How to Manage Technology When Homeschooling Your Child
Technology is an incredibly valuable asset for everyone alive today. For children born after 2010, constant connection to technology is a normal part of life.
However, choosing how much to expose children to technology is a tricky situation.
This is especially true for homeschooling children.
The Benefits of Online Homeschooling
Twenty years ago, homeschooling a child required a lot of additional work for the parent to determine the curriculum. Today, there are multiple online courses for homeschooling from Kindergarten up to Grade 12.
Online homeschool education often combines the best of both worlds for homeschoolers: independent homeschool materials in addition to the freedom to take their school anywhere.
With online homeschooling, students can learn anywhere with a wifi connection. Whether that’s at the kitchen table, in their study area, at the library, or even while traveling.
How Much Should Online Time Be Included in Homeschooling?
If you are a parent who is considering homeschooling their child, then you might have questions about how much of their learning should include technology.
As school becomes more integrated with technology, you must choose for yourself how much you expose your child to online learning.
The internet and virtual classrooms are great resources, but children cannot learn with technology alone.
Part of a child’s learning process involves interaction with other people and hands-on learning activities to help them grasp information. Too much online homeschooling with no physical interaction can limit the capacity to which they can learn new things.
A Bridge for Knowledge
Using technology for research, interacting with other homeschool families, and occasional assignments or projects is great. However, allowing the internet to teach your children full-time is not a good idea.
Think of online homeschooling as the bridge to knowledge. It is there as a resource that should be used when needed. Similar to visiting a library or museum, it is an experience that heightens their learning but is not the entire experience.
Find a balance between engagement and overwhelm. Typically 1-2 hours a day is a good measure of time for any child to be using the internet, gaming, or viewing media. For homeschooled children, this time limit may increase slightly if they are using online programs for their education.
Teaching Them to Use Technology
The reality today is that children need to know how to use computers. Most are very adept at picking up any device and making it work. Necessary internet skills, typing, and knowing how to search for information are critical skills for most careers today.
Ideally, you and your family should aim for a balance between learning healthy tech habits and building the skills that technology can’t teach, such as in-person communication skills.