Homeschooling for Different Learning Styles
During the learning process we use our senses to process the information and understand it. During this process, most of us tend to use one sense more than the others. The sense that we use most determines our learning style. According to researchers, there are three basic types of learning styles, which we’ll discuss below.
One of the problems with traditional schooling is that it shows preference towards reflective, sensing and verbal learners. Homeschooling is much more flexible and so can be better adjusted to all kind of learning styles, and is especially helpful to students who tend to have a hard time with the constraints that traditional schooling places on their behavior and on how they process new information.
Active and Reflective Learners
Active learners retain and understand information best by doing something active with it. Reflective learners prefer to think about it quietly first.
Sitting through lectures without getting to do anything physical but take notes is very difficult for anyone, but is particularly challenging for active learners. Active learners are often labeled as hyperactive by traditional schools, simply because they have a hard tome sitting quietly for hours.
Active learners love 3D online homeschooling because it enables them to do and to create as part of the learning process, and so they rarely feel bored.
Sensing and Intuitive Learners
Sensing learners like learning facts. They like details and prefer a slower pace of learning. Intuitive learners prefer discovering possibilities and relationships. They like innovation and really dislike repetition. Courses that involve a lot of memorization and routine calculations are very hard on intuitive learners. Just like active learners, intuitive learners are often labeled by traditional educators as “difficult” students.
Homeschooling in general, and 3D online homeschooling in particular, is perfect for intuitive learners because it focuses on discovery and avoids repetition.
Visual and Verbal Learners
Visual learners remember best what they can see, such as pictures, videos, and diagrams. Verbal learners like words, including written and spoken explanations. In traditional schooling there is a strong emphasis on words and very little visual information, which makes learning tough for visual learners. 3D education is perfect for visual learners because it provides them with the visual stimuli that they need in order to truly understand what they are learning.
The beauty of 3D online homeschooling is that it’s very flexible and can adapt to any learning style. When homeschooling, the pace can be slower or faster, visuals or text can be emphasized, and emphasis can be placed on active creation of material or on learning and memorizing facts – whatever works for the student.
Because it’s a fun, game-like way to learn, 3D education also keeps all students engaged, regardless of their learning style.
However, if your child is an active, visual or intuitive learner (or all three – they often go together), chances are he suffers in a traditional school setting. 3D online homeschooling can be a lifesaver for such a student and transform him from “mediocre” to “bright.”
Three Top Reasons Parents Love Homeschooling
Many homeschooling parents report that homeschooling is very enjoyable to them and that they simply don’t see their family ever going back to the crazy mornings, the rigid curriculum and the lack of flexibility and imagination so typical of traditional education.
The three top reasons parents love homeschooling their children:
Homeschooling is Flexible
Traditional schooling is tough and rigid. It throws children and their families into a schedule that is far from natural for most of us. The early mornings, the long hours, the endless homework, the late nights finishing up work – this is tough on kids and on parents alike, and is absolutely unnecessary. Kids can learn twice as much while enduring half the pressure they have to endure in a traditional school setting – by learning individually.
Another aspect of homeschooling’s flexibility is that it can be tailored to the specific child’s needs, interests and capabilities. Instead of forcing the child to fit into the curriculum, the curriculum is adjusted to the child.
Homeschooling encourages creativity
Homeschooling, and especially highly creative approaches to learning such as WiloStar3D’s 3D immersive education program, are the complete opposite of dry, boring traditional education because they encourage kids to use their imagination and creativity as part of the learning process. Learning thus becomes active and fun instead of boring and dry. We’ve seen countless tweets by homeschooling parents who say how much they love going outside with their child and immersing them in fun, engaging, educational activities. Homeschooling, when done right, is fun for parents too!
Research has proven time after time that socialization is NOT a problem when it comes to homeschooling. In fact, the notion that the only way to socialize kids is to throw them into a large group of peers with whom they have nothing in common except for their age is ridiculous. People have been socialized for many generations through their families and through organized social activities. For many sensitive, creative types, the gentle socializing that comes with homeschooling is far better than the harsh socialization in a traditional classroom. Parents love seeing their children flourish socially and they love helping them to avoid being hurt and pressured by peers.
Of course, there are many more reasons why parents love homeschooling. These are just the three that we consider as the top ones. We would love to hear from you – what do YOU love about homeschooling?
Getting Used to Homeschooling
For most families, homeschooling takes some getting used to.
Even if the decision to homeschool was not forced on you because of special circumstances such as having a special needs child, even if you thought it through and made an educated decision to homeschool, the transition is still not going to be 100% smooth.
While many kids who start homeschooling are relieved to put the traditional school’s intense social pressures behind them, others actually miss the social interaction. It takes time, and careful planning of plenty of social activities with other homeschooling families, to make them see that their social life isn’t over now that they are being homeschooled. If anything, their social life becomes more rich and focused because it’s more selective. They are not forced into the daily company of peers with whom they have very little in common. Instead, they spend quality time with like-minded people who share their interests.
Immersive education programs such as WiloStar3D are helpful in this respect because they enable kids to collaborate with other homeschoolers and to communicate with them as part of their learning, which makes the homeschooling experience a lot more social and the exact opposite of “lonely” or “isolated.”
For the homeschooling parent, there’s often the issue of finding time for herself and for her grownup interests. I’ve heard countless parents say that they would love to homeschool, but they can’t imagine being home with the kids every day for years. Some parents view the public school system as a way to make sure they get some “me” time, and while there’s nothing wrong with that, I believe that you CAN carve out “me” time while homeschooling.
In fact, if the choice is between working full time outside of the home while sending your kids to school, or staying home and homeschooling, your life will become much less stressful if you decide to homeschool. The mad morning rush will be over, and the need to nag your child to keep up with the rigid curriculum will be over too. The typical day for a homeschooling parent is far more relaxed than the typical day for a parent who works outside of the home, and you can get lots of “me” time while the kids are busy doing their work. Even at a young age, they will be doing a lot of the work independently, giving you time for yourself.
Homeschooling takes adjusting, but most families who opt for it never look back.
When trying to decide if homeschooling is a viable choice for you financially, the first question you need to ask yourself is, “can we get by on just one salary?” While it is perfectly possible to work at home part time while homeschooling your child, one of you will likely have to give up full time work outside of the home.
Homeschooling often means cutting back financially, but for most families, this is well worth it. The very fact that one of you (usually the mom) doesn’t have the expenses of professional attire, commute and daycare, will save you a lot of money. Other “sacrifices” may not be sacrifices at all: going back to a simpler lifestyle, cooking at home, having family dinners together and focusing on spending time together and on strengthening your family relationships are all very good things indeed regardless of whether you homeschool or not.
Before you commit to a homeschooling program or purchase a homeschooling curriculum, it’s important to make sure that the learning style of that program fits your individual child. It makes no sense to invest in a program that you would have to abandon just a few months later and start looking for a different one, essentially doubling your costs.
So, if your child loves technology and video games and is highly intelligent, creative and inquisitive, a 3D homeschool such as WiloStar3D would be a great option for them. A “mainstream” homeschool curriculum that resembles traditional education would likely be a poor fit for such a child.
Before deciding on a homeschooling program, make sure it is an accredited homeschool – even if it costs more, the accreditation is well worth it. It’s also important to talk with the school about their refund policy prior to making the first payment and to see if they offer a sibling discount, or a discount for prepaying the entire annual tuition.
Traditional Education vs. Immersive Education
Traditional education is about sitting passively in a classroom and listening to the teacher. It is not always this way – after all, many traditional schools do offer labs, art, music etc. – but we’re pretty sure anyone would agree that in a traditional education setting, the vast majority of the student’s time is spent in a passive mode.
Which is why we dislike traditional education and were looking to do something better – we wanted to find a way to allow students to be creative, to explore, to create – while learning. In other words, we wanted to see students immerse themselves in the material in many different ways and learn through experiencing rather than through passive listening.
Immersive education is about immersing students in a rich, complex curriculum that allows them to learn by participating in a wide range of engaging activities. Of course, immersive education doesn’t have to be about technology!
There are many ways to immerse students, as many homeschooling parents know quite well. We immerse our children when we take them outside to the playground and allow them to throw a ball down the slide and see what happens (gravity!). We immerse our students when we let them build with blocks and find out which structures are stable and which are not. We immerse children in art when we take them to the museum, to the library and to the children’s theater.
There are countless ways to teach by immersion. Certainly one of them is using the wonderful tools that technology offers to immerse, experience, and create.
When kids use technology, and especially 3D technology to learn, they immerse themselves in their virtual surroundings. They get to play, create, discuss, collaborate and build, all while assuming a unique 3D personality via their avatar. The beauty of 3D immersive education is that it uses technology to free students from physical limitations such as location or special needs and allows them to truly immerse themselves in the material.
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