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Kinsa

UPDATED: Does anyone on this board have a NON-superstar high school student?

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I mean if you have a gifted kid, that's great. You have a whole board for questions related to that side of your child, and then the rest of the boards to chat about other things like curriculum in general.

 

 

How do you sort out the parts of your child that are his gifted side and the parts of your child that are OK to talk about in mixed company? He's a whole person, like all the other people. He doesn't come in parts.

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How did this thread go from "Does anyone have students who are not academic superstars which is fine and statistically more common than not" to "the real problem is all the people with kids who are not average should go back to their enclave so everybody else can feel better?"

 

Because yuck.

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Honestly, I think that if you have a student of this caliber, and if you don't want to hear these types of responses, then your questions belong on the Accelerated board.

 

 

So out of the 7 sub forums on this site, I should only post on one of them?

 

I have high school and college students but because they are advanced and younger than others I should not be able to discuss issues on the high school or college sub forums?

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I also don't know where I fit in...accelerated board definitely but I also have college-related questions. 

 

But it's really lonely sometimes. How do I post questions without being judged that I'm either padding what we did or I am bragging or judging others' path?

 

 

This.

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I think just about all of us feel pretty lonely at times - I expect that's why we're here. Clearly the OP was feeling lonely. All of our kids are unique. That feeling is not exclusive to the parents of accelerated kids. 

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So out of the 7 sub forums on this site, I should only post on one of them?

 

I have high school and college students but because they are advanced and younger than others I should not be able to discuss issues on the high school or college sub forums? 

 

I didn't in any way say you should only post on one forum, any more than you're saying you don't care about any of the other parents who could be intimidated. 

 

Again, I am clearly one person with one opinion (last time, I said, "I may be alone in this opinion"), but for what you described re age 8 math and 1st grade reading, the Accelerated Forum seems like the place for you to avoid the types of responses you said were getting.  In any case, my post was admitting that I would be guilty of responding the way you described (e.g. "a first grader might be able to 'read' adult fiction but he won't actually comprehend the true intent of the author") and trying to explain why -- while also acknowledging students like apparently yours are do exist and need a place to get help.  

 

Apparently not what you wanted to hear, I don't know.  My apologies if it sounded like a rejection but it wasn't meant unkindly. :confused1:

 

 

When my eldest son was younger I would sometimes comment upon his work level because

1. I had no idea what was normal so I didn't know he was *that* far off plumb, and

2. I had no idea I should censor myself lest other parents compare their kids.

 

I'm sure it was difficult when you first jumped into conversations.  I do think the high school board tends to have older moms who are more aware of the range of children, so I hope you find more support now.

 

Julie

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How did this thread go from "Does anyone have students who are not academic superstars which is fine and statistically more common than not" to "the real problem is all the people with kids who are not average should go back to their enclave so everybody else can feel better?"

 

Because yuck.

Yeah, it's pretty awful when someone tells you that you shouldn't even be on a board, isn't it?

 

/irony

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Yeah, it's pretty awful when someone tells you that you shouldn't even be on a board, isn't it?

 

/irony

 

Not sure who the "/irony" is aimed at since I've certainly never told anybody not to be on a board...it would be ironic if I had, though.

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Not sure who the "/irony" is aimed at since I've certainly never told anybody not to be on a board...it would be ironic if I had, though.

It's aimed at the idea that every group is feeling badly in some way.

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I am not bothered by reading about ANY of the students on the boards. Other people's homeschool situations have no bearing upon how I choose to teach my kids unless I ask for advice. Even then and as teacher, I choose the curricula. People are entitled to their opinions.

 

Neither of my children are average or run of the mill. DS is 2e so reaches dizzying heights and paralyzing lows. DS typically maintains an A average in the classes he takes outside the home. He studies hard and expends major effort. DD is 7 yo and fabulous. Each child is very strong in certain areas though I don't expect DS will ever take an AP class. He will likely take the DE route by his senior year, but we need to finish this school year first. There are still many miles to go.

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I got about halfway through the thread before I decided to just skip ahead to comment, so I'm sorry if this has been said upthread. 

 

I really hope accelerated people choose to continue to post here. I love gathering ideas and seeing what others are doing and accomplishing. I love to celebrate accomplishments. Sometimes this is the only board you can do that. Family and friends can be jaded and ruin a good moment because of their own homeschooling prejudices. We all need a place to go to tell someone before we burst, right? 

 

All kids are different and do not fit in one box or one board. That's one of the reasons I pulled mine out of school. My 3 kids could not be more different and it's a challenge to keep them at just the right level of difficulty. They each have their strengths and weaknesses. And there's plenty of boards to choose from between  K-8, General, heck I've even dipped my toe in the Accelerated and High School boards. I've never felt unwelcome even when I ask a silly question. While I know my kids will never be involved in Duke TIPS or anything, they do have a thing or two that they are strong in; otherwise I suppose they are average students. I just don't think about it too much. They are where they are and I'm busy assessing what they need to work on, not how they compare to other kids. I guess because I always use New Content and see ALL the posts from ALL the boards I don't really feel excluded or included. People are people and everyone here is interested in doing the best for their kid.

 

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I wrote up a post, but lost it. But, I lurked on this board for nearly ten years before I posted. I read everything. Accelerated, learning challenges, chat, high school. The variety on this board is astounding. It is good for all of us to remember. Sometimes if we stay in our little corner of the homeschooling world, we miss chances to really connect and support each other and benefit from everyone's experience.

 

I really do want to hear everyone's opinion. It is lonely doing this all on my own.

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I have to admit that I get very discouraged sometimes while here on this forum. So many of you have "knock-the-ball-outta-the-park" high schoolers. I seem like the only one with an average, run-of-the-mill kid.

 

Don't get me wrong. He's a GREAT kid. But he's military bound, or possibly technical college bound if we are lucky. He will be graduating with minimum requirements. Getting him through algebra is like pulling teeth. No AP classes; no dual credit classes; no CLEP exams even. He's just not terribly academic.

 

Please tell me I'm not the only one with a non-superstar student. Let me know I'm not alone.

Kinsa,

 

I think you've been on the boards a long time, because I remember seeing your name for several years and maybe a couple board formats. I've never developed a sense that your kids were way ahead, way behind, or way average. I have developed a feeling that you were working hard to make good choices for your kids. You have been out there running the race, and have two kids well on their way into adulthood. That sort of makes you heroic in my book.

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Honestly, I think that if you have a student of this caliber, and if you don't want to hear these types of responses, then your questions belong on the Accelerated board. 

 

I may be alone in this opinion, I don't know, but there are literally hundreds of readers who never chime in and may go away thinking that their wonderful (often firstborn) can do these things.  I don't post on the younger boards, but if I notice such a post here, I will still always post comments about how learning earlier doesn't mean learning better.  I have had a child who learned things "too early" by memorization, and a child who was in accelerated math by 8th grade through our University (with some classmates who were far younger), and I have tutored hundreds of students through Kumon, so I feel comfortable posting my observations about the problems with learning very young.

 

All the while, I realize there is that one-in-a-million kid who asks questions with a vocabulary that even adults can't approach and that child's needs must be met, as well.  But my heart goes out to the hundreds who will be misdirected.  Perhaps if, as others have said, you clearly mark your post -- but it would have to be marked in such a way that every proud parent won't think their child applies, because believe me they will if the door is open even a crack.  Perhaps use specific examples of the child's statements or something that truly sets them apart from all of our smart kiddos?   

 

I still lean towards the Accelerated board for an 8 year old doing advanced math or a 1st grader reading adult literature.  I know you won't get as many responses, but you won't get the responses you don't like, either.

 

Julie

 

 

My issue with the Accelerated board with my kids was that there came a time at which they really were "high schoolers" in every way that mattered academically. So, parents who had four year olds who had taught themselves to read really couldn't chime in helpfully on questions about high school level math, science and literature curricula. For those questions, I needed to chat with other parents teaching high school.

 

My daughter jumped that hurdle earlier than my son did. However, once each transitioned to a full load of high school courses, the Accelerated board just didn't provide effective support for us any longer.

 

My approach was just not to include the kid's age in my signature and not to mention that fact unless asked directly. I simply mentioned the grade level and asked my questions.

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How do you sort out the parts of your child that are his gifted side and the parts of your child that are OK to talk about in mixed company? He's a whole person, like all the other people. He doesn't come in parts.

 

OP didn't ask you to sort out your kid, nor did I.

 

The question was not to parents of gifted kids at all. There were no requests of that kind.

 

Asking parents of typically developing children to speak up is NOT censoring you or diminishing the importance of your experience or silencing anyone. You can ask about National Merit Finalist policies until the cows come home. Nobody minds. On the contrary I think we all want to hear your experiences because we are truly happy for you, as we are happy for the learning disabled child who gets his license at 17. Yay for all of us. I am always thrilled to hear about a NMF kid. Almost all of them were accelerated in some way. As I was in accelerated programs I am interested in learning about how things have changed.

 

I did not interpret the OP's question to be referring to stopping that discussion, or any other discussion of any children, at all.

 

It was an outreach thread. Naturally seeing a lot of extremes of the spectrum of development can sometimes drown out the typical development posts in our mind, because they are surprising. This thread, as I understood it, was about celebrating that typical development, not about complaining that some people post about non-typical development.

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Well, I don't think there is any home like the WTM one. :) I am so thankful for this community. Where else could I discuss my wide range of kiddos who have very little in common with each other in terms of parenting them to adulthood? It is a rare place where I can talk to the same women about our adult Aspie who works as a Goodwill donation greeter, our dyslexic physics geek, our language aficionado, our budding novelist/meteorologist/fashion designer (yeah, try to wrap teaching around that one!), and on through my list! :) Seriously. Most of the people in our little sphere of the real world can't relate to 75% of our very real educational experiences and needs. There is always someone here who can lament with me, offer me support, offer me great advice, or celebrate with me. I am always amazed by the vast wealth of accumulated knowledge of the women on this forum. I am so glad I know they are out there somewhere in the real world and on here sharing.

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Wish I could sprinkle some magic "Peaceful Dust" over everyone at WTM who is unhappy about perceptions or misperceptions!

 

Any board, anywhere (not just at WTM) is going to include people whose feathers will ruffle and twist over something or other. I admit that my own feathers felt yanked repeatedly at one sub-board at WTM. I ceased either reading or posting there because the atmosphere was preponderantly "JAWM" and conversation among viewpoints seemed impossible.

 

One does the best that one can!

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OP didn't ask you to sort out your kid, nor did I.

 

The question was not to parents of gifted kids at all. There were no requests of that kind.

 

Asking parents of typically developing children to speak up is NOT censoring you or diminishing the importance of your experience or silencing anyone. You can ask about National Merit Finalist policies until the cows come home. Nobody minds. On the contrary I think we all want to hear your experiences because we are truly happy for you, as we are happy for the learning disabled child who gets his license at 17. Yay for all of us. I am always thrilled to hear about a NMF kid. Almost all of them were accelerated in some way. As I was in accelerated programs I am interested in learning about how things have changed.

 

I did not interpret the OP's question to be referring to stopping that discussion, or any other discussion of any children, at all.

 

It was an outreach thread. Naturally seeing a lot of extremes of the spectrum of development can sometimes drown out the typical development posts in our mind, because they are surprising. This thread, as I understood it, was about celebrating that typical development, not about complaining that some people post about non-typical development.

 

Just so you know, it was a rhetorical question in response to the person who said, "talk about this part of your kid over here and the other parts of your kid over there."

 

Any complaint I had about feeling unwelcome to post about my one gifted, now-grown child dates back to over a decade ago. I don't have a dog in the fight (and am astonished to find there is a fight) -- if you'll note my first post in this thread I showed up here because I also, currently, have a student of the type which the OP wished to discuss. BUT when the thread then turned on parents of accelerated or gifted kids, of course that rubbed me (and others) the wrong way. There was no need for that type of talk.

 

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I think there is probably a lot of miscommunication going on. Like Tibbie Dunbar, the comments I mentioned were from years back on other boards. My children have grown and moved on to high school/college pursuits.

 

I haven't been posting here that long. I mostly just lurk and look for interesting bits in the college section. Like Jenny in Florida, I find that the accelerated board is mostly devoted to young children. The topics discussed aren't really relevant to me anymore. In fact I don't really ask questions on any of the subforums. Most of those were answered long ago! I usually only chime in on posts discussing accelerated students (of any age) because I feel that I have some BTDT experience to share.

 

I started posting here because I liked the feel of this board. It didn't seem competitive at all and was welcoming of a wide range of students. That's why I was a little flabbergasted to read that I should be limiting my posts to one sub forum. I learned long ago to ignore posts that were not relevant to my situation. I just assumed others did the same.

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The miscomm might be from me. Ruth asked about posting here and hepatica assured her she should, but also mentioned something about the physics program I had responded to on another thread. Her response seemed to me as if it was directed at me because of something I had recently posted (but qualified that it was my personal opinion and with my one guy). But hepatica has since said that she did not refer to my response (although someone else replied too and I thought she meant I had judged others' choices...). Aaargh (need keyboard and thoughts colliding with each other smiley). And of course I guess that was a recipe for misunderstanding although none might have been meant. Anyway, mea culpa and I'm sorry the thread derailed. OP, my sincere apologies.

 

If in the next few days I can summon the courage, I might post some questions here or on the college board. Please feel free to ignore me if not relevant and I will just delete the post. I've deleted my son's age from my siggy so please just assume he is working at a level that is relevant to my questions? If someone is able to help I will always be grateful. I promise to be humble. :thumbup: And I can also take the discussion via PM if necessary. The reason I am asking on the WTM forums is because I respect your experience and opinions so much as a collective community. I have never felt a need to judge any of your individual choices for my own entertainment or feeling of superiority. I love the accel. board but like someone else said, my experience right now is a little different from the majority of posters there with younger children.

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If in the next few days I can summon the courage, I might post some questions here or on the college board. Please feel free to ignore me if not relevant and I will just delete the post. I've deleted my son's age from my siggy so please just assume he is working at a level that is relevant to my questions? If someone is able to help I will always be grateful. I promise to be humble. :thumbup:

 

:grouphug:

 

It is going to take me a while to get used to posting here rather than there.  If you are leaving there and heading here, I might need to make the move sooner. :001_smile: :auto:

 

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Statistically speaking, the sampling population when large enough should approximate to a normal distribution. However we tend to post only if we hit problems so I am assuming the people posting is a biased sample :)

 

I've deleted my son's age from my siggy so please just assume he is working at a level that is relevant to my questions?.

I removed my kids age from signature for a few months just to see if there is any effect but there wasn't. Talk about a silly experiment. I do get the cultural aspect you posted about earlier.

 

If it is a question about a typical high school or community college course, just post your question. Age of kid shouldn't matter unless we (parents) are worried about adult content in literature in which case we just pre-read the recommendations.

 

After two weeks of allergies, I have to check for spelling and grammar errors before and after posting :lol:

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Answering the op, mine is average.    Math is definitely his weak point and he hates writing with a passion (unless its his idea).    Btw, I love this high school board and have learned so much lurking here.

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I am grateful for those posters with more accelerated kids because it challenges me to stretch a little more than I probably would have with my kids. My kids are not accelerated, but I think catching a glimpse of that world helps me to honestly evaluate whether I am being a bit too easy.

 

I can appreciate the spirit of excellence, even though excellence in my house is going to look very different from a gifted kid's house. I need the encouragement when my kids are compliant but not self-motivated to learn, and they are teens still spelling an easy homophone three different ways in the same paragraph.

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Just so you know, it was a rhetorical question in response to the person who said, "talk about this part of your kid over here and the other parts of your kid over there."

 

Any complaint I had about feeling unwelcome to post about my one gifted, now-grown child dates back to over a decade ago. I don't have a dog in the fight (and am astonished to find there is a fight) -- if you'll note my first post in this thread I showed up here because I also, currently, have a student of the type which the OP wished to discuss. BUT when the thread then turned on parents of accelerated or gifted kids, of course that rubbed me (and others) the wrong way. There was no need for that type of talk.

 

 

Sorry. It is very hard to determine what questions are rhetorical online.

 

I really don't think there was a fight and I was responding to my perception that you felt there was ill-feeling.

 

I don't think the thread ever turned on parents of accelerated children or parents who were accelerated and I'm sorry you feel it did. I certainly work hard to accelerate my typically-developing but capable kids and I have nothing against acceleration at all.

 

I just though this thread was aimed at the question of, are there parents of typically developing high-schoolers here?

 

I'm not really sorry if that's offensive because I think that parents of typically developing children have the right to post such questions just as much as anyone else.

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I'm not really sorry if that's offensive because I think that parents of typically developing children have the right to post such questions just as much as anyone else.

 

EVERYONE thinks that. NOBODY thinks otherwise.

 

Would you please stop quoting me?

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I think part of being comfortable is the familiarity between other members. Not saying you have to post your life story, but if there is a rapport between posters, it's easier to read/make/take recommendations and be joyful for the journey(our own and others), not just where our kids fall on the academic success scale. 

 

I remember several years ago Nan discussing about teaching her kids to write the correct way on a piece of paper I breathed a huge sigh of relief because my son was having issues on margins. I started posting on this board shortly before ds started 9th grade. I asked what I thought then were stupid questions (and might cringe looking back at them today). I was pretty sure my ds was not headed to MIT then, but I felt inspired by stories of those who did. I posted questions here and not elsewhere on the Internet because this is the one place I knew I would not get placated answers. There were no pat answers or generalized statements about homeschoolers being better than public schoolers and anything you use will be fine. There were real answers and if my question wasn't specific enough, people who ask me to clarify. These were people ahead of me in the timeline, invested in their childrens' education and helping those of us that weren't sure what the difference was between Intermediate Algebra and Algebra II. 

 

That is the strength of this board, not where or when or if your child attend college. Our children are growing so much during high school. Life happens and courses change, children that were unsure at 12 are suddenly adamant about what they want at 16 or those so sure at 13 change their mind. Our paths all end up differently because we are raising people not plants. We're all finding out who these people are that live with us, the ones we educate out of love. They surprise us, they disappoint us, they amaze us. While we can guide, so much of what they are becoming is out of our hands. 

 

None of us should be ashamed, afraid, or hindered from posting what we need along this journey. We ARE all in this together regardless of what path we end up following. 

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You're not alone. :)

Different than your op, but also wondering out loud where we fit in on the HS boards: http://forums.welltrainedmind.com/topic/500103-is-anyone-else-struggling-to-find-their-place-in-high-school-homeschooling-is-it-so-wrong-that-we-want-to-paint-and-listen-to-velvet-underground/ 

 

This morning I commented to one of the kids that they might be the next Phyllis Diller... Either way she has a future in mime work. :/ Sigh.

 

My older daughter is solid enough, but at this point, cares very little about pursuing high academic success.

 

They're both very good and sometimes great at different things. Their passion just looks so different than what I read here, from the kids in the local good schools, friends at fencing, and similar aged cousins. 

Sometimes it scares me a little. When I read here, sometimes I can feel my stomach getting... nervous and... acidic. Haha!

 

I also don't want to be the reason they're not super stars. I'm not a super star mom, I was never a super star student. I know that lots of moms with super star kids are average learners themselves. I totally get that. It's just an honest thought/worry I have. 

 

I hope they grow up to have the success they desire, that they're hard workers, that they have warmth and kindness in their hearts... I have to keep telling myself, it's not a contest. A good woman, a good man is so, so beyond which AP courses he took in high school. For me the challenge is to keep pushing, accept who they are and work with that, and still make sure no doors are closed. Anything can happen. 

 

I think there's probably tons of average students here. I can't forget though, that this is a classical board. That means something. The fruit of the labor is very good for some folks here. The high school years can look amazing after years of following the method, even for average students who stayed the course. My discouragement isn't a reflection on my happiness for others awesomeness. 

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Although the website is hosted by one of the foremost figures in one approach to classical education, multiple education philosophies are represented by board posters. I would not find much to keep me here were it otherwise. I gain a tremendous amount of information and encouragement from this webgroup!

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I think part of being comfortable is the familiarity between other members. Not saying you have to post your life story, but if there is a rapport between posters, it's easier to read/make/take recommendations and be joyful for the journey(our own and others), not just where our kids fall on the academic success scale.

 

I remember several years ago Nan discussing about teaching her kids to write the correct way on a piece of paper I breathed a huge sigh of relief because my son was having issues on margins. I started posting on this board shortly before ds started 9th grade. I asked what I thought then were stupid questions (and might cringe looking back at them today). I was pretty sure my ds was not headed to MIT then, but I felt inspired by stories of those who did. I posted questions here and not elsewhere on the Internet because this is the one place I knew I would not get placated answers. There were no pat answers or generalized statements about homeschoolers being better than public schoolers and anything you use will be fine. There were real answers and if my question wasn't specific enough, people who ask me to clarify. These were people ahead of me in the timeline, invested in their childrens' education and helping those of us that weren't sure what the difference was between Intermediate Algebra and Algebra II.

 

That is the strength of this board, not where or when or if your child attend college. Our children are growing so much during high school. Life happens and courses change, children that were unsure at 12 are suddenly adamant about what they want at 16 or those so sure at 13 change their mind. Our paths all end up differently because we are raising people not plants. We're all finding out who these people are that live with us, the ones we educate out of love. They surprise us, they disappoint us, they amaze us. While we can guide, so much of what they are becoming is out of our hands.

 

None of us should be ashamed, afraid, or hindered from posting what we need along this journey. We ARE all in this together regardless of what path we end up following.

It's funny what little things return to me. A couple days ago I found myself saying Enjoy the Journey. Enjoy your little people. That was in the signature line of a long time poster (Janice in NJ?)

 

I've also been spending a lot of time at the laundromat, since our household goods are still in a box on a boat on the sea. I find myself remembering a comment (from Nan, I think) that she used to pray for her kids while folding their socks.

 

My kids read well and test well and are clever. There are many ways they are just average mid pack kids. My oldest used to swim with kids headed to college swim teams and international competitions and Olympic Trials. That was not the path he was on. But that didn't have to diminish the joy he took in swimming a hard set or dropping a half second or swimming a longer event.

 

I also think that it's easy for me to take all the outstanding things I see kids around me doing and think that my kids ought be excelling in each of those areas. But they can't be top at a dozen things that each take significant levels of time and dedication. They can work to be strong in a couple and ok at others. And some they will just have to pass on.

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Back to the original post... sorry but I after reading half way I also skipped ahead to post.

I found it very refreshing. My dd does not like school at all and its very hard to get her to do anything.  We are getting through Algebra 1 but I do not see her going any further with it. She does not want anything to do with college right now. Hoping she will change her mind some day. But I cant see forcing a child . She's extremely smart , she just doesn't like book work. She loves hands on things , excellent artist and cook. She hunts and even taught herself how to tan a raccoon hide and did an amazing job with it! We do the basics and just enough to get her through , which I feel is all I can do. 

 

I like to think she gets this from my brother who also could have been a straight A student in school but just did enough to get through because he disliked it that much!  He is beyond smart and can build just about anything, design things in his mind and build them with his hands! He is extremely successful with all his work he does - self employed!   

Just wanted to chime in because I could of written your post myself. ;) So its nice to know we are not alone. But I feel its important to realize that all kids are just not academic super stars, but they all have some pretty amazing qualities and smarts in their own individual way! ... which by the way.. makes the world a very interesting place!

 

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I know the feeling. Perhaps somewhere in cyberspace there's an island for misfit posts that don't seem to have a place anywhere....

 

there is.  I am part of a group that actually calls itself homeschooling misfits aka unicorn schooling.  Those of us there are too rigorous to fit with unschooling/relaxed schooling groups and too relaxed to fit in with the rigorous wtm homeschoolers.  We just do what we do to work with the children we have, the circumstances we have and the families we are in. I had forgotten that this thread existed after I posted back in January so did not mention it sooner, the group is mostly made up of unschool group "refugees" but there is plenty of us that use curriculum and actively teach but more like to the average child.  We don't fit into the box of any one particular methodology.  Its been exactly the life line I was needing.

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Back to the original question--I have kids all over the place. Some superstars academically, and a few, not. My last is my conundrum child--haven't been able to see a path forward for her yet. She should be working on algebra II today, but she's off shooting her pistol with her dad. 

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I just wanted to post a follow-up about this kid, as a source of encouragement...

 

I'm glad that I didn't just "give up" on him.  

 

Since last fall, we've been trying to figure out his future.  First we looked into a private Christian college (mom's wish), thinking that since he likes sports that maybe a sports management degree might fit him.  But he decided that he didn't want to do that after all.

 

Then he thought maybe he'd like to go into the military.  So we contacted a military recruiter.  I posted a thread about how disastrous that interaction was in another thread.  After a while, ds decided that he probably didn't really want to do that either.  So on to another plan...

 

He took a career interest survey and it popped out that air traffic control might be a good fit for him.  So we spent weeks researching, contacting... even did a few campus visits.  I *thought* he was fairly well settled on a state technical college (mom giving up on her idea of a small Christian college at this point) with a 2-year degree program.  But then after a few weeks/months he dropped the bomb that he wasn't all that interested in that idea any longer.

 

(*imagine us pulling out our hair at this point*)

 

So we finally sat the child down and point-blank asked him, "What is it that you like to do?  What is it that you think you want to do with your life?"

 

He thought for a while, then said, he just wanted something fun.

 

Okay.  Fine.  Fun.

 

"So what is it that you do that you consider fun?"

 

He responded, "I dunno.  But I really like Boy Scout summer camp."

 

(Insert sidebar:  As mentioned upthread, this boy is a prized possession at BSA summer camp.  This year he is being promoted as a "area manager" instead of a merit badge instructor as he has been for the past few years.  He loves this stuff, and he is good at it.)

 

Us:  "Okay, so what is it, exactly, about summer camp that you like so much?  Is it the camaraderie?  Is it being outdoors?  Is it the teaching?"  (Trying to get the root of what "fun" is to this boy.)

 

He thinks for a while, then responds that he likes being outdoors, and he likes being in charge of things.

 

Okay.  Finally we are getting somewhere.

 

So dh, ds, and I brainstorm about careers that might satisfy him.  We *think* we might have hit upon something that he would like:  park ranger

 

If you recall, we traveled around the US during the 2013-2014 school year, hitting over 50 national parks along the way.  This boy is well-versed in the National Park System.  He says that he would really like to be a national park ranger.

 

So after we investigated what it takes to be a park ranger, and discovered the desirable college majors (park rangers tend to be quite educated in the natural science fields), son thinks he wants to major in "park and recreation management".

 

Oh.my.gosh.  I think we have finally stumbled upon something that lights him up.

 

So we are now looking at colleges that offer a certified program in park and recreation management (believe it or not, there is a certifying organization - who knew?) and now we are zeroing in a few in-state colleges.

 

And next week we are going to visit one of them.

 

I really, really hope that this is the one that "sticks" with him.  He's a great kid - really, he is - but it's really tough trying to pin down a kid with out-of-the-norm desires and aspirations!  I'm so glad that we've persevered, though.

 

(Note:  my older two boys weren't this difficult!  Ay yi yi!)

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I just wanted to post a follow-up about this kid, as a source of encouragement...

 

I'm glad that I didn't just "give up" on him.  

 

Since last fall, we've been trying to figure out his future.  First we looked into a private Christian college (mom's wish), thinking that since he likes sports that maybe a sports management degree might fit him.  But he decided that he didn't want to do that after all.

 

Then he thought maybe he'd like to go into the military.  So we contacted a military recruiter.  I posted a thread about how disastrous that interaction was in another thread.  After a while, ds decided that he probably didn't really want to do that either.  So on to another plan...

 

He took a career interest survey and it popped out that air traffic control might be a good fit for him.  So we spent weeks researching, contacting... even did a few campus visits.  I *thought* he was fairly well settled on a state technical college (mom giving up on her idea of a small Christian college at this point) with a 2-year degree program.  But then after a few weeks/months he dropped the bomb that he wasn't all that interested in that idea any longer.

 

(*imagine us pulling out our hair at this point*)

 

So we finally sat the child down and point-blank asked him, "What is it that you like to do?  What is it that you think you want to do with your life?"

 

He thought for a while, then said, he just wanted something fun.

 

Okay.  Fine.  Fun.

 

"So what is it that you do that you consider fun?"

 

He responded, "I dunno.  But I really like Boy Scout summer camp."

 

(Insert sidebar:  As mentioned upthread, this boy is a prized possession at BSA summer camp.  This year he is being promoted as a "area manager" instead of a merit badge instructor as he has been for the past few years.  He loves this stuff, and he is good at it.)

 

Us:  "Okay, so what is it, exactly, about summer camp that you like so much?  Is it the camaraderie?  Is it being outdoors?  Is it the teaching?"  (Trying to get the root of what "fun" is to this boy.)

 

He thinks for a while, then responds that he likes being outdoors, and he likes being in charge of things.

 

Okay.  Finally we are getting somewhere.

 

So dh, ds, and I brainstorm about careers that might satisfy him.  We *think* we might have hit upon something that he would like:  park ranger

 

If you recall, we traveled around the US during the 2013-2014 school year, hitting over 50 national parks along the way.  This boy is well-versed in the National Park System.  He says that he would really like to be a national park ranger.

 

So after we investigated what it takes to be a park ranger, and discovered the desirable college majors (park rangers tend to be quite educated in the natural science fields), son thinks he wants to major in "park and recreation management".

 

Oh.my.gosh.  I think we have finally stumbled upon something that lights him up.

 

So we are now looking at colleges that offer a certified program in park and recreation management (believe it or not, there is a certifying organization - who knew?) and now we are zeroing in a few in-state colleges.

 

And next week we are going to visit one of them.

 

I really, really hope that this is the one that "sticks" with him.  He's a great kid - really, he is - but it's really tough trying to pin down a kid with out-of-the-norm desires and aspirations!  I'm so glad that we've persevered, though.

 

(Note:  my older two boys weren't this difficult!  Ay yi yi!)

What a creative process!  Thank you for sharing it.

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What a creative process!  Thank you for sharing it.

 

 

Thank you!  I am now thoroughly convinced that the hardest part of homeschooling high school is playing the part of the guidance counselor.  (LOL)

 

And I probably ought to mention that because this boy is not a superstar student, we are looking at a college that has a 75% acceptance rate.  Even with that, I'm still nervous about his acceptance.  (LOL)

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I love that update!  

 

You may also want to take a look at the job description for Game Warden - depending on where he wants to live, that may be another option.  

 

 

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If you recall, we traveled around the US during the 2013-2014 school year, hitting over 50 national parks along the way. This boy is well-versed in the National Park System. He says that he would really like to be a national park ranger.

Go check out your local park rangers and interns.

My local federal and county park ranger are very friendly with career advice. There are interns at my local federal park reserves and they are approachable too.

 

Link has some jobs that are for high schoolers at around middle of page

http://www.nps.gov/aboutus/jobsforstudents.htm

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I have to admit that I get very discouraged sometimes while here on this forum. So many of you have "knock-the-ball-outta-the-park" high schoolers. I seem like the only one with an average, run-of-the-mill kid.

 

Don't get me wrong. He's a GREAT kid. But he's military bound, or possibly technical college bound if we are lucky. He will be graduating with minimum requirements. Getting him through algebra is like pulling teeth. No AP classes; no dual credit classes; no CLEP exams even. He's just not terribly academic.

 

Please tell me I'm not the only one with a non-superstar student. Let me know I'm not alone.

 

**********************

UPDATE in #139:

 

I just wanted to post a follow-up about this kid, as a source of encouragement...

 

I'm glad that I didn't just "give up" on him.

 

Since last fall, we've been trying to figure out his future. First we looked into a private Christian college (mom's wish), thinking that since he likes sports that maybe a sports management degree might fit him. But he decided that he didn't want to do that after all.

 

Then he thought maybe he'd like to go into the military. So we contacted a military recruiter. I posted a thread about how disastrous that interaction was in another thread. After a while, ds decided that he probably didn't really want to do that either. So on to another plan...

 

He took a career interest survey and it popped out that air traffic control might be a good fit for him. So we spent weeks researching, contacting... even did a few campus visits. I *thought* he was fairly well settled on a state technical college (mom giving up on her idea of a small Christian college at this point) with a 2-year degree program. But then after a few weeks/months he dropped the bomb that he wasn't all that interested in that idea any longer.

 

(*imagine us pulling out our hair at this point*)

 

So we finally sat the child down and point-blank asked him, "What is it that you like to do? What is it that you think you want to do with your life?"

 

He thought for a while, then said, he just wanted something fun.

 

Okay. Fine. Fun.

 

"So what is it that you do that you consider fun?"

 

He responded, "I dunno. But I really like Boy Scout summer camp."

 

(Insert sidebar: As mentioned upthread, this boy is a prized possession at BSA summer camp. This year he is being promoted as a "area manager" instead of a merit badge instructor as he has been for the past few years. He loves this stuff, and he is good at it.)

 

Us: "Okay, so what is it, exactly, about summer camp that you like so much? Is it the camaraderie? Is it being outdoors? Is it the teaching?" (Trying to get the root of what "fun" is to this boy.)

 

He thinks for a while, then responds that he likes being outdoors, and he likes being in charge of things.

 

Okay. Finally we are getting somewhere.

 

So dh, ds, and I brainstorm about careers that might satisfy him. We *think* we might have hit upon something that he would like: park ranger

 

If you recall, we traveled around the US during the 2013-2014 school year, hitting over 50 national parks along the way. This boy is well-versed in the National Park System. He says that he would really like to be a national park ranger.

 

So after we investigated what it takes to be a park ranger, and discovered the desirable college majors (park rangers tend to be quite educated in the natural science fields), son thinks he wants to major in "park and recreation management".

 

Oh.my.gosh. I think we have finally stumbled upon something that lights him up.

 

So we are now looking at colleges that offer a certified program in park and recreation management (believe it or not, there is a certifying organization - who knew?) and now we are zeroing in a few in-state colleges.

 

And next week we are going to visit one of them.

 

I really, really hope that this is the one that "sticks" with him. He's a great kid - really, he is - but it's really tough trying to pin down a kid with out-of-the-norm desires and aspirations! I'm so glad that we've persevered, though.

 

(Note: my older two boys weren't this difficult! Ay yi yi!)

 

That is awesome. My xBIL works for the forestry department...which is state parks not national, but he loves it. He is about 55now and has a cushy office job but he spent years being outside doing his job. He has been with them for 30 years and he loves it.

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Kinsa, I felt all fuzzy inside reading your update.  Part of it was realizing that if this kid had parents like most, he would have been packed off to local state U whether he liked it or not.  He would have dropped out the first semester, and unhappily worked retail the rest of his life.  Or, maybe if he liked college, he'd have gone through the 4 years and then gotten a drone job he hated. Instead, there is a path that lights him up.  

 

My dad had parents like the most parents I described.  They even filled out the apps for him.  Although, instead of retail, he went to tech school where he failed (color-blind) into programming.  So, it worked out in the end.  

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Thank you!  I am now thoroughly convinced that the hardest part of homeschooling high school is playing the part of the guidance counselor.  (LOL)

 

And I probably ought to mention that because this boy is not a superstar student, we are looking at a college that has a 75% acceptance rate.  Even with that, I'm still nervous about his acceptance.  (LOL)

 

We have a friend with a son like this. He got a business degree and has a full-time job with BSA, including both marketing (which he interprets as game-playing) and managing a summer camp.

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