The Jakarta Post
Ferdias Bookelmann recalls the unpleasant experience of her only son, Ivo, then 6 years old, being expelled from his school without reasonable explanation.
That prompted her and her husband to make the decision two years ago to homeschool their son.
“Homeschooling is what we feel is the best for our son. We see that he has interests in art, science, architecture and entrepreneurship and we want to facilitate his passions,” she said in an email interview.
Their son is educated independently at home, meaning that they don’t send him to a homeschooling institution. Ivo takes both the national and Cambridge curriculum, which is taught by private tutors carefully selected by his parents.
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Interviewed separately, child psychologist Seto Mulyadi, popularly known as Kak Seto, said there were three different homeschooling learning methods. The first is individual, which is family oriented, the second is group where several kids gather together for a study session, and the last is community, in which kids basically attend a special school with different school hours and teaching methods than those of regular schools.
Contrary to popular belief, homeschoolers do socialize with each other during group study or by joining communities and other activities that suit their interests.
Kak Seto, who himself owns Homeschooling Kak Seto, said there was another misconception: that the education kids receive through homeschooling is lesser than that at formal schools.
“It has the same curriculum as a formal school; kids who are homeschooled also take the national exam,” he said.
“Moreover, homeschooling doesn’t force children to study. They study because they are motivated to do so, not because they have to, and it leads to them being a more creative individual in the future.”
Thirteen-year-old Alifia Afflatus Zahra who quit formal school for homeschooling also shares her thirst to learn new things ever since she decided to be a homeschooler.
“My drive to learn developed after I freed up my time, as in not studying anything – just like a starving person at an empty dining table, I became motivated to search for and select what I wanted to consume. I am also committed to following my own schedule, which was filled with subjects that I am passionate about and skills that I wanted to pursue professionally,” she wrote.
Homeschooling provides a more flexible environment for kids to study in, however that’s not the only advantage, said director of homeschooling Primagama Kusnanto.
“It also gives an opportunity for kids who live under different circumstances to get an education, such as those who are training to be athletes, celebrities, victims of school bullying and children with special needs,” he said. (kes)
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