Friday, February 20, 2009

I don't get it...

Last night I met someone who home schools her children while working full time. Basically she trusts that her two children are learning while she's at work. She does check in on them, and I am sure the kids are learning as I would think the state mandates they pass certain standards ( Iam guesing here) I just don't understand why someone would want to keep their kids out of school to be homeschooled, and work full time. I am trying not be judgemental, and I don't know her, but let's be honest, I totally am not feeling this. Would I home school my kids if I didn't have to work? Hell no. I am not a huge advocate of homeschooling. I know not everything works for every family, and some people think it's the way to go, but I just think it's awful.

Not all of my school experiences were wonderful, but the good and the bad are still apart of me, and I can't imagine not having those experiences. I can't help but think that homeschooling is just a serious overkill on sheltering a child. I just picture this parent who wont let anyone but them educate their child, and pretty soon I am picturing all sorts of crazy things. Don't get me wrong, everyone does it for different reasons, but I just have a serious problem with it. I also have serious issues with those who homeschool but then use the public schools for their extra curicular activities. Some public schools let these children come for PE, or be involved in band, sports, etc. I didn't even know that exhisted, until a few years ago, but it does, and I think it's total BS. If you don't want your kid to attend school there then why on earth would you let them do the other activies? All or nothing I think. Some public schools even let private school children do some of the activites like band, etc, and I think that is just as bad. Yeah yeah, your a tax payer. Blah Blah, I guess that's how they get around it, but it's just odd to me.

I am sure I will offend someone, and please feel free to educate me and share your side if you don't agree. I know people do it for different reasons just as why some parents choose private over public school. Some people think private school is horrific, and I personally think some are. No school is perfect, and no parent is either. I guess it's good that we have so many choices available, and we all just do the best we can in the end, and hope it's good enough.



Semi-Slacker Mom said...

That's crazy! She works outside the home, correct? CRAZY!

My children are in private school, mainly due to the fact that the schools in my area aren't up to par. But I also don't think they have the same morals as they did 20 years ago.

Katie said...

I don't have any enlightenment for you as the only kids that I knew who were homeschooled were complete weirdos. Remeber that family that lived in Beverley Hills...
We know a family that homeschools and their kids and the poor kids are socially inept. I feel bad for them really, because they are eventually going to go out into the world without Mama and Daddy get rolled.

Beav's Wife said...

That's insane! I've never heard of someone doing both before. She's nuts!

There is NO way I would homeschool-first of all I'd have to be admitted into the looney bin and secondly, I think kids who are homeschooled just miss out on SO much. I feel badly for them. :0(

THEhooahwife said...

LOL. Wellll..... I was homeschooled my whole life. Except for college of course. Sure, I was a bit sheltered, but in all honesty I turned out all right. To be honest, I think different school options are right for different families. I don't agree with that lady working all the time however. There are actually some people I would never recommend homeschooling to. It really is hard!

I learned a lot and my hunger for knowledge never died. I was taught in a way that caused me to always be curious and hungry for knowledge, something that most (not all) of my non-homeschooled friends didn't share.

Socially, I got along as well as I would have in a school system, but as I got older I found that I was okay with who I was, and no longer felt compelled to prove myself or figure out who I was. While I had some peer pressure from friends, I never had it to the degree I would have in school.

Academically, I was surprised to find that, after our rather informal schooling, I was the head of almost every class I enrolled in in college and was even requested to work as a student aide because they needed extra hands grading.

All in all, I don't find homeschooling caused me to miss out on much. I would have been so bad under peer pressure during those younger years. I really don't like sports, even though we always had the opportunity to play them. Artistically, I had unlimited options.

Homeschooling obviously isn't for everyone. You don't have to like homeschoolers, but please don't pity them. They get some opportunities that school kids can only dream about.

Annie said...

You didn't say how old these kids are, but if they are old enough to be left at home alone, then they are certainly at the point in homeschooling where most of their curriculum can be self-directed, with grading being done by mom and dad later in the day, or, if they are doing online classes (which most homeschoolers I know are doing these days), the work is monitored remotely. In this day and age, you can 'spy' on your kids from any computer, or even you phone, seeing exactly what they see on their screen at home or in another room. Not to mention the fact that actual 'class time' needed for homeschoolers is WAAAAY less than the 6 or 7 hours spent in a traditional school, due to the individual attention given to these kids. Most elementary grades don't need to spend more than 2 hours, with a max of usually no more than 4 hours for higher grades. Please don't lump everyone in who homeschools as 'weird', when you don't know them personally. I do not homeschool (yet), but I am leaning heavily towards it, for financial and other reasons, and I am getting these same stereotypical judgements from close friends and family even, who really don't understand the motivation behind this decision. My girlfriends with kids in public school immediately get all defensive if the subject of homeschooling arises because (in their 'everything is about me' little world) they assume YOU are judging THEM, roflol!! Nothing could be farther from the truth. It's not about the school, I live in an area with the best public schools around (Great Bridge). It's not even about religion, or some holier-than-thou ideal that I am earning points in heaven or something like that. It is, however, about curriculum, and my kids learning styles, and character training, and the individual attention that some kids with ADD and other issues need. Now I was lucky enough to grow up around a lot of homeschooling families (I went to Va Beach public schools myself), and I have a lot of friends today who do it. Yes, one or two are what some people might call 'weird', but isn't weird just a label for 'unfamiliar', 'not like me', 'different', etc? But they are a tiny, tiny minority of the millions of families that choose to follow this path. 99.9% of the kids and adults I know that are/were homeschooled have gone on to excel in their life pursuits, not handicapped in any way. In fact, these people and their example are a big part of the reason I defend homeschooling whenever I hear these stale myths being dragged out again. I am sorry this is so long, but I guess I am just as passionate about defending this very personal choice as some are to condemn it.
Here's a link to some interesting stats, if you would like to educate yourself on this topic a little better.
Oh, and yes, I absolutely would take advantage of every single resource available to me as a parent, especially public school sports and other extracurricular activities. The taxes used to pay for those non-academic pursuits is MY MONEY. You jump through hoops every year to get your tax refund and wouldn't dream of leaving off a child or two worth of deductions, would you? It's YOUR MONEY. You ever apply for a student loan or grant in college? Hello! No difference. Shoot, I would apply for and gladly accept any kind of government assistance/food stamps/WIC/whatever if I qualified, AND fight for welfare reform at the same time, without one ounce of guilt. Anyway, I am not here to berate or guilt you into or out of anything, just to provide information and open up a window of understanding on something that is much maligned and sorely misunderstood.

Three under Three said...

the kids are 10 and 14. I guess it depends on the children's maturity if they can be left alone,and noone knows that but the parents themselves. It just seems so very isolating...but like I said we all have differnt objectives and needs. And no I have never had to apply for a grant or student loan, which I realize is out of the norm, and I know I was very lucky, but your example does put that in perspective for me.