Please welcome Courtney Day to the blog. She has had great success with eclectic homeschooling by incorporating various methods of hybrid homeschooling into her plans over the years. She gave you a nice overview of why and how she decided to pass some of the class on to other people. I think you will love it! ~ Cindy
This post contains affiliate links.
I have so much respect and awe for parents who teach their children at home without outsourcing. I really wanted to follow in their footsteps and be the only educator for my four children until I graduate from high school.
I dreamed that we would spend our years reading good books, mastering mathematical concepts with ease, learning Latin together as a family, growing organic gardens in the summer, cuddling by the fire with hot cocoa in the winter, and reciting poetry , and when spring came again, bluebirds and cardinals nested outside our windows so we could marvel at the wonder of creation … and my children, who were so angelic, would never bother the precious nestlings with loud arguments.
Real life doesn’t look like my fairytale homeschool dreams. Like so many homeschoolers, I wear different hats all day. As my children progressed in class, I tried to keep up with everything. That’s when I discovered hybrid homeschooling.
What is hybrid homeschooling?
It is the practice to divide a student’s time between studying at home, teaching away from home, and / or teaching online. Online courses can include anything from live instruction to live instruction Classes being streamed or taught by DVD – basically everything that a “substitute teacher” offers for a particular subject.
We have been hybrid homeschooling for 7 years. Our first step into hybrid education was a local cooperative, and now my kids are attending cottage school. Hybrid homeschooling can go many different routes and I am so grateful that we have these options.
This year we’re also adding a few online courses for two of my students. One of them is one Algebra 2 course from Memoria Press for my eldest. To make my job even easier, I run a small cooperative for science and electives at home. This means that I will share the class burden with other parents!
Reasons to Consider Homeschooling Help
1. Cottage schools, cooperatives, and online classes give me a break.
I’m not responsible for teaching, planning, scheduling, or grading most of these classes (which is wonderful). In addition, a lot of pressure is relieved when we get to a subject that I can’t teach – or just don’t want to teach – without great effort.
Here are some examples:
- My oldest is entering his sixth year of Latin studies. He has long since exceeded my knowledge of Latin and now needs a master teacher.
- I just don’t care about evaluating compositions at any level, which is a little bit humorous considering I’m a freelance writer. Knowing that someone else is responsible for teaching and evaluating compositions saves me time and energy.
Since we chose cottage school, I have a full day of school week with no kids! I’m kid free once a week from 7:45 am-3:30pm and it’s fantastic! Please don’t get me wrong, I love you and you are great. But there are four of them … and they’re loud … and we have a lot of time together … and I’m an introvert. I’m a better person the rest of the week because I know I have time allocated on my own.
2. These courses provide accountability opportunities for my children.
Whether in person, online, or via video, my children are accountable to another teacher next to me. This is a great burden on me, but a great opportunity for my children to learn important lessons about planning, organization, and accountability at the same time.
3. In-person courses offer unique opportunities.
For example, our cottage school offers theater, sports, the arts, writing competitions, science labs, and social opportunities. Depending on the type of group, you can find all kinds of curriculum, extracurricular, and social options that your children can benefit from on multiple levels.
Not to mention the fact that my kids enjoy teaching with friends, there is positive peer pressure to perform well.
Are there disadvantages to hybrid homeschooling?
Of course there is. Almost everything has advantages and disadvantages – especially when we work hard to meet the needs of our learners.
- When you hand over the reign of the classroom, you are definitely giving up control of your curriculum options.
- You admit to someone else’s timeline that is taking away some of the freedom in school that we all love. That doesn’t mean you can’t go on vacation in February, but it does mean that you need to be in touch with teachers and plan accordingly.
- The positive peer pressure I mentioned above could go the other way – even in homeschooling circles.
- Most classes are chargeable.
Hybrid homeschooling options
Cottage schools or tutorials
These schools often offer core classes such as math, composition, foreign language, reading, history, etc. à la carte. They usually meet once or twice a week to teach and do homework for the rest of the week. Usually, you can take the full day or just a class or two that suit your needs. The classes are often taught by professionals or parents who have extensive experience in their subject. In many cases, you are free to drop and leave your students.
Cooperatives are usually organized by a group of homeschooling families. They are very versatile. Some cooperatives may offer core classes and electives. Some may only offer electives. Some may only offer social activities. and some can be very interest specific. Parents are often encouraged to teach and be present all day.
Online courses are often taught by professionals. You can find dedicated online courses for almost any major or elective for all ages. No Sweat Nature Study LIVE is an example of an online teaching opportunity for elementary and middle school students.
Streaming courses and DVDs
Several curriculum companies offer courses in difficult subjects via DVDs or streaming. Sometimes you need to buy accessories to accompany the lesson (such as a textbook or workbook), and sometimes all of the work is taught and done by the computer within the program. These are usually own-paced courses where most of the lessons are taken off your plate. However, sometimes you find that you are still responsible for grading.
In Home Co-op
I taught Algebra 1 to my eldest daughter and a friend’s daughter at my house last year. It went so well that we decided to expand and shift the focus. I’m going to run a small science, geography, and electives cooperative once a week this year. It really is a gift to find like-minded friends to accompany you as you homeschool to share responsibility!
I love our hybrid homeschool! For us it is the perfect balance between homeschooling and outsourcing. I’m not overwhelmed with the work involved in teaching four different grade levels and we actually found time for a bit of the fairytale life I dreamed of.
This was a guest post from Courtney Day. She has been home teaching for 9 years and lives in rural Kentucky with her husband and four children. She is a freelance writer and speaker with a desire to encourage parents on their way to school by drawing on her own experiences. Her hobbies are gardening, reading, kick boxing and long distance running. You will often find her serving at the local food bank or raising funds for a good cause. Just look for it The girl in yellow. Contact Courtney at [email protected]
Some of Cindy’s top tips for online or DVD curriculum
Note: We are not the author of this content. For the Authentic and complete version,
Check its Original Source