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Everything posted by LMD

  1. That's a lovely piece! Before all of this, I would have expected a sound bite from some department education expert for 'balance' but they went to the hea instead!
  2. It's not been a pure homeschooling board for a long time, no one has said that, and that's fine. The variety of posters has always been interesting. But it's not a school board either, it is founded on the premise of alternative education, of opting out or modifying. Critiquing the system we're leaving behind shouldn't be so offensive. I'm not actually looking for support here, I'm just looking to not have to endlessly caveat everything pro-homeschooling that I say.
  3. For 500K a year I might let your kids join in with mine, here in my home. If I really like you. So probably no 😆
  4. See, I actually think that there are schools that manage a decent education for some, maybe many, students. I even think a few of my kids would have done well, academically, there. But I'm still homeschooling. Because, while I do believe that I can do a better job in academics, I absolutely believe that I can provide a better all round lifestyle for my kids to grow into whole people. That is something each family has to reckon with for themselves. That is also why the ideas of policing my community are so... antithetical. I encourage my hS community, I try to lead by example, I give a lot of time and resources to help them find their own way. Because in the end, I don't have the authority to police them, the idea that I or someone should is part of the institutionalised mindset that says some authority has to be watching and approve/manage. Actual abuse and neglect is different, and (largely, depending on where you live I guess) has laws already in place to deal with that. It is not the same thing at all as families setting their own priorities. Deigning to judge another family's homeschool based on the slivers I see is not something I'm happy to do. Some schools/teachers do an absolutely shameful job with impunity - like the creepy guy who plummeted the top math class in my highschool. Or the nasty piece of work who bullied a friend's child into 8 years and counting of anxiety while helping her skills go backwards. Or a friend currently ranting to me because her child has been tracked on the lower math track for year 11 & 12 - because she scored 85% in grade 8... Everyone has stories. If an actual institution with a chain of authority still has trouble policing their own, then how can equals outside of an institution police each other? Edit - sorry that got long! 😄
  5. First idea is a nature study notebook. Write about what he observes. For more direction, come up with a basic procedure like 1. See something new/interesting. 2. Describe where it is. 3. Describe what it looks like. You can even do this from pictures in a book, rather than actual outdoor nature if it's easier. Or, I might be tempted to pair writing with a picture study. Kind of like the queen homeschool handwriting/picture study, except instead of copywork, he could write about what he sees in various pictures. Maybe even let him study it for a Couple of minutes then take it away and let him write what he remembers?
  6. Welcome and well done! Sounds like a really lovely start to homeschooling! My main suggestion would be to get your hands on a copy of The Well Trained Mind - it really is fantastic and has many practical suggestions and curriculum recommendations - including literature lists for each grade. Off the top of my head books for 5th grade, little women, the hobbit, sword in the stone, carry on Mr bowditch, Edith nesbit and Elizabeth enright books... It sounds like you are doing a lot already, and if it's working for you both then I wouldn't feel pressure to change much. Science, at that age, in my opinion, the non-fiction reading is probably one of the best things you can do. If she has a particular interest, let her follow it, watch documentaries etc. Once a week or so, she could work through the simple experiments in a book like this one: For Language Arts, grammar for the well trained mind is for grade 5 and up. You can get the first 6 weeks as a free sample here: For writing, you could start with having her write up short summaries of what she's read, so for example if she reads a section of a science book, she could write 2 or 3 paragraphs summarizing the main points. In the story of the world activity book there are narration questions for each chapter, she could pick a few to answer in writing. Keep reading, trust your instincts and have fun, you'll find your groove!
  7. Here, schools are going back in June. I'm planning to wind up my online classes by then. They were supposed to be just for my homeschool group families, but I have a couple of school kids tagging along too and I'd like to give them closure. Once everything goes back I'll also go back to my in person classes, possibly starting with outdoor activities (weather dependent)
  8. Lol, saying that it's an influential institution is hardly a controversial statement. Your experience of Chinese public schools is more relevant? I get that I've annoyed you by persisting with my chosen language. I hope that my previous post has clarified that I'm not trying to personally attack anyone - I'm institutionalised too - but being able to use the language I need to name my experience is important, and I thought that a homeschooling board of all places would be the least controversial place to use it. Okay, I get that it's easy to legally comply. My point was that legally (even if in practice it's rarely enforced) kids are supposed to be enrolled or recorded as opted out in accordance with whatever state laws. Its still an interaction with the system that ultimately says that the government educational institution is the authority. Maybe that's different where you are, good!
  9. As if we don't have friends and family who currently learn and work in the system. As if it's all just some hidden world from us, poor sheltered homeschoolers 🙄
  10. Er, is a state approved enrollment not mandatory where you are? Of course they are locked in to school. I'm not in the U.S, but it's legal now because homeschoolers fought, hard, for it! 91% of U.S. students in public schools is still a monopoly culture. We don't exist in a vacuum, the monopoly culture is influential. I think I get the issue now, I will happily say that I was/am institutionalised too, so are my never-set-foot-in-a-school kids. They still see media which is soaked in school themes, they hear about it from friends and family. Unfortunately (imo) they have still managed to internalize that school=Normal. Why do you think homeschoolers recommend a period of deschooling? I spent a lot of my life in the system and it definitely still affects how I think.
  11. Yah, people have been locked in to the school as institution system and are used to it, it has created many problems upon forced 'release.' More than that, it is a monopoly system, championed throughout the culture - the culture is institutionalised. Taking an alternative path is counter cultural and difficult. School has a different culture to the rest of adult life, spending 13+ years in it - you easily become used to it. It is accurate. Uncomfortable maybe.
  12. Being offended is a choice. Frequenting a homeschooling board is a choice. No one owns homeschooling, least of all those who don't homeschool. Homeschoolers adding their voice is diversity in homeschooling, sure. Institution-schoolers taking every chance to champion their (probably pretty decent) institutions in a homeschooling/alternative education space diversifies homeschooling how?
  13. Yeah, you're right, they're not being released. I never said it wasn't pejorative, but I also think it is largely accurate. I have never said that everyone should homeschool or that schools are universally terrible, an institution has its place and can do a lot of good. My point is that here, in this alternative education focussed space, the majority of this and many threads nowadays is public school cheerleading. It's tiring. I'm sorry if you find it offensive, but policing my language because it might offend some school users is exactly my point. People who come here to learn from the brave homeschoolers but who simultaneously take every opportunity to undercut what they do are changing this space and making ideological homeschoolers unwelcome.
  14. I don't use the term institutionalised lightly, nor do I use it for people who have partially homeschooled or truly considered it. There is a not-small segment of the population that cannot separate childhood learning from school, they are absolutely dependent on the institution. Otherwise homeschooling wouldn't be counter-cultural or brave. The original question about being a threat to the power of PS is because these families - and I've spoken to some of them - are now being forced into the space of considering/experiencing life outside of the institution.
  15. Yeah, but it is a fact that the users of this board have become increasingly pro-institutional schooling - to the extent that homeschoolers have to play defense in our own conversations, in our own space. The space to talk is becoming smaller and more policed. That's what it feels like to me, and I've only been here a decade. In 99% of the internet and the world, saying that many parents are institutionalized and won't even consider an outside of the approved institution option for their child - like the suggestions in SWBs books, is absolutely sacrilege. I cannot even very mildly question the crap my nieces and nephews come home with from school. But every man and his dog can ask inane questions and posit offensive opinions about my kids' educations. Here, we used to have a space to talk freely about the reasons - what we feel are advantages - we choose to homeschool. Now we get a bunch of 'well actually my kids school...' replies. I'm not anti school and I don't go to school boards extolling the virtues of homeschooling. It would be nice to have some respect for the actual homeschoolers that posters purport to want to learn from. /rant Sorry. Bad day.
  16. Welcome to the boards! I wonder if you could explain a little more about the purpose of your questionnaire? It doesn't seem to meet the need of helping to choose curriculum. Are you looking to choose resources for your own children? Paige's questions are good. I'd recommend reading a basic overview of the different homeschool methods, this will help you get a handle on the lingo and get a feel for what resonates with you - what is your vision for your children's childhood, not just the 'school' part. Don't lock yourself into any box, no family is purely one method. Remember that you are teaching your child, in your family. It has to work for you. You will probably buy things that look great and never use them, we've all been there. It's part of learning what works for you. There are some homeschool consultant type of things popping up, I know there's a Charlotte mason one, where they will discuss options with you and help put together a plan. I've helped a few friends in this way (for free 😄) but they're always just beginning plans for new homeschoolers who feel like they just need some solid ground to stand on so they can start. I never put in more work than the parents themselves. Parents who choose to homeschool need to own that choice, the only way to do that is do do the work. Getting advice and learning about the options is wonderful, and a big part of what happens on these boards, but in the end it's the parent who has to face their child and actually do the work. One of the main plusses of homeschooling is individualized education - I'm skeptical about reducing 'picking curriculum' to a short questionnaire.
  17. My oldest is about 2 months away from turning 15 and doesn't have her own phone. Though she's making noises about buying one with her money soon. We have a simple extra one that she or her 12 yo brother use when they're out and about. She does have a tablet with apps that allow her to communicate with her friends. Not having a phone hasn't made much difference from what I can tell. I still monitor fairly closely.
  18. Oh I totally agree Stella, most of the school teachers I know are working harder than ever! I also wouldn't make it as a classroom teacher 😄 Worst of both worlds for everyone at the moment.
  19. Connectivity is a big piece of this. I know that local schools are providing free ipads for all students. We're in a rural area where Wi-Fi can be fairly sketchy... yet they still require hours of online work everyday for first graders? Again and again, thank God I homeschool. I wouldn't make it as a school parent guys! I'm getting angry just listening to the stories!
  20. What I'm seeing is: Teachers being absolutely run off their feet Kids being given wildly inappropriate work - either hardly anything/too easy, or so much they are unable to get through it/access it/type all the things in little boxes when you are 6 years old... Very little supervision or ability to supervise. It's just not possible to work full time and supervise full time. Kids are getting a lot of screen time and parents are stressed out. Glimpses of loveliness. Parents spending more time with their kids, doing projects together. I've had people say things to me like, wow, hats off to you, homeschooling is so hard. I appreciate the sentiment but what they're doing is harder than what I do! They've got the worst of both worlds.
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