Home Schooling is a Popular Education Option

Schooling children at home was not an unusual thing in the not-so-distant past. Settlements were often far apart and children were not often gathered in large numbers. Parents would purchase the textbooks most accepted as “necessary,” such as the McGuffey Reader, and both parents would be involved in educating their children. In addition to learning “the three ‘R’s,” students also learned the tasks of daily living and of spiritual and moral growth. Home schooling fell out of favor when people lived in more populated areas and when the federal government began emphasizing public education for all students.The requirements of Home Schooling should be considered. The federal government requires that certain compulsory education requirements be covered for children attending K-12. Individual states may have other additional requirements. Parents should check the laws before starting to home school.There can be drawbacks to Home Schooling. Home schooled children may have a reduced amount of age-segregated socialization with their peers. In addition to limited contact with children their own age, home schooled children are unable to participate in organized school sports that encourage teamwork and teach healthy competition with opponents of roughly equivalent age and skill. Children have fewer opportunities to participate in musical groups, concerts, and recitals. Although children can learn an instrument at home, they are unable to participate in school-related parades or events.None of these things are entirely precluded by a child being home schooled. However, parents will need to work harder to ensure that their children can participate in them should their children be interested.What are the Benefits of Home Schooling? Home schooled students are not around children of their age group as much as other students; however, most school students have limited interaction during the day. Rather, they interact with their teachers while competing with peers for those teachers’ attention. Home schooling is usually conducted in the spirit of cooperation. Students taught together often work together, rather than compete to be the first to find the “right” answer.Home schooling tends to be safer. Students are not exposed to hazards outside of dangers that exist in any home, unless students are anticipating in scientific experimentation or in rigorous physical education classes. Students do not need to worry about classmates with knives or illegal firearms, nor do they need to face going through a metal detector on a daily basis.Sports are not a part of the regular school curriculum. Roughly the same percentages of home schooled students participate in after school activities as do their peers. It is also possible that home-based physical education programs are as effective as school-based programs, given that students are more likely to be active for the entire period and are not waiting their turn in class.Children are not exposed to drugs, teasing, or bullying, other than what they ordinarily find at home. Drugs are kept under control of the parents, at least in the classroom experience. Teasing and bullying is usually only among siblings. In addition, parents are able to teach spirituality and morality, if they feel that such things are an important part of the curriculum.Many other benefits exist to home schooling. More information can be found through one of many local home schooling organizations.

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4 Financial Aid Myths

Are you fighting the Financial Aid fight? If you are then you will need some help. Here are the 4 most frequent financial aid myths that are out there right now. If you can avoid these you should have an easier time finding and getting financial aid.

Financial Aid Myth #1. “I make too much money to qualify” OR “My parents make too much money to qualify”

Never and I mean never assume that you make too much to qualify for aid. Too many students out there make this mistake. There is no earning limit cut off like so many people think. Your wages are only part of the equation. There are many other factors that are taken into account. The main one is the school that you are trying to get aid for. If you are making good money you may not qualify for aid for a community college but you may qualify for aid for a more expensive university. The amount of aid that you receive is determined by your EFC. Your EFC or Estimated Family Contribution once calculated will give you a number that you can gauge the amount of aid that you will receive. Do not rule yourself out until this number is determined. You may qualify for thousands of dollars of aid. Give yourself a chance and give it a try.

Financial Aid Myth #2. “I am a home owner so I won’t qualify for aid”

Most colleges don’t take home ownership into account when determining aid eligibility. All that the college has to go off is what you put on your FAFSA application. A FAFSA application is your first step to receiving aid. In rare cases the college will use an additional aid form called a CSS form. And sometimes a college will place a cap on the account. This cap rarely exceeds 2.4 times the income of the family and it only happens if you are a dependent and your parents are helping you pay for college.

Financial Aid Myth #3. “I have too much money in my savings account to qualify for aid”

True, sometimes money in your account is taken in to account but it very rarely happens. You shouldn’t just assume that you will not qualify for aid because of it. The most important thing is to try. Also, it is important to note that students hardly ever get the full amount of tuition even if they get aid. Aid usually covers the majority of the fees but you may still have to contribute. It is a good idea to have some money saved to go towards tuition, books, and fees.

Financial Aid Myth #4. “Financial aid forms are a waste of time”

Granted, the forms really do take forever and they are tedious. But they are absolutely worth it. You simply cannot get aid without filling them out. If you gather all the materials and paper work that you will need before time this will help it go by a little quicker. You can find a list of all required documents on the FAFSA site. Get a snack and put on some music and commit yourself to fill out your FAFSA. Filling out financial aid applications is the best thing you can do for yourself when it comes to getting financial aid. You cannot hope to get any aid without them!

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