Homeschooling offers numerous benefits to many children in a variety of circumstances. Although it is not the best fit for every child and every family, many students have received a viable education with homeschooling. One group of children who may benefit from homeschooling is children with disabilities. These children can have difficulties in traditional schools. Today, many schools offer resources to help students with disabilities, but unfortunately, some students may struggle to keep up with material or feel comfortable in the class. Homeschooling children with disabilities can be a great solution to many of the problems that they face in a traditional classroom.
Meet Individual Needs
Many public and private schools will have some accommodations for children with special needs, but it is difficult to give each student everything they need to be successful. Parents, however, can give their children one-on-one instruction that is personalized to suit their needs. Depending on the student’s disability, the classroom may not provide ideal learning methods. For example, if a student has sensory or anxiety disorders that are difficult for teachers to work around, such as bright lights or loud noises. With home education, the parent can control these environmental factors to create the optimal learning space. Other things to consider include color schemes, music, and various seating options.
Homeschool also allows students with disabilities to work at a pace they feel comfortable. While traditional classrooms run the risk of leaving these students behind, parents can ensure their students grasp concepts before moving on to other material.
Provide a Safe Learning Environment
One of the key reasons that parents choose to homeschool their children with disabilities is to give them a safe environment to learn. With home instruction, there won’t be peer pressure to perform a certain way in class. They can learn in a safe, comfortable environment that helps them gain confidence around schooling.
Homeschooling can also provide a safe enviroment from bullying. Too often, children with disabilities are put under peer scrutiny because they are different. If a child is having difficulties with bullying, homeschooling allows them to be themselves and focus on learning rather than having to worry about being teased because of their disabilities.
Certain social situations can be overwhelming for a child with disabilities. For example, recess may cause a child to feel more anxious than relaxed. Homeschool can help eliminate unnecessary stressors such as this. Instead, parents can set up play dates or social gatherings at times and places that are comfortable for their children. This will also teach children with disabilities how positive social interactions are supposed to look.
Have More Flexibility
Homeschoolers are not confined to the same schedule that traditional classrooms are. Attending school from 8:00 to 3:00 takes up most of the day and leaves little extra time for things like doctor’s appointments or therapy. Unfortunately, many students with disabilities will end up missing a significant amount of school for these reasons.
With homeschool, parents can set their own schedules around necessary appointments and other obligations. Parents can provide homeschool instruction when it’s the most convenient for the family as well as when the student is feeling their best. Routine and structure are important for children, specifically those with disabilities. These children may require more frequent breaks to maintain focus and avoid frustration.
Focus on the Child’s Strengths and Interests
Every student has a different preferred learning method. Public and private schools typically stick to lecture-based instruction, homework, and tests. These methods may not be effective for children with disabilities. Students who prefer hands-on activities, interactive videos, or drawings can have more options through homeschool.
Some homeschoolers will incorporate their children’s interests to keep them engaged with lessons. For example, if a student really likes dinosaurs, there is no reason that they can’t be integrated into math lessons. It may take some creativity, but any parent can use their child’s interests to keep them motivated when it comes to their schooling.
Children with disabilities and special need may get everything they need from their public school teachers and other staff members. However, if your child is experiencing some difficulties, homeschool may be able to help.