Homeschooling 101: Dealing With Distractions

Posted on July 26 2012

Homeschooling has many advantages. It allows families to custom-fit the delivery of lessons and learning based on different factors – the child’s abilities and way of learning, their home situation, the activities they want to incorporate with learning and even the kind of values they want to inculcate in their children. Homeschooling also provides parents and children with more time to be together. Even better, the emergence of online high school programs make it even easier for parents to ensure that their child gets the kind of education he needs.

However, the downside is that it takes a certain kind of discipline and self-control to be able to ensure that high school credits are completed at the specified amount of time, if not earlier. As a homeschooling parent, you need to deal with distractions so that your child can finish his online high school classes and do well in them.

Here are some tips to help your online high school student from getting too distracted from his coursework:

Give your child a workspace. Working in the kitchen table can work as well, but it is better to provide a workspace to make your child more effective. Provide a corner of a room and equip it with the basics – a table, a comfortable chair, good lighting in an area that has low traffic. This sends a message to your child that sitting on that corner means he’s getting down to business. If you have more space, you can also add a file cabinet and project area, as well as a bookcase to store any research and literary material.

Minimize diversions and disruptions. This may mean banning Facebook and the cell phone during study time. Manage younger siblings during study time. Keep them distracted and entertained. Turn off your teen’s phone. Make it known to friends and loved ones that “school” is in session so that they can wait under “classes” are finished.

Try to maintain a regular schedule. One of the beauties of homeschooling is that schedules are not set in stone. You can always work around a schedule. However, it would be more effective to have a semblance of regularity for your teen. Try to arrange errands or appointments around regular “school time”.

Provide your child with enough challenging material that is custom-fit to his abilities and interests. When you are able to capture your teen’s interest with quality material such as the ones provided by The American Academy, he will have more incentive to focus on earning his online high school credit. The American Academy provides more than 100 online courses, with a wide range of topics. It provides coursework for basics such as Math and English, as well as Languages, the Arts and topics that will enrich your teen’s chosen career path.

Give your child something to aim for. One good way to minimize distractions is to have your child work towards a tangible goal – such as that trip to Disneyland that he’s excited about, or the gadget (cell phone, iPod or gaming device) he has been bugging you to get him for Christmas.

Distractions and disruptions can be detrimental to your teen’s learning. With the help of these simple strategies you can cut down on these to ensure a more effective learning experience.