On the third Tuesday of each month we post a quick roundup of some recent academic publications and news about homeschooling, offered for your interest. These are typically university research papers, and they may have a positive, negative, or neutral outlook on home education. The title links generally point to the full text of each publication, which is often a printable pdf file. In some cases, a paid subscription may be required to read the whole article. The article abstracts or introductions below are quoted in full whenever possible, without editing.
We have four items this month.
(1) Understanding the Impact of Homeschooling on Mothers’ Mental Health — E. Baker (2021)
Extract: What happens when you place another plate atop a stack of already precariously perched plates? The stack might fall or, perhaps, the stack sways a bit before righting itself, adjusting to the new load. Potentially, the top plate may cause the plate on the bottom, the foundation, to crack, threatening the structural integrity of the stack. Of course, the entire stack could tumble to the ground causing the plates to fall and shatter.
One might use this stacked plate scenario as a metaphor for a mother’s workload. That final plate is homeschooling. What happens when you stack homeschooling, and the duties that come with it, on top of a mother’s already swaying stack of plates? Does she fall? Does her stack of responsibilities sway and eventually right itself? Does she, the foundation, develop cracks and threaten the structural integrity of her stacked responsibilities?
The literature clearly shows a link between parenting and negative mental health outcomes (Evenson and Simon, 2005; Simon, 1998, 2008; Mirowsky and Ross, 2003), a risk that may be even higher among those who practice hegemonic mothering (Rizzo, Schiffrin, and Liss, 2013) as well as stay-at-home mothers (Frech and Damaske, 2012; Goldsteen and Ross, 1989), and it follows that teacher-mothers may experience even more negative mental health outcomes than mothers whose children attend school outside the home. Teacher-mothers face unique stressors that may increase a mother’s already high level of stress such as increased workload, role insecurity, curricula choices and related strain, lack of support from spouses, and lack of community support (Lois, 2013, 2017; Murphy, 2012; Stevens, 2001).
(2) Secondary Socialization of Children from Home Education — M. Hanák, V. Šimek, & K. Bočková (2021)
Abstract: The aim of this paper is to find out how the secondary socialization of children from home education takes place and to map the personal experiences and opinions of parents educating their children at home. The paper is divided into theoretical and empirical parts. The theoretical part deals with the socialization as a necessary process in the life of each individual, we describe the various types of socialization, we deal with a different concept of socialization according to where it takes place, i.e. in the home and school environment. The theoretical part forms the basis for the empirical part. For the implementation of the research, we chose qualitative research using semi-structured interviews, which were conducted with parents who currently have a child or children in home education. According to the results of the research, home schooled children are secondarily socialized in regular and sporadic meetings with other home schooled children, either as part of celebrations and other social events or for the purpose of learning together in a small group of children. Another way are friends with whom they see each other several times a week in hobby groups or visit each other. Furthermore, the family and siblings, play an important role in the socialization process. Due to age differences, siblings can help each other in many ways, learn from each other and spend free time together. The limit of the presented work is a small sample of respondents and the associated impossibility to generalize the results. However, the research went into depth on the topic and brings forward the subjective opinions and experiences of parents. Another limit is the implementation of the interviews through the telephone, which does not allow for the observation of non-verbal expressions of the respondents during the interview, which can reveal a lot.
(3) A Robust and Timely Discussion of a New Kind of Homeschooling: Hybrid Approach Combines At-Home Learning with School Attendance [Review of Hybrid Homeschooling: A Guide to the Future of Education by Michael Q. McShane] — M.B. Horn (2021)
Preview: Hybrid Learning and homeschooling have become prominent models over the past school year as millions more students learned from home, whether part or full time, during the coronavirus pandemic.
Against that backdrop, Mike McShane’s new book, Hybrid Homeschooling, would seem both topical and timely.
It is both of those things, but not for reasons directly related to the pandemic or the various phenomena of blended and remote learning that became so widespread in much of the country beginning in March 2020.
McShane’s book is instead a treatment of a strand of homeschooling that has received relatively little attention: “hybrid homeschooling,” which he defines as “a school that for some part of the week educates children in a traditional brick-and-mortar building and for some other part of the week has children educated at home.”
(4) Barriers to Postsecondary Enrollment for Homeschooled Students in Kentucky — H. Petty (2021)
Abstract: My Honors Thesis Research Project’s focus is on homeschooling in Kentucky. Statistics so far have proven that throughout the United States homeschooled students typically perform as well as, if not better than, their traditionally educated peers. However, in the state of Kentucky, there seems to be a discrepancy in those students who have been homeschooled and their success in post-secondary institutions. My research derives from various reports and data on traditional and homeschooled students in the state of Kentucky in order to better understand and assist in further preparation and recruitment of homeschooled Kentucky students.
What interesting homeschool news and academic research have you come across this Cygnus Term? 👩🏻🎓
❡ Explore more: If you’d like to investigate the current academic literature on homeschooling yourself, the best place to start is Google Scholar, the special academic search engine from Google. Just enter a search term or phrase of interest (“homeschool,” “unschooling,” “classical homeschooling,” “deschooling,” etc.), and Google Scholar will return a list of academic publications that mention your topic. 🔍
❡ Explore more: For a comprehensive review of homeschooling research prior to 2020, see the paper by Kunzman & Gaither that is linked in our Research & News post for July 2020. 📖
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