Homeschooling

Discussion in 'Family Life - Stories, Pictures & Updates' started by Happy Chooks, Oct 12, 2010.

  1. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    My DH and I have been having the "Great Debate" about homeschooling. He is all for it, me not so much. We have 2 children, almost 11 and 7.

    So for those of you that homeschool:

    1. What made you decide to homeschool your children?
    2. What difficulties have you had?
    3. How's it working, would you do it again?
    4. What do you like about it?
    5. What do you not like about it?
    6. Any other comments?

    Thanks for your comments!
     
  2. No kids here yet but I was homeschooled [​IMG]

    1. What made you decide to homeschool your children?
    Mom and Dad decided to homeschool me for several reasons. One of which being we didn't fully like the public school system.
    2. What difficulties have you had?
    Not many, because you can see it happening and correct it early on.
    3. How's it working, would you do it again?
    I'm doing it with my children when I have them! I think it is a great form of education.
    4. What do you like about it?
    I like it because you can do somewhat what you wish. If you need to take a day off, there are no cards to sign, you just do it. And we did summer school also.. All year around we did school but we had many days off here and there.
    5. What do you not like about it?
    Nothing [​IMG]
    6. Any other comments?
    Yes. You won't have your children forever. During these years you're the greatest influence in their life. Don't waste it [​IMG]
    Also, a thread that WoodChic started about are you homeschooled, private schooled, public schooled, etc. (?) has a lot of information on it about homeschooling [​IMG]
     
  3. Mrs. Turbo

    Mrs. Turbo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 26, 2009
    ky
    1. What made you decide to homeschool your children?
    Bullies at the school pushed my 7th grader down the stairs and broke his ankle, fights, and all the sex conversations, pictures, and kids hiding behind the bleachers doing who knows what.

    2. What difficulties have you had?
    Just getting started was the hardest.... we get the books that are self teaching and I am there to guide him when needed. English is more involved.

    3. How's it working, would you do it again?
    going great and I would do it again, but we are sending him to high school next year since he will be out of middle school and more mature.

    4. What do you like about it?
    flexibility and I control what he is learning and what he shouldnÂ’t be learning about.

    5. What do you not like about it?
    cost.... there is not a tax deduction for homeschooling

    6. Any other comments?
    you can take charge of your child's education if you do not like what is offered in your area.
     
  4. SunnyDawn

    SunnyDawn Sun Lovin' Lizard

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    I home schooled both of my children at different times. The oldest hated school and begged me over and over again until I finally consented. Now she is thirty and doesn't remember having harassed me to do this and comments how much she "hated" being home schooled! On the other hand she was way ahead of her peers in her learning skills and still has a very clear view of the world we live in which I can't say holds true for most Americans.
    My youngest son was home schooled for a few months when I yanked him out of 5th grade due to a terrible teacher who yelled at him constantly and, as a result, he started to get terribly behind in his language arts. This was the problem area between him and this teacher who assumed that because he excelled in math that he was just "blowing her off" when it came to writing reports etc. The principal was no help at all and after talking to many other parents who were having very similar problems with this teacher I eventually gave up and pulled him out of class.
    We spent the last few months of school and part of the summer catching him up and giving him a good handle on what he would face come Fall, then we re-enrolled him for 6th grade. This worked out perfectly! He was/is a very social person and needed the peer interaction so permanent home schooling would have been tough for him, especially since I knew of no one else in our area that home schooled. He went back to 6th grade in the same school (with a new teacher and a new principal) and had no further problems.

    My advice about home schooling is...
    #1 Don't try to home school and work at the same time (no matter how much the older kids promise to faithfully work on their paces). It may work at first but it will not last!!!
    #2 If you are home schooling for an extended length of time (more than a few months) get your child into other activities that provide socialization for them.
    #3 If you don't have any experience as an educator, take some classes! It's not true that "just anyone" will make a good educator.
    #4 If you are not a patient person to start with Don't do it! Children require a lot of repetition to learn well and sometimes when you feel like nothing is working they will all the sudden "get it"! If you lose your patience, however, they will "shut down". Nobody learns well in a negative environment.
    #5 Try a program that uses computer-aided tasks and has on-line support for you and your child (make sure these programs meet the educational requirements for your state). You will avoid having to write an entire year's worth of curriculum only to discover that your child is not meeting his/her grade level requirements. You can always supplement these programs with your own lessons.
    #6 If you are still not sure about home schooling you will probably have a harder time with it since it takes a lot of energy and dedication to home school. On the other hand you get to control your child's environment, keep them safe and give them a much higher quality education than they might get in your area. I did thoroughly enjoy being able to spend more time with them when they were young (though often it can be hard to resist turning every moment into a "learning lesson"). So there were many positives.
    #7 Make sure you give your child a chance to express his/her feelings about how home schooling is working out for them and be open to changing your decision if either of you realize that it is just not working. There is no shame in either decision!

    Good luck, whatever you decide! [​IMG]
     
  5. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks so much for the responses, keep them coming. I do stay home, so this is why we have been "discussing" this topic. If I do agree to do this, we will start with my oldest son, and consider adding the youngest later. Also, we would be doing a blended home school - meaning they go to classes on Tues and Thurs (PE, Music, Language Arts, etc), all other days are home schooled and the curriculum is provided. (A compromise for both of us)

    My husbands concerns:
    He thinks the education he is getting isn't up to par.
    Our oldest doesn't really fit into the "clique" sporty types, so he worries that bullying will become an issue. (I too worry about this) My son would rather be in the library at recess.
    He thinks the public education system "dumbs down" children and removes their ambition to learn.
    He sees the public education system cranking out people who can't function in the real world. (like people who can't do something simple like count change, run a checkbook, etc) - I have to agree here.
    My oldest son is bored in school. And he doesn't like repetition. He sees it as I understand this so why do I have to do it 50 times? (He's got a point there)


    My concerns:
    I know it's going to sound stupid, but socialization is a concern for me. He has some outside activities, but I worry about him becoming more isolated.
    That he may not get a complete education - Things I'm not strong in like science (which happens to be his favorite subject)
    Getting him to be self directed, he doesn't currently do it. I don't want to have to ride his rear to get his work done, although I'm currently doing it.
    That I'll pull my hair out.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2010
  6. PineappleMama

    PineappleMama Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Mine are 8 & 12 (girl and boy) and we're HSing this year, first time....

    1. Complete, Epic Fail at their public school... on a number of subjects... and that school is considered one of the best in the district.

    2. Motivation... mine and theirs.

    3. Worth it so far... but ask me again in May.

    4. If the kids don't 'get' something we can take the time to go over it until they do... we don't just have to plow ahead because most of the group gets it and we're on a timetable that has to cover all these specific things that might be on the standardized test. That's a huge thing, and one I didn't really think of before going in... just one day BLAMMO...

    5. Paying taxes to pay for public school and having to cover our school too... at least let me claim the same Teacher's Credit that other teacher's get on their taxes to cover supplies, books, etc bought on their dime... it's a whopping 250/yr which doesn't cover everything, but it would help.

    6. We decided to try this now, 2nd and 7th grade, rather than waiting any longer because if it doesn't work out... if there's any credit issues should they go back to PS then it won't effect the credits needed for a diploma... if we waited another year/two then that could become a problem... that's one reason any ways that we went ahead...
     
  7. Camelot Farms

    Camelot Farms Chickenista

    1. What made you decide to homeschool your children? DD developed severe social anxiety and was unable to function in the public school

    2. What difficulties have you had? None really, other than finding enough things to interest her. Even though she 'cant' go to school, she misses the social interaction.

    3. How's it working, would you do it again? Absolutely!

    4. What do you like about it? Being able to move at her speed. Things that are 'easy' get less time than things that are a struggle for her.

    5. What do you not like about it? Not enough community support

    6. Any other comments?
     
  8. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Quote:

    5. Paying taxes to pay for public school and having to cover our school too... at least let me claim the same Teacher's Credit that other teacher's get on their taxes to cover supplies, books, etc bought on their dime... it's a whopping 250/yr which doesn't cover everything, but it would help.

    This is an issue for our school too. Seems everything can be "fixed" with MORE MONEY. And our latest peeve, they got rid of GATE but gave us a Technology class, so our children can learn to use powerpoint and use facebook. [​IMG] I can't even count how many times we're hit up for money from the schools for supplies, field trips, fundraisers, etc.

    6. We decided to try this now, 2nd and 7th grade, rather than waiting any longer because if it doesn't work out... if there's any credit issues should they go back to PS then it won't effect the credits needed for a diploma... if we waited another year/two then that could become a problem... that's one reason any ways that we went ahead...

    This is an excellent point, and one I hadn't thought of. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2010
  9. PotterWatch

    PotterWatch My Patronus is a Chicken

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    1. What made you decide to homeschool your children?

    Our decision to homeschool was based on several different factors. The private school our boys were attending (oldest was in 1st, youngest was preK), was having some difficulties and was no longer the place we wanted for them. I was working just to be able to afford private school and felt like I was missing out on a lot of what was going on in their lives. We could have put them in a very good public school but it just didn't feel like the right fit. My oldest is bright and funny but he has an odd side that would no doubt cause him a great deal of trouble in public school. We decided to try homeschooling and have never looked back.

    2. What difficulties have you had?

    Most of the difficulties have been mine. It is sometimes hard to let go of the ideas that learning should be done in a certain way (often the way we learned as children ourselves). I tried doing school at home for a while but it was a disaster. School programs run well in schools but not always on a smaller scale at home. It took us a while to find out what the best path was for all of us. That path still changes, I have just learned to roll with those changes rather than trying to make things look like we are all told they should.

    3. How's it working, would you do it again?

    I think it is working fantastically. There are many, many homeschoolers who live in our area and that makes it much easier than it would if we were more isolated. I no longer worry about my kids measuring up to a certain standard but simply trust that they are learning. Everyday I see or hear things from them that lets me know they are doing just fine. If they were to go to public school tomorrow, they would be ahead in some areas and behind in others I am sure; but we all know that everyone learns things differently and at different speeds so I no longer spend any time wondering if they are "on target".

    4. What do you like about it?

    I love the freedom that it affords us. I work only part time and can pretty much set my own hours. My husband is retired (disability), and therefore we are able to spend a lot of time together as a family. The freedom to pick up and go camping, or to a museum, or on a trip without having to report in to school officials is great. My brother had a heck of a time getting permission from the school to take his kids out for 4 days so that they could attend my sister's wedding in Hawaii. We don't have those worries.

    I love that my kids are socializing in ways that are positive. That's not to say that there are never conflicts or negative behavior, it's just that they are able to see older children and adults modeling conflict resolution much more than I think they would in a traditional school setting. They aren't learning the poor behavior that I see displayed by many of the children who live in our neighborhood. I know that we could combat that behavior even if they were in traditional school, but the fact that we don't have to makes their forward motion that much smoother.

    I love that my kids are able to learn at a pace that suits them and they are able to expand and explore ideas with a flexibility that is simply impossible in a school setting. As great as a teacher might be, they simply can't drop everything just because little Johnny wants to find out more about electricity one day. As homeschoolers, we have the freedom to completely change our plans when a child finds something that inflames their passion to learn.

    5. What do you not like about it?

    It is very hard to keep a clean house. With four people in and out of the house all day, every day, it really creates a lot of wear and tear. It is much harder to keep up with housework now, especially if everyone doesn't pitch in every day.

    6. Any other comments?

    Homeschooling can be so many different things. You can talk to ten different families and get ten different answers to the question "what kind of homeschooling do you do?". Anyone who is starting out homeschooling needs to know that the idea they have in their head of how it will work will probably not match up with what happens in reality. Our style is constantly evolving and I know many families we are friends with find the same to be true. Let the kid(s) guide you. Helping a child find a passion for learning is, in my opinion, the opportunity that homeschooling offers above all others.
     
  10. PotterWatch

    PotterWatch My Patronus is a Chicken

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    Quote:If you do decide to homeschool there are two major networks in California you should look into. CHN and HSC. They offer information, conferences, yahoo groups where you can talk with other homeschoolers about anything and everything, and connections to park day and other local homeschool groups. Find out what groups are in your area and go check out some of them before you even make your decision. It may take a couple tries to find the group (or groups), that fit your family but I would be surprised if you don't find a group you will like. We have three different park days that happen each week within a 20min drive of our house (that is just the groups that are not religiously based, there are many more that are based in a particular religion). We have been to all of them and found that one group just didn't work out for us but the other two are wonderful and we have made great connections with other families in those groups.

    As far as getting a complete education, there are so many ways to learn. Online classes, community classes, most museums offer some type of classes, homeschool co-ops, etc. If your son has a desire to learn it, there will be a way. As far as being self-directed, find out what it is about his work that he doesn't care for. It may be something that is fairly easy to overcome. Many parents fear struggling with their child in homeschooling as they struggle to get daily homework done. The difference is, homeschooling doesn't have homework! Unless you choose to, there are no repetitious worksheets, no projects or assignments that seem to be useless. Most homeschooled children learn to love learning and therefore are motivated simply by the desire to learn more about the things that interest them (and even the things that may not interest them but that they have to learn to achieve a goal). If you are able, attend a homeschooling conference. There are several in different parts of California every year. The parents have the opportunity to learn more about homeschooling their children and talk with other homeschool parents, and the children have a chance to meet other homeschoolers they might not have met otherwise. It is a great thing for new and veteran homeschoolers alike.
     

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