Friday, March 7, 2008

The scary part of homeschooling

Even though I love homeschooling the girls and have found nothing more rewarding in my life . I always know that there is always going to be someone out there who doesn't agree with the way Tim and I choose to educate our daughters . Alot of the times its out of ignorance to what homeschooling really is and what it entails . I read an interesting article about how the state of California is trying to strip the rights of families to home educate their children . Forcing them to put them in their substandard schools . With this I have to say :

Alot of people out there donot understand homeschooling and see it as some 'hippie' 60's thing that only wacko religous people do to keep their children shielded from society . And those thoughts are so far from the truth . Children that are homeschooled , or schooled at home have such an advantage to their brick and mortar counterparts . Children that are taught at home , if done right that is , can experience life more then a child does stuck in a building for 8 hours a day . We can dwell on the things that interest us, and we can stop and work on those things that seem the toughest . We can move on if things are too easy, and we don't have to wait for the class to 'get it ' before moving on . Homeschooled children are very socialized and dare I think we socialize a bit too much . But I know my family has definitley dispelled that myth . Marilyn , Katie and Hannah can relate to children their age, younger , older . They aren't afraid of adults , and are polite . We even have the chance to take the girls to the nursing home that their grandmother works at to meet with some of the older folks . Letting them know that old people really aren't creepy . They are social little butterflies that haven't let learning at home keep them down .

We do believe in God , but we don't shield our children from society . We present both facts , then always let them know what we believe in . But we aren't spookie , creepy , jumping up and down , handwaving relgious wackos either . We also don't homeschool for relgious reasons, which believe it or not in today's society its the least common factor anymore anyways . More and more families are pulling their children out of brick and mortar schools because of violence in the schools , and poor substandard education by the 'credentialed' teachers that some aren't even fit to teach their own child let alone thier own as well . It is amazing as one night I sat and watched Jay Leno and he has a spot on his show where he goes out in the public and asks people simple questions and they show how "smart" they really are . The one that stuck out at me and even scared me was a 5th grade English teacher that didn't even know what the world alfresco meant . Me , in my limited non credentialed education knew immediately what this word meant . Of course it meant : outside . This woman didn't even know . He also asked her several questions you would of expected a certified teacher to know and she just laughed away with a chester grin only to say " I don't know ? " It was scary to even know this lady taught in the school system . It just goes to show you that going to college doesn't always means your more educated then someone else . It just means that you spent more money on something someone could learn on the job . One person in the comment section of the article tried to compare us with trying to be doctors . To that we don't feel we are doctors . Home educators know we are not medical doctors nor do we want to be . That the medical field is definitley something you MUST go to college for . Teaching your children . You really donot . Alot of families don't even realize that they teach their children from the very beginning . From the time you hold them in your arms your child is learning from YOU . Not a credentialed MOM .

Of course there are some families who have the wrong notion of homeschooling . Believeing that they can throw a book at their child and they are going to learn on their own . Sometimes we don't know the whole story and a child or children can have learning difficulties that make homeschooling a bit more of a challenge . Not all children are textbooks and not all children master material at the same time at the same level . My 10 yr old is finishing 4th grade this year . Her 8 yr old sister is finishing 3rd . Only because that is the level they are at . Some children at 8yrs of age are just finishing 1st grade in some homeschooling families . And you know what ? That's alright too . Being able to tailor our children's education so they are learning is what is important . Not if a child is 1 or 2 or 3 grades above or below their level .

Even brick and mortar school children are behind . I have a hard time believeing that its alright for a child to go to brick and mortar school and be behind . Why is that ? But a child at home could be working a level or two below grade level , and still be thriving and its not alright . I can say that you can get similar results from both sides of the spectrum . There are some homeschooled children who just don't do well at home . Maybe where mom isn't the best person to teach because of whatever issue there maybe . Not everyone is cut out to homeschool . But then not everyone is cut to be a teacher in a brick and mortar school either . I can remember many times being in classrooms with burnt out teachers who just were mean and scary and feeling like I had to protect myself rather then sit and learn in the classroom . All of this really goes both ways . The only difference is brick and mortar teachers get paid . I don't .

Just like small children . Not all children walk at age 1 . Not all children crawl . Not all children are eating table food at 9 months old , and not all children know their ABC's when they go to preschool . Why does it need to be so different once children begin their educational journeys ? Why do we hold our children up to a textbook then , and tell them that they have to be and do things like everyone else does now ? Why can't we let our children grow and thrive at their own pace ? Isn't that what life is really about ? Today we read in history about many famous Americans who have been schooled at home . Benjamin Franklin , Patrick Henry , Nathan Hale , Abraham Lincoln , George Washington , Thomas Jefferson , Woodrow Wilson , Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison , Margaret Mead , Frederick Douglass , Helen Keller , Emily Dickinson , Mark Twain , are all just to name a few . I mean really , such wonderful , intelligent people whom alot of them weren't given any credit as children because they were either labeled "stupid" , or " slow " , or some families didn't have the money for education because along time ago there wasnt' free education . Where these families terrible and horrible like the parents of today are for wanting the same freedom ?

Homeschooling is a choice . A fundamental right , and dare I say Constitutional Right as our children are given " fair and equal education ?" Where is the fairness in cheating our children out of a good education when sending them to substandared brick and mortar schools ?... and hey , since we're on the subject .. why are those schools so substandard ? I mean really .. credentialed teachers teach in them . In the end our children will grow up , go out and get a job and in the end does it really matter where they learned what 2+2 equals ?

If your wondering here in the end what I am talking about . Here is the link :


Anonymous said...

Just wondering what your girls will do for high school? And what about college? As the course work gets more advanced, do you feel prepared to teach at this level? My area has a home school prom every year which I thought is a great idea!

Anonymous said...

I agree with you! I home school because the Brick and mortar school refused to educate my Sean, who has you know, has severe chronic health issues. The germs caused him to be sick all the time on top of his Dysautonomia, which makes him exhausted and tons of Doctor appts. Appts that take all day long. It makes sense to home school him and his brothers.
My husband's parents are on the band wagon and were really one of the first people to approach our local leaders about banning home schooling. Home schooling is on the rise here in California and it is taking away from our traditional public school more and more all the time. YEAH!!!!!

Our program has a High school program, which is still very new. I would love to to my own curriculum, but my time is limited and so I use K12, straight out of the box. I supplement with my own things as needed,which is needed at times.

I will email you with our address.

Anonymous said...

Were you home schooled yourself? You seem so passionate about it! What is your level of degree? I am considering home schooling my own children bc the schools in my area are terrible.