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Helpful Things Your Child Should Learn Before They Turn 18

Helpful Things Your Child Should Learn Before They Turn 18

People who experience a broad range of life experiences tend to enjoy themselves more and find happiness in many different ways. Learning some essential skills during your teenage years is one of the worthwhile personal endeavors that broaden your perspective. For an 18-year-old to fit into the society, and enjoy life, it is pertinent to have some skills that will help them get through all stages of becoming an adult without regrets.

1. Communication

Every 18-year-old you must be able to communicate with strangers, teachers, and people from all walks of life irrespective of affiliation or background. Give them the freedom to communicate freely with people under your close watch throughout their childhood. This means your child will grow to be able to communicate with strangers and handle the communication politely. but a lack of this skill or experience could come with some serious consequences because a young adult might find him or herself in a situation where communication with a stranger might be required resulting in untold hardship.

Hence, every child should be encouraged by a parent to build communication and interrelation skills.

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2. Primary Knowhow (DIY)

Most parents have resorted to helping their children do every single task not thinking about the consequence of such actions. We drive or accompany our children everywhere, and practically stop them from doing the very basic things they should be able to do. Regularly doing things for them can hinder their ability to be self-reliant.  A parent who is often too involved is not in any way helping a child grow. Hence, before your child turns 18, you should help that child to know the fundamentals of independence. Ensure your child can use the basic public services and perform basic adult tasks.

3 Learn a Musical Instrument

This is something every parent should encourage their children to do before they turn 18. Perhaps the biggest reason for your child to learn a how to play a guitar, piano and other musical instrument is to bring the joy of music to others. Not everyone has the ability or resources to learn to play and as an adult. An instrumentalist can bring joy and vitality to every social occasion.

While learning to play is healthy and entertaining, it is also mentally stimulating as it can help you child build patience, confidence, self-esteem and other vital skills necessary for integrating properly. The joy of music itself can open up a new world of inspired interests and possibilities for your young adult to become successful.

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4. Household Chores

Since the dawn of the 21st century, parents are increasingly excusing their teens from participating in some essential household chores. But the question that should pop out is, what if your young adult finds himself in a situation where he or she will require the use of the hands to carry out the task such as sweeping the floor, doing dishes, or otherwise contributing to a different household? It could be disastrous. This young adult may not know how to satisfy their needs or even make an appropriate contribution to themselves.

Learning some household chores will help your child integrate into any society and blend with others in a shared apartment.

5. Problems Solving

We tend to intervene in misunderstandings and protect our children’s feelings quickly without thinking of the psychological disadvantages. Young adults can find it difficult to deal independently with problems and resolve conflicts without an adult’s intervention.

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The disadvantages are that this carries with them to the university level, which often results in low performance. They could get stuck and give up because they are not used to solving problems for themselves.

6. Teach Freedom

Parents can sometimes form the habit of planning their child’s entire career. They might even find themselves clearing out all obstacles and stumbling blocks between their child and that envisioned future. Thus children develop no understanding of how success comes only by trying and trying again. Parents should teach freedom, and allow children the ability to decide on what to become in future. Forcing a child into what he or she doesn’t want to do can cause resentment.

Every 18-year-old should be able to navigate the world without a parent. These acitivities can help prepare a child for the world of independence ahead of them.

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Featured photo credit: pixabay via pixabay.com

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Published on November 7, 2018

How to Homeschool in the 21st Century (For All Types of Parents & Kids)

How to Homeschool in the 21st Century (For All Types of Parents & Kids)

In 2016, it was estimated that 1.7 million children were being homeschooled in the U.S, roughly 3.3% of all school-aged children.[1] Although this may not sound like a big portion of the population, the growth rate of homeschooling has been 7 to15% per year for the last two decades.

The burgeoning numbers are not a coincidence. There are tremendous benefits to homeschooling, including one-on-one teaching, adaptability to individual needs and learning styles, a safe learning environment, encouraging learning for knowledge rather than grades, and tailoring a curriculum to the child’s interests.

Is homeschooling something that you have been considering for your family? With all of the tools and resources available for homeschoolers in the 21st century, it may be easier than you think.

How to Homeschool (Getting Started)

After thinking it through, you’ve decided that homeschooling is the right step for you and your family. Now what? Here are the first things you should do to get your homeschooling journey started on the right track.

Figure Out the Laws

Homeschooling is regulated by the state, not the federal government. The first step is to find the current and accurate legal requirements mandated by your state in order to educate your child legally.[2]

The regulations can vary widely, from strict guidelines to no guidelines at all. However, don’t be overwhelmed by the legal jargon. There are many resources and local communities for homeschooling families that can help you figure out the logistics.

Decide on an Approach

Every child’s needs are different. This is your chance to choose the homeschooling style or combination of styles that best fits your child’s learning style and interests. A brief description of seven different homeschooling methods are listed below.

Supplies/Resources

Often times, purchasing a homeschooling curriculum is done too early in the planning process, resulting in buyer’s remorse.

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A curriculum is not always needed for homeschooling, and other types of free or less structured resources are readily available.

Find a Community

Getting connected with a community of homeschoolers is one of the most important parts of building a successful and thriving homeschool environment for your kids.

Look for communities online for virtual support or a local group that you and your kids can interact with. Partnering with others fosters better socialization skills for the students and provides opportunities for field trips, classes, and outings that wouldn’t have otherwise been a part of the homeschooling experience.

7 Different Homeschooling Methods

1. School-At-Home

Also known as Traditional homeschool, School-At-Home uses essentially the same curriculum as the local private or public school but at home.

The lessons can be completed independently, but more commonly, they are administered by a parent or a teacher-facilitated online school.

  • Benefits: formal standards, wide selection of curricula, same pace as peers, short-term friendly
  • Drawbacks: expensive, inflexible, time consuming, parent can get easily burnt out
  • Resources: K12, Time4Learning, Abeka

2. Classical

One of the most popular homeschooling methods used, it borrows educational practices from Ancient Greece and Rome. Subject areas are studied chronologically so that students can understand the consequence of ideas over time.

Socratic dialogue fosters effective discussions and debate to achieve beyond mere comprehension. There is often a strong emphasis on Great Books[3] as well as Greek and Latin.

3. Unit Studies

Rather than breaking up education into subjects, unit studies approach each topic as a whole, studying it from the perspective of each subject area.

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For example, a unit study about animals could include reading books about animals, learning about the classification of animals, figuring out which animals live on which continents, etc. This method is often used as a technique in other more comprehensive educational methodologies.

  • Benefits: promotes thinking about concepts as a whole, not monotonous or redundant, student-directed, bolsters weaker subject areas, beneficial for teaching multi-age students
  • Drawbacks: incomplete, knowledge gaps, curriculum-dependent
  • Resources: Unit Study, Unit Studies, Unit Studies Made Easy, Konos

4. Charlotte Mason

This Christian homeschooling style utilizes shorts periods of study (15-20 minute max for elementary, 45 minute max for high school), along with nature walks and history portfolios.

Students are encouraged to practice observation, memorization, and narration often. With a focus on “living books” (stories with heroes, life lessons, socio-ethical implications), reading plays a big role in this student-paced teaching style.

5. Montessori

Maria Montessori developed this method through working with special needs children in the early 20th century.

With a primary focus on the student setting the pace and indirect instruction from the teacher, this approach includes free movement, large unstructured time blocks (up to 3 hours), multi-grade classes, and individualized learning plans based on interests.

6. Unschooling

Unschooling is a learning model largely based on the work of John Holt.[4] The teaching style focuses mainly on the students’ interests, putting priority on experiential, activity-based, and learn as you go approaches.

For basic skills such as reading, writing, and math, a systematic technique is employed, but testing and evaluations are typically not utilized. Teachers, in general, play more of a facilitator role.

7. Eclectic/Relaxed

As the most popular method of homeschool, eclectic homeschooling is child-directed, resourceful, and non-curriculum based.

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Parents can sample any combination of homeschooling methods and styles or resources. One growing sector of eclectic homeschooling combines part homeschooling with part traditional schooling.

How to Facilitate Homeschooling with Technology

One of the reasons homeschooling is more feasible than ever before is due to the accessibility of tools and resources to enhance the learning process.

Email

Email is a tool that has really stood the test of time. Invented in 1972, it is still used today as a primary means of communicating on the Internet.

It is a great way to share assignments, links, and videos between parent and student.

Google Drive/Calendar

Google Drive offers a multitude of essential programs that can come in handy for homeschoolers, such as Docs, Sheets, Slides, and more.

With its sharing capabilities, easy accessibility, and auto-save ability, it’s easier than ever to organize and complete assignments. It will improve students’ writing and typing skills, as well as eliminate the need for paper.

Google Calendar is an excellent tool for tracking assignment due dates, planning field trips and activities, and developing time management skills.

Ebooks

Rather than invest in physical copies of books, ebooks are a wonderful option for saving money and space. There are plenty of places that offer a free or paid subscription to a wide selection of ebooks:

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E-Courses

When a structured curriculum is necessary for teaching a certain topic, an e-course is the way to go.

From watercolors to calculus, there are e-courses available about almost everything. Including different teaching styles that vary from the parents will encourage students to learn in different ways.

The visual and auditory stimulation will also be beneficial in helping students understand and retain the concepts being taught.

Some recommendations:

Youtube

Youtube is not just a platform for music videos and cats doing funny things. There are a number of Youtube channels that produce quality educational videos, free of charge.

Creating a playlist of videos for various topics is a great way to supplement a homeschool education.

Some recommendations:

Final Thoughts

Homeschooling in the current age looks much different than it did ten years ago. There are more options and more flexibility when it comes to educating kids at home.

Don’t be overwhelmed by the idea of homeschooling your children if it could make a positive impact on your family.

Featured photo credit: Hal Gatewood via unsplash.com

Reference

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