Do you believe homeschooling is good for your kids, and why?
People will probably get tired of hearing me say this, but deciding to “homeschool” is really a decision to take personal responsibility for the child’s education. If homeschool is an attempt to duplicate the public school experience around the kitchen table, then it is likely doomed to fail. I don’t know many homeschoolers that take this approach. On the other hand, if the decision to homeschool is based on a throrough evaluation of all educational options, and is based on sound data and rational conclusions, and the parents have developed a cohesive plan for the execution that is realistic within their resources, then, of course, homeschool offers the best chance for the child’s success. But that is circular reasoning.
Homeschooling offers an opportunity to define a curriculum around the individual child’s abilities and interests. The public school system cannot do this. But at the same time, homeschooling on an idividual basis denies the feedback that comes from a classroom full of other children; it becomes a bit harder to gauge how well the child is progressing. This can be both a pro and a con.
Socialization is probably the most often cited reason for not homeschooling, with the argument that kids need the social interaction they get in the classroom. This is generally nonsense that comes from a lack of understanding of homeschool and a faulty idea of socialization. The classroom environment in a public school is an aftificial construct built around age segregation and a form of regimentation necessary in a school for classroom management but absent in the “real world.” The homeschool offers the opportunity for the child to interact with a much broader social spectrum than is possible in the classroom. But, like all opportunities, one must seize it to realize the benefit. (Contrary to popular misconception, most homeschooled children actually have MORE social interaction than their public schooled peers.) Since the classroom environment exists only in the school, learning social skills based on the classroom is useless once the child leaves school.
A neighbor of mine, after being forced to concede defeat in a debate on academic issues, tried to argue that, for socialization reasons, children needed to go to school to “learn how to stand in the lunch line.” When I asked her how this skill would transfer to the real world, she mentioned standing in line for a teller at the bank. My response was that we teach our children how to stand in the teller line by taking them to the bank with us. This pretty much ended her arguments.
My daughter & son were sick all the time and missed a lot of school and since they have been home they have hardly been sick.
Also in school everything was on a strict time limit (academics & lunch time)! My kids seem so much more relaxed and we are able to go that extra mile if help is needed and the individual attention they get at home is great!
On the other hand they miss other students,gym class and the structure of the school environment. So I went to the school and got the gym on Mon nights and we had a gym class with the pastors family it was great.Play dates are important as well to keep the social thing going.Feild trips make it more fun and are educational ( we went to the post office for a trip & the kids loved to see how the mail was sorted etc. and it did not cost anything to go) I also made a schedual (not down to minutes) that the kids enjoyed.
Homeschooling does not put a limit on learning as I feel public school does but thats just me. I am definatly for homeschooling! Hope I helped and good luck:)
After all these years I will let our experience, and the success of our children speak for how “good” it was/is for our children.
I would not say something like “if the parent is intelligent enough”, because I have seen parents without a high school diploma do just as well, and send their children off to college as well as those who hold a Masters in Education.
Intelligence is not equal to wisdom, experience, or common sense; throw in a ton of dedication and you have the recipe for a home school parent.
The level of education of the parent is not the key ingredient to success; their level of dedication is.
Home schooling has no magic, no one size fits all; it is a family effort, it is much more than academics; therefore it is in our opinion the most well rounded way to fully raise/educate a child.
We can tailor all instruction/learning to each child’s needs, and interests.
To explain, or make understandable the difference between home schooling, and conventional schooling would be very time consuming, and really we would not try because we think they are not even in the same hemisphere.
Home schooling takes on a different “picture” for each family; there are similarities among home school families, but not one is comparably the same.
Home schooled children, teens, and young adults have so many social opportunities that we are not even going to address that old “myth” anymore.
You are right, for many, including ourselves it is the BEST idea.
The oldest 4 DID attend public school. The oldest being in 7Th grade when we pulled him out. We knew for years that he was having problems but the system refused to help saying he wasn’t *bad* enough to have an IEP.( when we tested with the Alpha Omega Academy, he tested on 3rd and 4th grade levels… and was in ps ‘s 7Th grade )
We were already helping him at home anyway and decided to try homeschooling . ( we homeschooled the oldest the first year and he liked it and the others wanted to come home as well, so here we are!! 🙂
we have had our good and bad days, but for the most part, I would say that it is best for my kids!
as far as the *socialization myth* goes, my kids not only have more friends now than when in ps, they also know how to *socialize* with the real world now ( ie: if there are many people of different ages in one place, they know how to talk, or *socialize* with all of them, not just with those their own age)
We are in a couple of different homeschool groups and the kids are in other activities such as 4-H and scouts. Many of their friends are in dance , choir, and other club or *extra curricular* activities.
I will say that homeschool is not for everyone, it is a family choice and more important, it is a lifestyle.
My DD is only three, however she is already above and beyond what kindergarten will teach her. Anything I try to teach her, she either already knows, or learns it very quickly and is ready to move onto something else. She informed me not too long ago she wanted to learn Spanish. Generally that is not something the schools here will teach her. By the time my DD is old enough to go to the public school she will almost be 6. Who knows where she will be academically then. Certainly way beyond anything the schools here can provide for her.
My other DD is only 20 months. She is doing great. She too is above what others are at her age. Once she gets older we will decide what is best for her education. More than likely we will homeschool her as well.
Oh and my Dad always says: “If anyone’s going to teach my kid bad habits, it’s going to be us and not a bunch of strangers we’re paying $25,000 a year for the privilege” (lol!)
I’m 14 and where I have e-friends in countries like America, they tell me they can’t believe how “mature” and “savvy” and “together” I am compared to their own teenaged kids who go to their local schools.
Being home schooled also means I get the chance to learn heaps of things that aren’t offered to kids my age in schools – I’ve learnt to speak 6 languages (rather than only the 2 that are ever offered to kids in schools up here: English and either French OR Indonesian).
I am even learning to fly in addition to aircraft maintenance and that’s something that isn’t made available to students in many, if any, “regular” schools!
It’s also brought me and my parents much closer together: we’ve had to learn how to talk to each other; how to listen, really listen to each other and how to compromise. As a child, being homeschooled definitely improves your conflict resolution skills cuz you can’t afford to not get on with your parents when your Mum is both your mum and your teacher!
Oh and I do cross country running, swimming and horse riding in the State’s U-16 teams so I do still get to mix with plenty of other kids my age despite the fact I “don’t go to school”.
My son has been HS’ed for over four years. We are able to use curriculum based on his learning style (which is global – many types). He is able to go at his own pace in courses – which is different for each one. He currently has coursework over 5 different grade levels. That would be impossible in any B&M school.
We participate in a HS co-op once a week. Even though we’re in a small city, the group has nearly 100 students and continues to grow. That gives him the experience of having other types of teachers and work settings. He also attends many classes and camps in the community. He’s at zoo camp right now with all sorts of other kids his age.
By HS’ing, we can go to museums during “slow” periods (Not in May!) and take our time really exploring and discussing exhibits. He gets to talk, at length, with docents. He and I have both served on consumer panels (as HS “reps) at different museums, helping them learn how to serve the HS’ing community and the community at large. One children’s museum asked him to be a teacher’s assistant for the *public school* classes. They were so impressed with his behavior and willing attitude, as well as his intelligence!
My son also has several hours a day for self-directed learning after his “core curriculum” is complete. He can explore many topics in depth at any level he wants to.
He is not forced to conform to crazy rules about when he can use the restroom, how far from the wall he’s supposed to walk down a hallway, where, or how he learns.
He has the ability to interact with all age groups – from infants to senior citizens, several times a week. He has time to do community service work, do extra work in cub scouting, and spend hours in the library immersed in great books and knowledge.
So yes, my son is thriving in his HS’ing environment!
Go to the weblink above and look at what the standards of teaching are for interpersonal learning for victorian children (australia). These learning standards have been created so that children are prepared for life outside of school, how to manage relationships etc. It’s the way of all workplaces now. They can’t get that at home…Chn can be smart and know more than other kids and are ahead of other children their age, but if they don’t have the life skills in managing relationships, there’s not a lot that being the smartest can do for you if you don’t have the people skills.