Arizona Connections Academy is an online virtual school for grades K through 12. They provide a tuition-free public school as well as part or full-time private school programs. Virtual schooling is a great option for those interested in a more controlled home school environment but may not have the time to dedicated to full time instruction. Virtual schools can also be a great alternative to those students who aren’t thriving, for whatever reason, in a traditional classroom setting. More and more our society has begun to depend on technology and online schooling is a great option for some. Check out this great article about the ABCs of Virtual School Success to see if virtual schooling is a good fit for your child(ren) or family!
The ABCs of Virtual School Success
Consider the following “ABCs” of successful virtual schooling to determine if this form of education is a good fit for your family:
- Availability and attitude of parent and student
Virtual schools are not unsupervised, self-study programs. At most full-time virtual schools, a parent or trusted adult monitors student progress in the home throughout the day and works with certified teachers who direct instruction. This requires a parent’s time, especially when more than one student is enrolled. Students should also have the right mindset: being self-motivated, open to learning in a nontraditional setting, and having a comfort level with technology all contribute to success.
- Beyond the traditional classroom
Online schools give students the freedom and flexibility to learn almost anytime, anywhere. However, it is important that virtual school students have a dedicated learning space at home. The learning space need not be large or a separate room, but it should be organized, with room to store books and school supplies, and located in a relatively distraction-free zone.
When it comes to socialization with classmates, many virtual schools provide opportunities for students to socialize both in person and online. Online clubs, activities and field trips are both educational and social.
Although virtual public school students enjoy flexibility, it is important to note that they are still required to take the same standardized tests as all public school students.
- Challenging, computer-enhanced curriculum
Students attending virtual schools like Arizona Connections Academy should be prepared for a challenging, comprehensive curriculum. At virtual school, the computer is a tool for learning—which today’s tech-savvy students usually love. Students also use offline resources like textbooks, science kits and more. Although training and technical support are provided, parents should have a comfort level with computers too, since online learning management systems are typically used to manage daily lessons and communicate with teachers.
Do Your Homework
If virtual school seems like a good fit for your family, do your homework and pick a high-quality school. Parents should look for a school with a track record of delivering student achievement and growth and high levels of parent and student satisfaction. Other quality benchmarks include accreditation from a recognized accrediting body, full-time certified teachers who direct student learning, state-of-the-art technology resources and learning materials and community activities like clubs and field trips for students. For information, call (480) 782-5842 or visit http://www.connectionsacademy.com/arizona.
Have you considered a virtual school with your children? What do you think about the new ways computers have been incorporated into education?
Disclosure: The guest post and pictures above were written and provided by Arizona Connections Academy. This is a sponsored post. I will be compensated for this post.
Friday 10th of August 2012
I have never heard of virtual school. Although our oldest is only 15 months my husband and I have began to discuss what is best for her as far as schooling? Now this brings another option to the table!!
Tuesday 7th of August 2012
I have heard of this, but never done any research! Thanks so much for this post!!
Jessica Parks Wiese
Tuesday 7th of August 2012
Wow, I have never heard of this. I had considered home schooling my little ones, but honestly I am a bit intimidate by the whole thing. I am going to have to do a bit more research and see if my state offers something like this.
Monday 6th of August 2012
My youngest son graduated in June from California Virtual Academy. The curriculum and schedule was a perfect fit for him and we were very happy with the program.