Indian homeschooling
6th August 2021

Homeschooling in India – FAQ

By Jinal Gada

Homeschooling in India isn’t a very new concept. Schools started in India only some hundred years ago. Before that we had the Guru Shisya tradition where the student was able to learn one to one and get all doubts cleared while he or she learnt. Homeschooling today is very similar. 

What is homeschooling?

Homeschooling is a situation where a child doesn’t go to school. Overall any child who doesn’t go to school and is home working on his own passion and interest is a homeschooler.  The parent takes the entire responsibility of teaching the child.

How can we do Homeschooling?

There are two ways to homeschool. One is where the formal or alternative schooling method is brought home and the other is unschooling. Formal method is just like any other school would follow. Waldorf, Montessori are some alternative homeschooling methods which are available in school set up too. The difference is the child can learn at his or her own pace and get one on one attention. 

homeschooling

What curriculum can one follow while homeschooling?

The curriculum is decided by the parents and in many cases the child and the parent together build a curriculum. In cases where parents can’t frame a curriculum, there are a lot of curriculum available online or one can simply follow books as their curriculum guide.

Most parents plan it year wise and then divide it monthly and weekly.

How much time does homeschooling need?

Child is learning throughout the day in any activity he does. So homeschooling basically happens throughout the day. The time required for homeschooling depends a lot on the age of the child and also the method you choose to homeschool.

Very young children would need just one to two hours of focused time on the table. While older kids may need a little more depending on their interest and curriculum. This is just time given to formal lessons. For all the other learning we would need more time like dance, yoga, skates, swimming and more.

Can working Parents homeschool?

Yes, if you choose to work from home. No, if you have a small child and you are working full time. With a small child a lot of engagement is required. If not engagement, the parent should be around to observe the learning of the child on a day to day basis. 

With children above 7 years, it’s possible to homeschool if the parent is working for some hours of the day.

So basically, if you work part time or work from home, it’s possible to homeschool.

How much money is involved for homeschooling a child?

The answer to this question completely depends on how you plan to homeschool. Some follow alternative methods like Montessori or Waldorf while others follow a mix of everything. Some travel school. So the money involved would depend on how you choose to homeschool and what kind of resources you may like to use. Some make use of the waste as their resources. Some simply order online, some make their own and some use natural things available for free.

You may also like to read: how-and-why-we-decided-to-unschool

Is it necessary for a parent to be a teacher?

No. Any parent can homeschool. One doesn’t need to be a teacher. Some families choose to have an hour or two of focused teaching time while other times parents are around to help.

Till when can you homeschool?

Homeschooling can be done throughout. There are homeschoolers who skip Colleges too and give their NIOS and take degrees from distant universities.

What about grade 10 and college?

A homeschooler can appear for grade 10 just like any school going child. He can choose to appear either NIOS or IGCSE as of now.

After this they can go to any colleges as per their choice and grades.

What about socialisation for kids? 

This is such a question which needs a separate post all together but for this blog post writing in short. Socialisation for homeschoolers happens through homeschooling meets, friends at the park and all the ways that an adult will socialise in the real world. Homeschoolers are in the real world socialising with everyone around them.

Do we need to register for homeschooling in India? 

At present, there is no registration required for homeschooling in India. You can just start the journey and when your child chooses to give his or her 10th grade exam – register for it through the board you choose to give which is IGCSE or NIOS.

What about competitive exams?

Like the child prepares for any exam, the child can prepare for these too. They can give any exams of their choice. And if these competitive exams needs a school or college admission, then the parent and the child together decide what they want to do.

Does Homeschooling work for single parent?

The answer to this is my personal opinion. If single parenting works, then homeschooling also works for a single parent.

How to convince family members?

Frankly, until I wasnt sure of taking this step, thought nobody would agree to my decision. But once I got sure, slowly, I could pose questions to my husband and we found answers together and it worked. So, I would say its a journey and it takes time. For the initial two three years I kept asking for a year more to explore and tried not putting him to a school.

What if the child wants to go abroad for studies?

He can follow his interest and do all that is needful. Its very much possible. There is a girl named Malvika Joshi who got admission in MIIT without even taking the board exams. You can read more here. 

Can kids who have been to school earlier be homeschooled?

Yes, you can remove a child from school and explore homeschooling for older children too. Any child at any age can be homeschooled.

Many people have started exploring homeschooling since the pandemic hit us. If you are one of them exploring this journey and have more questions, type in the comments below. If you are an experienced homeschooling parent – I would love to know you, leave a comment here. 

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