community environment at large scale
4. Alignment to future education
Home schooling may be devoid of future centric skill sets from a child’s point of view. While the child may appear in assessment through open methods of learning, the child may have not been exposed to routines and concepts which are required in higher levels of education.
Additionally, the child may have also lacked key academic elements required for college entrance examinations which form part of structured affiliated curriculums.
While external tutors maybe hired, it is akin to augmenting home-schooling with structured online schooling platforms which will cover multiple future centric facets such as:
- Eligibility for higher studies
- Competitive examination preparation
- Advanced sciences such as coding et al
Hence, if you’re looking to augment your child’s home-schooling with structure and formalised academic training, online schooling may be a boon for your child, given its least disruptive mode to the ongoing home-schooling process.