You have probably heard or have even seen the term “personalized learning” being used more
frequently in the last few years when it comes to educating children. The terminology may be coined as new but the technique is not. Personalized learning is defined by United States Department of Education (USDOE) as:
personalization to instruction that is paced with learning needs, tailored to learning preferences, and tailored to the specific interests of different learners. In an environment that is fully personalized, the learning objectives and content as well as the method and pace may all vary
The technique or even method defines homeschooling to the very essence of it. However, the homeschooling community goes a little further than that, where the student is at the center of it all. Homeschooling students have a unique opportunity to participate in the process by providing valuable data to their care taker, the parent or teacher. Most often, the valuable data affecting change is collected unknowingly, as parents try to find the right curriculum for each child. Homeschool students will verbally express their lack of connection, dislike or in my case, their downright fear of the curriculum they are interacting with. This would initiate change on the caretaker’s part. They will either change the method, the book, and the online class altogether, or find a way to modify it to fit the need of the student.
What I often found in teaching my kids over the years is that a simple modification in delivery may be all that is needed to change their perspective. Personalized learning allows the student to receive formal instruction in a small group environment. However, the students are given the time needed to become proficient in the subject matter and reach a level of mastery in order to use the information as a building block.