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HomeSqool FAQs
The questions and answers below provide general information about HomeSqool and will help you decide if HomeSqool is the right tool for you and your students. Note that access to detailed user guides and training videos (coming soon) is provided when your first classroom has been approved.
About HomeSqool
HomeSqool on the Web
Compatibility and Hardware
Educational Benefits
Educational Technology
Training and Support
Security and Policies

About HomeSqool

What is HomeSqool?

HomeSqool is an online service, brought to you by SqoolTechs, LLC, that provides instructional tools for the purpose of “Supporting Quality Online Opportunities for Learning”. Specifically, HomeSqool is a virtual learning environment, built on Moodle open source software, that allows homeschool instructors to create interactive websites to either support face-to-face instruction or to deliver instruction completely online. HomeSqool provides a wide variety of tools that support most instructional and learning management tasks.


How is HomeSqool pronounced?

“HomeSqool” is pronounced just as “home school ”. Sqool is an acronym that stands for "Supporting Quality Online Opportunities for Learning”.


How much does HomeSqool cost?
All HomeSqool accounts are provided free of charge and are supported through the ads placed on your web pages. Following the beta phase of our site, you may choose to purchase a subscription which will provide you with an “ad free” account or you may continue using your free, ad-supported, account.

How long will my account be active?
Free HomeSqool accounts will be active as long as they are being utilized. Accounts will NEVER be disabled due to summer vacation. Accounts will be considered “inactive” when HomeSqool staff is unable to contact the account holder, using the email address of record, for 10 days.

What tools are included in a HomeSqool account?

The following tools and features are currently available through HomeSqool. These tools have been grouped into the following categories. It is important to note that many of the tools fit into more than one category as homeschool instructors can utilize them in multiple ways.

Web Tools

  • Web editors
  • Web page templates
  • Hyperlinking Tool
  • Built in Navigation/Menus
  • Site/Course Search
  • Education Search Engine

Classroom Management Tools

  • class calendar
  • choice (poll)
  • groups
  • workshop
  • electronic “drop box”

Web 2.0 Tools

  • blogs
  • wikis
  • podcasting

Learning Activity Tools

  • assignment
  • database
  • editable glossary
  • lesson
  • journals

Assessment Tools

  • grade book
  • multiple quiz formats
  • automatic scoring of multiple choice and true/false questions

Communication Tools

  • chat
  • forum
  • internal messaging
  • news announcements


Do I have to use all of the tools?
No. You decide which tools to use and add them to your classroom by selecting from a drop down menu. For example, if you don't want your students to use blogs, you simply don't add the blog tool to your class. You can also add a tool but hide it from student view until you want them to use it. Here is an example: You want to use the chat tool for a literature group discussion at a 11:00 on Monday. You can set up the chat in advance, but hide or turn it off from students view using the hide (eye) editing tool. Then, on Monday At 11:00, you un-hide the chat tool, or make it available for students to access by again clicking on the hide editing tool.

Is HomeSqool difficult or time consuming to learn?
No. HomeSqool has an easy to use interface. Once you understand the basic editing tools, you can quickly build your first virtual classroom. Easy to follow training videos (coming soon) and written user guides are provided for every tool in HomeSqool. In addition, a searchable database of the most frequently asked "how-to" questions is provided.  If you have advanced technology skills, the sky is the limit to what you can do with a HomeSqool virtual classroom. Here are a few of the simple editing tools that you will use to create your virtual classroom:

When an instructor logs in and clicks this button, located in the upper right corner of every virtual classroom, easy-to-use editing tools are revealed.
These tools allow you to position resources. This allows instructors to organize and sequence resources to best meet the needs of students.
This icon appears next to any resource, activity or block that can be edited. Simply click and type in the textbox that opens. No knowledge of HTML is needed.
An open eye indicates that a resource is visible and available for students to access. Clicking on it hides the resource from students, and vice versa with the closed eye.
The X deletes resources and activities after a warning message confirms that deletion was intended. The X also removes blocks. Blocks can be added again by selecting the desired block from a drop down menu.

Can HomeSqool save instructors time?
Yes, HomeSqool makes instructors more efficient. Here are a few examples. Automatic grading of objective items and automatic entry of scores into the online grade book reduce the time that instructors spend on assessment and grading tasks. Units of instruction created with web-based resources can be re-used with other students and shared with other instructors. Announcements, homework, and other information can be quickly posted for all students. Web-based resources can be easily added for students working at different levels, thus making differentiation of instruction possible.

Traditionally when instructors want to integrate a new technology, they must learn to use a new software program. Since instructors use one interface for all tools, less time is devoted to learning new software programs.

See also:
Can I use my existing instructional content?

Can I use HomeSqool as my educational website?
Yes and No. Yes, you can use HomeSqool as your classroom website, however, keep in mind that in order for anyone, (parents, students, other instructors) to access your classroom, a login is required. This makes your classroom more secure and protects student privacy. We recommend that non-student visitors to your website be assigned visitor privileges. Visitor privileges allow them to see most of the information in your virtual classroom, but not post any information. (This is a simple procedure explained in the User Guides.)

Many instructors choose to maintain an educational website that doesn't require a login. They post information for the general public on those pages and provide a link to their virtual classroom. This is a good solution to guarding student privacy while letting the general public see only what you want them to see.

I teach several different subjects. Can I have a virtual classroom for each of the subjects that I teach?
Yes. instructors may create as many virtual classrooms as they need to best meet the needs of their students. When students login to HomeSqool, the start page will list all the classrooms for all of the subjects that the student is enrolled in. When a instructor logs in to HomeSqool, all the classes that they teach are listed on the the start page.

After your first classroom, or master classroom has been approved, you will be given the right to create as many subject area classrooms as you need.

Compatibility and Hardware
Can I use my existing instructional content?
Yes! Virtually any file type (images, PowerPoint, Flash, Shockwave, Word Processing documents, Spreadsheets,etc.) can be integrated into your HomeSqool virtual classroom. This allows existing content and resources to be utilized saving you time.

Can I move my content from another VLE to HomeSqool?
Yes! HomeSqool is SCORM (Sharable Content Object Reference Model) compliant. It simple terms, this means that the content is shareable and reusable from one VLE to another simply by importing or exporting a zip file.

If I close my HomeSqool account, can I take my content with me?
Yes! Since HomeSqool is SCORM (Sharable Content Object Reference Model) compliant you can export your content to a zip file and move it to another SCORM compliant VLE. Unlike some web-based education-related services, your content is not locked into a system.

What hardware and software do I need in order to use HomeSqool?

All you need in order to use HomeSqool is a web browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Netscape Navigator, etc) and an Internet connection. The following plug-ins are recommended: Shockwave, Flash, Java, and QuickTime.


Educational Benefits
How does HomeSqool benefit students?
Today's students are digital learners who are best engaged by using technology in a social community. Students genuinely enjoy learning with HomeSqool. HomeSqool allows students to learn anytime and any place.  Calendars, announcements, and assignment postings help students to stay organized. The Web 2.0 tools allow students to create learning artifacts for an audience of peers.

instructors can use HomeSqool to effectively differientate instruction for students working at different levels. The grouping tools allow instructors to easily provide resources based on ability level. Students see only the resources that the instructor has provided for them.

See also:
What is Web 2.0 interaction?

How does HomeSqool benefit instructors?
There is no software to install and no servers to maintain when using HomeSqool.  Instructors can use free HomeSqool accounts with no impact on family budgets.

The HomeSqool suite of tools makes instructors more efficient and make good instructors even better. Many of the tools will assist you with learning management tasks. A HomeSqool account provides a secure way to provide learning activities for students 24 hours and day, 7 days a week. For example, you can easily post a class calendar, assignments, links to reference materials, links to web-based activities and learning games, and
unlimited web pages.

The HomeSqool Community will allow instructors to share resources and ideas.  
Groups of instructors working together to improve student learning, can use the HomeSqool suite of tools to develop a shared vision, work and learn collaboratively, and visit and review each other classrooms.   Instructors can locate other home school  learners for cooperative projects.


Educational Technology
What is Web 2.0 interaction?
Web 2.0 is a term often used to describe the transition of the World Wide Web from a collection of websites to a full-fledged computing platform serving web applications to end users. Many experts believe Web 2.0 services will replace desktop computing applications for many purposes, especially those related to educational technology. Web 2.0 is also often referred to as the "read-write web" because users are no longer merely reading the content provided on websites but are often creating content for others. Specifically, HomeSqool provides Web 2.0 interactive tools including blogs, wikis, chat, podcasts, and discussion forums.

What is a virtual learning environment?

A Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) is a web-based software system designed to facilitate instructors in the delivery of online educational experiences for their students. VLEs provide a set of teaching and learning tools designed to enhance a student's learning experience by integrating technology in the learning process. VLEs can be used to teach courses entirely online or to support face-to-face instruction. VLEs are sometimes referred to as Course Management Systems (CMS) or Learning Management Systems (LMS) or Managed Learning Environments (MLE). Some common commercial VLEs include BlackBoard and WebCT. HomeSqool is a virtual learning environment, built on Moodle open source software. It has been configured to meet the needs of home school instructors and students. It allows instructors to create interactive websites to either support face-to-face instruction or to deliver instruction completely online. HomeSqool provides a wide variety of tools that support most instructional and learning management tasks.

You may also be interested in the answers to following FAQs:


What is an integrated instructional interface?
This is a term that we have developed and coined to describe HomeSqool. An integrated instructional interface is a computing platform that provides all instructional tools merged together into a single system, accessible via the Internet through one login. Through our years of working with instructors, we discovered that one of the biggest frustrations that instructors report is the need to remember many different usenames and passwords for many separate programs to perform many necessary instructional tasks. The HomeSqool vision is to provide all the instructional tools that instructors need in one place with one login.

What is the learning theory behind HomeSqool?

HomeSqool is built using Moodle open source software. Moodle was designed to address the 4 major principles of the social constructionist pedagogy. These principles are summarized below:

  • People actively construct new knowledge as they interact with their environment.
  • Learning is most effective when constructing something for others to experience.
  • Learning occurs on many levels when people are a part of a learning community in which learners are constructing things for one another and are collaboratively creating shared artifacts with shared meanings.
  • The processes of reflection and metacognition are stimulated through participation in a learning community.
Simply stated, HomeSqool provides the tools for learners to actively construct knowledge through interaction with a social learning community.

Training and Support
Are user guides available to help me learn to use HomeSqool?
Yes. When your first virtual classroom has been approved, you are provided with access to the Instructor Information area. This area links you to user guides for all of the tools available in HomeSqool that will help you get started. The Instructor Information area also provides you with access to the HomeSqool Community where you can share ideas and resources with other instructors.

Do you provide on-site training in the use of HomeSqool?

Yes. The SqoolTechs Team offers a wide variety of training options to address the needs of home school groups and instructors. Details are provided on the SqoolTechs website.  We are also available to present at home school conferences. Please contact us at


Can SqoolTechs host a VLE for my home school consortium?
Yes. The SqoolTechs Team offers a wide variety of hosting options to address the needs of home school groups. Details are provided on the SqoolTechs website.

Are there presentation or training materials available for HomeSqool?

Thank you for spreading the word about HomeSqool! Currently, we have the following free online workshops that could be used in a presentation or training about HomeSqool. To access these workshops, it is necessary to to create a free account.

  • The ABCs of VLEs
As we develop more presentation materials, they will be posted here.

You may also be interested in the answer to following FAQs:


Security and Policies

What is the HomeSqool Privacy Policy?

Click here to view the HomeSqool Privacy Policy.


What are the HomeSqool Terms of Service?

Click here to view the HomeSqool Terms of Service


What kind of security measures are used to protect my content and information?
We protect your content by performing hourly backups of all your files and database information. Content creation is protected by user name and password through our secure login. In addition, all files uploaded to the site are scanned for viruses and malicious software.

See also our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

How does HomeSqool protect children's privacy?
We don't collect information from children or allow children to create accounts on HomeSqool. Instructors are responsible for creating student accounts and enrolling students in their classes.

My question isn't in this list. How can I get it answered?

Please email your question to . An answer will be returned to you by email.


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