Author Topic: Home-schooling  (Read 9320 times)

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Sophie Jenkins

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #75 on: February 18, 2013, 04:46:48 PM »
My family was closer to the "unschooling" side of the spectrum. My parents decided to homeschool for the first few years because my dad was dealing with a lot of kids from the local grade school who couldn't read. They wanted to make sure we had the basics down. After a couple years, they realized they enjoyed our company, we were learning a lot (and my mom was thrilled to find that our curiosity was driving her to learn more, as well!), and that the ability to have a schedule of our own was a huge benefit in our family life. My dad is a pastor, and almost all his evenings were spent in meetings. Being home during the day meant that he could stop at the house for lunch between sermon-writing and in-home visits. If we'd been in a conventional school we would have rarely seen my dad.

Out of six of us, one has a degree in Asian Studies, another sibling has a degree in sciences, a third just graduated with a communications degree, and one is in nursing school. I decided to forgo college because I could support myself with the job I had and loved, and my youngest sister has a condition that many doctors and specialists said would lead to her never being able to read and comprehend what she read- and though she has a lot of learning disabilities, she's reading like a champ and is leaps and bounds ahead of where she was predicted to be.

The thing is, it's not for everyone. In my family, we were all very self-motivated learners with so much curiosity you could drown in it. Some people need more structure (my husband, for example, loves the traditional classroom setting. it's what's best for him). Education is such a personal thing, and no one way is ever going to be right for all families.

kareng57

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #76 on: February 18, 2013, 11:17:37 PM »
Any parent can teach their child better than a school teacher.
I find this statement to be shockingly condescending and very offensive to those who have chosen to dedicate their lives to teaching.  One wouldn't say this about their children's paediatrician or spiritual leader in such a blanket, flat-out statement of fact; why do teachers earn this disrespect?

edited to fix quote


I would have to agree.  I tried to teach music-lessons to my own son - it only took a few weeks to realize that it just would not work.  It was not that I didn't have the knowledge - but I wasn't a teacher.  Most of my "lessons" ended up with at least one of us in tears.

A short time later, we registered him with a student teacher.  Parents are not always great teachers.

No, but you recognized the fact that you needed assistance and went in search of how to better serve your child.


But, that's not what you said in your "any parent"...post.

I would also not have been a good teacher for reading, math, etc. even though technically I would have been able to teach these concepts at least through middle school.  I have a great respect for public school teachers, and figure that they went through a university curriculum for a good reason.  Knowledge does not equate how-to-teach.

You seem to be implying that any parents who do have the knowledge to teach their children, but choose to send them to either public or private schools, are simply being lazy.

Roe

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #77 on: February 19, 2013, 06:37:42 AM »
Any parent can teach their child better than a school teacher.
I find this statement to be shockingly condescending and very offensive to those who have chosen to dedicate their lives to teaching.  One wouldn't say this about their children's paediatrician or spiritual leader in such a blanket, flat-out statement of fact; why do teachers earn this disrespect?

edited to fix quote


I would have to agree.  I tried to teach music-lessons to my own son - it only took a few weeks to realize that it just would not work.  It was not that I didn't have the knowledge - but I wasn't a teacher.  Most of my "lessons" ended up with at least one of us in tears.

A short time later, we registered him with a student teacher.  Parents are not always great teachers.

No, but you recognized the fact that you needed assistance and went in search of how to better serve your child.


But, that's not what you said in your "any parent"...post.

I would also not have been a good teacher for reading, math, etc. even though technically I would have been able to teach these concepts at least through middle school.  I have a great respect for public school teachers, and figure that they went through a university curriculum for a good reason.  Knowledge does not equate how-to-teach.

You seem to be implying that any parents who do have the knowledge to teach their children, but choose to send them to either public or private schools, are simply being lazy.

Lazy? I have a son in public school and I homeschool one child so that's definitely not what I said.  If that's what you took from my words, well, so be it.  I'm not going to defend myself or my views, they are what they are.  You don't have to agree with me. 

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #78 on: February 19, 2013, 04:09:06 PM »
One of the things that was also important to me, as a homeschool teacher, was that we could do year-round school.  I've read a number of things about how much kids lose from taking summers off, and I didn't want that for my kids.  I don't know of any year-round schools, though.  We do miss school here and there and take days off when we need to get the house clean, or when we move and need to pack/unpack.  But those tend to be for short periods, and we often do *partial* schooling during that time (we might get some math, handwriting, reading, science, and geography done, but skip Chinese, spelling, and our extra math).  And since we don't usually take off for holidays like President's Day, we end up getting a lot more days in the school year, which I think helps the kids with consistency.  They don't forget as much, and they also maintain good habits about being able to sit and get work done when they need to, even work they don't like (my oldest is not a math fan, but as long as she's doing math every day without fail, she mostly accepts it without whining too much--which is good, because math is our top priority now that she's a solid reader).

I can't even imagine how bored my oldest, particularly, would be at school.  She'd be in the second half of kindergarten and learning the basics of reading those basic little first reader books.  It turns out that reading is her greatest strength, and she's reading on a solid third grade level.  She finished the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe the other day.  And yet she needs a bit of extra help working through math problems and understanding the reasoning behind them.  I don't think she's exactly behind in math, but I could easily see her falling behind if she was being taught along with 20 other kids.

I'm weirdly happy to hear you consider handwriting to be important. In school here in Texas apparently handwriting is less important than learning to take bubble sheet tests because we stopped working on it in 2nd grade. And in our school it REALLY showed.

A friend of mine is home schooling her kid, and had a composition book that they have kept for about a year and a half, and its fun to look at page one, then flip through to the last page, because you can watch her shaky "kid" handwriting turn beautiful.
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Kendo_Bunny

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #79 on: February 19, 2013, 04:27:04 PM »
I can say as an aspiring teacher that a parent is the best teacher a child can have. Not necessarily of algebra and physics and French, but of learning. Teaching in public schools makes me shake my heads at how many parents do not view themselves as any part of their child's educational team. They do not read to their kids, try to help them with their homework, or really take any interest in their schoolwork at all, and it shows. The parents who care about teaching their kids have kids that shine. Even the kids who are not academically inclined take their work more seriously, don't goof off or act up as much, and are prouder of their work. A teacher, even the best teacher in the world, can't have the same level of influence that a parent can have, and a parent as a teacher is vital. Parents have a responsibility to their children to help them learn the best they can, to teach them as much as they can, and to take an active interest in their knowledge base.

So even if a parent doesn't know when the Battle of Agincourt was fought, they can still do a lot more than tell the kid to just go look it up alone. They can actively engage in their child's learning life, and look it up with the child, or even just talk a little bit about what history they remember. Anything that shows that their parents value learning. 

Lynn2000

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #80 on: February 19, 2013, 04:41:29 PM »
I can say as an aspiring teacher that a parent is the best teacher a child can have. Not necessarily of algebra and physics and French, but of learning. Teaching in public schools makes me shake my heads at how many parents do not view themselves as any part of their child's educational team. They do not read to their kids, try to help them with their homework, or really take any interest in their schoolwork at all, and it shows. The parents who care about teaching their kids have kids that shine. Even the kids who are not academically inclined take their work more seriously, don't goof off or act up as much, and are prouder of their work. A teacher, even the best teacher in the world, can't have the same level of influence that a parent can have, and a parent as a teacher is vital. Parents have a responsibility to their children to help them learn the best they can, to teach them as much as they can, and to take an active interest in their knowledge base.

So even if a parent doesn't know when the Battle of Agincourt was fought, they can still do a lot more than tell the kid to just go look it up alone. They can actively engage in their child's learning life, and look it up with the child, or even just talk a little bit about what history they remember. Anything that shows that their parents value learning.

Well said.
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Roe

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #81 on: February 19, 2013, 04:44:39 PM »
I can say as an aspiring teacher that a parent is the best teacher a child can have. Not necessarily of algebra and physics and French, but of learning. Teaching in public schools makes me shake my heads at how many parents do not view themselves as any part of their child's educational team. They do not read to their kids, try to help them with their homework, or really take any interest in their schoolwork at all, and it shows. The parents who care about teaching their kids have kids that shine. Even the kids who are not academically inclined take their work more seriously, don't goof off or act up as much, and are prouder of their work. A teacher, even the best teacher in the world, can't have the same level of influence that a parent can have, and a parent as a teacher is vital. Parents have a responsibility to their children to help them learn the best they can, to teach them as much as they can, and to take an active interest in their knowledge base.

So even if a parent doesn't know when the Battle of Agincourt was fought, they can still do a lot more than tell the kid to just go look it up alone. They can actively engage in their child's learning life, and look it up with the child, or even just talk a little bit about what history they remember. Anything that shows that their parents value learning.

Well said.

Kendo, perfectly stated. 

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #82 on: February 19, 2013, 05:14:57 PM »
I live in an area where a lot of kids seem to not have much educational support at home and it seems rather sad.   Some parents don't even make sure their kids get off to school on time or even attend.   I swear one day there was just enough snow on the grass to be a dusting but there was nothing on the ground, and a mother was OUTRAGED there was school and wouldn't take her kids in.

Mind you it would require her walking them to school, as there's no bus and she didn't have a car. So I think it was more "I'm too lazy to walk my kids to school but I'm not about to admit it so I'm going to pretend like they shouldn't be expected to go!"  ::) Often I see two other boys who are brothers leaving for school (they walk past our house) at 10pm or later (school starts at 9).  One of the crossing guards (who was quite a bit of a gossip) told me that it's been reported to the proper services that the boys are repeatedly truant or very late.   
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

MrsJWine

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #83 on: February 19, 2013, 05:20:46 PM »
I grew up with a family of homeschoolers. I've met others since, but they and some of their friends from their local group are what I think of when I hear "homeschool." To the best of my knowledge, I don't know any kids who fit the stereotype: weird, socially awkward, women in prairie dresses, etc. They are smart, funny, and socially capable. I don't know much about them academically, but the one who was closest to my age went to grad school for the classics in a very rigorous program. I used to be kind of jealous of them. They did so many fun things, and they were so self-driven, something I've always lacked. Their parents were really great people, and the whole family seemed really tightly-knit. They definitely did not suffer as a result of homeschooling. Because of that family, I was actually set on homeschooling my own children.

And then I had some actual children.

I could see homeschooling my younger one, but my older one and I are so much alike in all the wrong ways. Even when she was a young child, trying to gently get her to recognize letters, I was met with this wall of resistance (I don't mean that I sat her down and tried to MAKE HER LEARN; I just mean that I would point to a letter once in the course of an entire book, and she did not like that). Her preschool teacher tells me she's very inquisitive and will often choose sitting down to learn over going to play. But our personalities do not mesh. I think I would be terrible for her, at least at this age.

So my opinion on homeschooling has changed over the years. I used to think that if you could do it (and do it well), it was usually the best way to educate your children. Now I am sure that it's one of those things that depends almost completely on the personalities involved.


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Sharnita

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #84 on: February 19, 2013, 05:29:17 PM »
Yeah, there are a huge variety of parents and kids out there.  Most parents I've known personally and professionally have been great, whether their kids are in home, private or public schools.  That being said, there are also parents who teach their kids racial slurs, who teach their kids to slur, who insist their kids respond to any sort of challenge or insult with physical violence.  There are a few parents who turn to home schooling to avoid truancy issues, to hide child abuse issues, to provide child care for other children, etc. While these certainly aren't most parents, their existence is enough to disprove the argument that parents are always the best teachers or even that they always want the best for their kids.  There are some parents out there who are really mistaken about what the best is and there are some parents who are really self-serving. I am glad Roe has never had to encounter them but they exist.

twiggy

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #85 on: February 19, 2013, 06:01:18 PM »
I have been interested in homeschooling. DS is in a Pre-K program offered by the public school district. I loved last semester, and he had a great time. Then, this semester he ended up getting a new teacher. He is faking stomach aches to stay home, and he's being sent home with homework packets every week. He's 4 and is already starting to hate school. Niece is in the same program, but at a different school. She is on teacher #6. I have concerns about DS being faced with a future of revolving faces, and basically trusting his education to the luck of the draw.

OTOH I don't know if I can be the best teacher for my kids. I have time management issues, and I don't know if I'm organized enough to make it work long term. I do think that I will keep DD and the Baby home until Kindergarten though.

My goal is to let my kids' teachers do what they can, and supplement where I can. Right now the kids are 4yo, 2yo and 7mo. We go to the zoo and learn about animals, where they live, what they eat, when they sleep, etc. We have a garden that the kids help me plant, tend and harvest. That leads to very basic discussions about plants' needs (sun, water, good soil) and where food comes from. I bring the kids into the kitchen for whatever they can handle, and we read every day. I try to explain anything that DS asks me about, and when I don't know the answer, I admit it and we look it up.

My point is that I don't think that I can successfully teach my son everything he needs to know and give him a well rounded education. However, it's still primarily MY responsibility to make sure that he is educated.
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Piratelvr1121

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #86 on: February 19, 2013, 06:30:52 PM »
I have been interested in homeschooling. DS is in a Pre-K program offered by the public school district. I loved last semester, and he had a great time. Then, this semester he ended up getting a new teacher. He is faking stomach aches to stay home, and he's being sent home with homework packets every week. He's 4 and is already starting to hate school. Niece is in the same program, but at a different school. She is on teacher #6. I have concerns about DS being faced with a future of revolving faces, and basically trusting his education to the luck of the draw.

That sort of thing (the homework packets) was one reason I considered home schooling before we moved here.  In the previous school district, they were rather competitive and my oldest would fake stomachaches to stay or come home, and they would both come home with enough worksheets to amount to at least a half hour of homework and that's not factoring in the time it took to try and make them do it.   I even pulled them out of a daycare because the eldest's kindergarten teacher was concerned because he'd melt down and didn't want to do anymore work.   (he was in afternoon K)

Turns out the daycare teacher was giving him more work to do that was more like first grade level math because she thought he should be able to handle it.  After a switch of daycare centers (because the director of the first supported this teacher) my eldest did just fine in kindergarten and didn't melt down anymore.  Then when he was in 2nd grade his teacher basically told me, when I mentioned he'd struggled with a book report, that I could have just done it for him, that's what the other parents did.  ??? ::)

We moved here and suddenly the boys liked going to school and didn't want to miss a day.  It's the same state so the requirements are the same but all the teachers seem to be better at making learning fun instead of a chore.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

Elisabunny

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #87 on: February 19, 2013, 08:40:56 PM »
I have been interested in homeschooling. DS is in a Pre-K program offered by the public school district. I loved last semester, and he had a great time. Then, this semester he ended up getting a new teacher. He is faking stomach aches to stay home, and he's being sent home with homework packets every week. He's 4 and is already starting to hate school. Niece is in the same program, but at a different school. She is on teacher #6. I have concerns about DS being faced with a future of revolving faces, and basically trusting his education to the luck of the draw.

OTOH I don't know if I can be the best teacher for my kids. I have time management issues, and I don't know if I'm organized enough to make it work long term. I do think that I will keep DD and the Baby home until Kindergarten though.

My goal is to let my kids' teachers do what they can, and supplement where I can. Right now the kids are 4yo, 2yo and 7mo. We go to the zoo and learn about animals, where they live, what they eat, when they sleep, etc. We have a garden that the kids help me plant, tend and harvest. That leads to very basic discussions about plants' needs (sun, water, good soil) and where food comes from. I bring the kids into the kitchen for whatever they can handle, and we read every day. I try to explain anything that DS asks me about, and when I don't know the answer, I admit it and we look it up.

My point is that I don't think that I can successfully teach my son everything he needs to know and give him a well rounded education. However, it's still primarily MY responsibility to make sure that he is educated.

For pre-school, you might look into Joy School http://www.valuesparenting.com/joyschool/.  Some of my friends have done it, and really liked it.  It's basically a co-op preschool with 3-6 parents per group, who take turns teaching.   
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Deetee

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #88 on: February 20, 2013, 01:56:38 PM »
Quote
I am in my 2nd year of university now, and am pretty much one of the only ones in my year that is writing and reasoning at an above average level.

Actually, you aren't.

About half of your class is writing at an above average level and about half of your class is reasoning at an above average level. That's a requirement for defining "average".

(Unless, of course, your year consists of 2-5 students in total.)



Onyx_TKD

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Re: Home-schooling
« Reply #89 on: February 20, 2013, 02:38:13 PM »
Quote
I am in my 2nd year of university now, and am pretty much one of the only ones in my year that is writing and reasoning at an above average level.

Actually, you aren't.

About half of your class is writing at an above average level and about half of your class is reasoning at an above average level. That's a requirement for defining "average".

(Unless, of course, your year consists of 2-5 students in total.)

No, it's not. Heronlady's statement was imprecise, because she didn't specify the type of average or the population over which it was taken, but it is not false by definition.

First, "average" can mean different things. If "average" refers to the arithmetic mean, which is a common usage, it can be skewed by particularly high or low values. If the performance of a few top students was high enough above the rest, the majority of the class could be performing below the class average. It may be unlikely, but not impossible. OTOH, if "average" refers to the median, then by definition half of the population performs at or above the median and the other half at or below. However, that brings up the second point.

The average depends on the population over which it is computed. If the population is all students in the state, or in the country, or in the entire world, or even just all students in the school (including all years), then it is possible for all or most students in a subpopulation (like a year or class) to be below average. Again, it may be unlikely, but it's not impossible by definition.