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Since the ancient civilizations and history of man, knowledge has remained to be one of the most significant factors in human life. In ancient times, knowledge used to be passed on from the parent or community members through involvement of the less experienced with the experts of the subject in question mostly via practical work. For instance, an inexperienced person would learn about carpentry or workmanship by spending some time with say expert carpenters or artists. As times went by, society continued to develop technologically and knowledge, as well as, the growth of populations. By the seventeenth and eighteenth century, most societies in the world had developed methods by which different types of knowledge would be acquired by interested persons including the young. As societies continue to evolve, most adopted a system where learners could be brought under a common roof and be taught similar subjects, a move that was geared towards standardizing the education system (Klein 56). As of this date, some parents take their children to school where they are taught in groups. All the same, parents choose to educate their young ones from home probably because of the flows they observe in the traditional education setup. In this regard, this paper is aimed at comparing and contrasting the standard method of education with home schooling.
In traditional education setup, the children are taught according to their age sets. There is a particular syllabus, which teachers or instructors have to follow within the stipulated time per subject. Again, there are specific textbooks and learning materials that have to be used by teachers of traditional schools. An important aspect of the traditional system is that each single teacher attends to about twenty or forty students in a class depending on populations or income levels of people in a given area. All students must attend classes during the set time, complete assignments and engage in other extracurricular activities with regard to their syllabus.
On the other hand, home schooling mostly involves parents teaching their children according to personal preferences and style with respect to the subjects or manner in which the child is educated. The schedules are made according to the childâ€™s preferences and availability of time on the side of the parent or guardian. It should be noted that the parent of the child individually picks subjects that he or she thinks can be understood by the child without major difficulties (Lesch 41). In some setups, home schooling can be extended to when families are gathered together say during outings where family members including the extended family teach the child different life issues or subjects. Mainly, the parents or guardians decide whom the child is to play or interact with during the day. This set up has caused a raging debate on whether children under home schooling ought to be enrolled in a variety of extracurricular activities in public schools even if it means making it a legal procedure that has to be adhered to by all parent.
From the above discussion, which details how, each of the education systems operates a number of similarities can be drawn. It is clear that although the systems differ in their core design, they are both meant to achieve a similar goal. Whether a child or student is in a traditional or home based school, the main agenda is to increase his or her knowledge, make them understand what happens around them, develop their strong areas maximally so that they become independent individuals in future (Klein 18). Another similarity is that,in both, there exists certain guidelines that have to be followed beginning with schedules or timetables which stipulate the subject to be learned at a particular time. Secondly, certain subjects have to be learned irrespective of whether one is in a traditional school or at home. A distinct feature in the systems is that there is one person that is in charge of making decisions in what is to be done. In home schooling, the parent of the child decides which subjects to teach and schedules the time that learning will take place while teachers of the traditional education setup are obligated with this duty. Furthermore, it would be appropriate to argue that both systems aim at imparting discipline to its learners so that they can become responsible persons.
The differences of traditional and home schooling are many including the fact that,in the home based system, a child learns at her own pace depending on the difficulty of the subject. This is not the case in traditional modes of learning, where children have to learn according to a syllabus that has to be completed within a set time meaning that a child can lag behind others in a subject especially if he or she is a slow learner. With home schooling, the teacher to child ratio is in most cases one to one or one to two in cases where the parent has two children. This is an indication that the teacher or parent is able to concentrate on a childâ€™s strengths then work on improving weaknesses, at least as far as education is concerned (Lesch 13). The teacher to student ratio in traditional setups may range from one to twenty or one to forty and this creates a situation where the tutor cannot have keen concentration on the childrenâ€™s ability considering that they are many, and doing so would only lead to time wastage. It is also a well-known fact that traditional systems of education does not provide the correct or required personal discipline in their students given that the pupils influence each other negatively using their peer groupings. The institution undermines any efforts made to develop utmost discipline in kids. While parents educate their children at home, they are able to monitor them at close range and restrain the young ones from associating with friends or peers that would make them develop unwanted and negative behaviors (Klein 95). Personal discipline is one of the highly significant life values that a person should have, and any education system that does not impart it to the students can be said to be weak and less efficient. In essence, attitude is a key factor that determines if one is to be successful in education or not. The children in traditional schools are expected to have a similar attitude towards education considering that every schooling activity is standardized, a scenario that brings up tight competition between learners some of whom opt to drop out due to reduced self-worth or conviction that they are weak and poor individuals in educational matters. The home based schooling does not create such a competitive environment, as the child in question does not have to compete with any one or have fear of failing which makes him or her approach matters with a balanced self-attitude and without any kind of fear.
Of all the weaknesses of home schooling education, lack of adequate extracurricular activities has been cited as the major one (Lesch 74). The argument that lack of extracurricular activities weakens home schooling is based, on the fact that children are not able to develop social skills of reliable communication, sharing, competing, decision-making, teamwork and general socializing. Without all these values, children of home - based schools become overly less efficient and are unable to integrate well in the society. They lack respectful communication skills that are needed in the real world, in addition to being fearful to, competition and challenging situations. A solution for this would be to have all parents practicing home schooling be legally required to take their children for a specific number of extracurricular activities in public schools that are near to them. In this manner, home schooling will produce students that are well rounded both in education matters and socially.
From the above discussion, it can be observed that education is aimed at making an individual independent, knowledgeable and much better socially by engaging him or her in different subjects and extracurricular activities. Home - based schooling has numerous advantages over the traditional system including flexibility and close monitoring of a child (Klein 24). The traditional system,on the other hand,has its strengths some of which are development of people skills due to socializing and enabling students understand the importance of time as the syllabus has to be covered. In my own opinion, I think that the traditional system of education is inferior compared to home schooling and as such, I would advise that appropriate measure be taken to increase the rate of homeschooling including scheduling some time for extracurricular activities.