Have you ever read a homeschool blog, like this one, or scrolled through a homeschooling group on Facebook only to be bombarded with vocabulary you don’t fully understand? Or maybe you’re like me and “know” the lingo but never entirely understood what it meant.
Fear homeschooling lingo no more! We’ve compiled a list of 10 terms frequently used in the homeschooling world so you can understand what they really mean when you come across them.
If you’ve been on our website or seen our posts on social media, you’ve probably seen this word quite a few times. What does it mean exactly? Accreditation simply means that an outside organization has looked at a program and determined that it meets or exceeds standards set by that organization. When you choose an accredited program, you can teach with confidence knowing that the program will provide your kids with a good education.
- Dual Enrollment
Have a high schooler who’s planning on going to college? Dual Enrollment lets him/her take college classes now, while still in high school. S/he’ll get some of those college general education classes out of the way while earning high school credits. This can either be done through a local college or community college; or your student can sign up for an online program. Some programs, like Bridgeway’s Associate Program, even let your child earn their Associate’s Degree while still in high school!
- Homeschool Co-op
You’ll find this term on just about every homeschooling website, blog, and YouTube channel out there. What is it exactly? Homeschool co-ops are groups of people that get together daily, weekly, or monthly to learn from each other. They can tackle difficult subjects, like AP science or history, that you might be intimidated to conquer yourself. Or, they can just be a small group of people getting together to learn something fun! Either way, homeschool co-ops are a wonderful opportunity to get to know other homeschooling families and help each other through the homeschooling process.
- Learning Styles
Every child has a special way s/he learns best. Those special ways can be divided into three different learning styles: auditory, visual, and kinesthetic. Auditory learners learn best through listening–hearing a lesson and repeating it in their head until it’s understood. Visual learners need to see it to remember it. Kinesthetic learners are movers; they can’t sit still and learn, instead they need to be moving around and/or fidgeting. Knowing your children’s learning styles can help you teach in the way that most benefits them.
- Live Online Classes
In short, Live Online Classes are courses your kids take online. Taught by certified teachers who instruct your kids in a subject and provide feedback on assignments, online classes can be a great addition to your homeschool. They also allow your kids to interact with peers via the virtual classroom. For the homeschooler who is intimidated by teaching difficult courses, online classes give you the confidence that your children are learning what they need to.
A homeschool portfolio is a collection of your child’s work throughout the previous year. It shows what that child did, learned, and created during that year. Some states require that you create a portfolio. Other families make them as a way to look back on the year, recognize their achievements, and identify what needs to change for the next year.
- Personalized Learning
Personalized learning is exactly what it sounds like: taking the child and making sure s/he is given the chance to learn in the best way possible for him/her. It factors in the interests of the child as well as his/her learning style to create a curriculum that fits him/her. It’s an opportunity that can really only be found in homeschooling.
This term pops up in the homeschooling world every once in a while. It essentially means keeping track of your kid’s grades and assignments. Did s/he get an A on a test? You need a place to write that down. For those with college-bound high schoolers, it could mean creating a transcript complete with grades and credit hours.
Homeschooling bloggers and YouTubers talk a lot about scheduling: scheduling the year, the day, what needs to be done and when. Why do they devote so much time to it? There’s a simple reason: scheduling allows you to keep on track. Homeschooling brings a lot of surprises that can interrupt a school day. Having a schedule already in place helps you get back on the right track so you can quickly bounce back from those surprises.
- Year-round Schooling
Some homeschooling families decide to do school year-round. Yes, that means during the summer, too. This creates a more relaxed school year and, ultimately, cultivates a spirit of learning in their homeschool that’s not just confined to nine months.
Homeschooling is a unique world with many different facets, but that is precisely what makes it so special. Do you have more questions about homeschooling? You can contact one of our representatives at 800-683-1474 to hear more!