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Is home education a viable alternative to school? What are the advantages and disadvantages?

Educating your child at home isn’t for everyone. Many woman don’t have the time, the skills or the patience to become their child’s full time teacher.

However, in some cases home education can give your child an academic advantage over their peers and help them develop into the kind of individual you want them to.

If you are thinking of educating your child at home, the main points to consider are as follows:

Do your homework
Home education is not something to be rushed in to. Do your homework and find out if it’s the right choice for you and your child. Contact home education support groups and organisations to get a better idea of what’s involved.

Home education doesn't mean home isolation
Many mothers choose not to educate their child at home because they think it will adversely affect their social skills. Yes they will miss out on the interaction with other children at school but this can be made up for with clubs and groups like the Beavers or the brownies.

Don't underestimate the commitment you need to make
Teaching your child at home is a huge undertaking. To educate your child to the same standard as school children, requires a great deal of work and planning. You will essentially be taking on a non-paying job that many people will view as unnecessary. However, the rewards of successful home education do make it all worth while.

You decide what your child learns
The beauty of home education is that you decide what and how much your child learns. If your child is showing great aptitude for a particular subject, you can push her further than a school would. If your child is struggling in a certain area, you can devote extra time to help them grasp it. The boundaries and limitations of most schools simply don’t apply.

Success rates are very high
Research has shown that the majority of children who are educated at home develop into caring, sensible and well balanced individuals. They typically perform better in examinations and have a more enthusiastic approach to work and study. Surprisingly, home educated children also tend to be more confident and self assured than the average school pupil of a similar age. This dispels the myth that school is needed to toughen kids up and help bring them out of their shell.

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