By Danika Young | LTVN Reporter/ Anchor
A significant portion of the American public views homeschooling as an old-fashioned and outdated way to educate today’s youth. However, homeschooling has become increasingly popular in recent years. It has increased steadily from 2% to 8% every year and is continuing to grow. In addition, there are many enticing qualities that homeschooling has to offer to make it superior to traditional schooling.
Homeschooling allows parents to choose the curriculum and how they teach it. For example, my parents were firm believers in educational traveling; I was able to travel to many countries, where I learned about different cultures and gained real world experiences I would not have had in a classroom.
A flexible curriculum also allows parents to focus on their students’ specific talents or interests. As a homeschooler myself, I was able to draw pictures in my science class since I was more talented at and interested in art than I was regarding science. However, I still learned the science curriculum, so I was able to do what I loved and learn at the same time.
In Israel, I was able to live through the events that took place in the Bible from the Jordan River to the Garden of Gethsemane. In Europe, I was able to observe the places where history had been made. By traveling, I learned through a different lens: a real world perspective.
Non-traditional learning has been proven to be a better education system for children. According to the National Home Education Research Institute, homeschoolers score 15% to 30% higher on tests than students in public school do. In addition, up to 24.5% of all homeschooled children have enrolled in grade levels at least one or more steps above their age group.
Because of the commitment and flexibility given to homeschooled kids, they tend to be more successful and confident in their academics and in their everyday life.
Homeschoolers are more likely to be “well-rounded” students in terms of extracurricular activities. On average, research shows homeschoolers do well on social, emotional and psychological measures outside of the home as well. When I was growing up, I was involved in everything my parents could find — from horseback riding to speech and debate club.
Lastly, homeschooling allows parents to embed social and family values, in addition to religion, at a young age. My parents wanted us to grow up in a Christian environment, which is why they implemented Christian aspects into our teaching.
Non-traditional schooling is the best way to educate children. As said by David O. McKay, who was an American religious leader and educator, “The home is the first and most effective place to learn the lessons of life: truth, honor, virtue, self-control, the value of education, honest work and the purpose and privilege of life. Nothing can take the place of home in rearing and teaching children, and no other success can compensate for failure in the home.”