Home Schooling vs. Remote Learning – What is the Difference and Which is Better?

Published on June 1, 2020

Welcome to the age of alternate schooling! In the current situation, we know it will be a while before schools reopen and we all go back to normal life. Though the world has come to a halt amidst this pandemic, why lose out on these crucial years of your child’s development? Most parents wonder if their kids would fare better with remote learning or being home-schooled during this time and, of course, which would be more feasible for them as well. Let’s look at how remote learning differs from homeschooling and which one is best suited for you.

What is Homeschooling?

In homeschooling, parents are the full-time instructors and teach their kids using a curriculum chosen and developed by them. They can make use of aids available online and offline but must keep records and set deadlines to track their child’s progress.

What is Remote Learning?

Remote learning or virtual schooling is managed by teachers from afar. Everything, right from teaching to monitoring development and learning outcomes is done via the internet, following a structured curriculum with student-oriented learning.

The Differences Between Homeschooling and Remote Learning

Both homeschooling and remote learning are viable and suggested during the lockdown, instead of bringing the child’s learning and development to a halt. However, which one should you choose? Let’s look at the differences between homeschooling and remote learning.

1. Curriculum

The first difference between homeschooling and remote learning lies in the curriculum. This is all the more important, considering your child will eventually transition to regular schooling in the future.

Homeschooling: Parents must create a comprehensive plan of topics, assignments and tests, making sure that they meet all the learning outcomes in the curriculum. This has to be done with precision, so that whenever/if the child resumes traditional school, there are no gaps or overlaps in topics.

Remote Learning: Remote learning sticks to the same learning outcomes as the traditional schooling curriculum. But, it follows a re-structured format that considers the challenges faced in an online forum and tackles them to make learning earlier. Since everyone is on the same page when traditional schooling resumes, it’s easy to run through what was covered and pick up where they left off. At FirstCry Intellitots, the curriculum is re-designed by experts to make it more interactive and suitable to a home environment and prevent your child’s learning and development from being compromised. This allows students to comprehend topics even from afar to meet learning outcomes.


2. Parental Involvement

The level of involvement of parents and guardians strongly differs in remote learning and homeschooling, considering their roles in the same.

Homeschooling: Parents are full-time instructors in homeschooling, so they must teach their kid concepts, and come up with activities and assignments. They also need to keep a record of what is covered and track their child’s progress, to convey to the teacher if/when their child goes back to school.

Remote Learning: Parental involvement is required in remote learning but to a lesser degree. Ideally, parents should sit with their child during online classes, so they continue the learning process throughout the day and help their child complete homework or activities that the teacher assigns. However, this is also ideal for working or busy parents, as they can assign a family member or guardian to sit with the child instead. Intellitots goes a step further to make parents’ lives smoother, by providing recordings of the completed sessions. This allows you to catch up on what was covered when you have time during the day. Easy, right?


3. Teaching Skills

Each child has his own set of strengths and weaknesses, meaning some topics may be easy to understand and some may not. A teacher is able to identify solutions to particularly tricky topics and teach them in a manner easy to understand for all students.

Homeschooling: Teaching comes naturally to some people, as they find it easy to break down tough concepts for the child. But this isn’t the case with others. Homeschooling requires parents to teach their children, irrespective of any specialisation in teaching or prior training in the subject. Many often find themselves wondering if they’re ‘doing it right’, while others breeze through. There’s also the ‘mom’ or ‘dad’ factor to consider, as being your child’s teacher and parent at the same time can definitely be challenging. Besides, if a parent has a subject they’re weak at (hello math phobics!), they will first have to teach concepts to themselves.

Remote Learning: Professional teachers go through years of training in different teaching styles, learner difficulties, and more. They are well versed with the curriculum and easily identify areas that require extra attention, all while making it fun for the child. Online forums also make teachers more approachable to discuss issues faced during the class. At FirstCry Intellitots, teachers are adept at preparing lesson plans and trained in a wide variety of teaching styles to ensure each student learns at his pace. If at any point you feel your child lagging behind, you can communicate this to the teacher so proper measures can be taken for your child to catch up.


4. Social Interaction

This lockdown has limited the number of people your child sees on a daily basis, meaning no friends around. However, social interaction is a key aspect of development and can affect your child’s confidence, moods, and behaviour.

Homeschooling: Homeschooling involves just you and your child, so the number of people your child interacts with is still limited. It is solely up to parents to come up with ways to integrate an element of socialisation in their child’s life.

Remote Learning: Remote learning gives kids the opportunity to interact with people other than family. Right from teachers to other students, there are a number of people to converse with, meaning hours of fun and unique conversations each day. This ensures that social interaction doesn’t stop, even at home. Having said that, FirstCry Intellitots assigns maintains a low teacher to student ratio, so equal attention is given to all kids. Kids also build a unique bond with their teacher during remote learning, which makes the transition to regular schooling much easier.


5. Screen Time

The battle between parents and kids on screen time is intense and endless, often ending in tantrums or exasperation. Plus, spending all day at home doesn’t make saying ‘no’ to your kids any easier every time they ask for the TV remote. So, how can this be managed?

Homeschooling: Kids will usually ask for screen time once they’re done with the daily lesson, and depriving them of it can only make things tougher to deal with down the line. Parents can use screen time as a reward or opt for certain concepts to be learnt through videos or songs as a replacement for cartoons.

Remote Learning: Remote learning is a great way to spend quality screen time each day. Teachers also suggest certain online material which kids can use after the lesson to complete activities. Other than that, parents can ration screen time by using it as a reward for attending online classes and completing activities, if their child is adamant. In short, remote learning significantly cut down on daily screen time, without much protest.

Which One Should You Pick- Homeschooling or Remote Learning?

Which one should you pick- Homeschooling or Online Schooling?

One of the main factors involved in making this decision is time. If you have enough time during the day to sit down with your child and teach him, homeschooling may work for you. This is also a good option for parents who have expertise in teaching and know how to separate being a parent, from being a teacher.

Remote learning is the best option if you are planning to send your child to school once the lockdown lifts, as it ensures he does not miss out on anything or find it hard to catch up. Working parents also find remote learning much more feasible, as parental involvement is minimal and they can work during the day, rest assured that their child is occupied and learning something. Not to mention, it helps spend quality screen time and aids social interaction, even during this time of social distancing.

The debate between homeschooling and remote learning brings forth points on practicality and expertise. However, managing work, house chores and their child’s education puts a lot on a parent’s plate. Moreso, if one or both the parents are working. With options like remote learning available, you can not only take some of the burden off yourself, but gift your child interactive, fun, and student-driven learning during the lockdown. Weigh your options and make the best decision for your child. After all, your child’s education and development comes first!

FirstCry Intellitots is your go-to for remote learning with fun, interactive classes, right at home. Click here for information on admissions, curriculum and more!

Disclaimer: The reopening of schools is contingent on the government’s orders.

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