A Thorn in the Side…or a Jewel in the Crown
I received an email a couple of days ago from a friend. She asked me to comment on the following statement “…..you know, in the US, there is quite a bit of controversy over K-12 among homeschoolers …..many see it as taking away the parents teaching of the children and relegating it to videos”.
In this article I want to address the issue and role of using online educational video in homeschooling.
I find it a little hard to believe that if we sit down and think about it for a moment that anyone could reasonably suggest that “using video is taking away the parents teaching of their children” any more using a textbook might.
Using video to teach your child as a homeschooler is certainly no different to using a textbook in that it is simply a format in which to deliver the core information, or the facts!
However video is a format that has distinctive silver lining.
Firstly the textbook only offers the child one solitary option. It must be read. And if you then have a child that does not like reading, and on top of that they do not find the topic particularly interesting, then it can be a recipe for disaster.
Video however provides the child with 2 choices. And if you use subtitled video, as we do, then it provides the child with 3 choices. They can watch, listen or read. Every child absorbs and processes information in the manner that best suits them, and their abilities. So it is important to provide the child with the choices so that when we hope or expect them to absorb and process certain information, we give them the benefit of a flying start.
At the same time though video offers a much more dynamic means to deliver information, and as a result it rapidly captures the child’s attention and maintains their interest for a longer period of time. And guess what? It also introduces an element of fun at the same time. You make learning fun and watch the child’s motivation increase. That’s precisely why the most effective form of learning comes about when the child enjoys and is interested in the topic. I suspect this is exactly why few of us adults retire to bed early in the evening with a dictionary to relax! Hard work or what? (more…)