How to Customize Your Homeschool Approach

Are you struggling to find the perfect homeschool curriculum for your family?

Do you like one or more homeschool styles but none gel perfectly with you?

It's time to customize your homeschool approach - here's how...

Many homeschoolers find something they like in various homeschool philosophies, styles and approaches, but they can't find an exact fit for their family.

Other homeschoolers just prefer to design their own curriculum for their own reasons, and would never countenance a boxed curriculum like Sonlight.

And still others "mix and match" among the various types of homeschool curricula and philosophies.

Just remember, every homeschool has its own style and approach, there treally is no one size fits all in homeschooling!

Creating the perfect homeschool schedule and programme for your family will take time and LOTS of trial and error.

Read on to find out what you should consider as you design the perfect homeschool for you.

N.B. Comparison is definitely the thief of joy here! Do NOT compare your homeschool to anyone else's. Take ideas that resonate with you, ask for tips, but do not compare!

How to Customize Your Homeschool Approach

If you're not sure whether you should design your own approach or how to go about customizing a bought curriculum or homeschool style for your homeschool, here are some tips and ideas.

1. Determine how your child learns

This is probably the most important step in deciding what approach to take to customizing your homeschool.

If you're not sure, there are tests available online that allow you to discover your child's learning style. 

Teaching according to your student's style of learning can really make the difference between success and struggle.

2. Familiarize yourself with the various homeschool philosophies

Do some research into the types of homeschooling approaches out there - you may be surprised to find out there are so many!

Look at the mainstream ones first, and then look into some of the "offshoots" of the main approaches.

There are lots of different ways to do this, but this article discusses the main homeschool philosophies.

3. Talk to other homeschooling families

This is so important when customizing your homeschool and discovering what approach is right for you.

Not only will you meet and develop relationships with other homeschooling families, but you will also glean ideas for all sorts of lessons and approaches.

There are myriad Facebook groups which have veteran homeschoolers more than willing to chat, and some curriculum have their own forums and apps too.

I find the Sonlight app invaluable!

4. Multiple children

Multiple children require a different approach than just one child.

This is something to remember as you do your research - would this work with three, four, six, or eight different ages?

If a certain homeschool approach involves a lot of expensive field trips, for example, and you have a lot of children, that approach could be impractical.

Finding a solid programme that you can pass down through various children is useful, but remember that you may need to adapt your teaching and curriculum to different learning styles and personalities in your family.

5. Design your own

Don't be afraid to design your own curriculum or even just a unit study about something your child finds fascinating.

Sometimes, homeschooling parents can get stressed and worried over whether or not they have the 'perfect' curriculum for their kids. (Hint: there's no such thing!)

But sometimes that stress and worry can translate into a rigid curriculum that is not a good fit for your student/s.

Instead, don't be afraid to experiment and even create your own curriculum or unit study.

Does your student love machines? Design a unit study that covers the core subjects through the subject of machines. Explore the topic of machines through all subjects.

This unit study planner is a great guide to help you create your own themed curriculum:

6. Research online

Take advantage of free home school information online.

Look at various lessons from different curricula to find out how they are laid out.

This will give you an idea of how they work and help to give you more ideas for your student.

You can look at these as springboards for your own customized approach.

For example, you may love the selection of books Sonlight suggests but want to do language arts and history slightly differently while following their science program as it's laid out.

7. Know your kids

Probably the most important aspect of customizing your homeschool is to observe and know your kids. 

What works for them? What makes them tick?

How can you work with, not against, your child's interests and style of learning?

When you embrace this approach, it sets your child up for a lifetime of learning.

More Homeschooling Tips:

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