The homeschool movement has continued to grow and shift over the last few years. Megatrends in homeschooling to note:
- Growth. Homeschooling is no longer the rare fringy movement that characterized it ten and twenty years ago. Now several percent of the US population, perhaps 3% is actively homeschooling.
- Mainstream Awareness, Many Involved. Because of the widespread awareness and acceptance of homeschooling, the pirate or “us-them” mentality that characterized homeschooling for many years has somewhat dissipated. In fact, many families now homeschool for a few years or homeschool some but not all of the kids. Before, the homeschooling community was somewhat separated from the others, this is not nearly so much the case.
- Homeschooling Acceptance. In the old days, homeschoolers had trouble getting resources and even text books or teacher editions. Now, there’s a significant number of vendors, especially technology vendors, who actively market to homeschoolers. Time4Learning, Accellus High School, Reading Eggs, Time4Writing, Science4Us, VocabularySpellingCity, HugeSpelling, All About Spelling, and Writing Without Tears are just a few of the vendors who cater to homeschoolers. There is even a site about homeschooler’s literature!
- Technology – The homeschool market and community are now using all the great community tools on the net to find and work with each other. There are Facebook groups (and Twitter and so on) for Road Schooling, Military Homeschoolers, Waldorf Homeschoolers, UnSchoolers, Classical Homeschoolers, and so on and so on.
VocabularySpellingCity has just added pages with more complete spelling lists per grade. These are available to both their premium (ie paid) and free users.
Here for example is the content for the first grade word lists:
In first grade spelling, students should demonstrate command of words with common spelling patterns and frequently used irregular words, as well as grade-level sight words. They should be able to apply grade-level phonics to decode one- and two-syllable words. They should understand standard grammar. They should be able to use verbs to convey past, present, and future, and frequently occurring nouns, adjectives, and prepositions.
The word lists include compound words, frequently confused words, lots of sight words, general purpose vocabulary, academic vocabulary, and domain vocabulary
For High School spelling and vocabulary, students should be able to analyze the cumulative impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone (such as how the language evokes a sense of time and place or how it sets a formal or informal tone); they should be able to use language that is particularly fresh and engaging. They should demonstrate command of grammar and usage, correctly use patterns of word changes that indicate different meanings or parts of speech (analyze, analysis, analytical; advocate, advocacy), and see how meaning of key terms are used and refined in texts. They should be able to use precise words, details, and sensory language, and understand how language functions in different contexts to make effective choices for meaning or style. They should be able to correctly use patterns of word changes to indicate different meanings or parts of speech (conceive, conception, conceivable) and interpret figures of speech such as hyperbole and paradox in context.