Eclectic Homeschool: Curriculum That Works
It’s likely that this isn’t the first time you have come across the term “eclectic homeschooling” in your home education journey. That’s because this broad educational style is at the heart of the approach of many, many families who choose to homeschool—even those who had started their journey with a more narrow view of how they wanted things to go. On this page, we will explore what eclectic homeschooling is, how it differs from other styles of homeschooling, how it relates to homeschool curriculum, and how Time4Learning’s online program ties in extremely well with an eclectic approach.
What Is Eclectic Homeschooling?
Eclectic homeschooling is a highly individualized education method resulting from mixing and matching a variety of homeschooling resources. It is an exceptionally personalized approach for every child based on their strengths, learning styles, and interests. Many families find that what worked well one semester, may not work the next. Or in some cases, what works for a child in one subject, does not work in another subject. As a result, the eclectic homeschooling approach will be completely different for different families.
While some homeschoolers pursue only a Classical approach or only an unschooling strategy, eclectic homeschoolers see value in a variety of different educational methods. While actual statistics are hard to come by, it’s likely that most homeschooling families eventually adopt an eclectic approach to their children’s education.
Eclectic vs Relaxed Homeschooling
You may hear the term “relaxed homeschooling” used interchangeably with eclectic homeschooling, as many people consider them one and the same. If there is a difference between the two, it is that relaxed homeschoolers may still pursue a singular style of homeschooling, while allowing their child’s interests to primarily dictate the focus. Eclectic homeschooling, on the other hand, is more about finding the right mix of resources and methods, with less concern that the child is directing the educational agenda. Certainly, though, it is also possible to have both a relaxed and eclectic homeschooling philosophy.
Designing an eclectic homeschool curriculum for your child or teen depends heavily on truly understanding how your child learns best. This may not be possible until you’ve had at least a year or two of home education under your belt and have had the chance to test different curricula, resources, and methods.
Eclectic homeschooling is often an end result of trying a variety of other homeschooling styles. When you combine the educational goals you have for your children with your observation of their specific interests, strengths, and weaknesses, you are able to mix and match the programs and tools that will fulfill both. Resources that eclectic homeschoolers might use could include online learning, library books, locally offered courses and clubs, videos, and bits and pieces of subject-specific curricula.
Getting started with an eclectic approach might include:
- Observing your child carefully over a school year or more to determine his/her learning style, key interests, and what does and doesn’t work to keep his/her interest
- Setting out a list of goals you want your child to accomplish
- Researching available curricula, materials, tools, and local offerings that fit your educational goals and your child’s individual needs
- Blending the resources you find to create a customized educational plan, with the recognition that you can make adjustments as you go, depending on the success of each resource.
Eclectic Homeschool Online
Eclectic homeschooling is an efficient way to teach a number of children who have different interests, abilities, ages, and learning styles. If you have more than one child, it is possible that their varying needs may not be met with a single curriculum.
One way this works for many families is by integrating an online homeschool program into their curriculum mix. While mom or dad works with one child on a hands-on project, other siblings can be working independently on web-based lessons or activities. This can rotate, depending on when each homeschooler needs individual attention vs self-paced learning. Incorporating some kind of online curriculum into an eclectic homeschooling method can not only provide solutions for families with multiple homeschoolers, but can also make even a single homeschooler’s school day more varied and interesting.
How Does Time4Learning Work with the Eclectic Homeschooling Method?
Time4Learning’s language arts, math, science, and social studies serve as a core educational base for eclectic homeschoolers. Our curriculum can be used by children who are gifted, those who learn differently and those that learn typically. Parents can use Time4Learning as a core curriculum or a supplemental tool, by selecting only the modules that they want and using the lesson plans as a guide for picking and choosing topics and activities.
Our families include every educational philosophy under the sun. Some of the benefits of Time4Learning for eclectic homeschoolers include:
- Payment is based on a monthly subscription model, allowing families to use the program only as much and as long as needed.
- The Reports function of the program keeps track of all lessons started and completed, percentage scores for quizzes and tests, the amount of time spent on each activity, and the dates the activities are completed. This makes homeschool portfolio keeping easy.
- Time4Learning appeals to a wide range of learning styles.
- Children like using the computer to learn. Time4Learning is a convenient, interactive homeschool resource that provides a welcome change from textbook-based lessons, and it helps children learn computer skills that are so important today.
- Time4Learning’s self-paced, modularized lesson plans allow you to move forward and back through the materials whenever you want. You can skip lessons that teach concepts your child has already mastered and repeat those he or she has not. The choice is yours. With Time4Learning, you are always in control.
Time4Learning has proven effective with eclectic homeschoolers, has a low monthly price, is easy-to-use, and provides a money-back 100% satisfaction guarantee so you can make sure that it works for your children. Time4Learning is a great homeschool curriculum choice for many eclectic homeschooling families. Sign up for Time4Learning as part of your overall homeschool program. If you are one of those eclectic homeschoolers who has been looking for a fun, interactive, web-based curriculum to supplement the other homeschooling programs you have been using, try our demo lessons to see if Time4Learning would be a good fit with your homeschool.
Additional Resources on Homeschooling Styles
Want to know even more about the different approaches to homeschooling? The following pages can help: