The Ontario Federation of Teaching Parents

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Styles in Home Education – a Comparison

StructuredSemi-structuredInformal
GOALSPromote self-discipline, good work habits,develop good memory
-can't be creative in a vacuum
Integrate education with everyday learning while producing children who are self-directed, self-disciplined and who love learning.Give child joy in learning.
Foster creativity.
Allow the child to grow from within.
CURRICULUMTends to be textbook orientedUses textbooks and workbooksTends to be activity oriented, e.g. trial and error learning
Purchases a complete curriculum and follows it dailyUses some curriculum but not rigidly adhered toUses resources around the home, from the library, from the community.
As the need arises might use some traditional curriculum
EVALUATIONSubject lines remain distinctParent may teach basic math and language separately but allow more freedom in other areas of studyThere is more an incorporating of subjects around a central theme as in a unit study
Regularly scheduled testingMay test score subjectsEvaluation on a daily basis by observing the child
SCHEDULETeacher directed according to student's needs as identified by teacherTeacher sets boundaries within which the student worksStudent directed
Scheduled day prepared in advance by teacher according to child's needsWork generally planned by parent but student makes choices within parametersParent follows child's lead and gives help when required
School begins at a certain time - determined by parentFlexible - somewhat controlled by parentChild determines when learning will occur
More work done at the desk - fewer field tripsSomewhere in betweenLess work done at the desk - learning takes place where it takes place