The start of the school year is a time of mixed feelings for kids and parents. Kids are usually excited to see their classmates again and meet new ones while parents have to brace themselves for a new round of tuition fees, homework, year-long logistical planning, getting along (and competing with) other parents and grappling with homeroom teachers and the principal.
But did you stop to think that there can be a more simple and effective way to educate your child? That option is called homeschooling and it might be a more viable option than you think.
Depending on a government’s educational policies, homeschooling would be different in each country. In the United States, homeschooling is very popular especially among the religious sectors of the population who feel like a secular education is not enough for their children.
In Germany, homeschooling is outlawed. Parents who do this often have to perform in secret and do so because they do not agree with the state-sponsored educational content. Most believe such run counter to their personal beliefs.
In the Philippines where literacy rates have always been high, homeschooling is finding a new popularity thanks to groups like The Homeschoolers of the Philippines which currently has more than 5000 members. High profile advocates, like husband and wife team Edric Mendoza, ANC TV anchor and Joy Mendoza, a popular blogger, have also contributed to further awareness for the homeschooling movement.
For Filipinos or expats looking to move to the Philippines, it’s good to know that homeschooling is alive and well in the country and supported by the Department of Education.
Though homeschooling is not for everyone, it is a good option for the following kind of people:
- Teachers who have experience working in the academe and are not satisfied with the prevailing system to educate their children
- Business people who wish to inculcate the family business early into their children’s education
- Parents who want to maximize the educational experience at a more affordable cost by choosing their own learning materials and designing a program more appropriate to the needs and learning style of their child.
- Families who are traveling or who are expats in a new country
- Couples with at least one parent who can stay at home full time.
- Families who don’t want to go through the hassle of enrollment and taking children to and from school.
To get started in homeschooling in the Philippines, it helps to join a local Facebook group of homeschoolers. Follow a well-known homeschool expert like Teacher Ched Arzadon and then get in touch with homeschool providers like The Master’s Academy or the Catholic Filipino Academy. Also talk to representatives at the Department of Education to see what other support they might offer.
Once you get into homeschooling, don’t be afraid that your child might suffer from a lack of companionship. Most homeschoolers have an active social life through extra-curricular activities like joining ministries and clubs at church or after school sports like gymnastics, ballet, swimming or martial arts.