Youth Engagement in Homeschooling

A learner who is homeschooling for social change

When used as a tool to positively change the world, homeschooling can be a disruptive way to transform education. Moving outside traditional education systems, youth engagement in homeschooling provides tangible, meaningful, everyday action that young people can lead, learn from and grow through.

Your life, time, and brain should belong to you, not to an institution. — Grace Lwellyn

How to Foster Youth Engagement in Homeschooling

Youth-Led Learning — Determining their own course for learning and their own tools for assessment can provide young people with powerful new ways to envision and enact social change. Through self-ownership, access to tools and youth/adult partnerships, young people can focus their learning on social change, moving from studying to acting to transforming their lives and their lives of those around them, too.

Homeschooling for Social Change — Children and youth can change the world when learning outside schools focuses on how to transform their own lives and the world around them. Traditional core curriculum in schools, including math, science, literature, and more can all focus on social change, and when adults transform opportunities for this learning with students, they can form transformative youth/adult partnerships, too.

Learning Outside Schools — School doesn’t have to be a prison sentence, learning doesn’t have to be adult-led, and education doesn’t only happen in education systems. Instead, learning happens throughout our society all the time, whether through video games, advertising, mentorships, apprenticeships, work, or elsewhere. Young people can take ownership of their learning and discover new ways, new topics, and new outcomes everyday.

Needs for Youth Engagement in Homeschooling

Inspiration — Homeschooling can seem alien, scary and really challenging to youth who’ve grown up in traditional schools (and adults too!). Inspiration, including stories from people who have done it before them, can be a key to overcoming the challenges and moving ahead with owning your own learning in life.

Education — Learning about education isn’t an activity that should only happen within the traditional education system. Homeschooling youth can learn about learning, learn about teaching, learn about formal and informal learning, and much more. Educating students about education can be one of the most powerful, substantive and transformative things young people gain from homeschooling.

Technology — While its not required and shouldn’t be used all the time, technology can be a powerful tool for learning outside of schools. Young people can use texting, the Internet, cellular technology, apps, and a variety of tools for accessing information, creating information and knowledge, sharing their learning, and much more.

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Other tools are out there, too – share your thoughts in the comments below! For more information about how The Freechild Project can support youth engagement in homeschooling in your community or organization, contact us.

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