A representative from ClassesandCareers.com contacted me about writing a guest post of my choosing. Since flash backs from my school years keep popping into my head (thank you to the school buses that are now back on the roads!), I decided a school related topic would be appropriate. As you know, if you read my guest post for Hormonal Imbalances, I am considering home schooling Dylan. I have not made any decisions yet, but I believe there are different advantages for every method of teaching/learning and I was interested in hearing a comparison. So without further ado, here is a comparison of home study vs classroom learning…
Each side in the debate over home schooling or classroom schooling for children makes compelling arguments about the strengths and weaknesses of each system. But when it comes down to making educational choices for your children, as a parent, you need to decide which benefits are best for your child’s personality and talents. As you move toward making this decision for your children, however, it is worth looking at some of the key advantages of each system, particularly as they relate to the home or school environment.
Ask yourself this question about your child: Does my child need individualized, one-on-one attention, or does my child thrive when given a project and then left to their own devices to compete it? Home schooling lowers the student-teacher ratio significantly. At its very smallest, home schooling provides children with a one-to-one relationship. But even in large homes-school groups that number isn’t going to be more than about 10 or so. On the other hand, some public school class sizes are reaching close to 40 students per teacher, giving the children very small amounts of individualized learning attention. Children who have trouble staying on task or who will succeed better with specialized attention will definitely benefit from the lower student-teacher ratio that home schooling provides.
Public schools, because of a high student-teacher ratio, have little time for individualized curriculum. The result is a one-size-fits-all model of teaching where students either succeed or fail based on the curriculum choices of a teacher or school board and have little chance at exploring specialized interests or projects. However, the flexibility of home schooling allows parents and home educators the chance to tailor learning experiences to a child’s individual needs and interests. Studying at home means that a home-schooled child has the freedom to go as deep as they want to go into history, science, math, art, and more.
One of the advantages of classroom learning is that you can be assured that your child is learning a range of social skills on a daily basis from their interactions with a wide variety of children and adults. Because of the lack of a daily peer group, some think that home schoolers have a hard time learning social skills. Although it is true that if a home schooler never leaves the house, they may lack social interaction and may have trouble with those relationships later in life, that doesn’t have to be the case. Active home-school families often form home-schooling groups with other families where their children can go on field trips or play together on a regular basis, providing home-schooled children with peer social interaction to help them grow and thrive socially inside and outside of the learning environment.
In general, both systems of education have their advantages and disadvantages, what is important for parents to understand is that each child is different and may thrive or succeed in different atmospheres and under different circumstances. And only parents can make that decision for their child.
Gunter Jameson writes about several topics including travel, minimalism and Online Colleges.