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10 Benefits of Homeschooling You Need To Know

10 Benefits of Homeschooling You Need To Know

Did you know that in the US today, there are about 2 million children who are homeschooled? This represents an annual increase of between 7 to 15 percent. Globally, almost 40 countries have banned homeschooling or have restrictive laws. So, what are the benefits these children are getting and are they really doing well on standardized tests such as SAT and ACT?

1. Homeschoolers do better on tests.

One study of 20,000 homeschooled children revealed that they definitely scored better at tests. This was particularly evident in those children who had been homeschooled right through to high school level. In another study, the homeschoolers in the SAT test were scoring around 67 points more than the national average.

2. They have more emotional freedom.

Being educated at home removes a lot of the stress of the normal classroom. There is no need to try to ‘fit in’ and give into peer pressure. There are no cases of bullying, drugs, being ostracised and all the other social pressures. In the book A Sense of Self: Listening to Homeschooled Adolescent Girls by Susannah Sheffer, the author has found that teenage homeschooled girls had no loss of self esteem and become happier and more emotionally mature adults.

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3. There is no homework.

Because the children are more directly involved in the learning process, there is little or no homework to be done. Parents never have to struggle to help with impossible and lengthy homework.

4. They are not socially isolated.

There has been much criticism of the fact that the homeschoolers do not get to learn social skills. This is only partly true because there will be lots of opportunities for them to do extra activities with other kids. They will more than likely have plenty of friends when they do their swimming, gymnastics and piano lessons, for example. It is up to the parents not to isolate their children.

5. Flexible schedules make life easier for the whole family.

No rushing out of the house in the morning and having to meet all sorts of schedules, not to mention meetings and other commitments. The parent can decide the length of lessons and also decide when to take holidays. Many homeschooled children can enjoy educational breaks with their parents at off seasons during the year. There are loads of opportunities for field trips, museum visits and parks. This can tie in perfectly with what they are learning at home at the time.

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6. They can learn at their own pace and make faster progress.

John Taylor Gatto, the controversial author of Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling, has criticized the public school system. He says that homeschooling avoids confusion in learning as the kids get one-on-one tutoring. The homeschoolers learn autonomy in learning and are not so emotionally and intellectually dependent as the public school kids.

7. Their special needs are catered for.

If a child has special needs, they may be labelled and treated inadequately in the school system. This could well be a hindrance and is often a social stigma. ADHD children have to suffer all sorts of prejudice and obstacles. If the child is homeschooled sensitively, his special needs are never forgotten and s/he is always the number one priority.

8. There is plenty of time for “premium” parenting.

I usually refer to homeschooling as “premium” parenting because the parent is intimately involved in the learning process. This rarely happens with public school kids. At most, they get grudging help from parents with homework, but it will never be the same quality the homeschooler gets. The parent as the teacher knows the subject well and can share fully in the joy and excitement of learning.

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9. Homeschoolers may become happier and more productive adults.

Research into how homeschoolers turn out as adults was conducted by Dr. Ray in 2003. He found that 5,000 out of a group of 7,300 adults had been homeschooled for more than 7 years. They were much more active in community and social life than their public school counterparts. A much higher number also went on to higher education and they also scored higher on the happiness scale. In 1999, Stanford University accepted twice as many homeschoolers compared to publicly and privately educated students.

10. They may be more independent.

When the homeschoolers were questioned at college, they reported that they were much more independent in their approach to life and learning. They had never felt the need to follow the crowd, and this served them well. In regard to having to solve learning problems, they were much more independent in seeking out the answers themselves.

Were you homeschooled and what were the advantages? Let us know in the comments below.

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Featured photo credit: Homeschooling/Iowa Politics.com via flickr.com

More by this author

Robert Locke

Author of Ziger the Tiger Stories, a health enthusiast specializing in relationships, life improvement and mental health.

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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