Online Home Schooling, Distance Education or Regular School: What’s Best?
Are you considering online home schooling or distance education for your child? It’s important to weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of these alternative education methods compared to traditional schooling. This guide will provide you with a comprehensive breakdown of the pros and cons of online home schooling and distance education, helping you make an informed decision for your family’s educational needs.
Flexibility and Convenience of Online Home Schooling.
One of the major advantages of online home schooling and distance education is the flexibility and convenience they offer. With online learning, you have the freedom to create your own schedule and tailor the curriculum to fit your child’s individual needs. This means that you can choose when and where your child learns, allowing for a more personalised and flexible educational experience. Additionally, online learning eliminates the need for daily commutes and rigid school hours, making it a convenient option for families with busy schedules or those who live in remote areas.
Personalised Learning and Individualised Attention.
One of the key benefits of online home schooling is the ability to provide personalised learning and individualised attention to your child. In a traditional school setting, teachers often have large class sizes and limited time to cater to each student’s unique learning needs. With online home schooling, you can tailor the curriculum to your child’s specific interests, strengths, and weaknesses. This allows for a more personalised and effective learning experience, as your child can progress at their own pace and focus on areas where they may need extra support.
Socialisation and Peer Interaction in Traditional Schooling.
One of the main concerns that parents have when considering online home schooling is the potential lack of socialisation and peer interaction for their child. Traditional schooling provides daily opportunities for children to interact with their peers, participate in group activities, and develop important social skills. However, it’s important to note that online home schooling doesn’t mean complete isolation from other children.
There are many ways to ensure that your child still has opportunities for socialisation and peer interaction. Online home schooling programs often offer virtual classrooms, discussion boards, and online communities where students can interact with each other. Additionally, extracurricular activities, clubs, and organisations outside of school provide opportunities for socialisation and building friendships.
Cost and Resources.
When comparing online home schooling, distance education, and traditional schooling, it’s important to consider the cost and resources required for each option. Traditional schooling typically involves expenses such as tuition fees, school supplies, transportation, and potentially additional costs for extracurricular activities. On the other hand, online home schooling and distance education often require an initial investment in technology, such as a computer or tablet, as well as internet access.
Online home schooling and distance education can be more cost-effective options as there are typically no ongoing tuition fees or additional expenses for transportation or school supplies. Additionally, both these online schooling options provide flexibility in terms of scheduling and resources, allowing students to access a wide range of free online resources and educational materials.
Parental Involvement and Control.
One key factor to consider when deciding between online home schooling and traditional schooling is parental involvement and control. Online home schooling provides parents the chance to participate more actively in their child’s education. They can have a direct role in selecting and guiding the curriculum, as well as monitoring their child’s progress and providing personalised support. This level of control can be beneficial for parents who want to have a hands-on approach to their child’s education.
On the other hand, traditional schooling often involves less direct parental involvement in the day-to-day education process. While parents can still be involved through parent-teacher meetings and volunteering, they may have less control over the curriculum and teaching methods used in the classroom. Ultimately, the level of parental involvement and control desired may vary from family to family, and it’s important to consider this factor when making a decision.
Worries Of Online Safety When Home Schooling Online
In today’s digital age, ensuring the online safety of children has become a top priority for parents. With the internet being a vast and sometimes dangerous place, it’s important to take proactive steps to protect your child when online home schooling. When home schooling online or doing distance education your child will have access to the Internet. Therefore you need to set up strategies and talk to your children about internet safety.
At My Homeschool, keeping your kids safe online is very important to us. That’s why our platform works so well for online home schooling. We have embedded most of the videos for your child to watch within the platform. We’ve also watched the videos to make sure there are no nasty surprises. Your child won’t need to browse the web to do research, as we’ve done the research and provided direct access to the link. We’ve taken days, weeks, and months to collate child-appropriate online learning material to give you confidence that your child will be watching quality instructional materials.
Online Home Schooling Providers vs. Distance Education Schools
However, there is still a further distinction between these two online home education options.
External Accountability of Online Learning
When you register for online school (distance education) you are accountable to the school. Your child is still a school student and not technically homeschooled. For example, with My Homeschool you are not accountable to us; we give you the choice to run your online home school as desired. However, you are responsible for your child’s homeschool registration.
Control the Content with Online Home Schooling
When you use a distance education provider you still need to use the curriculum they provide. However, with online home schooling you can use the curriculum they suggest, or you can tweak it to suit your child’s needs and your family values.
The Flexibility of Online Home Schooling
Record Keeping and Documentation
Whether you are doing distance education or online home schooling you will still need to do some homeschool record keeping.
If enrolled in a registered online school you send the paperwork to the school. If you are registered for home schooling then you may need to send some documentation to reregister. Documentation will be different from state to state. For example, online homeschooling in Victoria requires less documentation than homeschooling in QLD or homeschooling in NSW.
Online Home Schooling Support
Distance education provides support to the student and gives them access to qualified teachers and tutors who can provide one-on-one instruction and support. Online homeschool programs build teaching support into the resources and offer support to parents as the home educator. For example, at My Homeschool we have a virtual staff room in our community forum, and our resources are written so that the parent or student can learn along the way.
Cost of Distance Education vs. Online Home Schooling
Online home schooling eliminates the need to pay for teachers. Therefore, it costs less compared to distance education or a private school education. If necessary, parents can access tutors for specific subjects for further support.
Enrolment Criteria for Distance Education vs. Online Home Schooling
When using distance education schools in Australia, you can only enrol in a distance education school in your state. Additionally, there are usually eligibility requirements. However, when using online home schooling providers, you can enrol simply by paying for the course. It does not matter where you live.
Using My Homeschool For Online Home Schooling
At My Homeschool we decided to make our online learning platform a friendly and helpful place for home educators. We have a forum to ask questions and discuss issues, we provide online Zoom workshops, and send out a regular newsletter. An annual conference is also scheduled.
At My Homeschool, we use a customised version of Moodle to deliver lessons. We also use the Moodle App so you can access the learning platform from your phone.
What You Get When You Join Our Online Home School
- streamlined online home schooling curriculum so you can educate your kids from Kindergarten to Grade 10.
- a comprehensive scope and sequence with each grade.
- group art, music and read-alouds for the family to enjoy together.
- advice on book choices so you are alerted to potential issues.
- resources that cover multiple subjects simultaneously.
- videos, movies, and websites to enhance learning.
- short and varied lessons so your kids won’t be overwhelmed.
- independent lessons at grade level when appropriate.
- extension work, so your child can further explore topics that interest them.
- challenging curriculum for children wanting to go to university after Year 10.
How Much Is Online School Work?
Your child will need to access our online learning platform to complete some of their online lessons. A laptop, tablet, or desktop computer will work well. Your smart phone can be used for a quick review, or on the go, but it’s not the best long-term option for online reading and watching videos.
Our courses are set out in three sections:
- Before You Start – This has the files that you will need to help you get going with our course.
- The Virtual Cupboard – stores all the lesson resources.
- Weeks & Terms – This section is set out into the 18 weeks of the semester. It includes all the online links and videos needed for each week in one handy place.
Online Home Schooling in the Primary Years
The main strength of the My Homeschool Learning Platform is that all your resources are stored in one place. However, in the primary years, hardly any of their work is done online. Most of the resources can be printed and read offline. Video links to digital books are online. However, your child will not be writing their work online and they will be reading from living books.
Online Home Schooling in the High School Years
Our homeschool high school lessons still include lots of real books to read and notebooking activities. We expect students to do more independent work and have provided links to explore, however, there are no online quizzes or online activities.