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A friend of mine is writing a paper for her college class (not sure what class it is). She is getting her masters in education. She said she would be very interested in getting the viewpoints of such a diverse group of homescoolers. So, if you wouldn't mind answering the questions she posed to me, I'm sure she would appreciate it greatly. She has a positive opinion of homeschooling...I wanted to put that out there to belay any thoughts that she might be writing an anti-homeschooling paper!

 

1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

Thank you!

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A friend of mine is writing a paper for her college class (not sure what class it is). She is getting her masters in education. She said she would be very interested in getting the viewpoints of such a diverse group of homescoolers. So, if you wouldn't mind answering the questions she posed to me, I'm sure she would appreciate it greatly. She has a positive opinion of homeschooling...I wanted to put that out there to belay any thoughts that she might be writing an anti-homeschooling paper!

 

1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling? Dh and I felt that this is what God was leading us to do.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems? It can provide a sufficient education for children who are motivated and lack "issues" that limit their ability to be educated and whose parents are involved.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home? The ability to learn at the pace they need, slower or faster depending on the subject, the chance to pursue interests that would normally be beyond the scope of a classroom, the opportunity to develop their own personality without the constant barrage of popular fad from peers day in and day out, and the sheer abundance of time available to be with me and dh to build stronger bonds.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school? I am sure they are missing out on things, but I am glad they are missing out on some of those things.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling? Seeing the light come on when they finally "get" something.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging? Balancing the maintenance of life while educating. The dishes and dust bunnies always want to call to me in the middle of math. :001_smile:

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive? Yes.

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

Thank you!

 

My answers in blue.

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A friend of mine is writing a paper for her college class (not sure what class it is). She is getting her masters in education. She said she would be very interested in getting the viewpoints of such a diverse group of homescoolers. So, if you wouldn't mind answering the questions she posed to me, I'm sure she would appreciate it greatly. She has a positive opinion of homeschooling...I wanted to put that out there to belay any thoughts that she might be writing an anti-homeschooling paper!

 

1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?We felt it was the best for our family.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?It is broken and will not be fixed since politicians don't think education is important and gut the budget.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?Freedom. Free to learn at their own pace, free to develop their own ideas instead of following popular fads.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school? Not really

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?Conversations.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?The youngest child!!!!

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive? It can be, depending on the curriculum you choose. It can also be done with just the cost of printer ink and paper.

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

 

Thank you!

:auto::lurk5::iagree::001_smile::D:bigear::tongue_smilie::lol: ( from ds5).

Edited by Sasharowan
DS5 was helping me.
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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling? I chose it for my son because I prefer to accentuate his abilities and work on/with his issues rather than put him on an IEP and have him placed in awkward situations in a school system.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems? There are some good and some bad, just like companies, neighborhoods, and anything else out there. I have my daughter in a private school currently and if we moved (the school district we currently live in is completely awful, by any standard), I'd happily put her in public. I am a product of the public schools and find myself quite satisfactory :)

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home? For my son, he gains the ability to work at his own pace. He is able to work on his social interaction issues without becoming overwhelmed. He isn't picked on.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school? Group projects. Sure, there are bad things about them, too, but I think it would be nice for him to work on some projects with other kids, no matter how tough it would be for him.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling? I love watching him learn under my tutelage, and I love being able to focus on his favorite subjects and chase random topics that come up.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging? The day-to-day grind and never really getting a break. I am just not cut out for that.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive? It's cheaper than private school, especially the private school I'd love to send DS to, which caters to kids with ADHD/Asperger's. So it's not cheap, but comparatively, no.

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A friend of mine is writing a paper for her college class (not sure what class it is). She is getting her masters in education. She said she would be very interested in getting the viewpoints of such a diverse group of homescoolers. So, if you wouldn't mind answering the questions she posed to me, I'm sure she would appreciate it greatly. She has a positive opinion of homeschooling...I wanted to put that out there to belay any thoughts that she might be writing an anti-homeschooling paper!

 

1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

Thank you!

 

1. We chose homeschooling because we wanted to give a quality individualized education to our children.

 

2. My perception of the public school system (after having taught in it for many years) is that it often fails children at the top and bottom ends of the spectrum, but can do a good job with children in the middle.

 

3. My children gain an education that is literature based, that has a solid basis in phonics, grammar and Latin and a strong base in basic math skills.

 

4. Nothing because our state allows us to use the public schools as we choose. I am unable to provide speech therapy for my dd but will be getting that through the schools.

 

5. I enjoy seeing my kids understand new things, making connections between what we are studying "in school" and what we come across in the rest of our day.

 

6. Each stage of development has it's challenges but they have not been insurmountable challenges.

 

7. Homeschooling has not been expensive for us because we use the library extensively and often buy our curriculum used.

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling? My son was being bullied at school. After 2 years of trying to work things out within the system my son developed trichotillomania. He spent 4th grade with no eyelashes. At that point dh and decided that we had to do something extreme. After researching our options we decided to bring our children home for a year because we couldn't mess them up emotionally any more then the school did. We found that we really enjoyed homeschooling and kept with it after the first year.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems? I think like any system it has its problems. It wasn't working for us but there are plenty of kids who thrive in it. If I need to stop homeschooling at some point I am glad it is an option.

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home? Freedom. Freedom to be who they are. Freedom to study subjects that interest them.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school? They are missing out on some club activities that are difficult to replicate in the home environment. Such as a debate team.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling? My family. I feel homeschooling has strengthened our family bond. It has defintiely strengthened the bond between my kids.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging? It is a little challenging spending all that family time together. Sometimes, you need a break.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive? Hard to say. There are some expenses that I would still incur if they were in school. I try to purchase used when possible. I utilize the library, a lot.

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

 

Thank you!

 

My answers above in blue.

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First, I am a former public school teacher. I have a MEd and also worked as a child developmental specialist before coming home full time when ds was about 18 months old.

 

1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling? I originally chose homeschooling because my son had a May birthday, was a minority, and was large for his age (at age 5 most people assummed he was 7 or 8). He was a very wiggly, active, curious child and I knew from my experience that this was a bad combination for kindergarten - even if he was bright. Even though he doesn't have ADHD Iknew that he would be labeled as a problem. With a K certification I knew I could teach him and decided to do it one year. At the end of hte year we had enjoyed it so much,and found so many other families we connected with, that we continued. He is now 10 and we continue to homeschool for other reasons. One, he has had some delays in academics due to undiagnosed learning difficulties including a vision problem that delayed his reading for 2 years. He is behind same age peers in the classroom. The other big reason is simplythat we LOVE the homeschooling lifestyle. I love being home. I love that we do everything together. I love being the primary influence in my child's life. I love that we have the flexibility to change curriculums, to change schedules, to adapt and follow our interests.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

I don't have a bad perception, but I don't think they are very effective. I spent 3 years in a middle school before going to early elementary and preK. There is no individuality to classes and what is taught to children. THey must catch it the way it is taught, when taught, or be left behind. If they don't catch it, they must fail. Sometimes children could be helped sooner with remedial help in K or 1, but instead the help is delayed for years. Teachers are so busy teaching standards they can't teach children. When I went to thepreK level I was amazed at the difference. If the child needed OT, PT, speech, it was provided within a short time and all those people worked together. That never happened in public school. Parents had to fight for services and even then the services didn't always meet what the child really needed. When I was initially looking for OT for my son, he qualified with a -3 deviation privately. He couldn't write his name,let alone anything else. The school district would not provide OT because 'it didn't effect school work or the ability to complete school work if the following modification was made: teacher or another student will write all answers for child on all assigned work'. I asked how often that would be provided and the answer was 'as we have someone available' which was guaranteed to be about 40% of the time.

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home? He receives a truely individualized education. In addition, even though he is lagging behind same aged peers in a couple of subjects he is not showing the same low self esteem I saw in public school children. He also gains a closer relationship with parents and extended family. He has been to more places and on more field trips than any public school child we know. He has been able to receive specialized turoring, more indepth art and music classes, the opportunity to learn at his pace, the opportunity to grow as a person and develop his own interests, and learn without fear and intimidation. (I know, not all teachers use fear and intimidation, but I did work with some that did.) He gets 1-1 interaction regularly.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school? Most of the time nothing. There are more sports available. There is more daily contact with a much larger group of people but sicne I feel that many kids are raised in packs and have mob mentality that isn't necessarily a bad thing always.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

The flexibility we have as a family. The ability to change his curriculum as needed. The time we have together as family.

6.) What have you found to be challenging? The most challenging thing about homeschooling is the best part as well- I am with my children all the time. Sometimes it is really hard because they really know which buttons to push and when the grind gets hard, I just can't go home and unwind. Sometimes a class of 30 is easier, but it isn't better.

7.) Is homeschooling expensive? It depends on many factors so each family will answer differently. If you count in the loss of my income, yes, it is an expensive choice to make. I brought home the larger paycheck. If you ask about curriculum costs, not really. You can buy excellent, quality, time tested curriculums and material for less than $500 per child new. Used is even less. That's not much for a years worth of materials. Of course there are some that are much more, and the choices can be overwhelming. Some specialized curriculums are quite expensive though - like programs written for children with special needs. If you have a child that needs specialized reading instruction, for example, the cost for one subject can easily be over $1000 for a program like Barton Reading and Spelling (for dyslexics).

 

When I first went to look at curriculum for my son, I honestly didn't quite know what to do and was overwhelmed at first. When I was in public school I didn't have choices in main curriculum. The choice was made for me and then I found what I needed to make that curriculum work for my students.

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

I believe that homeschooling is one method of education that works. Public schools are not bad in and of themselves. For some children they are the best choice. I know many families that homeschool one child and have other children in public school or private schools. When I was teaching in public school I thought that all homeschoolers were awful. Everyone I worked with did as well. Everytime a child returned to school that had been homeschooled it was nightmare - they were behind, not interested in the education of the child, and so on. I had a very one sided view, a very negative view of homeschoolers. Essentially they were bad and only I was a 'trained professional' and has those 'special skills' necessary to teach children. Once I entered the homeschool community I met many many more successful families than I had ever met as failed families. I met families that were better versed in education theory and current research than myself. I found that most families were willing to spend hours on research and learning how to teach their children. They were serious about the education their child received. They were dedicated. And most importantly,the children were succeeding. The children were not 'weird'. Honestly, I met more 'weird families' teaching public school than I ever have in homeschooling.

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

 

We have chosen to homeschool for flexibility (to be able to travel at will and move mid year) and academics. Both of our kids have unique a unique combination of strengths and weaknesses that I don't think the school system is equipped to handle well.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

 

Our local schools are adequate. The kids score well but they are constrained by testing requirements and the need to educate all children.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

 

My child has developed a sense of responsibility for her education. She has been able to make huge leaps in subjects she finds easy while having the time to work to mastery in those she finds challenging. She also has the gift of time. Time to explore what interests her, to take advantage of all the opportunities she wants to and to allow her to enjoy her childhood (no 6am wake up for the bus).

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

There are opportunities that the local school offers that we can not (certain field trips, competitions). There are classes that are much harder for us to teach and this will be an increasing problem as she ages (science especially). We can not offer all the classes she would like all the time (though I think what she does take is often higher quality...these include art, music, instrument, after school languages). I also think she would love to spend all day hanging out with friends though I'm not sure I believe that is something she misses out on.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

 

I enjoy learning alongside the kids and watching their eyes light up when they finally get it. I enjoy not having to worry about someone else's schedule.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

 

I find the lack of time to myself quite challenging. I think we have finally found our way through this by signing both up for a full day co op one day a week as well as hiring a sitter one day a week. The sitter does some basic work that I set out (grammar, reading, math) and we have lengthened the other three days. I also find the responsibility to make sure that they are educated well overwhelming sometimes. I try to only look at our states SOLs every few months but when I do there is generally a day or two of panic for dh to deal with.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

 

Yes. For us it has been as expensive as private school would be. We pay for a language tutor, piano lessons, co op, sitter, testing and curriculum/supplies (plus other stuff I am sure). I have also given up the opportunity to work part time which is a fairly significant financial sacrifice given my degree field. The cost is well worth the benefits our children have gotten to this point. If we were living somewhere with a different educational system (perhaps Germany) public school would have been an option. If we move somewhere with a better system or their needs change as they age it will also be an option. I just don't believe the current system we have, especially in our district, meets the needs of young kids.

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

We originally began homeschooling because I knew one of my kids would not do well in a school environment. I taught 11 years so I was confident he wasn't a good fit. Since then I've come to appreciate so much more about homeschooling.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

I think teachers do the best they can and, overall, schools serve kids who process things as typically presented at typical ages relatively well. The kids who fall outside those parameters aren't well served. I don't blame teachers for this though. So much is stacked against both teachers and those sorts of kids in the present day school environment. A lot is stacked against boys generally in this present school environment as well unfortunately.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

I believe both of my children are getting a better caliber education than they would otherwise. I'm also better able to address special learning issues and health needs in one child.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

Nothing at all for one child. The other is very extroverted and I think he would love recess and related social stuff every day. This, though, could have both positives and negatives for him!

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

I love to watch my kids light up as we learn together. It's fun. Some of it isn't fun of course! But that, too, has rewards. I feel good about the education I'm giving them.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

Balancing the needs of two very different kids who are prone to comparisons is tricky at times.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

It can be but it doesn't need to be, at least at the elementary level! We homeschool both well and very inexpensively.

Edited by sbgrace
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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

We chose it because we felt it would be a good fit for our family. One daughter needed more structure than she was getting in public middle school. One daughter needed more social support and guidance. Our sons benefit from an individualized education.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

Underfunded and overburdened. Our school district is dealing with a major budget shortfall this year. One thing that's been quite striking to me is that as our school district struggles with the budget, ps kids have more and more days off. My children do more school days than their ps counterparts. That said, given the many challenges they're dealing with, many individual schools and teachers are doing their best to provide a good basic education. I know many teachers and they are amazing individuals dedicated to their work.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

Flexibility. We can make our schedule suit our lives. Right now we're starting school late in the mornings because one ds is in dress rehearsal week of a musical and the schedule is pretty intense. Many other actors are struggling to get homework done and deal with school too.

Individualized intruction.They are not held back until the majority understands or passed by because they don't understand the material. If a child doesn't understand a concept or makes a mistake, I can correct, re-instruct and have the child re-practice the concept immediately. I choose curriculum that suits my teaching style and their learning style and adapt it as needed. And they can choose which interests to pursue in some of their studies.

Academic rigor. I choose rigorous curriculum and the kids don't have to spend their time on busywork or dumbed-down activities.

Meaningful Instruction. Often we choose to get out and about to experience a science concept or nature study. When we study plants, we plant the garden at the same time; when we study bugs, we can spend days out in the field bug catching. We spent an entire spring visiting a pond 2-3 times a week when we did a pond study.

Focus on nature. We are able to incorporate our love of nature and the outdoors into our studies.

Family time.

Learning is fun. :)

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

Probably. In any choice we make, we are giving up some of the good things about the other choices. There are some great teachers in our school system. I hear about the wonderful things my friends' kids do at school and think, "Gosh, that sounds like a fantastic project/activity/experience!"

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

Family time and learning with my children. Snuggling on the couch reading. Hearing my child recite the helping verbs while he's in the bathroom. ;) Seeing a kid have an "AHA!" While our basic routine stays the same, I love that we've found our seasonal flow--Fall, enthusiasm and lots of projects; Winter, academic focus, very rigorous; Spring, outdoors and active; Summer--relaxed, lots of child-led learning.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

Too much family time? LOL

At first, my biggest challenge was finding the right curriculum and figuring out what worked best for us. Now my biggest challenge is finding a good balance between flexibility and routine, rigorous academics and other worthwhile enriching activities. Too many good choices!

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

It can be, but it doesn't have to be.

 

Cat

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[1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

 

I don't trust the academics in our local public schools, and had too much experience with the down side of "socialization" in the schools as a kid. In short, to give my kids a better education and reduce the amount of bullying and social darwinism they're exposed to during their formative years. Being in a religious minority has also informed the decision.

 

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

 

They're pretty wretched. There are a few charter and focus schools I'll consider for the upper grades in our area, but the default neighborhood school? Even though we're in a "good" district, no way will I trust them.

 

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

 

One-on-one focus, curricula tailored to her needs, a more flexible schedule that gives us more family time, and more free time.

 

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

Not really, as she is involved in a weekly enrichment program through a local public school district. It provides the group activities like P.E. and things that take resources and talent we don't have at home like art and music, without me having to trust them to teach her core skills. She likes the group environment, being very sociable and outgoing. In an ideal world she could get that along with solid academics--we don't live in an ideal world.

 

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

 

Spending time together and getting to see her progress firsthand. I don't need a report card to tell me what she's learning. We do most of her lessons curled together on the couch with a dry erase easel in front of us.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

 

My daughter has a rather short attention span and often has trouble focusing. The home environment means there are plenty of distractions and excuses to delay getting down to work. But this is ameliorated by being able to work at her pace, and often the approach of time for the school bus to pull into the neighborhood is all the incentive she needs to focus, so it's more a matter of discipline than attention deficit.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

 

No. Between secondhand and free online sources, the early grades at least have cost very little.

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

 

Thank you!

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

 

We plan to homeschool because funding for schools in Minnesota has dropped drastically over the years, and our schools are now somewhat middling as far as quality of education. Also, our daughter will likely have some learning disabilities as the result of a genetic disorder, and we feel she'll get a better education learning one-on-one at home with me.

 

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

 

Not good. As I said, the funding just keeps getting cut. Also, I met a lot of undergraduates when I was in college who planned to be elementary school teachers, and I wasn't impressed by either the rigor of their studies, from what they told me, or by the people themselves, to be honest.

 

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

 

Constant access to books that the schools can't come close to matching. I have a library of over a thousand books, mostly classics and non-fiction, and my daughter has free rein. Already, at the age of two, she regularly sits and flips through books on Buddhist monasteries or the works of Da Vinci. She'll receive a better and more consistent education, and will be able to study more of what she wants, instead of what her grade level and teacher dictate.

 

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

More access to team sports. Though, given that my family is prone to life-threatening clumsiness, that's probably a good thing.

 

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

 

Being able to share what I love with my daughter. She's quite young, but I love teaching her about literature and science. We've recently started reading one famous work of poetry every day, and she loves it.

 

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

 

Not much yet- ask me in ten years. :tongue_smilie:

 

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

 

Again, not yet, though in five more years, I'm sure the answer will probably be yes.

 

 

I just want to throw in that, while we probably don't count as full-fledged homeschoolers until my daughter hits four, we are extremely committed to it, though in our case, religion plays virtually no part in our decision.

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling

 

Because I think I can give them a better, more individualized education than they would receive in a traditional school setting. Also, we're a military family and homeschooling helps in two ways. First, it gives us flexibility. We can move in the middle of the school year, we can take off school when my husband is able to take leave, we can visit family without interrupting studies. Secondly, it gives us consistency. We don't have to worry about moving from an advanced school district to one that is more behind or vice versa.

 

What is your perception of the public school systems?

 

That they are a one-sized-fits-all setting that does not and can not fit all.

 

3.)What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

 

An education tailored to their abilities (and sometimes interests).

 

4.)Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

Nothing positive.

 

5.)What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

 

Being there for the light-bulb moments.

 

6.)What have you found to be challenging?

 

Teenagers.

 

7.)Is homeschooling expensive?

 

It is considerably less expensive than private school. It is about equal with yearly public school costs, based on what my friends pay with regard to fundraisers, uniforms, textbooks (many school systems make students pay for them), band uniforms, etc.

Edited by Mrs Mungo
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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

Academic reasons to start. Lifestyle is the bonus.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

Depends on where one is. We move a lot. I've seen great schools and some pretty bad ones.

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

More free time, more family time, security/safety, her curriculum doesn't change each time we move, the opportunity to come to know people of all ages. There is a lot more, but these will do.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

Drugs. Mean girls. Sex in the bathrooms. Belittling and bullying.

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

I enjoy being with dd. We are not slaves to the school schedule.

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

The daily grind can get boring. Every day math, language, history and science have to be done. I do find it challenging to have the energy and imagination to keep things fresh.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

No.

;)

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

 

Initially it was because when we moved to this area, people warned us that if we love our daughter, we should not allow her to attend public school here (60% drop-out rate, some of the lowest test scores in the nation, some shocking stories of violence, and really high teen pregnancy rates, etc.). We keep on choosing it because it is simply the best of the available choices in terms not only of academics, but also personal safety, healthy socialization, and the kind of family life we want.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

 

See above!

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

 

Tutoring - one on one attention in an academic program adapted to her needs rather than a classroom environment where she would be forced into a particular predetermined mold or labeled a failure. A broader range of social interactions (her friends are not limited to kids of the same age, socioeconomic class, and geographic area). A close-knit and supportive family life.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

Bullying. Teachers who are indifferent or even hostile. (There are *wonderful* teachers out there. I had several of them. There are some awful ones as well. I had several of those too.) But with regards to the positives of public schools, obviously she has much less classroom experience than her public schooled counterparts (though she does get some in the areas that we "outsource") and I don't know whether that will prove to be a disadvantage for her when she gets to college. I don't think it will be a disadvantage at all beyond school, in the career world.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

 

Being the person who gets to spend those precious hours with my daughter, and seeing her eyes light up when she "gets it". Seeing first-hand the incredible progress she has made, day by day.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

 

Keeping up the momentum in times of stress or illness or just feeling stuck in a rut.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

 

Not in my house. :-) It certainly can be, but it can be done on a budget as well. One of the sacrifices we make to homeschool is a second income. It's worth every penny and then some.

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

 

As highly gifted kids, my husband and I had less than wonderful experiences in public schools. Originally, our plan was to send our daughter (who obviously outstripped us in the smarts department early on!) to the best private school we could find. But we couldn't afford it. Homeschooling was supposed to be an interim measure until we could find the right school. But it turned out to be a great fit. So, when our son came along, we just folded him into the routine.

 

 

2. What is your perception of the public school systems?

 

I'm sure there are good schools. And I know they serve a need. My own experiences were not good. And I don't hear a lot of positive things from friends who have kids in the system. I suspect that most teachers are doing the very best they can, but my impression is that they are having only very limited success.

 

 

3.)
What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

 

Flexibility, the freedom to have learning experiences crafted to fit their individual needs. The opportunity to spend more time with and develop closer relationships with their families. More time to be a kid, or to pursue things about which they are passionate. Less time wasted waiting for everyone else to catch up. The freedom to do schoolwork when it is best for them.

 

 

4.)
Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

There are certain cultural experiences my kids have missed. They never spent time playing with friends while waiting on the corner for the schoolbus, for example. But we've done our best to provide alternate experiences and rites of passage. So, when they were younger, we participated in homeschool groups with weekly park days, to which my kids carried lunch boxes. When my daughter moved on to full-time college enrollment, we had a party for her, complete with an informal graduation ceremony and presentation of her diploma.

 

 

5.)
What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

 

I love the time with my kids. I love knowing I'm doing everything I can to give them the best educational opportunities I can manage. I take comfort in knowing I won't be kicking myself later for not trying my best.

 

 

6.)
What have you found to be challenging?

 

Sometimes, it's challenging spending all that time with my kids. I love them, but I almost never get a "day off." I know we bear complete responsibility for their education, and it can be stressful. Plus, both of my kids are very bright and demanding both educationally and parentally. It's a double whammy, with no relief.

 

 

7.)
Is homeschooling expensive?

 

It can be, but it doesn't have to be. Essentially, if you want to do a good job, you have to invest either money or time. I have usually chosen time. I spent a lot of energy searching out great, inexpensive resources and figuring out how to fit them together to work for each child. I rarely spend more than $300 per child, per year, which is less than many people spend on supplies and fees for public schools.

 

Of course, that doesn't take into account the opportunity cost of having one parent home full time. Obviously, if you count the salary I am not making by staying home, this becomes a more expensive lifestyle.

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

 

Basically so I have the power to do what needs to be done, not just the responsibility for it. Plus the government has a habit of making education policies in opposition to what studies show is best, so they are not providing the sort of education I want for my kids and definitely not the sort of environment I want for them either. I don't think the structured environment would do good things for my daughter. She responds to structure the way I work things at home, but school style structure with what would appear to her to be arbitrary rules would frustrate, then stifle her and she'd stop thinking for herself. I know why those rules are there, but I'm a grown up ;)

 

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

 

There are enough alternative schools to show that the standard government model needn't be the way it is. I can only speak for our experiences, which includes stories from dh, who was a teacher for three years, but I think the system works as though it doesn't like children, especially boys. It also works as though it doesn't like adults either, because many teachers are treated terribly. It depends a lot what subject you teach, but in general, teachers time is taken up by ridiculous amounts of admin that could be taken care of by a secretary so teachers could focus on the job of teaching. So many teachers don't have the energy left to care about their subject matter or education theory, with all the other messing around they have to do and I don't blame them.

 

If you've read Liping Ma's book, the teachers spend time each week working on their own skills in the subject. If our teachers' admin chores could be given to a secretary, there would be time for that sort of collaborative learning for teachers. I think that would help keep them interested in their subject matter and that will benefit the students more than another PD on using smart boards. Dh reported that there were some really great PD opportunities while he was teaching, but as a new teacher who had to write his own curriculum, he didn't have time to attend them. He also reported that the older teachers felt the PDs offered were irrelevant to them at such a late stage in their career. The style of PD Liping Ma described would be valuable to teachers at all stages of their careers.

 

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

 

Well my daughter is only doing preK at the moment, and my son has only just turned two, so they gain the same things any child of this age gains from being at home. They are growing into confident little people because they know I am here. They are comfortable with Daddy going off to work without them because they know I'm be here while he's away. They are inquisitive young people because they are allowed to touch. They have good awareness of what their bodies can and can't do because they are allowed to climb.

 

For the future, one of the most important benefits is that they'll be able to start building their resumes as soon as they are mature enough. In Australia, perfect grades don't count for much in many sectors if the applicant hasn't any work experience. I'm hoping they'll be able to take part time, junior office jobs during high school. They are much more valuable on the resume than the usual after school jobs like supermarkets. I understand this situation is very different in America, but this is the situation here and homeschooling will give us flexibility in study hours so the kids will be able to get started on resume building asap.

 

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

At this age, they aren't missing anything worth having. For the future, I don't think they will be missing anything important from not attending school that can't be arranged outside of it; though mine will go to Saturday school for a language from grade one. I couldn't provide those benefits at home by myself, but normal public schools don't offer decent language instructions anyway, so I'd still have to send them to Saturday school.

 

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

 

Watching my daughter learn to care.

She's only small, so her interests are restricted to the immediately relevant, and she'll block mostly everything else out. I guess it's a survival mechanism to prevent her being overwhelmed with things she doesn't understand? Anyway, we will do themed puzzles, read stories, watch documentaries etc, and that idea will gradually become part of her little world. For example, late last year we were doing a penguin unit study, and after a few weeks of puzzles, books and documentaries, we went off to the museum. Coincidentally, just inside the door was a model of penguins diving for fish and a month before she would have ignored it as irrelevant to herself, but she yelled "LOOK! PENGUINS!" (which shows her enthusiasm because she doesn't say much) and went running over. She spent about ten minutes staring at it. A few weeks later we were able to go to the "Penguin Parade" to see real ones coming out of the ocean and trekking home, and she sat there watching them until 10pm.

 

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

 

At this age? Nothing that's homeschool related :lol:

 

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

 

More expensive than it needs to be, at the moment, I'm sure. :D Still, educating our children is a worthwhile use of our money.

 

Rosie

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

Predominantly because I want to be the primary influence in the lives of my young children. Also because I want a quality academic education with focus on areas that are increasingly de-prioritised in the school system.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

Varies. Predominantly poor.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

Greater attention to academic fundamentals. Time to pursue her own interests.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

Yes. Access to resources in specialist areas - art, PE, music, Science. The benefit of working in a group setting on "fun" projects (i.e. enrichment activities).

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

Being able to choose the very best available materials, both in terms of quality and suitability for my child's specific needs.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

No time to myself is exhausting. Inefficient in terms of meeting social needs - time travelling between activities is excessive.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

Much more expensive than public school, but cheaper than private school. Being an overseas homeschooler with a preference for US materials presents an extra challenge, as overseas postage costs are very high.

 

any additional points

Homeschooling is not necessarily the best option for our family, but it is the best available option. My fantasy school situation would be some sort of flexible community school which would allow for a combination of home and school.

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A friend of mine is writing a paper for her college class (not sure what class it is). She is getting her masters in education. She said she would be very interested in getting the viewpoints of such a diverse group of homescoolers. So, if you wouldn't mind answering the questions she posed to me, I'm sure she would appreciate it greatly. She has a positive opinion of homeschooling...I wanted to put that out there to belay any thoughts that she might be writing an anti-homeschooling paper!

 

1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

I started homeschooling my second daughter in 6th grade to protect her sweet spirit from the cruelty of other girls who would have inevitably thought her not "cool" enough to be treated kindly. I continue to homeschool because of the poor education and total lack of decency that is rampant in our public schools.

 

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

See above. My "perception" is based on first hand knowledge. I have three children who attended public schools, two of them K-12th, the other K-5th and then again 9th-mid 10th. The experiences they had there are the very reasons my 3rd child was partially homeschooled and my fourth child will not be attending at all. I wish I had known then what I know now. I would have homeschooled them all.

 

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

My child is recieving a better academic education then she would have gotten in public school. She is also recieving a better social, spiritual and emotional education then she would have gotten in public schools. She is gaining knowlege, respect, confidence, work ethic, and strong character.

 

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

Plenty of bad things. Nothing good. My daughter attends and/ or participates in AWANAs, Sunday School, A professionally taught music class, Co-op classes (spanish and P.E.), Art camp, science camp, 4H clubs, performances and competitions, livestock shows and clinics, horse back riding lessons and competitions, field trips, basketball league and clinics, plays, science fairs, culture fairs, spelling bee, singing and speech competitions, and concert performances. She could never have the vast and varried experiences I can provide to her if she were in public school. We wouldn't have enough time. Through many of these activites, she experiences competition, class room settings, group activities, student/ teacher dynamics and social interaction and friendships with children of her own age as well as younger and older children and adults. Along with an excellent accademic education, I purpose to provide her with a well rounded, interesting and interactive life.

 

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

Spending time with my dear ones, watching them learn and sharing my joy of life and learning with them.

 

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

Being a parent is challenging. Homeschooling is just part of that. There isn't any one aspect of homeschooling that I find overly difficult or unmanageable. I LOVE to school my kids. It's the most fun part of my day.

 

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

I spend about $1000 each year on each child.

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

 

Thank you!

 

Answers are in Purple

Edited by katemary63
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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

My kids were getting top grades and yet didn't seem to know what I thought they should. I worked with them after school. Fast forward to #5 who is one of those wiggly, touchy, distractible, young for his age boys. He missed about half of what went on in class. If I was going to work with him so hard I might as well keep him home and do it all. We liked it so well that we never sent #6 and #7 will stay home too.

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

It seems to be an about average system. We are a small rural area so no one is 'expecting' much beyond basics. It does seem relatively safe. I think many of the teachers care deeply but are bound by endless rules.

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

An education tailored to their needs. Much less stress.

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

The only thing I worry about is that we live in a very small community. If they choose to live here they may always be outsiders. This is the kind of place where people stay and still hang out with the people that they went to school with. Of course they may move 1500 miles away so it won't matter.

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

Being able to move as quickly or slowly as we need to. DD is advanced so not being bored is important. DS has strengths in history and science which are not areas of focus in PS

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

Keeping up with all the housewife stuff and making sure 3yo dd gets her fair share of attention.

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

It can be as inexpensive or expensive as you want. I don't think I spend any more in elementary than it took to go to PS after you count clothes/gym shoes/supplies/book rental/party requests/tissue requests/field trips/etc

 

The hardest part was taking the leap, after that it's been pretty smooth sailing.

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1.) [/size]Why have you chosen homeschooling?

Initially because my oldest was an early reader with a later birthday so wouldn't have entered kindergarten until he was almost 6. I figured I had a year to try it and see if I liked it. I kept homeschooling because I found it worked for our family and I was able to give the kids a quality education.

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

My two oldest are in school for the first time and I do not have a very good perception of the academics in school. My son's high school has block scheduling so they only get each subject for 4 months out of a year then go 8 months without. Not a good way to learn math or a foreign language. I also think they put way too much emphasis on standardized tests that are not good indicators of what a child is capable of.

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

The benefits are a high quality education and a strong parental bond. It also gives them the opportunity to do school and follow their passions while still having time to play and be a child. My boys have school' date=' then sports, come home to do homework then it is time for bed. They don't get to play.[/color']

[/size]4.)

Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

No. We make an effort to give her time to play with friends and have her involved in extra-curricular activities. Having my boys in school now, dealing with peer pressure and seeing kids get bullied, I have a different perspective on the whole "socialization" argument people pose against homeschooling.

5.)

What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

I love the time I get to spend with my child. I love to see her learning. I like having control over what she is learning and how. I like being creative.

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

Getting everything done. There are so many subjects possible. I find it hard to set limits for myself. Also, I don't have alone time. Not a biggie for me because I don't need much but there have been moments when I could really just use a day where I don't have something I must do.

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

No. There are a lot of costs associated with sending a child to school that, though spread out throughout the schoolyear, still add up. Homeschooling is only as expensive as you want to make it. You can spend a lot on curriculum or you can build your own for very little money. You can take your child on lots of trips or have them in lots of activities which cost money or you can chose not to do those things.

[/size][/font]

 

Not sure if I did that correctly but hopefully every answer went with the right question.

Edited by Donna
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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

 

Multiple reasons. I felt the school put a negative spin on the earliest years, therefore setting kids up for a negative view of education (my daughter was missing recesses, getting "demerits" and getting an "F" in math by K and 1st grade, and the F was NOT because she didn't know the work- it was because of incomplete assignments due to either being sick or on vacation that the teacher wouldn't let her make up at home and didn't have time at school, and due to asking the kids to draw pictures to demonstrate their answers- my daughter liked to draw elaborate detailed pictures and would run out of time to do the work.

 

I felt they didn't have enough time to be kids- even in K it was deskwork for hours, silent lunches, 10-15 minute recesses, homework.

 

I felt that they focused too much on standardized testing and not enough on other things. (Which also caused stress for the kids- mine was having stomach aches every day in third grade which was the first big testing year, although they had started "prepping" for the test as early as Kindergarten!)

 

And lastly I just kind of felt like my kid's childhood was slipping away so quickly and I was missing so much of it. And so was she! So I finally had enough and pulled her out toward the end of third grade and have been very happily homeschooling without looking back ever since.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

 

Same as above. They don't give kids enough time to be kids. They focus too much on standardized testing rather than a well rounded education. And this isn't working for many of them, and certainly isn't working for my district going by the results of said standardized testing that come out in the papers each year- my district is below state average nearly across the board.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

 

She gets more time to be a kid, follow her own interest, etc. She gets more exercise, more time to play, more time to be outside, more time to be with her family. She gets more of a customized education, where we can do things in a more well rounded way and move at our own speed and take our time more with things we enjoy. She gets to experience more of "real life" instead of just being shut away in a classroom for years "preparing" for life, so I think learning is less "abstract" for her. She gets to be more independent and she gets to do many more hands on things. She gets to do lots more "field trips" and outings. And she gets to live life with much less peer pressure, bullying, and so on. Oh and she gets sick less often, too :)

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

No. Seriously, no. I feel she gets a better education at home. And if you take the education aspect away from school, what's left? Socialization? There WAS no "socialization" really in school. From Kindergarten she lost her meager 10 to 15 minutes of recess almost all.the.time. as a punishment for "talking too much" in the classroom. They had "silent lunches." And what would the "socialization" have been like now in middle school? I shudder to think about it. She gets PLENTY of socialization now- more so than she would have in school, I think.

 

She can talk to her family when she wants to. She accompanies me on most of my errands and outings. We go on frequent field trips. We are active in our homeschool meetup group. She is involved in multiple extra curricular activities (currently Girl Scouts, Judo and Homeschool Bowling League weekly, with library book club every few weeks and homeschool P.E. at the Y once a month). She has cousins and friends on our street who she plays with often after THEIR school hours.

 

What else might there be? An argument that she should be able to learn from different people instead of just mom? Well, she does. She's had gymnastics instructors, swimming instructors, her sensei at Judo, the librarian at book club, the homeschool P.E. teacher, art teachers at her summer art camps, Girl Scout leaders, 4H leaders when she did 4H, and so on and so forth.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

 

I enjoy learning or re-learning in some cases, alongside my daughter. I enjoy that we spend so much time reading together, I enjoy the many hands on projects and activities we try to do, I enjoy the many field trips we go on, being able to go on vacations and outings on days and at times when it's not ridiculously crowded, I enjoy having my kids with me throughout the day as opposed to only at the end of the day when we're all tired and not at our best- there are so many things. I couldn't pick just one! But if I had to, it would be I feel like my daughter has more of a childhood now. She gets to experience more of it, and so do I.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

 

To be honest...I wouldn't say there's been anything all that challenging as of yet. (I've only homeschooled for a couple of months at the end of third grade, all of fourth grade, and now we're more than halfway through fifth grade). If I had to pick one thing, it would be occupying my younger son who wasn't yet schoolage while focusing more on my daughter who was, which did sometimes make me feel a little bit guilty (that I wasn't paying enough attention to him).

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

 

It's as expensive as you make it. Some people spend a LOT of money on curricula. Others buy cheap, used, and put together a lot of stuff on their own. I think I have NOT spent a lot on curricula compared to many. But I spend a good amount on things like field trips and activities and camps and classes and lessons for the kids.

Edited by NanceXToo
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A friend of mine is writing a paper for her college class (not sure what class it is). She is getting her masters in education. She said she would be very interested in getting the viewpoints of such a diverse group of homescoolers. So, if you wouldn't mind answering the questions she posed to me, I'm sure she would appreciate it greatly. She has a positive opinion of homeschooling...I wanted to put that out there to belay any thoughts that she might be writing an anti-homeschooling paper!

 

1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

 

We started homeschooling because the private school wasn't meeting her academic needs and the behavior issues in the class, and the teacher's way of handling them, were making her miserable. Our reasons have evolved as it's now not to avoid the negative of a traditional school, but because of all the positives of homeschooling.

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

 

In general, I feel that the academic standards are too low. Some schools are okay and some are great - a lot depends on the individual teachers.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

 

She has the opportunity to learn no matter where she is academically. She's not held back nor forced forward. She has time for art, and writing and music. She has time for family prayer and attending Mass as a family. She's able to adjust her school schedule to what other opportunities life offers. She's able to choose which kids she wants to spend time being around. She has a good sense of who she is and doesn't have to conform to what other teens set as the norm.

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

Free textbooks!!! :lol: I'd love to be able to replicate the science lab, but it would cost a fortune - so we do what we can. Art instruction would also be a plus there - assuming a good art teacher, which I think most are. :001_smile:

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

 

Spending time with my daughter. Knowing that she's getting a good education and that she's happy.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

 

Balancing academic rigor with providing enough free time for dd to pursue her own interests. Also knowing what she shouldn't miss out on regarding academic and other opportunities. Negotiating college selection and scholarship applications will be challenging I'm sure.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

 

Yes. But worth every penny. And certainly less than private school.

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

Thank you!

 

HTH :)

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

Academic reasons primarily. I love the idea of being able to plan an education with an end goal and work towards that goal.

 

Also, my husband is training to be a physician, and his schedule will be an unusual one. I love the idea of having flexibility in our days as well as throughout the year so that my children will be able to spend as much time with their father as possible.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

I attended 12 different schools in 5 different states when I was a child. All public schools. Of those, I would consider maybe 2 as actually being ok, and even then I think I can do a better job at home. I think that the public schools try to do too much instead of focusing on the academics. They try to be the children's parents instead. Mostly, I found public school to be slightly less than adequate academically and a total waste of my time. I don't want my kids to waste 7-8 hours a day of their childhood when I can do better for 2-3 hours a day.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

An education with an end goal in sight. A curriculum catered to their needs with a teacher who will do anything to help them learn. They also gain time to be children and to explore and learn about the world about them.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

Some extracurriculars maybe?

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

Haven't started yet :001_smile:. But I think I will love learning or relearning with my children. I'm also looking forward to being able to hang out with my older kids.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

Convincing my husband of the points above. Also I think it will be challenging to be patient with my kids some times.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

Can be, but doesn't have to be. From what I can tell, it tends to get more expensive as the kids get older.

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling? We chose to homeschool due to academic and religious reasons. Our local public school building had one of those open floor plans foisted upon them during the early 1970s, so the poor teachers had to try to build walls out of shelves and boxes - it was not at all conducive to education. We also belive that we, as parents, have the ultimate responsibility and authority for our daughter's education, both academic and religious. The bottom line was that we felt we could do a better job than the local public school.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems? Although there are some good teachers there, I feel the overall system is terribly broken and will not be fixed until greed and pride are placed to the side, which I unfortunately don't see happening any time soon.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home? She gets the benefit of one on one attention and a custom tailored curriculum. We teach for mastery, not grades, so we stick with a subject until she gets it. If she is not ready for it, I put it away for a few months and then reintroduce it. Therefore we have very little unproductive time where she is just spinning her wheels but learning little.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school? Violence, class struggle, feelings of inferiority, survival of the meanest... Seriously, things like science labs or phys ed equipment, but we can usually find alternatives.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling? The fact that my daughter is developing into a very strong, secure, wise person.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging? I always joke that I am the weakest link in our homeschool. It is hard for me to be at the top of my teaching game every single day. I used to worry about the days I failed, but then I saw my daughter's scores on the standardized tests and realized my fears were groundless.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive? It certainly can be. I just finished agonizing about a physics curriculum for 8th grade that cost $500. I decided against it. I have noticed that the cost seems to increase with each higher grade and that we are buying more reference materials that we keep and have fewer "workbook/textbook" type things for resale.

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

 

Many of the public school teachers I have met were very biased against homeschooling because they had only experienced cases of homeschooling gone wrong. They had to deal with the kids who were terribly behind, whose parents had terrible parenting/teaching skills, etc. Once they meet other homeschoolers who are successful, many change their opinion.

 

The certified teacher who does our annual portfolio review has often commented that I am doing with my student what she dreams of being able to do with hers, if she were free of administrative mandates and able to focus exclusively on education.

 

Our current public education system was built on a model designed to provide a large, solid pool of laborers to work in factories. It met that challenge quite well. But that is not the need in modern society. We need more innovators and problem solvers. Unfortunately these are the very skills that are rejected in our group system that offers a one-size-fits-all type of education. Logistically it is not set up to provide anything else. We don't reward creativity, individuality or ethics and our society is now reaping the bitter harvest of seeing those countries that do reward such skills leaping ahead of us in the global economy.

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A friend of mine is writing a paper for her college class (not sure what class it is). She is getting her masters in education. She said she would be very interested in getting the viewpoints of such a diverse group of homescoolers. So, if you wouldn't mind answering the questions she posed to me, I'm sure she would appreciate it greatly. She has a positive opinion of homeschooling...I wanted to put that out there to belay any thoughts that she might be writing an anti-homeschooling paper!

 

1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling? Because the public school that dd was going to at that time was not helpful. They would not assist us in helping dd with studies nor would they suggest what we could do to help her. They also punished my dd when *I* didn't sign her paper. Thats just the tip of the iceberg.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems? Some are good, some are bad.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home? Tailored instruction that meets the needs, slow if need be, fast is need be. We can choose to concentrate of the studies that will help with the chosen career path or we can go from subject to subject learning all we can. We are not hindered by a time table or test.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school? Nope

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling? Having my kids around all the time. I am somewhat dismayed when I hear other parents say they can't wait to send kids to here or there or can't wait to get them out of the house and such. Really? What did you have kids for if you don't want to see them?:confused: (By the way I am not talking about the occasional break, I am talking about all. the. time.)

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging? Scheduling and then getting them to finish in a timely fashion! :D

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive? Hmm.. depends, it doesn't have to be. There are lots of resources. So yes it can be but no it doesn't have to be. (Hehe, how;s that for a non-answer! :D)

 

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

 

The only thing I want to add is that socialization is a very over used word :D

 

 

Thank you!

 

 

Hope that helps :)

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling?

 

I chose to homeschool for religious freedom, individualized focus and attention, scheduling flexibility, and plummeting public school academic performance on a global level.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems?

 

My perception is of a top-down Stalinist-type regime that sucks the life and creativity out of children. It has also been my experience that while there are many wonderful teachers, their hands are tied by bureaucracies and they don't have license to do what they think is best. It is also my impression that bad teachers cannot be fired because of tenure, which leads to A LOT of bad teachers! I also think teachers get the short shrift because many parents of their students just don't care about education.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home?

 

A much better academic advantage, since the home educated child, by definition, has his own private tutor for his entire K-12 education. We don't spend all evening doing homework. We have time for volunteer and extra curricular activities, and to still eat dinner together. Not only do my kids complete their academic work, but they are able to learn many real-life skills just by being home more. For instance, my oldest son is taking this week of from school work to re-roof a house with his dad. He'll pick up his school work where he left off and not be 'behind.' He'll still finish his books my late May/early June.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

The public school my children would attend is pretty bad. So, they are missing out on drugs, sex and violence, and cross-dressing teacher's aids.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling?

 

I enjoy the time we have together, and being able to explain both sides of controversial issues, and challenging my kids to actually THINK instead of regurgitating random facts. I have one son who works above grade level, for his age, and one who struggles with below-grade level work, for his age. I love that neither of them are discouraged, frustrated, held back or rushed forward. They just 'do the next thing' after mastering the previous set of data. I also have a son with life-threatening food allergies, and I love not having to worry about that.

6.) What have you found to be challenging?

 

The amount of time and energy demanded from the teacher (me) has been challenging.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive?

 

We spend about $500 per year, per child.

 

She also asked me to add any additional points that I thought were important, so if you have any thoughts that you feel are imperative to add in order to represent accurately your feelings on homeschooling please do so.

 

Thank you!

 

Thank you for asking these questions! I appreciate it because I'm sure the answers won't be easy to hear. :grouphug:

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling? Ds16 asked to in 5th grade. He was tired of the distractions in public school, the constant starting/stopping of topics to cover a volume of topics w/o any in depth study. The wasted time waiting for others. We agreed to homeschool for 3mths to see if he and I liked it. We did :D and didn't stop until he out paced me accedemically.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems? There are some great teachers who are able to work within the system, but there are a lot that are not so great. It is a gamble to see which one you are going to get. I think that public schools are trying to push kids too fast and too hard, not giving them the foundation they need. To me it is like skipping a rock across water. It goes far and fast, but with no depth. The kids who are the fastest, then have to sit and wait for the slower ones to catch up. And Seriously....why do 3rd graders need to know Power Point?

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home? Depth. Compared to the stone skipping across the water, it is like having a snorkler going on the same path. We can go deep or shallow, slow or fast, but all the discoveries along the way, are what we value the most. .

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school? I once thought that my kids were missing out on working in a group. I thought that they my struggle with incorperating others ideas with their own. Now that ds16 is in group situations in church and college, I have heard many comments to the contrary. He is considered a valuable team member for projects and is sought after. DD12 just got her first progress report for private school; her teacher commented specifically how easily dd moves from leader to support in a group setting and how naturally she integrates into shared projects. I think that they learned the group skills in our very small groups of 3 at home. They learn it by playing with friends and groups at church. There are many things that parents usually associate with 'school' and I find that for the most part, these skills are learned in the community just as easly as they are learned in school. A classic question that homeschoolers get is 'how will they learn to stand in line'....ummm, at the grocery store?!:D

 

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling? Time. We can get our core work done in 3 hours, and that allows 3 to delve into solo interests. For one child that may mean long, time intensive art projects, for another it may mean reading extensive classic novels. Every day can be different based on the childs needs, wants and interests. It allows time for as many field trips as we want to take and time to add media into learning, to augment subjects.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging? Relearning the same topics over and over. LOL A more serious answer is: Sometimes as a teacher I struggle with finding a different way to explain somthing. For instance, if I am trying to explain a math concept, and they don't understand, I have to come up with a different way to explain it. I have learned over the years to Google concepts, use different math books, pulling out manipulatives (even for an older child), using our bodies to explain things, or calling another homeschooler for suggestions. I expect that traditional teachers do the same things, so I dont think it is any different between hsers vs traditional teachers

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive? It doesn't have to be, it can be done virtually free. It can be very expensive if you let it! We spent about $1,000 per year per kid. That is wayyyy more than a lot of people. We used to be in private school, so that is a drop in the hat to what we used to spend. I buy a lot of games and manipulatives. I buy a lot of books. Art museums, Zoos, Science Centers, field trips, sports teams (in lieu of PE), art supplies, cameras, microscopes..... it is easy to homeschool without these things but sooo much funner and easier for us to have it all. :D

Edited by Tap, tap, tap
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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling? We live in a terrible district. The scores are low. The buildings look like prisons. I went to the local high school for a few months long ago, and I said I would never put my kids in there. We originally bought a small house as an investment with the plans to fix it up and sell before our kids were school age and move to the district we wanted them to attend. The recession hit, my husband's company laid people off and we had a string of years of just getting by while he tried to find work in his field that paid decent. So the P.S. was out and we couldn't afford private. In the meantime we had another child and the oldest reached school age. She was/is a very bright, probably gifted child. (I say this because my sisters and I were, my mother, a P.S. teacher agrees that she is, and because she meets all of the criteria on any list I have ever seen. No, she has never been tested, and I am not bragging.) But she was reading long before preK age which is free through the schools here. Nothing I ever read suggested to me that preschool was necessary for a better education for a child raised in a learning rich environment. Since she was ahead of the game, we just continued instead with what we were doing at home and moved forward at her pace. We have never looked back. If we moved now, I would not put them in a school. I began researching homeschoooling and fell in love with it.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems? Well it is not good of the district we live in. The educational environment of the wealthier district that I grew up in is better. But now that we have experienced real learning in the real world, the entire system of P.S. seems so artificial to me.

 

I also do not like that they dictate so much of life for the families that use them. If they decide to lengthen the school year because of snow days and the family had plans for vacation then they have to cancel. If a child has too many sick days, he is in trouble. I am very dissapointed in having preschool in the schools and that people are made to believe that their young 3 and 4 yr olds are better off there than at home. I hate all day kindergarten. 5 yr olds should not be in school that long, especially without naps. And do not get me started on the fact that our local district lengthened their days last year to make up for snow days. We had children in the neighborhood not being released until almost 5:00 pm. It left no family time in the evenings, and made for very tired children each day. That was a terrible solution. It doesn't make sense to me to hound people over things like this. There are so many flaws in the system that I will avoid it at least through the elem. and middle school years.

 

And on the curriculum, I much prefer offering my child a Classical education and going so much more in depth than our schools do. I like that my child is learning things that I didn't learn in elem. school and it is not too hard. We do it in a lesser amount of hours per week. We do not have to wait until middle school to diagram sentences. We can teach phonics and Latin and things that a lot of schools don't offer.

 

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home? A better education. Lack of peer pressure. More self confidence. Less focus on superficial things. Preparation for college and the real world and for running a household in a real life environment. Time management, study skills, self motivation, a good relationship with siblings.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school?

 

Being around more kids would be the only thing. We make up for the fun things that school offers like field trips and holiday parties and plays and guest speakers and science fairs and field days and even classroom learning situations through weekly scout meetings and activities and at community events and in weekly co-op classes. I do not want them to miss the fun learning opportunities. We live in an area with lots of opportunities for homeschoolers.

 

But I am sure they would like to play on the playground daily twice a day with a big loud noisy group of kids instead of once or twice a week. But honestly, that is not worth all of the benefits we would be giving up.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling? I love the learning we do together. I love learning, and I am constantly having to research and educate myself on how children learn, on the new grade level that I will be teaching, on just about everything under the sun. And I love reading to my children. We read together all day long on so many subjects. We have so many topics going on any given day. The librarians know us and we them. I would hate to miss that with them. We would still read were they in school, but it would be cut down so much if it was just their homework and bedtime reading.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging? Financial aspects. The fact that I can't work because this is a full time job means that while my husband was working in jobs for which he was overqualified and underpaid, I couldn't help out.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive? Yes, it can be. But as others said, it is a lot less than private schools. And if we can manage it and manage it well during the past years while we were going through so much financial turmoil then anyone can. In fact, I want to know what schools are spending so much on per child when I can manage new computers, printers, tutors, books and supplies, and healthy food on an almost nothing budget. We did/do it without going into debt and without being behind on anything. I am budget conscious, but I do get the best of what we need.

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1.) Why have you chosen homeschooling? God called me to this decision and DH is coming around, slowly but surely.

 

2.) What is your perception of the public school systems? I have no problem with public schools. I am doing this because it is right for our family. I do have concerns about class sizes and teaching kids how to take a test rather than teaching them what they need to learn. My oldest son is very smart and I am worried that he will not be challenged enough and get bored and lazy in school the same way I did.

 

3.) What do you think your child gains by being educated at home? We are able to cover more material in a shorter amount of time, allowing for more outside interests and field trips. Also, it is easy to cater your curriculum to each child's individual needs and go at their pace in each subject. It also gives the child a strong sense of family, a religious education which can't happen in public schools and an ability to protect your child from a lot of the negative pressure they get at school.

 

4.) Is there anything that you think your child is missing out on by not being in public school? I don't really think there is anything they are missing out on in elementary school. They still have friends and do the same activities as other kids. In fact, I think their lives are enriched. I do worry about them missing out on playing middle school and high school sports and doing band or whatever else they want to do. I hope our state laws change before then and they are able to participate in those things.

 

5.) What do you enjoy most about homeschooling? I love being able to teach my kids. I love seeing the lightbulb moment when they finally get something and seeing their beaming faces when they are proud. I also love pushing them when they think something is too hard so they can reap the great rewards of finally getting it when they thought they couldn't. I love being able to spend the time with a child who is struggling with something and teach it a few different ways until something clicks. This really teaches you a lot about your children and helps immensely in other areas of their lives as well.

 

6.) What have you found to be challenging? There never seems to be enough hours in the day (although I do save a lot of time not driving them to school and doing all the busywork they were asking parents to do). It is hard teaching when you have toddlers or babies around.

 

7.) Is homeschooling expensive? Definitely, but it is cheaper than private school and worth every penny. So what if we can't eat out whenever we want to or buy new clothes every season?

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