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Author Topic: Home-schooling  (Read 41511 times)

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #15 on: February 16, 2013, 04:51:39 PM »
We homeschool for a number of reasons.  One is worldview.  We don't like that a lot of public schools teach a lot more than math, reading, and writing, things that parents should be able to teach their kids, especially in those early formative years when kids aren't yet secure enough to ask questions or debate back.  Another is educational quality.  Most of the schools that we're familiar with or that are in our area spend so much time teaching those non-academic things and teaching to the lowest common denominator that the education is really lacking.  We're also military and move a lot, so teaching our kids ourselves will make sure that their education is more consistent and that they don't miss anything major or study the same thing twice in a row because of switching school districts.

As for socialization, maybe I'm weird in this way, but personally, I don't *want* my kids socialized by twenty other kids their age who are just learning manners and politeness and how to treat other people and aren't that experienced in it themselves.  I would much rather my kids experience the majority of their socialization from their parents, grandparents,and  other trusted adults and cousins/older friends, who have enough life experience to provide good examples of behavior.  They'll have plenty of chances to practice their budding social skills on other kids during church, activities, homeschool groups, and the like, but I don't want the majority of their lives to be spent with twenty other kids exactly their age.

We plan to homeschool our kids the whole way through, but we're open to looking at alternatives if it turns out that some of our kids need a different experience.  In that case, though, we'll probably go with a private or charter school rather than a government school.  We'd also like our kids to take some community college classes when they're high school age, so they can get some practical classroom experience, working to deadlines set by other people, and being responsible for their own class, to help prepare them for the real world or college.

As for homeschooling being legal, as others have said, it's legal in the UK, but there are some countries where it isn't legal at all (I believe the Netherlands and Germany are two examples, although I'm not absolutely certain about those).
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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #16 on: February 16, 2013, 05:01:53 PM »
There is a person here that told me about a home-school curriculum company, Sonlight.   They resonated with me because their motto is why we will/are home-schooling.  "The way you wish you were taught." 

I was bored in school.  My husband was bored in school.  Our daughter is showing signs of being smarter than either of us. I remember loving having chicken pox and pink-eye because I wasn't allowed to go to school  I could do a week's work of work in about 5 hours, then I had all that free time to read and do crafts.  The schools want a one-size-fits-all model.  If you learn faster or slower, well, too bad.  The only reason my husband survived without being mind-numbed was a third-grade teacher that kept throwing math books at him to keep him from acting up.  He was teaching himself Differential Equations in his last year of high school.  I was allowed in read in class because otherwise I would talk to my neighbors, but most of school was a waste. 

I read every book on home-schooling that my well-stocked public library has.  I remember reading three that were about home-schooling in England.  When listing Philosophies of Home-schooling, "Charlotte Mason" is always included.  She was a late 19th century educator in England and proponent of "Living Books", i.e. not textbooks. 

I briefly taught high school Physics, and I was shocked at how it is even worse than when I was in school.  We live in an area that is considered highly desirable because of the schools.  But, it is just the best of the worst. 
« Last Edit: February 16, 2013, 05:03:53 PM by Sophia »


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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #17 on: February 16, 2013, 05:45:55 PM »
I am genuinely interested in why people choose to home school, would those who are doing so mind explaining why they have made this choice? I understand that sometimes it is a path chosen after bad experiences at school such as bullying, but for other parents who believe it is a better route for their child, why is this? Do you worry about the lack of socialisation with other children?
Also, is it legal to home-school in the UK?
I would be grateful to hear about anyone's experiences.

My friend is home schooling in the UK. Here's her blog: I don't think her children have any lack of "socialisation". It might be more quality that the quantity jammed up against kids you just happened to be the same age as that I got. My friend is a primary school teacher so it just didn't make sense to work in one of the most stressful environments and pay lots for child care so that someone else could teach her children.

Yes, home schooling is legal in the UK.


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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #18 on: February 16, 2013, 07:50:53 PM »
I homeschool my children for medical reasons.  In the last 7 months two of my children have been in the operating room 5 times (combined). The little one had his hip rebuilt and work done on his knee (combined procedure) and had the first of several procedures to attempt to give him mobility in his right (dominant) wrist.  The oldest had his left ankle worked on and two separate procedures on his left (dominant) hand and in one of those he also had his left upper arm worked on.  Upcoming surgeries include a cardio-thoracic procedure (oldest), right hip (youngest) right knee (youngest), possibly going in again on the left hip (youngest) and two more procedures on the right wrist (youngest). There are other areas of concern in each child, though we're not at the point of surgery yet.  Oldest has issues with temporary paralysis in is left (dominant) arm, but the tumor causing the problem is very close to several major nerves and an artery, so we don't know if we want to remove it. Youngest has some tumors in his spine, but we're doing additional studies before we decide if the risk is worth the benefit of removing them.  Middle son is a type I diabetic.

With all of that going on, and being a single mom, it's impossible for me to maintain a normal school schedule with the boys.

I also have major issues with the state of education in this country.  I don't want to write a novel, so I'll just leave it at that.  It's also one of the reasons I left teaching after 10 years in the public schools.
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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #19 on: February 16, 2013, 09:38:26 PM »
My nephew was home schooled because his parents felt the school was being too "harsh" with the boy. He could be an ehell serial all on his own. He was undisciplined, unable to follow simple directions and unwilling to shut up for any length of time.  They called it ADHD but never in his life got him tested. His socials skills consisted of talking over people when he had something to say, and anything he wanted to do was, in his view, ever so much more important than anyone else.  He was so unconcerned about others that when a friend of them family took him and his mother to a concert, when the child was 14 - the kid sat there and sang "The Sun Will Come Out  Tomorrow" - trying to compete for attention with the band. ( when the friend, who was sitting right next to him, told him to stop his mother, told her that he could sing, friend told her that the rest of the audience wanted to hear the band not the kid and mom told her how "sad" all those people were)
  The kid is 20 now, has never been taught the social graces, and most people in the family dread seeing the kid.  He has never fisnished high school and is only working at subway because  another friend of the family hired him.

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #20 on: February 16, 2013, 09:55:18 PM »
That's actually quite sad.  Neglecting the entire social awareness aspect of his education is really just a convoluted form of child abuse.

I suspect he and his mother were not often invited to attend concerts or anything else.  At least not more than once.


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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #21 on: February 16, 2013, 10:13:41 PM »
That's actually quite sad.  Neglecting the entire social awareness aspect of his education is really just a convoluted form of child abuse.

I suspect he and his mother were not often invited to attend concerts or anything else.  At least not more than once.

It sounds like there would have been issues if he were in "regular" school, too.  I can just imagine how much fun parent/teacher conferences would have been.  (Actually, i don't have to imagine, I think I have met with parents who had approaches very close to this)


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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #22 on: February 16, 2013, 10:24:25 PM »
Those are the stories that make me so mad and that cause so much trouble for those of us who try to homeschool "right".  I work my butt off in really difficult circumstances to make sure my kids get a kick-butt education *and* social graces. Grrrrrr.
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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #23 on: February 16, 2013, 10:53:25 PM »
The thing with homeschooling is- it can be really great or really terrible. So can public schooling. However, just like marriage- you can have a *great* relationship with or without a marriage- but you're trading the rights that society gives you if you have that piece of paper.

I was part home-schooled, mainly catholic schooled. No one ever cared when applying to University that I'd had all these fantastic travels, they wanted to see my "papers". So as long as you make sure to home-school your children so that you aren't locking them out of the ability to pass a GED and further their education (or in many cases, obtain any main-stream, non-minimum wage/self employment) then go to it! However, my personal experiences home-schooling seemed to be that many parents deliberately or accidentally fell into the trap of A-playing only to the child's strengths and interests, and B- avoiding the parent's weaknesses. I missed crucial years of math instruction because my primary-instructing parent was weak at it- so we did very little of it- and to this day I struggle with "theoretical" math.

I think that you can supplement a public school education quite effectively (we do this with our son, and will with his younger brother). If you do choose to home-school- make sure to do so with the aim that whatever "extra" you learn, you follow the state/province guidelines so that your child won't struggle re-integrating into the mainstream if it becomes necessary or they chose to enter post-secondary education. As well, make sure that you are disciplined enough to follow a reasonable routine- again, my experience in the workplace with home-schooled individuals is that they frequently struggle to do things the "don't like" (parents didn't enforce learning/doing disliked homework/tasks) or follow time-keeping (unused to 10-15 minutes "mattering"- used to re-arranging schedules to suit themselves/family on short/no notice).
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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #24 on: February 16, 2013, 10:58:48 PM »
Home schooling offers many benefits. First, I don't want children socialized in public school. What's so great about learning about how to be bullied, learning that people are cliquish, tease others, etc. or are biased against other groups of people because of how they dress, skin color, religion, etc. I don't want them to learn the values of their peers - primarily that texting is life, that parents are dumb and clueless, and that tv shows portray the real world. Instead I think home schooling offers children curriculum designed specifically for their needs and interests. If they need to take longer on learning to read, they can. If math is easy, they move on. We can take field trips whenever we want to investigate whatever we want. There are home school groups that meet, plus we are involved in our church. Our neighborhood has families we know and children can come over. I think it's in the best interest of children to be home schooled if they have a parent or caring adult who is willing to facilitate that learning. You don't have to have an education degree, but you do have to have some skills. It's cheaper than private school and you know exactly what your children are learning. All of the children I know whose families home-school graduate and get into great colleges. They are nicer people and are more mature and responsible teenagers. There are always a few who don't do it well. I have a SIL who said she was home-schooling her kids. She didn't. They basically quit school and messed a bit with a curriculum but never graduated. Since the parents didn't care, the kids didn't care. Honestly, I doubt they would have graduated from HS either because they just didn't put the effort in to showing up. It's not a argument against Home-schooling, but an argument that parents need to be involved in their child's life.

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #25 on: February 16, 2013, 11:23:10 PM »
My nephew was home schooled because his parents felt the school was being too "harsh" with the boy.

Oh, I know those families.  I was a Catholic school librarian & asst. principal for 10 years.  We had kindergarten and first grade SS students switch to homeschooling for this reason. 

I remember I shared with a kgrtn mother that our greatest challenge was teaching children that they weren't the center of the universe.  She replied that she had no problem with them thinking that.  'We cannot have 20 centers of the universe in a classroom.' "Oh, I'd never thought of that." Her SS wouldn't stop throwing rocks at other students. 

There was the SS who tried to cut off another student's ear.  He wasn't allowed to go on the pumpkin patch field trip.  His grandparents took him that afternoon so he wouldn't feel bad. 

Don't get me started on the parent of the that wanted me fired.  Why?  I dared to give her SS middle school student Saturday detention for using racial slurs. 

IMHO These families don't have a positive motivation for homeschooling. 

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #26 on: February 17, 2013, 05:01:49 AM »
Thank you everyone for putting such thought and effort into your replies, very interesting reading. I do find it a fascinating subject and am in awe of the parents who home-school ( and do it so well). I have a 2 year old and a 4 month old in the UK and although I do not intend to home school at the moment, it is certainly something I would consider in the future if it became apparent it was in their best interests. I like the poster (half_dollar I think) who said they re-evaluate every year whether it is still in their children's best interests, that seems a very good idea. Again, thanks to all who responded.


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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #27 on: February 17, 2013, 05:46:34 AM »
Just by the way, it is always good to look up studies and papers about homeschooling. The 'socialisation' thing is one of the biggest questions people have, but it is absolutely a non-issue. It does, of course, vary family to family, but in general they have better socialisation skills than school-taught children by a number of studies (e.g. I would not be worried too much. I had another good list of studies, which I cannot find just now, about socialisation and other things... It pointed out that, in the USA at least, something like 2% of people are homeschooled, that homeschooled students are more likely to donate money, earn higher wages, go to college, etc. and that the 'religious' stereotype is actually a minority within homeschooling (I recall people homeschooling for religious reasons being something like only 30% of families). I'll post it if I find it.

As with anything, it varies family to family. If you want to homeschool predominantly to save money or to keep your children away from the nasty harsh world out there, then rethinking things is a good idea. If you are ready and willing to work hard to do what you believe is best for your children, then you will likely be another favourable statistic.


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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #28 on: February 17, 2013, 06:04:06 AM »
The one thing I have against homeschooling, sort of referenced in my above post, is that children are not above manipulating their parents into doing what they want in terms of schooling. I often wondered that with the former home schooled girl who would never shut up and was always arguing with me with whether or not she should do her class work.

I'm willing to be quite a sum that she does this with her parents, who give in to her, which is why she is used to being this way with adults. Teachers, on the other hand, have seen it all and they are not there to be liked by their students. They're no afraid of saying "No", unlike some parents these days.

If she'd been in a regular school from day one, she'd know by the time you got to year six that the teacher telling you to sit down, be quiet and do your work means exactly that. Even the unruly boys understood that.

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #29 on: February 17, 2013, 07:06:40 AM »
We're planning to homeschool our peanuts (now 2 years and 4 months) for several reasons, but many of them fall under the topic of efficiency.  There are certain languages, physical activities, musical skills, and areas of study we expect our children to learn.  The actual number of hours spent on core curriculum material at public schools each year is actually quite low after subtracting for life skills and social lessons, administrative and transition times, classroom distractions, and the like.  It just doesn't make sense to us to have our kids spend that much time in a school building, then try to fit in our own material nights, weekends, and summers.

To answer part of the socialization and authority question, we do plan to have the kids in plenty of structured activities led by adult role models, where they listen to others, follow group rules, practice independence, and the like along with the core purpose of the activity.