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Thread: Home Schooling

  1. #26
    Power Poster sewbizgirl's Avatar
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    Ha ha... I have to shake my head at some of the 'opinions' of those who have had no experience homeschooling, whatsoever. I home educated all three of my children during the 90's and 2000's and finished up when the last one graduated in 2008. I'm sad to see the same old fallacies about homeschooling are still alive and well.

    Actually, the "insular world" is in the institutional classroom, where the kids are surrounded by only those of their same age, every day of their life. If they weren't confined to that environment for the vast majority of their waking hours (not to mention tied up with hours more of homework once they get home), they might have time to learn all the other important aspects of life... cooking, building, gardening, raising animals, learning a trade with mom or dad, volunteer work, fine arts training, or whatever their natural leanings are. They would not be subject to "group think" and indoctrination of what is "correct" according to someone who the government hired to "educate" them. They instead grow and flourish within the values of their parents.

    In reality, you don't need nearly as much time to educate a child every day when you don't have to waste time dealing with the kids who act out (at worst), or just can't keep up with your child's learning level (at best). It is not necessary to replicate the format of public school, and is not even beneficial.

    Home educating families are more often than not part of local support groups with other HE families. There are tons of opportunities to "socialize", learn together, take field trips and just gather to have play days. They are also with peers in church and community sports teams. The concept that HE kids are just kept in a box, is ridiculous. And they are out in society so much more than kids confined to the classroom. They are unfettered! They are commonly very comfortable conversing with people of all ages, especially adults. They have a huge 'leg up' on being productive adult citizens. And they, in large percentage, do become leaders as adults.

    School can really harm a child's natural love of learning by boring them, day after day after day.

    So I'm offering a few thoughts that may be new to some... from someone who has lived the home educating life.
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 05-09-2019 at 10:31 AM. Reason: remove political statement
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  2. #27
    Power Poster sewbizgirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bearisgray View Post
    A question/opinion -

    How can a parent/guardian teach something he/she does not know ?
    There is a vast array of excellent curriculum available to choose from. If you send you kids to a school you just have to take what you get!
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  3. #28
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    Glad to see you chime in, Sewbizgirl! I was hoping you would, being a homeschool mom. I agree with everything you said!
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  4. #29
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    I think it depends on where you are and how you choose to approach it. I know several families here who home school. They are part of a home school group in their areas. They network with other families for lots of field trips and social time. I haven't found their children to be any less well socialized than the public school kids and in general a lot more mannerly and well behaved. Its a huge commitment, but I can't say I wouldn't do it considering the state of public schools.
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  5. #30
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    I mentioned my Catholic education, which I didn't like. We were treated like a herd of cattle. There were a minimum of 50 kids per class (usually more) and if you weren't near the top you were at a disadvantage. I went from grades 2-10.
    In 7th grade they separated the boys from the girls and then Freshman year I went to an all girls high-school.

    In my junior year I elected to go to a large public high school. It was a great experience. I went to school with the richest, poorest, and everyone in between, all races, ethnicities , religions, you name it. I'm so glad my parents allowed me to do it.
    It was the best experience I had before college. The diversity was an education in itself. I made many friends along the way I would have never known had I stayed in the other high school.

    We had a similar situation when our boys were in school. For most of their formative years they went to a school with kids just like them. When we moved we put them in a more diverse setting and they did just as well academically but were happier socially. They've told me many times those were their best school years before college.
    This is a little off-topic but since we're discussing education I thought I'd mention it.

  6. #31
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    I was an public school educator (HS social studies and 27 yrs as MS counselor) for 35 yrs. I don't think this is an easy answer or "one-size-fits-all" As NZ said--home schooling can be excellent or very mediocre at best. Excellent home school parents are working Very hard not only with a proscribed curriculum that emphasizes not only learning facts, but thinking, and Very hard at getting their children to events that allow socialization. Unfortunately the size & diversity(not just talking race, ethnicity or religion here--but personalities) limits of those socialization events don't work for all kids if only a small group of homeschoolers. And being that home school child that attends a weekly Scout, etc meeting sometimes just makes them feel more isolated as the other kids are seeing each other daily at school.
    As a counselor, I've had kids enter M.S. that had spent 6-7 yrs homeschooling and did great--others that were a disaster and I really felt for them. As a H.S. teacher of required (by the State of KS) American History I've had more than one previously home schooled student have to take my final in order to get credit for their home school American History and not pass it. If I had been homeschooling my own two kids, I'm sure they would have failed any math curriculum too!
    Some states have very high standards on home school curriculum and performance--unfortunately some, like Kansas, do not, just as long as a parent files a a plan using a published curriculum. But there are no outcomes standards in KS, so some kids get a wonderful education, others a very sub par education--but all "graduate". In our public schools there are outcomes standards, and kids not meeting them are prescribed remediation--otherwise the district is forced to make changes in order to see better results. And yes, every year some public school seniors don't actually graduate--but often there are attendance issues.

    I do think that in some locations that are very remote, having elementary students home schooled actually make sense so that kids are not on school buses for hours on end or forced to board with someone in town. But by middle and high school the depth of subjects and social education is so important.

    I have a son that is ADHD and there were frankly some teachers that I felt were not sensitive about that and My life would have been easier to home school him--but it was important for him to learn to deal with his disorder in a real world, regardless of how painful at times.
    If parents are unhappy with public schools' approach to special education, every state has SE advocates to help with Individual Ed. Plans at no cost and due to federal regulations, special ed services must be outcomes based.

    yes, there are some districts that do a better job than others, but the socialization piece is So big with preparing kids for being productive, resilient adults. One note--every public school is required to allow any home schooled student to attend for specific classes (i.e. music, or advanced science, etc) and as a counselor I would encourage parents to take advantage of that so their students get a feel for public ed.
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 05-10-2019 at 02:24 AM. Reason: shouting/all caps

  7. #32
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    Everyone in my family have gone through public schools. And agree that it all depends on the parents when it comes to Home Schooling. Some parents shouldn't have children, let alone home schooling them. I did the Girl Scout Leader and my DH works with the High School youth group at church. We could tell without being told who was home schooled and who was not. The kids came from different schools so it wasn't like they were all in the same class. Just like schools aren't all good either. It all comes down to the parents and their involvement in their child's education and socialization. We all want to protect our children as best we can, but unless we want them to live with us until the day we die, then they need to socialize. The younger they are when they start socializing the better they will be.

  8. #33
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    I would never have had the self-discipline to teach my own children the types of things that have to be learned as part of the standard curriculum, but I felt I had a role in showing them the things that school can't show them very well. For example, getting out to just walk around in nature and pointing out things they might not notice, visiting museums or talking about current events at dinner. I tried to follow up and show them that you can find out more about things that seem interesting by going to the library and looking them up. To me the most important role that parents have as teachers - and all parents are their children's first teachers - is to help cultivate curiosity and an appreciation for the wealth of knowledge that is there for them to discover, and also to help them consider important topics and learn to think critically.

    Someone I knew took on the task of home schooling her son through his last couple of years of high school because he had a prolonged illness and was getting behind. She and her husband divided the different types of course work between them and did a very thorough job of covering it all. The boy went on to a prestigious college and thrived. I suspect the vast majority of parents would not be able to do as well as these highly educated and motivated parents did. He was their only child, which certainly helped.

    In addition to the important social aspects, most schools have a great deal to offer kids that goes far beyond anything parents can do, and they usually have highly trained teachers whose competency is verified. They are also constantly under community scrutiny, whereas nobody really knows what goes on in some homes. Many schools have excellent lab equipment and other resources that would be hard to come by at home. Then there are extra-curricular activities, which provide many areas of learning and growth. My 3 kids did things like band, swim team, computer lab, school newspaper, and Latin, Spanish and German clubs and debate team. Not only was all that very good for them, but colleges look for evidence that students are well-rounded and have had a broad exposure to different ideas and experiences, and that they had leadership roles. Homeschoolers have to work very hard to even come close to providing those kinds of opportunities. I admire those who sincerely try, but some do fall short and their kids are missing out.
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  9. #34
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    Several years ago, I was on the Grand Jury with a woman who homeschooled her children because she did not want them associating with the kids in public schools. I wondered how they would deal with these types of adults later in life. That was such a narrow-minded reason for home schooling her children. The experiences of public school teach so much more in life lessons and how to deal with all types of people.
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  10. #35
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    Later today I am gong to a grandson's graduation from college-the most difficult college to gain admittance to in our state. He is at the top of his class in Computer Science. He and his older brother were home schooled. My DIL did a marvelous job of integrating educational opportunities. There is wonderful curriculum available. The moms in the area had a co-op day; the moms took turns teaching materials, art, crafts, books etc. that they were most interested or skilled in. These kids formed lasting friendships. I would never say they were anti-social. They were not subjected to negative peer pressure, were not subjected to bullying, ridicule and pressure to do drugs, drinking or early sex. These kids have availed themselves of classes offered by the local community college and on-line classes. They all took the standardized tests required along the path. The education my grandsons received was far more expansive that they would have gotten in the local schools. Our local public schools are full of social problems and pressures. I wholeheartedly support home school based education.
    And, I might add that I am a trained educator with a significant number of years of experience earlier in my life.

  11. #36
    Super Member KalamaQuilts's Avatar
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    Just popping in to say thank you for the thoughtful responses to my question. Sharyn

  12. #37
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    Thank you for sharing your observations, quilterpurpledog. You “get” it!

    There are some very negative influences in schools. Would it be best for a child to be thrown into the shark tank to deal with them alone at age 6, or let them grow and mature and gain wisdom from their parents before they have to deal with the negatives of socialization? My kids had the opportunity to develop a strong sense of “self” before they had to deal with jerks in their lives. And now they do it very well... better than I do, in fact. My daughter is an amazing counselor for youth with problems.
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  13. #38
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    SBG, I'm just curious here: how do they have access to things like biology and chemistry labs etc? This is not a judgement at all. I've never known anyone who was home educated so I really don't know these things. Also languages and things that aren't offered at home like music etc.
    I don't think anyone here is offering their view to make anyone angry. Kalama just wanted opinions.
    I may have annoyed some by knocking my Catholic education but I don't mean any harm. Just telling my experience.

  14. #39
    Super Member NZquilter's Avatar
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    Susie, I know you asked SBG, but I have an answer too. As quiltingshorttimer mentioned just above, every public school is required to allow homeschool students to attend specific classes, like the sciences that need a lab you mentioned. As for music, you can always hire a tutor. My Dad is a music teacher and would often get homeschool kids going to him for private lessons for years. He really enjoyed teaching them and they always loved their weekly lessons. That's how my Dh learned Greek and Latin, by private tutoring.

    Home education isn't a "handicap" or a stunting of children's knowledge.

    I'm sorry your Catholic education left a bad taste in your mouth for Catholic religion. But please remember that just because one school was operated like that doesn't make every Catholic, or even private, school like that. I taught in a Catholic school for a year before I met DH and I loved what I saw there. The kids were happy and innocent, just like how kids should be. They were taught so much more than just religion.
    Last edited by NZquilter; 05-10-2019 at 07:25 AM.
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    This is a wonderful thread.
    I went to a Catholic school and feel I got a wonderful education in most things. They were a little lax on history and geography. But I picked that up well later. I had to opportunities to do so and have traveled all over the world.

    Some home school parents do a wonderful job, some do not. A family I know home-schooled in the late eighties and early nineties. Father was a square dance caller and a lot of his dancers were family and relatives and their friends. There were two squares of just teenagers. These children were interacting with all ages. They are now wonderful adults and at least two of them are square dance callers. There were eleven squares on the floor at one of their recent dances. Three generations are dancing and interacting together. I think that is important.

    I certainly disagree with putting our children in "boxes". We send our children to Day Care when they are days old. Tiny ones are in one room, one and two year olds are together. Throughout life they keep to their age groups.

    The homeschoolers in my area have a group that gets together every once in a while for socializing and fun and sports. There they meet other children of all ages, not just ones of their own age.

    As a teacher in a one room school museum, I have children come in each day to learn about a 1904 school day. A different school brings their 4th graders each day. Once in a while the home schooled group comes. What I have learned is different about this group is that I find one or two who know very much about history; they can name all the presidents and their vice-presidents. Some are a whiz at math. Some are excellent spellers or can do cursive like Palmer. Do they all catch up later? Maybe.
    Last edited by maviskw; 05-10-2019 at 07:45 AM.
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  16. #41
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    Someone earlier mentioned it -

    becoming an educated person seems to depend on three things -

    the person him/herself - does he/she want to or is able to learn?
    are the parents/guardians interested/encouraging and do they have the means to support this?
    are the materials/institutions available to the learner (either/both cost and/or location)?

  17. #42
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    The mothers that are involved in home schooling here, the kids go to a home school commune type gathering once or twice a week. They have labs and learning centers for the home school kids. It's a job for the parent who is home schooling, it's not here read this book and answer the questions. It's not cheap either. Lots of paperwork involved to keep the kids grade levels tested and recorded. The kids I know now that are homeschooled are more involved in outside activities and community then the public school kids. The parent is the key to successful home school kids and many can't stick with it. I was way not interested in home schooling my kids. They went to public school for elementary and then church private school focused on college prep until 11th grade. Then back to public school for the two years to have prom, sports, band, etc. They had all the credits needed by 11 grade to graduate but wanted the social life of school. They only had to go 1/2 day to get credit of being in school to get the attendance needed to be in graduation.
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  18. #43
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    NZ you are absolutely right in your assessment. My experience was just that. I know it isn't like that all over. We had some really crabby nuns who didn't like kids, especially boys. And it was most of the nuns, not every single one. I always felt sorry for my brother because they were so hard on the boys and he was very bright but hyper. But he was resilient and ended up fine.

    As hard as I am about the education I received I also feel that some good came out of it after all. I like the person I am! At least some of that must have come from school,right? So at the end of the day it is all good.
    And thanks for the info I asked about!

  19. #44
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    We had private music lessons. One son is a guitarist who went on to music college and became a worship director. The other son was a gifted violinist.

    Also, they danced in the ballet... professional performances. My daughter was a fully trained ballet dancer by the time she was 14 years old. She was also a rehearsal coach for performances such as the Nutcracker, taking the younger students through their numbers every rehearsal. She knew all the choreography for all of the dances in the ballet. My two sons danced and performed too. We never could have given that kind of time to ballet, had they been in school and had the reams of homework and outside assignments every day. But it was a wonderful life for them and our entire family bonded and grew from the ballet.

    The question of science: By the time labs were part of the curriculum, we used satellite courses from Bob Jones University. They had the labs we needed to observe. We also ordered our own supplies to do some at home. We erupted the volcano, dissected the worm and frog, etc. And our co-op had science classes available too, for home ed students to take together.

    If you miss something in education, your brilliant, resourceful children will pick it up somewhere else. What they are interested in, they will pursue. You can be sure of that.
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  20. #45
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    Home schooling works for some kids. Usually success has more to do with the parents than the child being home schooled.

    I have two grands who are home schooled. Their parents rarely involve the kids in outside of the home activities. One of them is, and always was, extremely shy, but did ok in school, had a few friends. Since he has been home schooled he has basically become a hermit. He does not know how to be around people he doesn't know. He is literally frozen if someone he doesn't know says hello. He's learning his lessons, but has learned nothing about surviving in the world.

    His brother has Aspergers and is very bright, also sociable. He visited me to help me in November and I had to make sure he did school work. Since he respects me and KNOWS that I do not threaten, I actually do what I say I'm going to do, he got most of the work done relatively quickly. He had a science experiment to do - usually those are skipped by Mom and Dad - and remarked that it was 'kinda fun'. A writing assignment took him a total of about 2.5 hours work with me; with Mom and Dad it would be weeks, sometimes months, of prodding.

    He's afraid of school because he feels he won't be accepted by the other kids. Might be true, but he's never had the opportunity to find out, or figure out how to get along.

    So, while they are doing their schooling, I don't consider it a successful endeavor. What good is knowing stuff if you are frightened of the world? I think home schooling can work well for some families, though.
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    I am all for public schools! It is, IMHO, a great "leveler" of society. I like the idea that everyone who graduates has some core of knowledge and shares in the public school experience. I also think that everyone needs to learn to read very well. If you know how to read, you can educate yourself.

  22. #47
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    I tried so hard to get my son in a Montessori school when he was young. Teachers couldn't keep up with him. He asked questions about everything. everything. He still does. but in class rooms of 30+ kids, he didn't do well. lost interest. so home schooling sounds like a good thing. I applaud any parent who can do this for their child.
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    I wrote a response here last night but it vanished. Not sure why, but I'll recap:

    -We homeschooled 17 years. I loved choosing curriculum that was challenging and fit both our educational philosophy and my teaching style.
    - We were able to engage in many years of homeschool co-ops, in which mothers (and a few fathers with flexible schedules) could teach what they excelled in.
    -The socialization argument was laughable. Our kids (and all their peers) were involved in so many activities that we had to say "no" to some in order to get our schoolwork done.

    - I was able to spend more time on areas where each child was either struggling or had intense interest. "The way they're wired" was fun to explore.

    -We made a lot more progress between Sept and May than their peers did from Aug-June because we didn't have to stop for snow days, federal holidays, religious holidays that weren't ones we observed.

    -Homeschool is a natural environment mixed with adults and kids of all ages. Kids learned to interact with all those age groups, as opposed to being in a class with 30 kids their same age and roughly the same maturity.
    -We didn't have to always wait for the slowest kid in class. Many times the gifted kids suffer in a public or private school because the struggling students take so much of the teacher's attention. I know because I went to public school and I volunteered in one. I also taught in a private school and realized I was always "teaching to the middle" and felt conflicted that neither the slowest nor the fastest kds were getting my best as a teacher. I gave my best, but did that mean it was their best in a classroom.

    -I was able to teach our kids to write, to think critically, to integrate daily chores such as cooking and laundry with algebra and geography. I was able to help them deal with conflict by dealing with root issues, and to make consequences fit the infractions.

    - We gave them the choice to attend high school when they wanted. One chose senior year, one chose jr/sr years, one finished at home. The three who graduated went on to graduate college, move out, get married, and no one moved back home, nor has been remotely tempted. LOL.

    -Our youngest is 17. He homeschooled for two years, but clearly as "an only child" needed more friends around to suit his personality. The first school he went to was boring (he had learned almost all of it at home before entering ) but he loved the classroom. The next school (where he has been from 4th grade to the present) is outstanding--challenging intellectually, safe and friendly with a family feel to it, and a place where he's encouraged to be a strong servant-leader.
    Last edited by zozee; 05-11-2019 at 12:34 PM. Reason: too wordy, and still is! Sorry.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nativetexan View Post
    I tried so hard to get my son in a Montessori school when he was young. Teachers couldn't keep up with him. He asked questions about everything. everything. He still does. but in class rooms of 30+ kids, he didn't do well. lost interest. so home schooling sounds like a good thing. I applaud any parent who can do this for their child.
    In America, any school can call themselves a Montessori School. If you want the method developed by Maria Montessori, you need to look for a school accredited by Association Montessori Internationale. (AMI) There is also American Montessori Society (AMS) which is the Montessori method adapted to American Culture. Then there are the schools that say they are Montessori but do whatever they feel like.
    The AMI method teaches respect for the child, that the hand teaches the mind, and that learning is child lead. The teachers must have a four year degree in a subject, then go for additional training as Montessori instructors. The children are not given answers to their questions but are led to the answer by the Socratic method, often using manipulatives. One day I dropped in at my child's school and found the upper elementary (grades 4-6) out on the grounds. They told me that they didn't have to study today, they were just going to draw a map of the campus. There they were, with pads of paper and surveying tools becoming mapmakers.

  25. #50
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    "-The socialization argument was laughable. Our kids (and all their peers) were involved in so many activities that we had to say "no" to some in order to get our schoolwork done. "

    That is because you made the effort to keep your kids involved with the world. Many parents don't.

    I do volunteer work for a local organization that provides, clothes, shoes, school supplies, personal products, etc. to children in foster care. One family of children who came in were 'home schooled'. The youngest, 6 years old, watched TV all day and ate snacks. He was 'large' for his age. The older kids - one (about 12 years old) said she thought she could count to 100.

    That is an extreme example, but it is not unique. If the school systems do Not monitor the progress of children being home schooled, well, the kids suffer.

    Parents are the key to home schooling success.
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 05-11-2019 at 01:49 PM. Reason: shouting/all caps
    A quilt is like a good life. It's full of mistakes, but, in the end, it looks pretty good.

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