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  • May 25, 2016, 11:46:54 PM

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Author Topic: Need advice from Homeschoolers  (Read 1988 times)

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camlan

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #15 on: April 13, 2016, 05:29:32 AM »
One thing I would consider, before pulling him out of school, is how you will be able to help your son learn how to learn. Because it doesn't stop with his high school diploma. If he goes to trade school, he will have the same issues of needing to learn at his own pace. And when he gets a job, he will have to learn the ropes there, as well.

It is possible, if you push the school, that he could get help with his learning issues and learn coping techniques that would be useful to him for the rest of his life. Or perhaps there is some way you can get him this help outside of school, if you decide to homeschool. Because while I can certainly see why he wants nothing to do with his school (seriously, couldn't he go to summer school and make up his grades--the counselor seems to want your son to drop out), and that if he is homschooled at your work place, you can help redirect him, ultimately, he needs to learn how to maintain his focus on his own.



Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


3angels

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #16 on: April 13, 2016, 12:19:34 PM »
OP here - Several things - The trade school he wants to go to is for welding. He started in ag this year and is a member of FFA. He has almost a 100 in that class and gets upset if he's late for school since it's first class of the day. He's doing so good in that class and has such a knack for it that the teacher lets him have privileges that other kids don't get.

 In order to be classified in 11th grade for next year, he needs at least 12 credit hours (6 hours per grade level) by the end of the year. He will have 5.5 or 6. Summer school only allows 2 classes to be taken at a cost to the parents of $300 per class.

He was in a different school district (wonderful teachers, admin) from Pre-K to 8th grade and there was a 504 plan in place there and the teachers really worked well with him. Well, except for one but that's a whole other novel. It was when we moved and transferred to a new school district that the problems started (Even my aunt, who used to be a teacher in this district, says it's one of the worst districts around). They wouldn't accept the 504 plan from the previous school and said they had to do their own evaulation. I sent in the paperwork and the coordinator said everything looked great and she would get it put back in place. Forward to this year and DS asks when we're going to finish his 504 plan. My response was  :o ??? Long story short, the previous coordinator had quit shortly after I sent her DS paperwork and had piled all the files of kids she was working on in a box, set it in the principal's office and walked out. Nobody knew where they were until this year because the principal had quit and his replacement had not yet started work  >:( The school was backpedaling and apologizing to a lot of kids/families but it was too late. When we finally had the evaulation, I did ask about having a set of textbooks at home being an accomodation of his 504 plan and they said No.

So that's where we sit now. No textbooks to help him, teachers that don't show up for their designated tutorial time, and other teachers that lecture these new ways of doing math that nobody understands and won't accept a correct answer worked the old-school way, which DS does understand.

Mommiepenguin & Sheltiemom: Thank you for those recommendations, I will definitely be looking into them. I just hope the school doesn't give us grief about pulling him out once we decide on a program(s)!


Sophia

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #17 on: April 13, 2016, 12:39:29 PM »
...I just hope the school doesn't give us grief about pulling him out once we decide on a program(s)!

That is a reason that you in particular should join HSLDA.  From what I've read, people are most likely to be hassled when pulling their kid to homeschool when the school district is a bad one, or the kid had troubles of some sort before homeschooling.  Both apply to your family.  If you join HSLDA and the school hassles you, you contact HSLDA and then the school will be contacted by a homeschooling lawyer. 

MommyPenguin

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #18 on: April 13, 2016, 06:15:41 PM »
...I just hope the school doesn't give us grief about pulling him out once we decide on a program(s)!

That is a reason that you in particular should join HSLDA.  From what I've read, people are most likely to be hassled when pulling their kid to homeschool when the school district is a bad one, or the kid had troubles of some sort before homeschooling.  Both apply to your family.  If you join HSLDA and the school hassles you, you contact HSLDA and then the school will be contacted by a homeschooling lawyer.

I agree with this, people who have pulled their kids tend to get the most grief.  And the trickiest times are always when there's paperwork being sent in.  A friend of mine just got a summons to truancy court because the school district lost her daughter's test scores from last year.  Nevermind that they'd received them along with the notice of intent, and sent the family a confirmation letter that their notice of intent had been accepted (meaning they'd also gotten the test scores, which have to be evaluated for the previous year before they'll accept the notice of intent for the next year).  When they realized they didn't have the actual test scores, nothing else mattered.  Instead of sending a letter asking the family for the test scores, the district enrolled her in the local school and began logging absences for months until they added up to enough to try to bring the family before the truancy court.  Fun times.
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Elisabunny

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #19 on: April 13, 2016, 08:35:45 PM »
Does your state do dual enrollment?  That's where the child is homeschooled, but the district is required to allow them into classes the parents can't handle.  It would be one way to keep him in the welding and other trade classes.
You must remember this: a ghoti is still a fish...

3angels

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #20 on: April 14, 2016, 11:26:59 AM »
Does your state do dual enrollment?  That's where the child is homeschooled, but the district is required to allow them into classes the parents can't handle.  It would be one way to keep him in the welding and other trade classes.

Didn't know that was even a possibility but I'm sure he would definitely be excited to do that. I will be calling the district admin office to find out. Thank you!

LadyL

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #21 on: April 14, 2016, 02:31:27 PM »
I have a somewhat different take as the spouse of someone with ADHD who had trouble in school. For my husband, learning "on the job" is much more effective for him than learning in a classroom because he sees the application in real time. He had trouble finishing college - two attempts to attend full time were unsuccessful, and then night school enabled him to get his A.S. but he did not complete enough credits for his B.S. In his field, there are lots of common certification programs that can be a resume boost - he has talked about wanting to complete these programs, and in one case when he was between jobs he did take two courses but never took the final test to get the actual certificate. I think the structured learning environment of classrooms/online courses, homework, and testing is just at odds with his learning style and abilities.

However, he is really really good at learning on the fly in a hands-on environment - he will often master a process that would take most people days or weeks in just a few hours. Because he is in IT, actual job experience tends to trump credentials, so his lack thereof hasn't been a big career limiter.

If your son has identified a career path that doesn't require he finish the traditional high school requirements, I would not dismiss that plan out of hand. It doesn't sound like he's trying to avoid responsibility but that rather he'd like to try a path of his own design. Some of his struggles might also not be solved by homeschooling - for example, my husband will voraciously devour dry, technical information about a topic if he's interested in it (e.g. tech specs of stereo equipment), but if he's not he really can't be motivated to care with any amount of persuasion or cajoling. His brain just doesn't work that way. It's either rabid interest or little to none. This is reflected in his college grades, which tended to be something like "A C B+ D D." I imagine it was very frustrating for his teachers, since he's otherwise bright and engaged, and I can only imagine how much his own parents would have struggled if they were the ones trying to instruct him.

I may be totally wrong of course (not every person with ADHD has the same strengths/limitations) and you should do what you think is best. Good luck!

wolfie

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #22 on: April 14, 2016, 04:28:11 PM »
I am going to come at this from the other end - your coworkers. Is your son going to be getting his own office so he is out of the way? Or will he be sitting with everyone else? how are you going to handle if he has questions/needs help while you are busy with work stuff? Honestly I wouldn't be happy if one of my coworkers brought her teenage son into work and said she would be homeschooling him while at work. I would have concerns on how she could possibly get both done at once and the env would change. Really make sure you thought of all possible issues that could come up and put a plan into place. I also would never actually say anything to you - I would figure that wasn't my business. But noone speaking up doesn't mean noone has a problem.

Also... what will you do if this doesn't work? If you can't juggle the two of them?

sammycat

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #23 on: April 14, 2016, 09:45:38 PM »
I am going to come at this from the other end - your coworkers. Is your son going to be getting his own office so he is out of the way? Or will he be sitting with everyone else? how are you going to handle if he has questions/needs help while you are busy with work stuff? Honestly I wouldn't be happy if one of my coworkers brought her teenage son into work and said she would be homeschooling him while at work. I would have concerns on how she could possibly get both done at once and the env would change. Really make sure you thought of all possible issues that could come up and put a plan into place. I also would never actually say anything to you - I would figure that wasn't my business. But noone speaking up doesn't mean noone has a problem.

Also... what will you do if this doesn't work? If you can't juggle the two of them?

I have to agree.

3angels

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #24 on: April 15, 2016, 04:08:30 PM »
I am going to come at this from the other end - your coworkers. Is your son going to be getting his own office so he is out of the way? Or will he be sitting with everyone else? how are you going to handle if he has questions/needs help while you are busy with work stuff? Honestly I wouldn't be happy if one of my coworkers brought her teenage son into work and said she would be homeschooling him while at work. I would have concerns on how she could possibly get both done at once and the env would change. Really make sure you thought of all possible issues that could come up and put a plan into place. I also would never actually say anything to you - I would figure that wasn't my business. But noone speaking up doesn't mean noone has a problem.

Also... what will you do if this doesn't work? If you can't juggle the two of them?

I work for a water utility company with a total of 4 employees: general manager and operations tech who are uncle/nephew, then myself (the office manager) and the part-time clerk who is my sister-in-law. We are a small community where everybody knows everybody. General Manager is actually the one who suggested DS coming with me to work for homeschool next year as DS will be working here over the summer as sort of an intern already.

As for juggling the two of them, I've been working 3 days a week and attending college the other two days for over a year (graduating in 3 weeks, yay) and not once have I fallen behind in either. My boss specifically mentioned this when suggesting DS come to work with me, he knows I can handle both. Also, there are many days that once I get the previous day's bookkeeping done, I have nothing to do unless a customer comes in.


I have a somewhat different take as the spouse of someone with ADHD who had trouble in school. For my husband, learning "on the job" is much more effective for him than learning in a classroom because he sees the application in real time. He had trouble finishing college - two attempts to attend full time were unsuccessful, and then night school enabled him to get his A.S. but he did not complete enough credits for his B.S. In his field, there are lots of common certification programs that can be a resume boost - he has talked about wanting to complete these programs, and in one case when he was between jobs he did take two courses but never took the final test to get the actual certificate. I think the structured learning environment of classrooms/online courses, homework, and testing is just at odds with his learning style and abilities.

However, he is really really good at learning on the fly in a hands-on environment - he will often master a process that would take most people days or weeks in just a few hours. Because he is in IT, actual job experience tends to trump credentials, so his lack thereof hasn't been a big career limiter.

If your son has identified a career path that doesn't require he finish the traditional high school requirements, I would not dismiss that plan out of hand. It doesn't sound like he's trying to avoid responsibility but that rather he'd like to try a path of his own design. Some of his struggles might also not be solved by homeschooling - for example, my husband will voraciously devour dry, technical information about a topic if he's interested in it (e.g. tech specs of stereo equipment), but if he's not he really can't be motivated to care with any amount of persuasion or cajoling. His brain just doesn't work that way. It's either rabid interest or little to none. This is reflected in his college grades, which tended to be something like "A C B+ D D." I imagine it was very frustrating for his teachers, since he's otherwise bright and engaged, and I can only imagine how much his own parents would have struggled if they were the ones trying to instruct him.

I may be totally wrong of course (not every person with ADHD has the same strengths/limitations) and you should do what you think is best. Good luck!

LadyL, you just described DS to a T! If he's interested, he can sit for hours and learn everything he can get his hands on. It's the subjects he has no interest in that he's failing. This has me thinking, not once in all the meetings with the school has this been brought up. Unfortunately, high school/college teachers operate much differently than elementary teachers who look for ways to engage your child.

Onyx_TKD

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Re: Need advice from Homeschoolers
« Reply #25 on: April 15, 2016, 05:24:17 PM »
OP here - Several things - The trade school he wants to go to is for welding. He started in ag this year and is a member of FFA. He has almost a 100 in that class and gets upset if he's late for school since it's first class of the day. He's doing so good in that class and has such a knack for it that the teacher lets him have privileges that other kids don't get.

FWIW, in my understanding (as a mechanical engineer), welding is a very important and skilled field. If he already knows that he enjoys it and is good at it, working towards that as a career sounds like a very solid plan. Of course, it would be better to have a high-school diploma first, but please give your son a big pat on the back for very correctly recognizing that what he's currently doing (normal school) isn't working and proposing a practical alternative. Despite what must be an extremely frustrating situation with school (which is a huge part of a kid's life), he's not just wanting to quit school--he's wanting to switch to a different school, a trade school, that he thinks will work better. That's quite a mature choice for a frustrated teenager.

I have a somewhat different take as the spouse of someone with ADHD who had trouble in school. For my husband, learning "on the job" is much more effective for him than learning in a classroom because he sees the application in real time. He had trouble finishing college - two attempts to attend full time were unsuccessful, and then night school enabled him to get his A.S. but he did not complete enough credits for his B.S. In his field, there are lots of common certification programs that can be a resume boost - he has talked about wanting to complete these programs, and in one case when he was between jobs he did take two courses but never took the final test to get the actual certificate. I think the structured learning environment of classrooms/online courses, homework, and testing is just at odds with his learning style and abilities.

However, he is really really good at learning on the fly in a hands-on environment - he will often master a process that would take most people days or weeks in just a few hours. Because he is in IT, actual job experience tends to trump credentials, so his lack thereof hasn't been a big career limiter.

If your son has identified a career path that doesn't require he finish the traditional high school requirements, I would not dismiss that plan out of hand. It doesn't sound like he's trying to avoid responsibility but that rather he'd like to try a path of his own design. Some of his struggles might also not be solved by homeschooling - for example, my husband will voraciously devour dry, technical information about a topic if he's interested in it (e.g. tech specs of stereo equipment), but if he's not he really can't be motivated to care with any amount of persuasion or cajoling. His brain just doesn't work that way. It's either rabid interest or little to none. This is reflected in his college grades, which tended to be something like "A C B+ D D." I imagine it was very frustrating for his teachers, since he's otherwise bright and engaged, and I can only imagine how much his own parents would have struggled if they were the ones trying to instruct him.

I may be totally wrong of course (not every person with ADHD has the same strengths/limitations) and you should do what you think is best. Good luck!

LadyL, you just described DS to a T! If he's interested, he can sit for hours and learn everything he can get his hands on. It's the subjects he has no interest in that he's failing. This has me thinking, not once in all the meetings with the school has this been brought up. Unfortunately, high school/college teachers operate much differently than elementary teachers who look for ways to engage your child.

I was home-schooled myself, but I can only really offer input from the student perspective, since I never had to deal with how it was set up or curricula were chosen.

One big strength of homeschooling is having more flexibility in making things interesting for the individual student. For one thing, "field trips" are a lot simpler--in addition to things like museums (including a hands-on science museum in our area), we once went to watch a museum-piece locomotive being moved by crane and saw some of the filming of a movie in our area. Second, a lot of topics can be combined into something more interesting. I'm not sure if you said what specific topics he's struggling with (if you did, I missed it). But I wonder if any of them could be somehow woven into, e.g., designing and creating a welding project. There would probably be elements of math and science to incorporate into the design process itself. Writing up a proposal for you of what he wanted to do, what purpose it would serve, the timeline and budget, etc., could bring in practice in English (in a type of writing that would be useful for his actual field), etc., in a way that might be more motivating if it culminated in doing something he finds satisfying.

Also, if he learns well on his own for subjects that interest him, by all means, use it! My mom likes to say that my brother and I taught ourselves from textbooks, because we both learn well that way.