Can I home educate my child with Special Educational Needs?
Absolutely, yes! The rules for home education in the UK are very flexible.
Your child must simply receive a 'full-time' education suitable for their age, ability and aptitude, and any special educational needs they may have. As a parent or carer you are well placed to know what your child's particular needs are and tailor a home education environment accordingly.
Why might home education be better for my child with SEN?
Many children find learning difficult. There are a variety of reasons for this, but parents want to feel that they are helping their child reach his/her full potential.
SHL recognises that many home educated children have not been able to succeed at school. This isn’t necessarily a failure of the school system, but it is important to accept that if a child is stressed by being at school then learning at home may be a positive step forward. Just working at their own pace, without the distractions of an over-stimulating classroom/classmates could help your child focus on improving skills and understanding concepts.
Sometimes a child is not developmentally ready for the next step in a subject. Practice is needed to develop competence and security in a topic.
How do SHL home education packs help with SEN in particular?
Our packs give you the programme of study in the best order for learning and it doesn’t matter how quickly the work is completed. You are aiming for gradual, steady progress in a child who is less anxious about learning. Over time, improved self-confidence will mean fewer tantrums and less reluctance to learn new material.
Many of our customers have children on the autistic spectrum, or have dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia or other difficulties. Over the years, SHL has been working to help parents to help their children find strategies to deal with these difficulties and to develop skills and knowledge to fulfil their potential.
We have developed different study packs and offer a range of educational resources to help your child access the curriculum.
You know the areas that your child finds most difficult. It isn’t fair or reasonable to expect a child with learning difficulties to meet the same targets as a child without those difficulties. You can encourage your child to move outside his/her comfort zone, to have meaningful achievements and to feel a sense of pride in progressing through the curriculum.
Each individual child has a unique set of talents, interests and capabilities.
You are a part of their learning journey.
Choosing the right SHL pack for your Child
Children with recording Issues but average understanding
If your child can read and understand textbooks designed for his/her chronological age but has difficulty with recording the answers, then we recommend buying our primary or secondary packs, but altering the method of recording the answers to activities throughout the programme.
Many children have a real issue with writing. They might have coordination difficulties (dyspraxia), dyslexia or an impossible need for perfection. All of these issues can overwhelm a child emotionally so that the desire to achieve is compromised by a real fear of failure. If your child can tell you the answer then you can record the answer on the child’s behalf. Talking about the activities and working out the answers is where the education happens; recording is less important. Many parents feel pressure to have written proof of the work completed each day. If recording risks causing a meltdown then it works against educational benefit and should be avoided. Perhaps an audio or video recording could be made of verbal answers, or a picture could be drawn. As long as you as the parent are satisfied that the work has been understood then your child can continue with the programme.
Our professional experience, reinforced by our personal experience as parents of a child with ASD and a child with ADHD, leads us to approach home education as the art of the possible, rather than chasing the impossible. Your family unit is what matters, not a comparison with an ideal.
Children with recording issues and reduced understanding
If your child finds filtering information from a page and writing answers difficult, then choosing our Special Needs packs might be helpful. The workbooks have been chosen because the information is clearly presented, and written recording is reduced to a minimum. Your child can concentrate on one learning objective at a time without having to sift through a lot of information.