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I've been trying to avoid posting in these threads, but I do see a problem here. Without knowing a good bit more, how do you know that the text is a good one?

 

I conduct a lot of research before I choose a textbook. For example, I'll research what other institutions are using when teaching the subject. Many times, the same textbook is used at multiple institutions.

 

Just as a few examples, my son took AP Physics B at our local high school last year. Within the first couple of weeks, he was complaining that he hated the textbook - that it just threw a formula on the page without explaining where the formula came from. I researched the reviews of his textbook on Amazon and many college professors shared his assessment of the textbook (this book was on the College Board recommended textbook list.)

 

I investigated what epgy used for its physics classes and purchased that for my son to use instead of the classroom textbook. He had an extremely successful year using that book.

 

Next year my son is taking organic chemistry at home because he wants to go to medical school so we are avoiding the community college for science classes (he is not old enough next year to use the cc anyway). I have an electrical engineering degree, but I don't have the expertise to teach organic chemistry. We are using MIT's OCW for this class. His physics teacher from last year has volunteered to mentor my son in the lab component of this course. Organic chemistry is not offered at any high school (public or private) in our area, so the teacher and I are working together to come up with a lab component. Again, I am researching the lab books that various colleges use for organic chemistry. The same book seems to be used at many of these colleges, so that is the book we are going with as well. If need be, I will contact a professor at a nearby college for his input as well.

 

Imo, the internet has made it much easier to homeschool the high school years.

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I have been following these boards for many years (many more than my current post log indicates) and I see these threads come and cause so many of us anxiety. Please, do not be discouraged. Look at your situation. Are the public schools around you good/great??? Here, they are not. Private schools range from 12-20K per year and I see many trouble spots with them since I have friends who send their kids there.

 

Using Teaching Company lectures, many books, movies, and more, I have developed a fascination about history that I am able to infuse into a class I ***facilitate*** with 7 high-school home-school kids. My son (and I) benefit from the great conversations and increased energy and focus that comes with the group environment. Could he get a better education somewhere else? Of course... but we ***don't live*** somewhere else. Plus, ***somewhere else*** won't afford ocean, aloha spirit, and many other benefits he/we get living in this little rural patch of Paradise.

 

Again, we need to find what works ***where we are right now*** and remember that there are all sorts of people/personalities and strengths.

 

I have outsourced at times and will continue to do so. But please don't be afraid to ***facilitate*** and learn with your student(s).

 

I think it is much too easy to get anxious now that we are so connected via the web and can share ***group anxiety*** :tongue_smilie:

 

May the Force be with you... and thank you for this thread... I am a junkie and love to read them. I have learned so much from the posters on this forum.

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I think it is much too easy to get anxious now that we are so connected via the web and can share ***group anxiety*** :tongue_smilie:

 

May the Force be with you... and thank you for this thread... I am a junkie and love to read them. I have learned so much from the posters on this forum.

 

True that. All of it.:D

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Jean, you are obviously suffering from the Dunning-Kruger effect. I know, because I have it, too! Nothing you say from this point forward can be taken seriously once you have set off those alarm klaxons in the heads of the elite. Just enroll your kids in public school before you do any more harm. I know that's what I'll be doing. It's important to save my children from my delusions.

 

Taking a forum break.

 

;) Do you mind if I follow?

 

Sometimes these threads are like looking at the sun...you just can't help yourself even though you know it's bad...

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;) Do you mind if I follow?

 

Sometimes these threads are like looking at the sun...you just can't help yourself even though you know it's bad...

 

I'm just going to have to live with the fact that I've evidently shortchanged my boys since we couldn't outsource much. ;) I'm still going to be happy that colleges have been ok with what we've done, though I suppose Pittsburgh's issue comes from the same philosophy (search for my Pittsburgh threads - but also realize my guy WAS accepted there when reading it).

 

Make sure you step into your ps classrooms before you pick that alternative though. My frustrations now are what they are BECAUSE my youngest insists upon being there.

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But see this is my question...My oldest has basically been self-studying Chalkdust Precalculus. He is getting good grades. BUT I don't know if he truly understands the why's or if he is showing his work correctly or anything.. I only know the answers that are in the teacher's guide...

 

For subjects like math, if my kids are taking math at home w/me, they do not go off and do it on their own. We watch videos and read the textbook together and we stop and discuss them and we work the math simultaneously. I get them to explain what we are doing to me via sample problems or some of the text problems.

 

This process is what demonstrated to me our ds's math strength. Whenever he would explain a process it never resembled the way it had been taught. He had processed the information, made it his own, and taught it completely from his own understanding (which typically explained it to his sister in a way she understood it better than the textbook or lectures.

 

FWIW, I have found that at this pt in my life that alg 2 is my threshold for time commitment in. Maybe when I am not attempting to homeschool so many w/youngers underfoot, I may be able to pursue pre-cal w/my younger crowd.

 

For courses like AoPS, they take the online course or I have had a phD mathematician who is familiar w/AoPS teaching methodology meet w/him as a coach 1 day/wk.

 

I do not understand how you can reasonably investigate the materials about something you do not understand, on that level of education, or design a study of something you do not understand.

:confused: Really, you have no idea? Goodness, if an unsupported high school student is capable of researching universities and finding out what is necessary to apply on her own and what discern degrees various universities offer (or don't), I would think that college-educated adults would be able to discern how to seek out sources for quality educational materials. ;)

 

Even if there is a strategy, though, I think it would imply a certain level of knowledge. Even if not of all the nuances - but one would need to have tangible skill and knowledge to be able to evaluate whether that knowledge is presented better in one text as opposed to the other one, right? So, that is the part I do not get.

 

I can filter reasonably well through materials where I am acquainted with the matter, but not through those where I am not. Just how does one do that?

 

Self-study is different, though, allows for that experimentation, but if I am choosing the materials for my children and if it is not a self-study, but a regular part of studies with me as an active participant and all, should I not be able familiar with the topic to even be able to choose materials - or require input by somebody else who is familiar with it?

 

I have been doing this since our oldest was in 6th grade back in 2001. I knew no one IRL that was academic oriented. Every homeschooler I knew used homeschool market materials or the recommendations from Seton, Designing Your Own Classical Curriculum, etc.

 

Back then, I found Foersters by searching through the online bookstores at some of the most prestigious high school prep schools in the country. (Not a single person I knew had ever even heard of Foersters back then.) Their bookstores were a treasure trove of options for various topics. (Foerster simply happens to be one that I have used w/every single one of my older kids since then.)

 

I had to relearn alg. I learned it precisely the way I described to Choirfarm. Considering I relearned right along w/him, obviously I didn't screw him up b/c the boy never made below an A all the way through college earning his engineering degree. ;) But, no, it was not "facilitated." As an adult, I learned it much quicker and easier than he did. My perspective was not the same as his. I could still "teach" him. Not to mention, that when going through the text w/him, I would stop and question his understanding and challenge his thought processes. That is teaching. If you want to call it facillitating, whatever. :tongue_smilie: No matter what you call it, it works.

 

For astronomy, I simply searched top college astronomy depts and found their textbook sequences. I chose Berkeley's b/c they used the Cosmos for their first class. Teaching Co has the lectures that accompanies that text. The books online supplements are available for purchase. Ditto to Berkeley's 2nd semester course bk, The Cosmic Perspective.

 

No, I have no knowledge of astronomy. But, ds owns and has watched (taking notebooks full of notes) every single TC lecture on astronomy and physics there is w/the exception of a couple of their new courses. He writes reports based on topics I pull from his texts. He outlines the textbook chapters. He completes the online work (which includes pre and post tests). We discuss what he has learned. Considering this is a class that is college level that is purely for his edification (he currently has physics, chem and AP chem credits as a 10th grader w/o even factoring in his astronomy courses.....he'll receive course credit on his transcript, but no college credit), I am completely satisfied w/what he has learned.

 

He will be attending an astronomy camp this yr and is hoping that he will be able to ask the astronomer in charge for additional resource suggestions for his dark matter study that he has been compiling his own resources for. (see, to me that is the essence of an independent study......he has completely done it on his own. What he chooses to do w/the materials both input and output will be his decision. For his other astronomy courses, the input/output has been determined by me. I wouldn't use your term "facilitated" either b/c I do not learn the material w/him.)

 

 

Relevant to this discussion is the Dunning–Kruger effect, a cognitive bias in which the unskilled suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly rating their ability much higher than average. It states that people tend to overestimate their own skill, fail to recognize genuine skill in others, and tend to grossly underestimate the extremity of their inadequacy. The effect can be overcome, but it's been demonstrated to have fairly wide applicability in western society.

 

I've seen teachers at schools who obviously were suffering from this effect.

 

And, I've seen homeschool parents who obviously were suffering from this too.

 

If the standard you're seeking is "excellence" (and whether or not that's the standard you should be seeking is another topic entirely) then I don't see how you avoid a discussion of this. Whenever I hear anyone - be they school teacher or parent - blithely explain to me how they're a totally awesome teacher even though they don't really understand the topic they're teaching, alarm klaxons ring in my head and I hear a calm female voice saying "Dunning-Kruger effect detected. Prepare for emergency evacuation from infuriating conversation."

 

If you don't understand the topic you are teaching, then you should not be teaching it. Period. To not seek alternatives in that situation is a gross insult and is extremely disrespectful of your student. Even if that student happens to be your kid.

 

Well, there are many deluded parents who have managed to provide their children superior educations to what the local public school systems provide even though they have had to research resources, learn alongside their child, seek out answers from others more qualified when they hit spots they don't understand, etc.

 

I did not commit a gross insult nor was I extremely disrespectful of [my] student. I have given my students a strong foundation to be successful at the collegiate level. Our oldest "grossly insulted" student had his woefully inadequate mother for his teacher for almost every subject (only a very few outsourced and mostly those were college level, not high school level) courses. How on earth did he manage to graduate cum laude w/a degree in chemical engineering. It is completely unfathomable that my disrespect harmed him so immensely.:tongue_smilie:

 

To no one in general:

 

I am a firm believer of pursuing academic excellence. Yes, we do need to know when we need find other resources for our children when we are doing is not adequate. However, the suggestion that homeschooling through high school is not w/in the reach of the avg homeschooler has been repeatedly disproven. It does not take so-called experts to teach our children. W/the huge number of available resources parents can provide their children a solid education.

 

Is it going to fall at your door in a box that you then walk away from and leave your child to learn on their own? More than likely no. (I wouldn't say never, b/c I assume there are students out there like Ben Franklin that actually can do it on their own.;) ) My own personal reality is that it takes long hours of research, lesson planning, teaching, and working alongside my kids to make it work.

 

And you know what?? I love it (when I am not exhausted to my core anyway! :lol: ) My 10th grade, 7th grader, and I just finished a fabulous study of Shakespeare. We have great memories of deep, thought-provoking conversations, speculations, and fun. I wouldn't hand that over to anyone lightly.

 

(and I spent way too much typing this reply, so I am not proof-reading it, so it is worth what it is worth.. :tongue_smilie:

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To no one in general:

 

I am a firm believer of pursuing academic excellence. Yes, we do need to know when we need find other resources for our children when we are doing is not adequate. However, the suggestion that homeschooling through high school is not w/in the reach of the avg homeschooler has been repeatedly disproven. It does not take so-called experts to teach our children. W/the huge number of available resources parents can provide their children a solid education.

 

Is it going to fall at your door in a box that you then walk away from and leave your child to learn on their own? More than likely no. (I wouldn't say never, b/c I assume there are students out there like Ben Franklin that actually can do it on their own.;) ) My own personal reality is that it takes long hours of research, lesson planning, teaching, and working alongside my kids to make it work.

 

And you know what?? I love it (when I am not exhausted to my core anyway! :lol: ) My 10th grade, 7th grader, and I just finished a fabulous study of Shakespeare. We have great memories of deep, thought-provoking conversations, speculations, and fun. I wouldn't hand that over to anyone lightly.

 

(and I spent way too much typing this reply, so I am not proof-reading it, so it is worth what it is worth.. :tongue_smilie:

 

This "no one" shall respond.

 

As I read through this thread, the thought that came to mind concerned the naysayers who doubt parental ability at the high school level. I wonder what they feel the options are for parents who live in areas with mediocre (at best) public schools. Not all of the high school teachers at our local facility have bachelor's degrees in the subjects they teach. Some have provisional certification which allows them to teach while taking courses in that field. What makes that person more qualified than say a parent with a reasonably good Liberal Arts education? (Like this no one.)

 

There are assumptions being made that everyone has access to great schools when the reality is quite the opposite.

 

Further, some of those online courses are great. Others are...well...mediocre at best.

 

There is another issue here. Some of us have directed teens who were focused at a young age. Ugh. My son would have been horribly bored at the local high school. At home he could study Latin, read Classics, do more mathematical proofs than expected of his peers (:lol:), plus have time for travel, adventure and quirky projects.

 

No regrets on this end.

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I am a firm believer of pursuing academic excellence. Yes, we do need to know when we need find other resources for our children when we are doing is not adequate. However, the suggestion that homeschooling through high school is not w/in the reach of the avg homeschooler has been repeatedly disproven. It does not take so-called experts to teach our children. W/the huge number of available resources parents can provide their children a solid education.

 

:confused:

The bolded is a contradiction. On one hand you concede that we do need to find other resources - on the other you state that we do NOT need experts.

 

You admit yourself that there are subjects you can not actively teach, higher math and astronomy for example. That's all I am saying: for some subjects, we do need outside, expert, help. Which can take any number of forms, from online classes to tutors to dual enrollment.

 

My attempts to achieve fluency in French alongside my DD have not been successful despite four years of trying. The only way she will become fluent is if she learns it from somebody who is.

I can manage all other subjects somehow, with help, in our homeschool - but foreign languages, nope, not without outsourcing because it is impossible to learn to speak a language if you do not have a partner to speak it with. (As an aside: language education is my greatest regret about not being back home and letting them attend school there where they would reach fluency in two, possibly three, foreign languages.)

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This "no one" shall respond.

 

As I read through this thread, the thought that came to mind concerned the naysayers who doubt parental ability at the high school level. I wonder what they feel the options are for parents who live in areas with mediocre (at best) public schools. Not all of the high school teachers at our local facility have bachelor's degrees in the subjects they teach.

 

Yes, in fact, this is the problem. One cannot tear down public schools to suggest that no one does anything but drool and watch movies (and occasionally grope each other), but then again, not all public schools are fantastic. I attended a public high school that has (to my chagrin) appeared on lists of best in the city, state, and even once on a list of the best in the country. I took honors math classes taught by someone with a degree in the theater (the top teacher in the department). It took me five years to undo the confusion of his explanations of epsilon and delta -- seriously, I had just decided to take it on faith without ever really understanding it. It was very disturbing to realize I really could have figured it out, had it simply been explained properly! So I find it generally disheartening to consider crummy education in general.

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:confused:

The bolded is a contradiction. On one hand you concede that we do need to find other resources - on the other you state that we do NOT need experts.

 

You admit yourself that there are subjects you can not actively teach, higher math and astronomy for example. That's all I am saying: for some subjects, we do need outside, expert, help. Which can take any number of forms, from online classes to tutors to dual enrollment.

 

My attempts to achieve fluency in French alongside my DD have not been successful despite four years of trying. The only way she will become fluent is if she learns it from somebody who is.

I can manage all other subjects somehow, with help, in our homeschool - but foreign languages, nope, not without outsourcing because it is impossible to learn to speak a language if you do not have a partner to speak it with. (As an aside: language education is my greatest regret about not being back home and letting them attend school there where they would reach fluency in two, possibly three, foreign languages.)

 

I think either you misunderstand me or I am not communicating myself well. First, I have never suggested one shouldn't or couldn't outsource. :confused: What I have objected to is the insinuation that unless one is "highly qualified" the possibility of successfully teaching high school subjects is somehow not feasible w/o somehow short-changing their education.

 

I do teach all sorts of subjects that I am NOT an expert in......literature, biology, writing, math through alg 2, history, anatomy and physiology, etc (my degrees are in elementary ed and psy so I have no "expertise" at all at the high school level. Everything is outside of my area. :D ) I'm not an "expert" in anything. :tongue_smilie:

 

And, for astronomy, we still aren't "outsourcing." It is simply well re-sourced. And this is my preferred approach to all of the classes we do....whether they do them on their own like ds w/ astronomy or with me.

 

FWIW, I do not believe I am incapable of teaching my kids pre-cal. ;) I probably could if I had the initiative and time to dedicated myself to it. But, the vast majority of the readers on the forum cannot relate to my reality of household of people. :D W/ only older kids, I probably would not have outsourced starting at pre-cal. I have done so b/c it is a time invested issue. That is an issue we all face. And yes, the reality of it is that we need to know our personal limits.

 

However, I do not see those issues the same as being an "expert" myself.

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:confused: Really, you have no idea? Goodness, if an unsupported high school student is capable of researching universities and finding out what is necessary to apply on her own and what discern degrees various universities offer (or don't),

I see little point in your bringing that particular disagreement up. What is the connection you are trying to establish here?

I would think that college-educated adults would be able to discern how to seek out sources for quality educational materials. ;)

In the context of that quote, you were talking about being able to evaluate high level materials in a subject which you admittedly do not understand.

 

I fail to see how you can evaluate such materials without concrete knowledge of what they are about. Yes, you can listen to various recommendations, see what is used in various colleges, and so forth. But that is not what I thought you claimed. What I thought you claimed was that you were able to evaluate the materials yourself and de facto design a course of studies on something you do not know. That is what makes me marvel, because I do not consider it realistic.

 

Your quote from upthread, bold emphasis mine:

There are some subjects my kids complete at a level that I do not understand (astronomy for ds) However, I carefully investigate materials and still generate lessons plans from online supplements. And no.....it is not outsourcing. It is closer to "self-study" (though I don't believe his current class meets that criteria either since he didn't design it, I did. But, next yr he is designing his own dark matter study and that will be completely classified as "independent study.") However, one thing the course most definitely is not..........a class taught at a high school. It is a 2nd level Berkeley astronomy majors' text and no high school in our reality (don't know about yours) would even offer such a course.

Am I being too literal and not understanding you?

Are we talking semantics (it would not be the first time :D)?

Or you really, honestly claim that you can skillfully design and evaluate a course about something you do not understand, as well as appreciate the differences between the options as regards college level materials in that context?

Because if the latter, we do part our ways quite drastically on this particular topic.

However, the suggestion that homeschooling through high school is not w/in the reach of the avg homeschooler has been repeatedly disproven.

I do not see anyone actually suggesting that. :confused:

What many people are saying, though, is that at some point in some fields a parent is likely to exhaust their own level of preparation and skill and will perhaps not be the best option available for the child at that time to learn from / with - so we got into the whole outsourcing thing.

It does not take so-called experts to teach our children. W/the huge number of available resources parents can provide their children a solid education.

True.

 

The issue I am talking about, however, is the one of optimization, not necessarily "only" solid education. Sometimes the optimal choice for our children, within our realistic possible choices, is to delegate some things to somebody else to teach / oversee and mentor / grade / whatever. Sometimes not (so we have to make our best with what we have), but sometimes yes.

 

It does not mean that it would be out of the realm of possible to do these things at home. But it is not always the highest quality option. Personally, I am interested not only in providing a solid foundation to my children, but also in the optimization of the process: and that means that at some times they will not study some areas with me nor taught by me. And it may even mean that there will be many such areas, or even that most areas will be such in some cases, such as, presumably, our case if we were to continue to homeschool all the way through. And so we go back to my initial point: in my case, with my children, and within my reality, it may be certainly possible that if we were to homeschool all the way through, ultimately I would end up teaching them only philology and letters. Saying so does not mean that I deny the possibilities of homeschooling or that I extrapolate my situation to any other person's - it only means that it might be that, in my case and cases like mine, pursuing excellence (to go back to the original topic) would take the form of a rather drastic outsourcing. And I simply do not see why you took it the way you did. Yeah, I have a tongue in cheek way of phrasing things and when I write "seee, I did it aaaaaall on my own" I ironize my own toddler-like stubborness about some things - but my point is to emphasize that pursuing excellence for us might as well look as backing off a little (or a lot) rather than investing myself more as a parent. It is one facet of the optimization process which may be a part of some people's realities.

 

Nobody was suggesting that PS can automatically do a better job (though I hold the reverse to be true too - HSing is not automatically superior either) and nobody was suggesting people should fear to educate their children. We are talking about how to bring about academic excellence, and I am pointing that in some cases, it may take that particular form.

 

I am still :001_huh: at this whole conversation.

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I think I need to take that forum break too. This is so discouraging!

Thanks 8fillstheheart for your encouragement. Jane is asking the question I have...what should I do when our options (including our local high school) are not going to provide what I cannot? Are my efforts to self-educate and then teach meaningless? I am not an expert in anything except teaching. Is 8th grade as far as I supposed to go? Each of my dds are individuals with their own strengths and weaknesses. I am certain that I will cover and am covering high school level material before high school is reached. Am I not capable of doing the same when my children reach 9th?

I am not so sure of my abilities in every subject that I will not seek alternatives when needed, but even the experts I search for must be examined carefully. How can I even do this if my knowledge in a specific subject is so weak? Not all experts are what they are perceived or deemed to be. My dds had a truly wonderful teacher for piano(music in general as well) and as we've moved so much had to fill her shoes with new teachers. Not one of these experts yet can compare to her!

I think I should refrain from here...

My emotions are so raw these days that I may regret speaking from my heart, but I really felt compelled to address this.

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what should I do when our options (including our local high school) are not going to provide what I cannot?

As always, go with the best or, in that case, the least bad option - whichever one that is. The lesser of two evils principle.

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My emotions are so raw these days that I may regret speaking from my heart, but I really felt compelled to address this.

 

:grouphug:

 

Oh hon...To quote Scott Fitzgerald, "In a dark night of the soul it is always three o'clock in the morning." I felt this way often during my son's high school years. (Scott's quote is from The Crack-up which of course also describes many of those high school moments.)

 

Self doubt will follow us. May I just say that the first college acceptance letter that arrived was one of the sweetest moments of home schooling? Better yet are the emails that I now receive from The Dear Lad that travel across the miles. He flies home tomorrow night for spring break!!

 

It was worth it. Honestly.

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As always, go with the best or, in that case, the least bad option - whichever one that is. The lesser of two evils principle.

 

Gee thanks. Nice to know that my son had just a stinking education as opposed to a really stinking one!

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Gee thanks. Nice to know that my son had just a stinking education as opposed to a really stinking one!

:confused:

She asks about a situation in which she cannot provide something, nor can she find that elsewhere in her surroundings. So, I say, fine, the situation is not ideal, but within what you have there are still some choices which are better than others. What is problematic about that?

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And, for astronomy, we still aren't "outsourcing." It is simply well re-sourced. And this is my preferred approach to all of the classes we do....whether they do them on their own like ds w/ astronomy or with me.

 

No, I have no knowledge of astronomy. But, ds owns and has watched (taking notebooks full of notes) every single TC lecture on astronomy and physics there is w/the exception of a couple of their new courses. He writes reports based on topics I pull from his texts. He outlines the textbook chapters. He completes the online work (which includes pre and post tests).
I understand all this, and I would definitely consider this a great education and you a fantastic facilitator. And you are right, this is probably way more than he would get in public school.

I guess we are running into the same semantics problem we encountered before: what is teaching? To me, if I use a TC lecture, that means I am outsourcing in the sense of bringing the expert into my home via DVD.

That's what we do, too. I have no knowledge about classics, so we listened to 72 lectures by Dr. Vandiver who is an expert, and she was teaching, not I. That is what I mean by "I am not an expert and hence have to let an expert teach". The expert can be the author of a book -or a lecturer on DVD.

 

I guess we are talking about doing the exact same thing and just labeling it in a different way?

 

I do see one issue with this type of self-designed courses that I am wrestling with constantly: the problem of evaluation. I can learn alongside DD, study the lectures and works, but I still do not feel qualified to evaluate an essay on a topic of classical literature.

It may even be more of a problem in math and sciences (since you mention the online tests): how can one evaluate the level of knowledge unless the test is a simple bubble/fill in the blank fact check? Anybody can grade a test if it is multiple choice or if they have a solution key and if the student's work is half-way correct or predictable mistakes have been made. Should that not be the case, however, and the student comes up with an unexpected solution, or makes very strange mistakes, it takes not only a subject expert, but a person with lots of teaching experience to figure out what has been going on, whether the approach is valid, what misconceptions have led to this mistake to evaluate the level of knowledge and to correct the misconceptions.

Just yesterday I have been grading exams, fully worked problems, not multiple choice, and sometimes I spent a long time trying to figure out what happened for a student on a single problem (that I myself wrote!) because the student's solution has no resemblance to mine. Sometimes it is obvious garbage; sometimes it is a valid approach and only a minor arithmetic mistake somewhere led completely astray. This was hard to do at the beginning of my teaching career and has gotten much easier with the experience of ten years.

 

that is where I am still unsure. I can help my kids learn a lot of things in which I am not an expert by using expert resources, but I do not feel competent about evaluating their work myself - unless I use formulaic tests from an expert source that come with an answer key and are designed to avoid open ended questions. But I do not feel I can give a context rich exam and really judge my student's level.

Does that make any sense?

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what should I do when our options (including our local high school) are not going to provide what I cannot? Are my efforts to self-educate and then teach meaningless?

How can I even do this if my knowledge in a specific subject is so weak?

 

That is why we have boards like this!

The amount of wisdom the ladies here have been sharing has been a wonderful resource to help me evaluate materials in the areas that I am not knowledgeable about.

And then there is the realization that all of us, we can only do the best we can. We search and soul-search and research and we try our best to teach our children. Everybody will have stronger and weaker areas. I know that my kids, while getting an excellent math and physics education, will not receive a humanities education on the same level - and that's OK. Nobody can do everything at the highest level possible.

 

So, bottom line: you don't want to go away. you want to hang out here and listen to people discuss the resources. Because there will be an expert for everything if you just read long enough, who will be willing to guide you in designing your child's education and fulfilling your child's needs. I've learned so much here and am very grateful for all the different perspectives, viewpoints, and talents people share.

:grouphug:

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I humbly request that everyone not assume that only those with college degrees are qualified to offer their kids a good education at home.

 

 

Please forgive me if I insulted you, Robin. This thread has driven me over the edge.

 

Sincerely,

Jane

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I will add one more comment and probably bow out as well (dinner beckons). Strictly my opinion, excellence is education is about picking the right path for your child, which may look different for each one. It's not always about checking the highest box in each subject, it's about checking the correct one.

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:grouphug:

May I just say that the first college acceptance letter that arrived was one of the sweetest moments of home schooling? Better yet are the emails that I now receive from The Dear Lad that travel across the miles. He flies home tomorrow night for spring break!!

 

It was worth it. Honestly.

 

:iagree: Except my oldest goes home tomorrow after having been here for the week (with his girlfriend). ;)

 

IMO, anyone on/in the hive has what it takes to get their student into college via homeschooling. There are resources out there for us all. We read threads, consider options, and choose what is best for us.

 

Oldest son only had one outside English class as a senior. He did fine. Middle son had 3 outside classes (English, Microbio, and Effective Speaking). He'll do fine. I'm a math/science person, but he's far surpassed me in many subjects. I'm fine with that. Youngest surpassed my knowledge in a few areas back when he was in elementary school. I'm ok with that too.

 

I don't feel I chose the lesser of two evils by homeschooling starting when oldest reached 9th grade. I feel I made a good choice. ;)

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I deleted my post...decided I didn't need to justify anything to anyone!

 

:D:D:D

 

:grouphug: It was a point worth making.

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I can't always give a 5 star education in every subject. I can't because of time, money, my own mental limitations and the limitations of my child. I shoot for a 5 star but there is nothing wrong with 4 stars. There really isn't anything wrong with (gasp!) an occasional 3 star esp. if it is a non core subject that the student isn't terribly interested in, like Health.

 

Some people do want to have a 5 star education in everything and have the resources to provide it. Usually they are aiming for the Ivy League schools or something of that nature but sometimes their own passion for excellence is all that carries them. I can't compete on a number of levels with that. So I shoot for 4 stars in everything, with an occasional 5 star thrown in. I'd say that many private and public schoolers would have similar goals and standards.

 

I don't think that I'm doing my children a disservice. I'm not saying that I'm giving them a 5 star education while really giving them only a 1 star one. They will be able to go to a good college, will be able to compete for a good job and will be able to pursue learning on their own. I won't have handicapped them from achieving their potential even if they have to look for opportunities to soar higher after I'm done with them.

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that is where I am still unsure. I can help my kids learn a lot of things in which I am not an expert by using expert resources, but I do not feel competent about evaluating their work myself - unless I use formulaic tests from an expert source that come with an answer key and are designed to avoid open ended questions. But I do not feel I can give a context rich exam and really judge my student's level.

Does that make any sense?

 

This is likely my biggest concern as we go forward. I worry about being able to fairly and simultaneously appropriately, rigorously, validly determine Dd's level of performance and mastery. I am a very tough critic and mom, and the two do battle often as I review work product.

 

One thing that helps, is constantly assessing in a variety of ways. When I find that error, evaluate it and determine the cause I make a point to review that area and check back regularly. I still feel that tug of war when evaluating open ended responses, but then I try to find a source with an opinion I can rely on and consult.

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excellence is education is about picking the right path for your child, which may look different for each one. It's not always about checking the highest box in each subject, it's about checking the correct one.

 

I may post this on my refrigerator -- this quote is a keeper!

 

Thank you, elegantlion!

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I will add one more comment and probably bow out as well (dinner beckons). Strictly my opinion, excellence is education is about picking the right path for your child, which may look different for each one. It's not always about checking the highest box in each subject, it's about checking the correct one.

 

:iagree:

This thread reminds me of the heated thread from last summer. We all have unique expectations and goals. We can learn from each other, ignore what doesn't apply, and stay friends. I am ok with cognitive dissonance. I don't stay in a bubble with only like-minded folks. Iron sharpens iron.

:lurk5:

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I humbly request that everyone not assume that only those with college degrees are qualified to offer their kids a good education at home.

 

Now, that said, I feel compelled to add that I don't think a degree -- advanced or otherwise -- is what separates one teacher or homeschooling parent from another. One can be a quality teacher sans a degree. I think it might be more difficult, but I think it can be done. I need look no further than my father to know that.

 

Energy.

Integrity.

A wisdom-seeking mind.

Commitment.

The ability to find out what one knows -- and what he does not.

The courage to say, "I don't know," and then work to change that.

Communication skills.

A dash of warmth.

An interest in excellence.

A love of the learning life.

 

All of this and more can define a teacher's quality.

 

Ayup.

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I will add one more comment and probably bow out as well (dinner beckons). Strictly my opinion, excellence is education is about picking the right path for your child, which may look different for each one. It's not always about checking the highest box in each subject, it's about checking the correct one.

 

:iagree:

 

I think one reason I find this so discouraging at this time is because I feel very trapped with our life right now. Our options are very limited (even further because we are so isolated...Okinawa is a very small island that is too far from mainland Japan to be anything but a place of its own). I am not an expert in anything except teaching (teaching is where my heart is and where my degree lies). I try to be the best I can be in the subjects/topics that I need work in myself. But I can say I did teach my girls something. Unfortunately, I taught it to them too well. They love learning. They want more every day. There are difficulties in this too. They know there is so much more to know and they eagerly and sincerely want to learn it. I can only keep trying my best and filling in areas where I can.

(And yes, I do take advantage of expert dvds such as TTC and dvds to correspond with math. I will take advantage of any opportunity that I can find that fulfills our need as a family educationallly.)

 

And thank you all....I can't find the words to express the gratitude I feel for the kind support, suggestions, advice and ideas that you ladies (and sometimes gentlemen) offer me here. :grouphug:

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If there has been one person on this board who was singularly unprepared to homeschool, it was me.

 

My own education was beyond abysmal, and I went to a good school. I had one saving grace, and that was that I read. I still am constantly reading.

 

Thankfully, children grow slowly, and I can read fast.

 

I did have some other life experiences that I was able to use and apply, but nothing that anyone else couldn't accomplish with a little time and desire.

 

I think I'm doing a pretty bang up job, with one kid back in school in 11th and on honor roll, and I'm so unimpressed with her school that none of my others will step foot in a high school.

 

So, Pffft.

 

The most important thing you can do for yourself as a homeschool parent is to be honest in your own self analysis, then read and shore up those weak points. Read ahead of them. If you didn't value education before, value it now. Change the culture of your household to people that DO value it. You steer the ship, change the course and make it happen. Get great books on education, start reading the hard books, start learning and don't stop.

 

You can do it.

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I can't always give a 5 star education in every subject. I can't because of time, money, my own mental limitations and the limitations of my child. I shoot for a 5 star but there is nothing wrong with 4 stars. There really isn't anything wrong with (gasp!) an occasional 3 star esp. if it is a non core subject that the student isn't terribly interested in, like Health.

 

Some people do want to have a 5 star education in everything and have the resources to provide it. Usually they are aiming for the Ivy League schools or something of that nature but sometimes their own passion for excellence is all that carries them. I can't compete on a number of levels with that. So I shoot for 4 stars in everything, with an occasional 5 star thrown in. I'd say that many private and public schoolers would have similar goals and standards.

 

I don't think that I'm doing my children a disservice. I'm not saying that I'm giving them a 5 star education while really giving them only a 1 star one. They will be able to go to a good college, will be able to compete for a good job and will be able to pursue learning on their own. I won't have handicapped them from achieving their potential even if they have to look for opportunities to soar higher after I'm done with them.

 

Thank you for saying this. I have been following this thread but choosing to keep quiet. I have been reading it with the thought of, "But what if you just have average kids, like I do???"

 

My children aren't star students, but they'll do fine in life. They will go to an average college someday and earn an average living. There's nothing wrong with that. The fact that I'm able to give them an average education is OKAY!

 

I don't have to be an expert, nor do I have to outsource to experts. They need exposure, not mastery. College is for mastery. High school is for exposure. At least, that's my educational philosophy.

 

I marvel at those of you who have children who are so far above the average, then start to panic that my kids are lagging behind. But the reality is that my kids are fine and will do fine in life. Hopefully by my being bold enough to admit my mediocrity, it will encourage others who have read this thread and panicked. :lol:

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:grouphug:

Self doubt will follow us. May I just say that the first college acceptance letter that arrived was one of the sweetest moments of home schooling? Better yet are the emails that I now receive from The Dear Lad that travel across the miles.

 

It was worth it. Honestly.

:iagree::iagree::iagree:

 

Listen to those of us who've successfully homeschooled high school and gotten a kid into college and have seen him succeed there.

 

I'm a firm believer that if you keep challenging your kid(s) and yourself, everything will work out. Everyone has constraints -- whether it be time, money, expertise. You just have to do the best you can with what you've got.

 

Once ds went to college, I realized that although we didn't use the perfect curriculum in every subject area, we did enough that he was able to thrive there. He not only had the basic knowledge he needed, he also had the ability and willingness to seek out and obtain help when he required it.

 

I cherish the time we had together. It was worth it. Honestly.

 

Brenda

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:iagree::iagree::iagree:

 

Listen to those of us who've successfully homeschooled high school and gotten a kid into college and have seen him succeed there.

 

I'm a firm believer that if you keep challenging your kid(s) and yourself, everything will work out. Everyone has constraints -- whether it be time, money, expertise. You just have to do the best you can with what you've got.

 

Once ds went to college, I realized that although we didn't use the perfect curriculum in every subject area, we did enough that he was able to thrive there. He not only had the basic knowledge he needed, he also had the ability and willingness to seek out and obtain help when he required it.

 

I cherish the time we had together. It was worth it. Honestly.

 

Brenda

 

Thank you, Brenda. That is encouraging.

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Please share strategies and/or examples of how you support and require excellence in your homeschool.

 

As far as I know, "excellence" is subjective, so here are my subjective strategies/examples.

 

- I lead my kids through a thorough study of English grammar. No, I did not know grammar skills before we started. I've learned with them.

 

- I led my kids through their first years of arithmetic study, with math texts, then dh took over because he is more comfortable with higher level math than I am at this point. So far, so good. Also, I've received a lot of help from the mathy people here on the forums. They are my experts, but ultimately it is dh or I leading our kids through the subject, heavily leaning on books. I made my kids learn math facts.

 

- I taught my kids to read, as opposed to waiting to see if they'd take an interest in learning. I've read to them since they were little infants. I remember reading Beatrix Potter books to my two-month old, much to the dismay of someone who told me, "but he won't understand the word 'soporific' - the vocabulary is too advanced." :lol: Who cares? He loved the sound of my voice instead. I kept reading to them. I still read to them. I need to read more to them. I check multiple books out of the library for them, and hand them stacks to choose from to read every day after lunch.

 

- I taught my kids spelling rules and sounds, and made them practice printing letters and later, cursive. One has learned to type; I will make the other learn to type soon.

 

- I teach them Latin, with the help of books, some online articles, and much help from forum posters. I am learning alongside them. Actually, my son has learned it more easily than I. I guess you could say the book has taught him, but I taught him how to study the book effectively. How? I followed the directions in the WTM book.

 

In fact, that's what I do with a lot of subjects, because I did not have a good education. All of the above is far better than what I received, so when I read WTM the second time (the first time, I was too overwhelmed), it all made sense. So, I've milked it for all it's worth. That thing is all dog-eared, stapled in, underlined, marked up, written in, etc. (I even have forum "boardie" e-mail/snail mail/phone numbers written inside the front cover - if you e-mail me, you are in my WTM book :lol:, because they are the people who help get me through each year). I even bought many books YEARS ahead of time, just so I could understand the thread of learning that seemed to be woven throughout it. You've wondered about that obscure art skills book mentioned in rhetoric stage, that no one ever even talks about here? I have it. In fact, I have all of the ones mentioned there. I simply had to understand the thread. And I bought all the R&S grammar books and TEs ahead of time. I've referred to the later books, years ago, many times, just so I could see just where this grammar thing was going. And some writing skills, too.

 

- I teach my kids writing skills. Back when my oldest was six, narration sounded like so much fun, that we did it. And later, when it got not fun every day, I still had him do it regularly. I taught my daughter to narrate. I made them do copywork. Perfectly. Short, but perfect; building up week by week til they knew how to space their letters and words, and knew how to punctuate. Then, I went to a conference to learn how to do the next stages of teaching writing. One of the best investments I ever made. We sacrificed so I could go. The bonus was meeting so many other home educators who cared about this as much as I did. I hadn't had that experience before.

 

On that note, I also bought WTM rec'd. rhetoric books, and have browsed them off and on. I'm currently finally studying one of them myself, so I can show my kids how to study it and use it. I know I will not be an expert myself in the techniques, but I sure will know how to tackle the study and can show them how.

 

- I make my kids correct mistakes on their work. There is a reason behind every assignment I give them; so if they make mistakes, and I know they are capable of correcting them, they correct them. I don't give impossibly long assignments, so this is not a burden.

 

- I decided a couple of years ago that if I could teach my kids academic skills or teach them how to learn academic skills (such as outlining that rhetoric book and doing the exercises in it and then applying the skills to their content reading); they would be better off than if I focused on which topics of content matter they should study. For some reason, when I look at a history text or a science text now, I don't panic as much about their learning content now, because I know they can *do something* with that text (outline it, take notes from it, write compositions about it, take topics from it to find library books to read further about it, organize dates on a timeline from it, experiment from it, etc.). I also know the same thing about literature - there are things that we can *do* to those books in order to study them (TWEM comes to mind - very helpful study book). This is something I did not know when I was in school; therefore, in my situation, this is FAR better than where dh and I came from. As for making connections - we will probably make elementary connections (by learning to use a timeline, learning to write context papers, etc.), but at least we will making connections more advanced than what dh and I learned. And I am pretty sure it's more advanced than what they would get in a school (that we could send them to) around here (this thread made me go looking again for our DOE course descriptions - underneath all the edu-speak, I still saw mostly jumbled jargon).

 

- I make my kids do chores. They help with cleaning and organization; they fold laundry; they do dishes; they shovel snow and mow grass and rake leaves in the appropriate seasons. They carry things up and down to and from the big freezer for me, if I'm doing a "big cook" (big batches of beans to freeze, or batches of cooked grain for convenience breakfasts, etc.) - we have to be very frugal, and they see all the details that go into that. They help me shop carefully; they calculate or check unit prices and get me the low priced item from the shelves, etc. They roll balls of cookie dough when I make a triple batch of dough. Etc..

 

- I make my kids save a big part of their earnings. Their savings is to be used for investments - a couple of times they've bought ingredients from me, made cookies, and sold them for profit. Paid their savings back, put more into savings, and had spending and giving money.

 

- I take to heart the advice to talk with my kids - let them (now that they are in middle-going-on-high-school ages) appeal to me. I teach them how to appeal to me, so they won't grow up thinking they have to beg or have tantrums to be heard. Just today, I was out with my son, running errands. We had THE BEST talk, about all sorts of things that were on his mind. Instead of talking AT him, I remembered techniques that I've learned within classical education, for drawing out his thoughts. "OK, well, you've observed thus-n-such - WHY do you think what you think about that? What do you think influenced YOU to think that/to have that opinion about that situation?" and so on. Things don't go perfectly and we have many communication challenges, but we are all learning.

 

- I buy secondhand books. Last week, Wishbone Dawn (a poster here, who lives not too far from me) told me about a *monthly* local secondhand book sale, so my family met her there. I had pictured a big rural church basement with a few boxes of books strewn around on the floor. But nope, it was this tiny basement, with shelves everywhere, CRAMMED with books of all kinds. For like .25 - $1 each. I bought a boxful, and I am so going back next month. and the month after. Today, I lucked into the Salvation Army thrift store having a "$6/bag of books" sale - managed to find some good books there. Anyway, I keep new and interesting books coming into the house, to keep my kids' interest, because sometimes it's hard to find good book by browsing at our libraries. There are a couple of good branches, but we don't get to them as often as we get to others (which are mostly filled with series junk, and thus, my kids get bored and end up saying the library is boring - so I invented the notion of "we are going on a book rescue mission - scouring the thrift stores!" gets them excited again).

 

- I periodically ask lots of questions here on one topic. You can search for threads I've started, to see some samples of what I ask. I try to be as detailed as possible - giving background, and saying why I am asking. I always know that sooner or later, I am going to find someone who gets what I'm asking, and who will be patient as I bombard them with more questions to clarify issues in my mind.

 

- I worry a lot, and I periodically have a look at what universities here in Canada have for admission requirements to various programs. Yesterday was a worrisome day for me, so I had a look again. Which is what sent me to the DOE website for course descriptions. I'll need to decipher the edu-speak more closely sometime, but from what I can tell, and from what I can see in my somewhat-still-blind following of WTM, I think we have hope of doing alright in meeting requirements. I'm not sure, but I think requirements here in Canada don't vary as widely as in the States.

 

Well, OP, I'm glad you asked the question, because just writing this out has been therapeutic for me. :D

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Relevant to this discussion is the Dunning–Kruger effect, a cognitive bias in which the unskilled suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly rating their ability much higher than average. It states that people tend to overestimate their own skill, fail to recognize genuine skill in others, and tend to grossly underestimate the extremity of their inadequacy. The effect can be overcome, but it's been demonstrated to have fairly wide applicability in western society.

This is the second time, in the 11 days you've been a member of this forum, that you've cited the "Dunning-Kruger effect" as a warning to homeschooling parents that they may be too ignorant and incompetent to realize just how ignorant and incompetent they are. You've also recommended public school in a few threads, e.g.:

...you have options, and one of those options is relying on the public schools in your area. I know if I had to choose between "let someone else teach my kid" and "do it myself, but know that because I don't have time to prepare adequately I'm going to screw it up," I'd choose the former.

 

OTOH, you've never once mentioned how you're educating your own children, or whether you even have children. So I have to ask... are you a parent? A homechooler? A public school teacher? How have you become such an expert on education?

 

Jackie

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To all of you who have graduated your kids from homeschool and moved them on to university, I thank you for sharing and continuing to share HOW you did this over the years. To me, that is why threads like this are invaluable. I need these reminders, oh, about once a month. If I could send all the posters, who've inspired/encouraged/steered me over the years, a box of cookies, I would. I don't know how our homeschool project will turn out, but I have hope, after periodically looking at what others do/what other schools are doing/what universities require, that we are doing a pretty decent job.

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Well, there are many deluded parents who have managed to provide their children superior educations...

 

Our oldest "grossly insulted" student had his woefully inadequate mother for his teacher for almost every subject (only a very few outsourced and mostly those were college level, not high school level) courses. How on earth did he manage to graduate cum laude w/a degree in chemical engineering. It is completely unfathomable that my disrespect harmed him so immensely.:tongue_smilie:

 

:lol::lol::lol: Rock on with your deluded self and your grossly insulted kids; because I learn helpful, practical things from you every time you post stuff like this!!

 

As always, go with the best or, in that case, the least bad option - whichever one that is. The lesser of two evils principle.

 

...What is problematic about that?

 

I think what's problematic is simply the way you stated it. kfamily said she's discouraged, but you told her that in her case she should pick the least bad option - the lesser of two evils. It sounds disheartening to a discouraged person - as if she has no good options at all, no hope.

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...excellence is education is about picking the right path for your child, which may look different for each one. It's not always about checking the highest box in each subject, it's about checking the correct one.

:iagree:

 

I think everyone here wants "the best" for their children, but of course everyone defines "best" differently. For some parents, ensuring that their children are taught every subject at the highest possible level by experts in the field may trump all other considerations. Others, even if they had access to those sorts of resources, would not be willing to compromise in other areas in order to have "the best" in that one area.

 

For example, even if I could afford to send DS off to the "best" private school in Europe for high school, I wouldn't do it. Of course I want my son to learn from those who are specialists in their fields — he'll enjoy that experience for many years in college and grad school. Is being taught by experts the most important thing for a 14/15/16 year old? Not to me, it isn't. IMHO, there are advantages to homeschooling — the closeness of our family, the flexibility to travel and explore on our own time table, one-on-one attention and individualized instruction, the time and resources to pursue their own interests, etc. — that are more valuable to young teens than being taught by experts in every subject.

 

And, FWIW, DH was educated in a very expensive, highly-rated European boarding school — and he tells the kids all the time how incredibly lucky they are to be homeschooled.

 

Jackie

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This is the second time, in the 11 days you've been a member of this forum, that you've cited the "Dunning-Kruger effect" as a warning to homeschooling parents that they may be too ignorant and incompetent to realize just how ignorant and incompetent they are. You've also recommended public school in a few threads, e.g.:

 

Originally Posted by peterb viewpost.gif

...you have options, and one of those options is relying on the public schools in your area. I know if I had to choose between "let someone else teach my kid" and "do it myself, but know that because I don't have time to prepare adequately I'm going to screw it up," I'd choose the former.

 

 

OTOH, you've never once mentioned how you're educating your own children, or whether you even have children. So I have to ask... are you a parent? A homechooler? A public school teacher? How have you become such an expert on education?

 

Jackie

 

Thanks for pointing this out.

 

I'll remind anyone still reading that it's BECAUSE I work in our local ps subbing for mostly math/science classes (by choice since I want a part time job) that we even considered homeschooling. I've seen, firsthand, what goes on in our classrooms. I've seen the system. I've seen how talented our kids could be academically and how much they get shortchanged. I've seen what should be top students - taking all of our top classes, and sometimes getting college credit for them via our 'College in the High School' classes with an A - test into remedial level classes once they reach a mid-level 4 year school. I've seen the curricula, the testing, the SAT results, and yes, sometimes the teachers and how they fail top students and hold them back from what could have been. THEN I opted to homeschool.

 

I was a bit concerned at first - hence, bringing home tests, etc, from my high school to be certain my guys were getting at LEAST what they'd have gotten there. Mine had so much more though. They've tested up to their potential and, in some cases, beyond mine. I don't regret our decision AT ALL!

 

To those who are considering ps, I highly suggest you look deeply at the one your kids would attend. Some are undoubtedly good and will have the results to prove it (look for those results). Many are woefully lacking - mine is mostly average (with slightly below average stats for our state testing and SAT testing). There are MANY like mine out there. Some are worse. :glare: Don't just ask parents what they think about their local schools. The vast, vast majority of parents around here will tell you ours are good. (Do you suppose it's our 'friend,' the Dunning-Kruger effect?) They don't know any better. It's all they've seen. I've seen more. (I went to a good high school.) I wanted more for my kids. I'm glad, for their sake, that I chose to take the plunge. Even my youngest, who opted to return to ps, benefited tremendously from the 4 years we homeschooled.

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Thank you, Colleen, for your big list. I especially appreciate the suggestions various people on this forum and SWB herself to focus on skills. This is worth pondering.

 

Re the Dunning-Kruger effect, well, when I went to college, one of my professors always quoted Pope: "A little knowledge is a dangerous thing," and I think it's very important to be intellectually humble enough to realize that, even if you have a PhD in astrophysics, you don't know everything. However, my mother was telling me yesterday about a candidate to teach in her department, who has a PhD from Cambridge and seems very nice but has no teaching skills. (Of course, they don't teach this in grad school, except directly by giving the student classes to teach.) She is, however, willing to mentor him so that he will learn. So, yeah, even PhDs need to learn. By being members of this forum and sharing ideas with each other, I think we are also expressing that willingness.

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This is the second time, in the 11 days you've been a member of this forum, that you've cited the "Dunning-Kruger effect" as a warning to homeschooling parents that they may be too ignorant and incompetent to realize just how ignorant and incompetent they are.

 

I mentioned the D-K effect in both threads because it was apropos in both threads, and I make no apology for that. I actually went out of my way to point out that the D-K effect applies to everyone, including public school teachers. But thanks for selectively quoting me in order to support your thesis that clearly I must be an NEA Union plant or something.

 

You've also recommended public school in a few threads

 

Again, what I recommended is not what you are saying I recommended. What I recommended, paraphrasing myself more bluntly since you didn't get it the first time, was "Don't let your overweening ὕβρις ruin your kid's education." Public school is certainly one of those options, but is certainly not the only one. I checked the board rules and don't see how enumerating that as one possible education option is in any way inappropriate. I'd love to hear your explanation as to why you think it is.

 

"OTOH, you've never once mentioned how you're educating your own children, or whether you even have children. So I have to ask... are you a parent? A homechooler? A public school teacher? How have you become such an expert on education?

 

I'll be happy to discuss such things at the right time with the right person. But frankly, given your tone, that's not you, given how you've mischaracterized my earlier posts. So I won't be playing that game.

 

Kind regards,

 

peterb

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Colleen, that was a fantastic list. I think my years as an unschooler (though there were many great benefits) left me with a misleading sense that if I relax and let the kids take the lead, it will all work out. Even now I struggle with that attitude when I know darn well I have to buckle down, divr much deeper ijto the curriculum, and plan things out more. I'm always left a little awed by your commitment and hope to learn from you in that area. With my daughter going into 9th grade next year I can't afford my old attitude anymore.

 

I know you mentioned that there are people here who inspire you - always keep in mind you do that for others, me for instance.:D

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I'm so glad to see that this thread has finally come around. :)

 

To all those who have read through these posts, homeschooling high school for many of us was our first choice and I believe the best choice. It was chosen with our children in mind - for their benefit. Others may be quick to point out that the grass may be greener on the other side, and it may at first appear to be, but as you go over to the other side, reality may be some very green weeds are growing there. We're hearing now about a few families who thought ps would be the better choice for their children, but the realities of the social situation or other reasons has them bringing them back home. IMO what a good homeschooling parent needs is the desire to give their children the best education they can. All we can do is our best, and IMO 99 percent of the time, that's more than good enough. Choose the method of homeschooling that works best for each of your children. Enjoy the journey!

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For subjects like math, if my kids are taking math at home w/me, they do not go off and do it on their own. We watch videos and read the textbook together and we stop and discuss them and we work the math simultaneously. I get them to explain what we are doing to me via sample problems or some of the text problems.

 

This process is what demonstrated to me our ds's math strength. Whenever he would explain a process it never resembled the way it had been taught. He had processed the information, made it his own, and taught it completely from his own understanding (which typically explained it to his sister in a way she understood it better than the textbook or lectures.

 

.. :tongue_smilie:

 

Sorry, but I am already doing that with Geometry right now. I got lost at the end of Alg. II with my oldest and I do not have time to sit and watch the hour of videos for Pre-calc as well as however many hours it would take me to actually figure out the homework AND teach my 10th grade and remediate my 4th grader. Just can't. So I do the best I can...

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I mentioned the D-K effect in both threads because it was apropos in both threads, and I make no apology for that. I actually went out of my way to point out that the D-K effect applies to everyone, including public school teachers. But thanks for selectively quoting me in order to support your thesis that clearly I must be an NEA Union plant or something.

 

 

 

Again, what I recommended is not what you are saying I recommended. What I recommended, paraphrasing myself more bluntly since you didn't get it the first time, was "Don't let your overweening ὕβρις ruin your kid's education." Public school is certainly one of those options, but is certainly not the only one. I checked the board rules and don't see how enumerating that as one possible education option is in any way inappropriate. I'd love to hear your explanation as to why you think it is.

 

 

 

I'll be happy to discuss such things at the right time with the right person. But frankly, given your tone, that's not you, given how you've mischaracterized my earlier posts. So I won't be playing that game.

 

Kind regards,

 

peterb

 

I find it interesting that you take such umbrage in a thread that includes comments from long time homeschoolers, after schoolers, teachers at private and public schools and even some relatively new to homeschooling (or at least on the high school level).

 

I find it easier to understand a poster's point of view when I can put it in the context of his or her situation and background. For example, I read avidly what is posted by those who have demonstrated a long term grappling with literature, languages, math and science - even when - especially when - they don't agree with my base viewpoint.

 

I'm certainly not the queen of the boards, but I find your own tone less than filled with kind regards. And while putting hubris into Greek characters is an impressive party trick (I can never remember where I left my umlaut key, personally), I don't think that refering to hubris is that much of a trump card here.

 

[For those who don't have time or inclination to review ten years of posts, I've been homeschooling three sons for nine years, have a B.S. in English (not a typo), an M. S. in Education, a decade and a half of military service, and five years of overseas living in Europe and Japan. I have realized that the longer I'm at homeschooling, the less certain I am that I know it all. I like Jane Austen and Firefly.]

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