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Why Should You Consider Blended Learning?

by Jessica Parnell | Sep 20, 2016 | 3 min read

As homeschoolers, we’re always in search of the best fit for our students because we know that individualizing learning is the best way to engage and help our kids love learning. Online learning has been around for a while and is a mode of schooling that the homeschool community has embraced. But, the newest kid on the block, blended learning, is taking the education world by storm. Blended learning, the combination of online learning and traditional teaching, has taken the best of both traditional and online teaching approaches and “blended” them to create a hybrid, something new. And it’s working! If you haven’t tried blended learning with at least one of your homeschoolers (especially visual learners) you should! Here’s why you should consider blended learning.

Blended Learning 101

In the year 2000, only 45,000 students in the USA reported taking an online course. By 2010, over 3 million students were learning online. E-learning is here to stay, and for good reason! Online learning provides students with more flexibility, interaction and time to absorb material, which relates to better grades and more successes. Learning online also puts the world of information at your student’s fingertips, making assignments and projects easier to complete while challenging them to research, solve problems, and be self-directed.  Sounds great, right? It is!

But, not all online classes are blended. 

In a blended learning class, your homeschoolers will be instructed from a live teacher who will engage and interact with them in real time. Lectures, labs, etc. will be done via video or chat and your learners will be required to respond and be involved through interaction in the class. But, their online coursework, readings and discussions will still be through an online format, combining the best of traditional learning with the benefits of virtual learning. If your homeschooler has a question, they can use the online resources but also have a teacher to reach out to when they hit a wall. And class discussions, debates and projects are part of a good blended learning class, which means all learning styles are covered.

Why Consider Blended Learning?

Still not convinced that blended learning is right for you? We want to encourage you to consider adding a blended learning class to your homeschool routine, and here’s why:

  1. Blended learning keeps students engaged. Studies show that more learning takes place in the online environment than in traditional, face-to-face learning environments. In a blended learning class, your homeschooler will have a variety of learning resources, including videos, texts, images, artwork, and live classroom time to keep them engaged and learning. From class projects to discussion to video chat, homeschoolers in a blended learning class are kept on their toes and fully immersed in the classroom experience and material they’re learning.
  2. Blended learning compliments your flexible schedule. Homeschooling is all about flexibility. In a blended learning environment, you can experience a live class or recorded lectures without leaving your home! Your student will still be able to complete classwork, assignments and projects on their schedule throughout the day. And, the classroom goes where you go as long as you take a laptop or tablet!
  3. Blended learning appeals to all learning styles. By combining visual aids (think videos, pictures, maps, etc.) with auditory teaching and hands-on projects or assignments, good blended learning classes will speak to all learning languages. Your child, engaged with the correct learning style, is more likely to retain information and master the lesson. Blended learning, through engaged lessons and instant feedback from online quizzes and assessments, sets learners up for fun and success.
  4. Blended learning is the way of the future. If you’re not learning online and encouraging your homeschoolers to do it as well, you may be behind the times. Nearly all colleges require students to take online classes. And, many jobs give training through online delivery or training modules. Helping your homeschooler succeed in their future means they need to participate in some online learning.

Ready to dive into blended learning for yourself? Find out why Bridgeway Academy’s blended learning classes are a cut above the rest.
What’s your favorite benefit for online learning? Tell us in a comment below!

Jessica Parnell
Hello everyone! I’m Jessica Parnell — mom, homeschool evaluator, teacher, and CEO of Bridgeway Academy. In my 20+ years of experience as a homeschool mom and evaluator, I have had the privilege of meeting homeschoolers that take a variety of approaches to their education. It is their many stories and successes that inspire me in my own homeschooling and I love to pass on the knowledge that I have gained from them to other homeschooling families. The one constant that always remains true is that there’s no such thing as a “cookie cutter child.” Each child is fearfully and wonderfully made and as a result, learns and functions differently. It’s our job to ensure that we’re raising each child to fulfill their individual purpose and when we can teach in a way that inspires them, we are on our way to homeschool success. When I’m not writing or teaching my children, I like to ski, write and participate in triathlons. I graduated from Kutztown University with a Bachelor of Science in Education and a Masters in English and I am currently pursuing a degree in Neuroleadership.
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