There is Help for Homeschool Parents When it Comes to Math and Science

There are more and more homeschool parents electing to school their children from home. There are a myriad of reasons for parents taking direct responsibility for their child’s education. Controlling the content of the material while assuring that all state standards have been met are among the reasons parents take charge of their kids’ schooling. Not all parents have the means to take on this responsibility and not all should. Parents need to understand their own limitations if they are going to administer lessons themselves. It is important that homeschool parents take stock of these limitations and find assistance for their children

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Math and science tend to be subjects that many homeschool parents try to find outside help with. I have had a number of homeschooled students who came to me extremely deficient in their grade-level math skills. Math is the only subject we learn throughout our school experience that is linear, that is, we are expected to carry what we learn to each new level of math. The problem that occurs (not just with homeschooling, but traditional school as well), for example, is that if we don’t learn 6th grade math, we can’t do 7th grade math, and so on and so forth.

The earlier math deficiencies are detected, the easier they are repaired. One advantage to homeschooling is that these deficiencies are easier to spot and fix. If, however, the homeschool parents have reached their own math limitations, they should seek help. The longer it takes to resolve the issue, the less chance there will be that the child will ascend to a functional level of math once they reach graduation age.

There is help. With proper homeschool instruction, math deficiencies can be addressed, sometimes, with dramatic results. One of my homeschool students (terrific kid!) came to me as a 10th grader who I initially tested at a 5th grade math level. The homeschool parents had done an amazing job educating their son but had, unfortunately, neglected his math once they had reached their own limits at which time, he was brought to me. In just two and a half years this young man finished his senior year with me passing Algebra II with an A minus! This level of achievement is unusual but it shows what can be accomplished and that it is never too late!

The Sciences are the other academic area where there can be advantages with homeschooling. In public schools, science is often ordered by offering the mathematically-less complex courses first. The problem with this “logic” is that the most complex sciences are, in terms of math, the least complicated. For example, biology is, by far, the most complex of the sciences. Biology requires an understanding of chemistry and physics but is generally the first science course taken in secondary school. Both chemistry and physics generally require higher math skills than biology but make no mistake, both of these subjects are far simpler to conceptualize than biology.

In the ever evolving world of education, there is much to digest, but it has become obvious to many parents that there are several advantages to homeschool.

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