Sunday, December 10, 2006

Making Change, part 2

Thanks to all of you for the responses you posted to the first article of this series. My posting has not been as frequent as I'd like it; I hope to accelerate the series a bit over the next two weeks, so pay attention! :-)

You indicated that the decision for or against homeschooling is a family decision. It was not made in a vacuum, but considered factors that were internal and external to the family. You made the decision irrespective of the prevailing thoughts around you. Humorously, several mentioned that your families don't like any of your decisions. You rebels, you.

So, we know why you didn't succumb to public or private school peer pressure. Now, what educational reasons did you have for homeschooling?

The answer to that question is as varied as the parents who do it. My guess is that most answers will fall into the following, not-all-inclusive categories:

  • Learning deficiencies and/or advances - sometimes, a child is too far ahead or behind relative to other children their age, and the formal classroom cannot keep pace with them.
  • Behavioral difficulties with the student (or with other students) in the classroom.
  • Religious reasons - parents want to teach their children their religious beliefs, and how those beliefs integrate throughout all that a child learns.
  • Dissatisfaction and cost - it's too expensive to send a child to private school in lieu of having the child attend a public school, which the parents don't want to do.
  • Politics - some parents don't like the left-leanings or right-leanings of the subject matter or, recently, of the teachers.
  • Safety - who likes the thoughts of their children having to pass through metal detectors to go to school?
  • Reducing the influence of peer pressure on their children's ability to learn.
I'm sure you could think of many more.

Again, what are your educational reasons for homeschooling? Yes, some of this overlaps the responses you gave to the first article, but I'd like to know more. I believe that no one does it because "everyone else is doing it". I believe that everyone who does it has strong, foundational reasons for doing so. Just like, I hope, they have strong, foundational reasons for electing the officials that they do, and don't do it because "everyone else is doing it".


Favorite Apron said...

Couldn't bear the thought of putting my baby on the bus to the institution at such a tender age, when he could be home playing outside, taking naps, visiting grandparents, etc.

Anonymous said...

Remember that scene in "The Wall" where the uniformed kids in their nice straight line march into the meat grinder?

I don't want to rear drones for a broken system. I'm hoping they will be liberty minded free thinkers who know "the rest of the story."

I'd say mix of political, behavior, safety, religious, cost, peer pressure... Have I left anything out? lol.

A little of my own paranoia is also involved. "My daddy likes Rum and Cokes with his xanax when he goes shooting his guns..." LOL!

Susan said...

Educational reasons? Not being confined to the traditional scope&sequence. We can have greater speed, slower speed, more depth, or greater breadth.

Ensuring that kids learn to enjoy reading.

Also, we've discovered that listening skills are much better in homeschooled kids that have been read to a lot, as opposed to schooled kids.

Also, problem-solving abilities and being able to think outside the box.

Jane said...

Our oldest two were in school and it wasn't working for Patrick. At the end of Kg his teacher was talking about holding him back because he was showing no signs of reading readiness. I knew that he was a bright little boy and I didn't want him labeled so I was just going to homeschool for a year or two until he got "evened out."

It was a desperation move and I didn't want to do it. But what we've discovered is all of the strengths that have been mentioned previously. So we never quit and we've graduated one with Patrick--the voracious reader--close behind.

Kim said...

I couldn't stand the focus the schools placed on diversity and esteem while ignoring things like math and science. After teaching for a couple of years I realized any parent who really wanted to give their child a good education could do much better than the schools. I wanted my kids to learn, not be in a system that has to rely on busy-work for crowd control.