The Benefits of Homeschool for Special Needs Children

The Benefits of Homeschool for Special Needs Children - Playgarden Online
BY Miss Julia May 22, 2024 homeschooling, Special Needs Parenting

If you choose to teach your little one in a homeschool environment rather than at an NYC preschool, direction from special needs teachers or specialists can give you guidance and helpful tips for how your little one can succeed. By teaching at home, you have quite a bit of flexibility when it comes to curriculum, schedule, and activities. Little ones with special learning needs may have appointments or therapy that need to be worked around, and with homeschool preschool, your little one won’t miss a thing! 

Below are some more examples of the benefits of homeschooling your little one with special learning needs:

Step by Step Instructions

  • Larger projects or tasks can be daunting to anyone, especially little ones with special learning needs. Some stress can be relieved by breaking down the task into smaller steps, and in a homeschool setting, you have more time than you might at an average NYC preschool. Writing down steps as bullet points or check boxes can help little ones with special learning needs work through longer activities. In addition, crossing the steps off a list or checking the boxes are helpful visuals for any little one! 

Multi-Sensory Techniques

  • We experience the world through our senses, and all little ones benefit through sensory exploration. Some little ones with special learning needs may not have a certain sense (like sight or hearing), so they will depend on exploring with their other senses to learn about the world around them. Activities like practicing letters and numbers in some type of sand or using sandpaper letters to practice tracing, are great for sensory exploration (and we do just this at our NYC preschool!) Just be sure your little one enjoys the specific sensory experience you use, as some little ones do not like getting their hands wet or feeling certain textures.

Flexibility with Breaks 

  • Students with special learning needs tend to need breaks more frequently than neurotypical students at NYC preschools. In a traditional classroom setting, a few breaks are worked into the schedule. In your homeschool classroom, you can assign time for breaks, but you also have the flexibility to take breaks as needed – this might include extra time doing an activity they love, having a snack, moving their body, whatever they may need at that moment.
  • Moving from one activity to another can be overwhelming to some little ones with special learning needs. Giving ample time to prepare for an activity transition can help ease that discomfort. This can look like using a visual timer, giving a “two-minute warning,” or singing or playing a song that lets them know it will soon be time to move to the next activity.

Safe and Individualized Learning Environment

  • Having a space dedicated to learning can help teach your little one to learn that, when they are in that space, it’s time to learn and focus. Additionally, you get to create your little one’s specific classroom, as well as extend it to your kitchen or outside space, to encourage learning everywhere. Practical life skills are important for little ones with special learning needs to practice so they can develop some independence

Watch them Shine

  • Homeschooling your little one with special learning needs is going to be challenging – there will be great days and hard days (as is true with any other little one at an NYC preschool). The best way you can finish out the homeschool day and help your little one build their confidence is by doing something they love or show strength in. Maybe they love counting up to a big number, or drawing the letters of the alphabet, or kicking a soccer ball with you — however you end the day, end it on a good note. A homeschool environment can be so beneficial for your little one with special learning needs, as beneficial as the support and love from their families and people around them that will allow them to thrive!

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Miss Julia Pencil

Hi, I'm Miss Julia!

Miss Julia has been an early childhood educator for 5 years, with over 10 years of experience working in childcare. She has been teaching at Playgarden Prep since 2017, and is happy to share ideas on some of her favorite early education topics with you! Miss Julia has a BA from UC Irvine, and uses her experience in performing arts to inspire little ones every day in her enrichment classes at Playgarden. In her free time, Miss Julia loves enjoying nature, cooking, and creating with friends.

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