We don’t know what you envision when you think of homeschoolers, but modern homeschooling might surprise you. Homeschool families are usually people just like you who are taking a different look at how best to educate their children. Once a fringe movement, this style of education has gained in popularity.
Those who decide to consider the homeschool route usually do so for a variety of reasons. Whether your budget doesn’t permit you to double down on preschool tuition, or you are dissatisfied with the publicly funded options available, homeschooling may be worth considering.
Here at TwinGo, we aren’t advocating one way of educating your twinzies over another, rather, we would like to provide you with options and information to consider for your family. Because ultimately, you know what works best for you.
Regardless of educational perspective, it seems that everyone agrees that a good start in the early years will set your littles up for success. What that “start” looks like will vary based on the method you choose to utilize. Popular methodologies for the early years include a traditional play-based format, Montessori, Waldorf, Reggio, Charlotte Mason, and Tools of the Mind, to name a few. Though these methods will vary in practice, some key ideas commonly run across these philosophies. Here are some thoughts to consider as you mull over the homeschool option.
Many parents are attracted to the idea of homeschooling because it can be gentle path in these tender years. While an early “start” is good, it is becoming increasingly apparent that pushing academics in the early years can have negative impacts later on. While we all want our kiddos to do well in school, there may be something to say for letting them develop more organically early on. As a homeschooling family, you can treat your twins as individuals and meet them where they are at. Whether they are ready to dive into Shakespeare at age 3 or have some delays/special needs, you can tailor your choices and enjoy letting them be little.
While pushing littles to try to read too early may not be the best of ideas, having an early exposure to quality literature will serve them well. At these early stages, the focus should be on simply exposing them to good books so that they view reading as a pleasurable and valuable experience. Not sure where to start? There are plenty of excellent resources on literature including The Read Aloud Revival Blog and The Read Aloud Handbook. Do remember that little minds generally have short attention spans, so keep it short and sweet, not long and grueling.
One of the best things you can do for a young child is take them outside to explore nature. Children are born curious, and spending time observing and enjoying the wonders of nature nourishes their bodies, minds, and souls. Interestingly, research indicates that “[o]utdoor environmental education has been shown to promote complex thinking and increased academic achievement, not just in science but also in other core subjects.” So get out there with a magnifying glass and wonder with fresh eyes where that ant is headed off to.
Perhaps one of the biggest fears of parents that are considering homeschooling is that their children will miss out on socialization. Parents want to make sure their children interact with others so that they can learn interpersonal skills, emotional maturity, and self-regulation. Thankfully, these skills don’t necessarily have to be acquired in the classroom.
Today, there are many ways for homeschool families to meet the socialization needs of their children. Check with your local library, community church, or mothers of preschoolers groups and see where you can get plugged in. Adding a regular play group into your week can be a breath of fresh air.
Social media can also provide ways to connect with other homeschool families. There are even Facebook Groups for homeschoolers of preschoolers that can provide you with resources, ideas, and ways to connect. You’ll probably find that the harder thing is curating your calendar so that you don’t overbook yourself. And don’t forget that your twinzies are learning the fine art of getting along with another human being ALL the time. They’ll have that sharing thing down in no time.
We hope this brief overview of the idea of homeschooling gives you something to think about. Reading books, outdoor time, playing - are you already homeschooling? Start digging in and exploring if this piques your interest. Whatever you decide, no decision is permanent, and you can always adjust course when needed. Enjoy back to school season whether it is celebrated in the classroom or your living room!