Humboldt State University

Project Description

Homeschooling Parents' Pedagogy and Motivations

Project Abstract

The topic of my research project is home education, otherwise known as homeschooling. However, I chose to differentiate between �school-at-home�, which is the extension of traditional classroom methods and curricula, and �unschooling�, characterized by a child-led learning process in which children are free to explore and learn about their world as they see fit. Eclectic home educators use a combination of these methods, including a combination pre-packaged curriculum, text books, and child-directed learning activities.
My research questions are:
� Is there a relationship between homeschooling parents� reasons for teaching at home and the pedagogical methods employed?
� What, if any, public school services would home educators accept? For example, sports programs, part-time academic enrollment, etc.
� Are Conservative Christian parents primarily motivated to homeschool based on ideological reasons?

Homeschooling is a fast growing alternative to traditional education in America. However, few sociological studies have distinguished between families opting for more traditional educational methods involving textbooks, workbooks, and teacher-directed activities, and those engaging primarily in child-directed learning. In my opinion, there is a need for extensive sociological research on this issue, which differentiates between the pedagogical methods used by parents. To speak of home educators as a unified group is deceptive, for their educational approaches and objectives vary widely. Through my research, I hope to contribute to the emerging body of literature which makes these distinctions.

Surveys released for this project:
Homeschooling1 1
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