Home Education

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Education is a major concern in our society, and there is good reason for this concern. Many of these problems revolve directly around the public education system and include problems with peer pressure, lack of individual attention from the teachers, problems socializing or "fitting in" with other students, and various others. Although there is no real solution to all of these problems, there are many different ways of solving them. Private schools as well as tutors are a great way to give kids the individual attention that they need, however these methods can be very costly. Something that has grown in popularity over the last decade is home schooling. This system has been around for generations; children learn at home while helping their parents out around the house. Many great men including Patrick Henry, John Quincy Adams, and Thomas Edison were schooled at home (Talbot, 2). Home schooling definitely does not solve all the problems that are brought about by education, in fact it brings about its own chain of problems, but it does have a great deal of advantages. Parents are the most important influences in their child's education next to their teacher. "…research shows conclusively that parents' involvement in their children's education confers great benefits, both intellectual and emotional, on their children" (Coleman, 1). This is why it is so important for parents to get involved in their children's lives at an early age. Home schooling is a wonderful way to be involved. One of the main reasons that so many people are attempting to home school their children is because of the freedoms offered by it. These freedoms include religious freedom and the freedom to choose the curriculum for starters. Compared to 1985 in which there were only about 50,000 children home schooling nationwide, there are now anywhere from 1.5 to 1.9 million. Their population is growing by as much as 15-20 percent a year according to Florida's annual survey of home schoolers (Talbot, 1). This poses an interesting question. Why is home schooling so much better? It can not be just because of the religious freedoms that the students are allowed. The students are also allowed many more freedoms than regular children are. Home schoolers can choose when they want to do their studies, take a few days off when they want to, go on a field trip, etc. This makes it much more appealing for both the parent and the student. Although the parent has to take their child's schooling into their own hands, it turns out that these children become more independent. It is no wonder that more and more people are teaching their children at home.

The freedom of religion is one of the most prevalent reasons that people have been turning to home schooling as an alternative to public schools. A study done by the Department of Education in 1999 showed that as much as 38.4% of all home schooling families' home school their children because of religious reasons. There are many curricula available for home use that already come with religious studies that are taught as a part of the lesson plan, one very popular one is A Beka Books which has its roots in the Pensacola Christian College. These lessons come on videos and are now starting to incorporate the internet into them. They also have religious classes that are taught right along with the core classes such as math, history, science, language, and others. At the end of the week, not only is the student quizzed or tested over their core classes, but also over their religious classes. This is a major positive aspect of home schooling because, according to a 1995 study of home educators, sociologist Maralee Mayberry found that "84 percent believed the Bible was literally true, 78 percent said they went to church at least once a week" (Talbot, 4). This survey shows that a large majority of home schooling families are religious; making the religion issue a major reason that makes this system...
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