More and more families are choosing to homeschool their children and they’re seeking curriculum specialists and teachers to support them. At My Learning Springboard, we’ve had the opportunity to work with families at the elementary, middle, and high school levels to design and implement customized programs. Each situation has been quite different. We’ve worked with students labeled gifted and talented. We’ve worked with students with learning differences. And we’ve worked with students with rather complicated IEPs needing a variety of related services. In every case, we manage homeschooling as a collaborative team.
Typically we facilitate the homeschooling process through the public school system in partnership with families. Each public school system has different requirements for homeschool students, including curriculum design, progress reports, and achievement tests. Depending on the need, we provide different levels of support and involvement. Some families are looking for partners to help design instructional programs and courses that they will then implement themselves. As part of this service, we may model instructional techniques or provide ongoing mentorship for parents to help them develop teaching skills. Other families are looking for a more comprehensive service where we both design and deliver the instructional programs. In these cases, we assemble a faculty and provide full case management.
Sometimes we manage homeschooling in partnership with an independent school for credit recovery when an extended absence is required. This model looks quite different and follows the instructional program of the independent school where the student remains enrolled. Reasons for extended absence may include illness, behavioral issues, emotional issues, or temporary family relocation. Some of our programs have used e-tutoring so that students can continue with their New York or Washington, DC based tutor while temporarily living in another state or country.
Homeschooling in urban areas presents endless learning opportunities. Homeschool programs can easily include museums, zoos, botanical gardens, art studios, lectures, college courses, field trips, and road trips. Students can take any sort of PE class they want from gymnastics to African dance to krav maga. We can hand pick the technology, incorporate hands-on learning, design programs thematically, and make multi-disciplinary connections. Students progress at their own pace, instructional modifications can be made quickly, and there are plenty of ways to ensure having opportunities for socialization.
We’ve had great success with homeschooling so far and look forward to working with more families.By Brad Hoffman, M.S.Ed.
Board Certified Educational Planner and Learning Specialist
My Learning Springboard, Inc.