What do you think of homeschooling?

What do you think of homeschooling?

Sera Sera
I'm going to home school my daughter when she is old enough (she is an infant now), and I would like to know what you think of my plan. As a child, I hated school. I have a lot of bad memories from school, and I don't want to fill her head with the same garbage that my head was filled with-That's a different story that I won't go into. A lot of the kids were cruel, and a lot of the teachers were as well. I went to public schools, and as a senior in high school I finally was home schooled by my mother, because I had a medical condition. I am wondering if you think it's a good idea. I know that with a good diploma (college education) I can do this. I would just like some opinions. Thanks!(h)
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Avant-garde Avant-garde
If you can do it I think it is a great think to do. I have many bad memories from public school too. My parents home-schooled me because I am dyslexic and the public school was just not giving me a good education. There are a lot of preconceived notions that you may run into such as your kids wont have as good social skills. There was a study conducted that shows homeschooling actually is better than public school in many different areas.
deadpoet deadpoet
Home schooling is a great idea. Some kids that have been home schooled go off to college a few years early. When I have kids, I would love to home school them, because just like you, I have bad memories from school, and teachers are just jerks now a days
Alura Une Alura Une
I think it can be great, but...each style of education has it's advantages and disadvantages.

I come from a public school background and for most of my school years, I was miserable. I hated school, I got sick thinking about what I had to deal with there sometimes. I was blessed to be able to attend a small, alternative high school. I interacted with a lot of people who went to a "free school" (in my opinion, this particular one was a big kid day care with no structure or learning) and some home schooled kids. They had some quirks. Some were very good students, most were unusually intelligent and well-behaved. I wondered if they weren't tired from school in the way I was and came to high school with fresher brains. But they also often had huge gaps in education and some of them were pretty awkward. Really, really awkward. I understand that parents try to do things to avoid these things, but it's pretty hard, I imagine.

I know a lot of people who are fiercely loyal to and promote free schooling and/or home schooling. I have seen literature promoting these things but so little look at it in an unbiased fashion.

Truly, I think my high school was an ideal situation. It was small (under 500 students) and it was mostly pretty friendly. There was structure, but we had fun. No one got lost in the crowd. Some of those kids moved on to great things. And some are reaching thirty, have a great education, but can't do anything with it because they are kind of scared of people...
PassionQT PassionQT
I'm getting ready to home school our oldest next year for 8th grade. My kid made straight A's all through 6th grade in advanced classes, got awards, and for 7th grade they put her in basic classes (clerical error) with many unmotivated kids with disciplinary problems. WHen I sat down with them, they were only able to change 2 of her classes...they even admitted they should have put her in this one advanced class (btw, she got the highest grade in that class when they finally did switch her over) She is shy, very bright, and mature for her age. She is friendly, but she isn't a flirt or a social butterfly and won't take the advice of her peers to "act stupid" so the boys will like her. LOL...my friends never gave me that kind of advice!

So we aren't homeschooling for religious beliefs or because we are too conversative ( FAR from that! ). Some schools just aren't good environments educationally and socially. So now I'm in the process of doing the application for the Home school program and looking for other local kids/home school groups.

Now the elementary school where the younger kids go is great so they will stay there...for now.
Shellz31 Shellz31
I did a little home-schooling. I enjoyed it cause I could get so much more done in a shorter time so I was free to go out or whatever.

If I had kids, I wouldn't mind home-schooling. But I'm thinking by the time they got to school age - I might love the idea of having some time to myself again....hehe.
P'Gell P'Gell
Being part of the Attachment Parenting Community for many years, a lot of my friends home schooled.

Some did a fantastic job, some did an OK job, some, honestly did their children a disservice. Usually, the ones who didn't do a good job left things out of their curriculum, or stuck to basically "unschooling" ; ; which is "letting children teach themselves." One woman didn't teach her kids math because "I'm not good at it and I don't think they will want to do anything that requires math." That nearly drove me to rage. She also thought a thorough "lesson" was taking her kids to the grocery store with her, which according to her "women who send their kids to school don't do that." WTF?

The parents who did a great job usually had a curriculum planned, stuck to a schedule (even if they did break out of it once in a while) and had a LOT of education and/or knowledge themselves. These parents also were willing to hire a tutor if there was something they themselves couldn't teach (I don't subscribe to "all you have to do is stay one lesson ahead of the kids" philosophy of teaching) and DID put their kids into public or private school for High School. IMO, kids NEED the social dynamics of High School to learn how to act in society, find a partner and get by well.

My Man and I talked about home schooling and came to the conclusion that our kids would do better in a traditional school. I did consider home schooling our youngest, but she refused. "I want to go to school, sit at a desk and do my homework." (This from a 4 year old.) I figured she knew what she wanted, and she loves school. Seeing as she has Ausperger's and is not really socially outgoing, I doubt she would have friends at all if she didn't go to school. Last night she went to a sock hop with two friends, and she, personally needs the social interaction that being in school requires.

It depends on the family, the dynamic and the parents ability to be flexible. And, also to KNOW when they are not knowledgeable enough to teach a certain subject. I know SO many home schooled kids who know no math beyond 2nd grade basics. And more than I want to think about who were taught "Creationism" as a "science." ARGHGGHG!
MaryExy MaryExy
My only problem with home schooling is that the kid may have a harder time building social skills. They never have someone other than a parent teach them, and their friends end up only being kids in the same neighborhood and whatnot. They also usually don't get exposed to beliefs outside their family's, which ends up making them less open to accepting other views. I went to public school all my life, and while I wished I was home schooled back then, I'm not glad my parents stuck with it. Otherwise I think I'd be a very awkward person around others.

Education-wise, homeschooling can be much better if the parent is working hard. But one the social side, I'm kind of against it.
hjtee hjtee
I think if you can do it, and devote the time to it, more power to you.
I wouldn't be able to, even if I stayed at home, I don't think I would have the patience.

I would also be a little worried about my child's interaction with other children his/her own age, but I'm sure that could be covered with other 'after-school' activites, which are community, not school run.
IrishLassie IrishLassie
I am a product of homeschooling. My parents, especially my mom got fed up with how my school was teaching phonics and thought she could give me a better education. So halfway through the 2nd grade, she pulled me out. My parents didnt pull me out for religious beliefs. I think it was the best choice my parents made. I enjoyed being homeschooled. In the 7th grade, I started going back to public school part time for classes that neither my mom or step-dad could teach me, i.e: foreign language and advanced sciences. I had no trouble adjusting to public school. I made a lot of friends. I am naturally shy and a little quiet. No one made fun of me for being homeschooled. In fact most people were curious and asked a lot of questions. For me, it was a great experience and I think I had a great opportunity to do things most kids were unable to do. When I was 10 we took a family vacation to Virginia and D.C. and my mom treated it as part of my history class.

I cannot stand that people automatically assume that just because someone is homeschooled doesnt make them socially awkard or they can't succeed in life or anything else you can think of. I am not socially awkward I had a lot of friends growing up and I did a lot of activities. Took a lot of field trips with other kids of the same age. Probably even more field trips than kids in a public/private students because we had more free time to do such. If you talked to me you probably wouldnt figue I was homeschooled until I told you.

I am Christian and my mom did teach me creationism, because that is what I believe in. My mom did tell me about evolution. My mom worked really hard to make me a well rounded individual and to think for myself. When I graduated, I graduated with almost a 4.0 GPA. I would never trade the choice my parents made for the world. I went on to college to study Psychology and gentics. I got married while I was in college and unfortunately didnt have the money to continue to go. I dont have any student loans and my college was all paid for at the time. One day hopefully soon I will go back so i can finally get my degree *gleefully crosses fingers*

My husband went to public school and while he liked it, he wants to homeschool our kids when we have them.
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Originally posted by Sera
I'm going to home school my daughter when she is old enough (she is an infant now), and I would like to know what you think of my plan. As a child, I hated school. I have a lot of bad memories from school, and I don't want to fill her head ...
I have homeschooled my girls all their lives and it's not as regimented and awful as people think it is. They will be attending an online highschool so they can have the diploma and and take classes I am not confident I can teach. The school is all year round like our normal year and self paced so I know they will be proud of their achievements and able to compete with their public schooled counterparts.
Be sure you check out your State's regulations on homeschooling or get a good umbrella school to do that for you. There are great book repositories that schools use to recycle their books where you can get excellent resources to build your own curriculum. I do recommend Saxon math...we struggled with public school (Houghton Mifflin) math books and my girls made up three school years in one year with Saxon. As my daughter's say "It's boring but it is easier to understand and it makes math easy."
Most of all have fun with it! Enjoy the years you'll spend together and don't worry homeschooling more than one student isn't as difficult as you would think. Asking the older ones to help the younger ones is a great way to reinforce earlier lessons and check progress!
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Originally posted by MaryExy
My only problem with home schooling is that the kid may have a harder time building social skills. They never have someone other than a parent teach them, and their friends end up only being kids in the same neighborhood and whatnot. They also ...
Children who are homeschooled have more interaction than their peers with teachers outside of the school system. They tend to develop better social skills easier and at a younger age as they tend to see adult interaction most of their day. Most homeschooled kids aren't wearing prairie dresses and avoiding the public they are doing grocery shopping, car repair, other chores around the neighborhood and attending activities.
Most people don't know my kids are homeschooled unless they ask...and then they are pleasantly surprised that they are so social and well spoken.
Besides with the global world we live in my kids know more about other cultures and places than I ever did and I lived all over the world when I was growing up. My kids have close friends in foreign countries, in their own neighborhood and in neighborhoods we have lived in previously!

It really depends on the amount of involvement of the parents and how much time they actually have to devote to their children. The amount of time needed can be quite minimal though if your aim is to truly educate your child. Simply allowing them to actually PLAY can teach them all the lessons of the school yard with the added safety of a truly responsible and invested adult in attendance....you!

I have been blessed to have partners who understand my commitment to homeschooling and have worked HARD to allow me to have the opportunity to pursue this life choice. My children have had an almost idyllic childhood and will, hopefully, respect my choice and live up to their potential...but I know many parents who have children just as bright and well socialized who sent their children to public school. In the end it's your involvement that really makes the difference. Once you have done your best you just have to let the munchkins go and hope for the best for them.
Spilock Spilock
I think homeschooling definitely has its merits. I know there were several times that I hated my public school, simply for the fact that I was one of the nerds who got made fun of often. But even as far back as kindergarten I made lifelong friends, which is something that may not have happened for me if I had been homeschooled. I also thing that public school is a decent preparation for college.

But on the flip side, public schools are getting somewhat worse. I know I'm glad I got out of my highschool as early as I did, as it would have been a pain to be in the environment it consists of now.
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Originally posted by P'Gell
Being part of the Attachment Parenting Community for many years, a lot of my friends home schooled.

Some did a fantastic job, some did an OK job, some, honestly did their children a disservice. Usually, the ones who didn't do a ...
LOL My girls would love to have stopped math at second grade! We wanted to have them in the Saxon curriculum from the beginning but it was prohibitively expensive...until a local school system started using it. I tell you my kids are a full year ahead now after being nearly two behind...in only one school year! The system teaches math in such an easy to understand manner I am even filling in skill gaps as they learn! 'Course Sigel and Arch are both math enthusiasts so they do most of the teaching but I figure if'n I can larn this stuff ennyone can!

I teach english, science and history as those are my passions and language we leave to Rosetta Stone...or Arch as he is fleuent in polish.

I don't understand limiting a child's knowledge so we kind of jump from topic to topic as their interest does, often revisiting a topic later to go into more detail. I have had times where I was frustrated as hell with homeschooling but we've found a short break for some practical learning reinvigorates us all.

For us grocery shopping is a school activity but we MAKE it a school activity by figuring percents, reading labels, designing meals, creating and sticking ot a budget and balancing nutrition...the exact same things my Mom did with me even though I was public schooled! Personally I think every parent should do this with their children regardless of how they are being schooled, it's a great way to check for skill gaps and teach practical living skills!
IrishLassie IrishLassie
Originally posted by Airen Wolf
LOL My girls would love to have stopped math at second grade! We wanted to have them in the Saxon curriculum from the beginning but it was prohibitively expensive...until a local school system started using it. I tell you my kids are a full year ...
You rock Airen. My experience was very similar. We also used Saxon math. It's a very good curriculum. There are a lot of great sources for parents who want to homeschooling their children.
IrishLassie IrishLassie
My mom would do the same thing. Anywhere we went could have the potential of being a school activity.
IrishLassie IrishLassie
Originally posted by IrishLassie
You rock Airen. My experience was very similar. We also used Saxon math. It's a very good curriculum. There are a lot of great sources for parents who want to homeschooling their children.
Dusk Dusk
Personally, I don't believe in homeschooling. I could see why it looks like a great idea and I'm sure in some cases it can be really great for development. Hell, I had a terrible time for many years in school. The thing is though, I think dealing with all of that made me a stronger person. I'm more assertive, opinionated, and able to stand up for myself in social situations. I think if I homeschooled my kids someday I would be protecting them against an outside world they need to learn how to deal with. If they don't end up in those social situations as they're growing up, dealing with people in the adult world will be that much harder.

I can definitely see how homeskilled kids aren't lacking in social skills or anything of the sort, but I also think that those skills don't necessarily translate to being able to deal with assholes, liars, bullies, and selfish brats in the real world. Those characters are something I don't think someone gets as much exposure to grocery shopping or participating in a field trip once in a while.

That said, I'm certainly going to supplement my kids' public education at home with some of our own activities and values.
Redboxbaby Redboxbaby
We considered homeschooling for several years. Our son is gifted and the district we were in did not offer advanced anything for fear of excluding other kids. Instead of giving him a bit of a challenge, he was bored to death, and his teachers complained that they wanted him medicated as early as Kindergarten and first grade.

We moved to a different state and things got better, then a few years after that we had to move to Alaska (we'd heard horror stories about the "crappy" education system -- not true by the way) and we began considering homeschooling when we moved yet again, to an even smaller district with even less funding.

After 8 summers together, I was well aware that my son and I would end up hating each other if we chose to home school him. I am a perfectionist and his brain does not work in the logical order that mine does (his works much better than mine) but it is so confusing to the both of us. I am so glad we sought out other avenues for him. I like him a lot better when he isn't trying to teach me Calculus.
Enchantedkitty Enchantedkitty
I personally love being home schooled. I started my own homeschooling in 11th grade. I found it was MUCH easier for me. I didn't have to wait around for people to finish their work, I could move ahead and go on with life.

Even now in college I take most of my classes online.
Wondermom Wondermom
from my name I am sure you can tell my opinion of it. We don't do it for any religious reasons. My son is special needs and the district just couldn't provide what he needed to learn and progress in his delays. He still receives speech therapy from the school district but now it is one on one and he has improved dramatically.

We are part of a local homeschool group and we are very busy with them most the time on playdates and field trips. I don't teach creationism and strive hard to expose my son to every religion and holiday tradition possible. He is only just starting K officially this year but we will not be avoiding math or sciences once he is older and if I need a tutor to explain things better we will use one.

The child who wouldn't talk, play with other kids, always had a scowl on his face after school and was becoming violent from what he was learning from other children, is now a kid who you wish would be quiet for 5 seconds, loves to hug everyone he meets, wears a permanent grin and is as gentle as a kitten. He socializes with kids and adults of all ages and is learning social cues and facial expressions more than he did in the schools special needs program.
kjkitty kjkitty
I was in public school from pre-school until the end of ninth grade. After that my parents pulled me and my little sister and brother out of school and homeschooled us. We had an online curriculum. It is . . . Ohio's? "school at home" program but they have a program for students in other states as well. I taught myself everything, with some help from my mom and a LOT of help from Google. Each subject was divided into however many long weeks school is (I can't remember right now. I think 18?) and each lesson was supposed to cover a week's worth of material that you would learn in public school. I would read each lesson and then had questions to answer over it and there was a midterm and a final. So here are my thoughts . . .

I love homeschooling. It was great for me. I am very much a self-taught person so the system we had was natural to me. Even now that I am in college I pretty much ignore my professor for most subjects and teach myself out of the book. I was able to go my own pace (very fast) so I wasn't bored in school. I was also able to do a LOT during the day. I ended up working at a pre-school once or twice a week and moved from just a "teenage helper" to a substitute teacher for them. I also picked up a nannying job for a while and then a full time job at a sub shop. I also danced a minimum of twelve hours a week. None of that would have been possible if I had been in school. I think that homeschooling also prepared me for college in the sense that if I did not know the answer to, for example, a calculus problem, I was on my own. My mom and dad did not remember calculus from when they were in school and I was a grade above my public school friends. My only answer was to use Google to find practice problems, help forums, etc. until it clicked. That's a lot what college is like, and I feel like I am a lot better prepared for that then a lot of the other students I know.

However, my younger sister and brother are struggling with it a lot more than I am. They need a lot more guidance from a teacher figure, but they have trouble listening to my mom in that sense. A lot of fights used to break out in our house because we had all been around each other so much and my mom was trying to teach my sister algebra and my sister wasn't understanding. I think that my brother especially, who got pulled out of school before he had really been taught how to formally write a paper, really lacks the writing skills that are going to be necessary in college. Furthermore, because the curriculum we have is AWFUL, my sister especially is really struggling to learn the more complicated math subjects like trig and calculus.

So, my advice would be to find a REALLY good curriculum. And when your child is old enough, listen to what they have to say about the curriculum. I told my parents over and over that the one we were using was pretty much worthless, but they just didn't understand or listen. Also, keep them really involved with a very diverse group of people. My brother and sister are part of a homeschool band and everyone in that band is very . . . sheltered. The only people they hang out with or even know are other people in that homeschool band. Homeschooled kids definitely do not have to be shy or quiet or anything, but I think part of heading that off comes from keeping them involved with lots of different groups, lots of different people.

Lastly, you mention that "a lot of kids were cruel." I would just keep in mind that whether or not they are in public school, some day they are going to come into contact with these types of people. If you keep them TOO sheltered they are not going to be able to deal with the real world. Imagine what would happen the first time someone offers them drugs or alcohol at a college party or something and they've never heard of the stuff or don't know the dangers.

Anyways, sorry for the super long post but overall I think homeschooling is a GREAT idea as long as you do it right. In fact, if you want to get a jump start on your kid reading, I can find out what book my parents used for me and my siblings. We were all reading before we even started kindergarten and are all still great readers today. That's about the best jumpstart you can give a kid!
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