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This school year seems to look much different than in the year’s past. Many schools will not re-open for in-person learning. Even if they do, the environment will never be the same again. You can’t expect to see classrooms crowded with children and their teachers anymore. Many districts are opting to use distance learning for at least the first semester, but what exactly is distance learning?
Is distance learning the same thing as homeschooling? The short answer is no, distance learning and homeschooling are not the same things at all.
So, let’s talk about the differences in distant learning and homeschooling.
- Distance Learning
- Distance learning challenges Distance learning is still teacher-led with instructional time and an online student-teacher interaction. The goal of distance learning is to maintain and increase the student’s current academic levels and provide a way for students and teachers to interact with each other virtually. This doesn’t mean that you as the parent are off the hook. Since the teacher isn’t physically present with your student you will have to be. Teachers can’t be available 24/7 for student questions so when students are working on offline worksheets, projects, essays, etc. then you are who they will come to for help. With distance learning, the focus is not on the individual student, unlike homeschooling. Rather, all students learn through the same curriculum using worksheets and videos. One major disadvantage of distance learning is that it can be difficult for teachers to “see” which students have mastered a new concept and those that may be struggling with it. This can make it difficult for them to know when to continue building on a previous lesson, and it is one of the many reasons that teachers and parents need to communicate with each other for distance learning to work. Distance learning will typically require your student to be in a virtual classroom or doing online lessons on a schedule that has been set by the school district or teacher. This can be problematic for parents who also need to be working during this time. Homeschooling Homeschooling, while also done in the home, is completely different from distant learning. When you decide to homeschool your child you are in charge of picking out the curriculum or program for yourself. This is one of the main reasons that parents choose to homeschool their children. Homeschooling does not have to take place at a certain time each day, although most families do have at least a loose schedule that they adhere to. With homeschooling, learning can happen any time, anywhere. Are the kids in the kitchen helping you make cookies? There is a science and math lesson there. Homeschooling legal requirements
- Homeschooling Curriculum
- Main Difference Between Distance Learning and Homeschooling
- Bottom Line – Distance Learning vs Homeschooling
You may refer to ‘distant learning’ as ‘school at home’, or ‘at-home learning’. Yet no matter what you call it, it is a public or private school curriculum that students may complete anywhere. It could be at the comfort of their homes or some places other than the school classroom.
In many instances, there are video conferences where students are in a virtual classroom with a teacher teaching a lesson. With distance learning, the curriculum, assignments, projects, and tests are all provided by the teacher to the students. The latter then have to have those tasks completed by a certain date.
Once students submit the tasks virtually, the teacher grade and record them in the grade book. It works just as it would be in a traditional classroom.
Most public school districts ended the school year last year through distance learning but it was without a challenge. The result in most cases was a disaster leaving parents, teachers, and students frustrated.
Despite technical mishaps and other missteps that filled last school year’s distance learning, many of the schools still plan to start the new school year through this new type of learning. Hopefully, teachers and school districts worked to fix many of these issues over the summer so that the upcoming school year will be more successful and less chaotic/