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Homeschool puberty vs ps puberty - is there a difference?


Misha
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Both of my girls have started puberty and I'm wondering if there is a difference. 


I imagine there might be since peer influence is likely to be different in both situations, but I'm new at this, so I don't know.  :huh:

 

editing to add - difference in attitude, not age of onset 

Edited by Misha
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Umm...what do you mean exactly? Do you mean hsed girls start earlier or later? I don't think you mean that. I think you mean something like, "Do hsed girls get equally crabby and tearful as their PS counterparts, or are they more pleasant because they don't have peers telling them PMS is supposed to make them crabby?"

 

If this is what you mean, I assure you, hormonal changes are a force to be reckoned with (sometimes) no matter what kind of schooling you receive.

 

Also, if you're thinking something like HSed girls don't care if they have a cool purse or whether their hair is fashionable, I would also say this is not a certainty. I used to think this was the case and my firstborn didn't latch onto this "care what the other kids think" thing much when she did go to school. But my son is different and, though he was also hsed until 9th grade, he cares. I think this had much more to do with the personality of the child. One child may have an impervious, "Well of course everybody will like me just fine!" Attitude, while another might be quite sensitive to how other kids assess them.

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I have noticed a big difference between my kids' public school friends and homeschooled friends.  The public school friends are so incredibly rude and just really have terrible attitudes.  The homeschool kids are not nearly as aggressive in their snottiness :)  I attribute a big piece of this to lack of sleep in public schooled kiddos.

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I have noticed a big difference between my kids' public school friends and homeschooled friends. The public school friends are so incredibly rude and just really have terrible attitudes. The homeschool kids are not nearly as aggressive in their snottiness :) I attribute a big piece of this to lack of sleep in public schooled kiddos.

Or maybe it's just those kids.

 

All the ps kids I know are terrific kids. Smart, funny, interesting and interested, able to talk with adults, supportive of each other. When I look at them vs the way I remember middle school, it's night and day. Not one resembles your description.

 

Homeschooling doesn't create great kids, just as it doesn't create geniuses (much as my father hopes). I do agree it's lovely and helpful to have somewhat more flexibility in say, sleep schedules, but overall it is not a panacea. Puberty is really hard for some kids and others will get through unscathed, but their educational model doesn't have any effect on how their hormonal shift will play out.

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There must be. At my children's ages (12 and 14, almost 15 yrs old) other people's children, public schooled, are rude, disrespectful, NEED cell phones, cannot even go to a family event without bringing friends, don't want to spend any time around the parents, etc.

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There must be. At my children's ages (12 and 14, almost 15 yrs old) other people's children, public schooled, are rude, disrespectful, NEED cell phones, cannot even go to a family event without bringing friends, don't want to spend any time around the parents, etc.

Seriously?

 

I forgot, all public schooled children are Devils and homeschooled children are all angels.

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To me the main difference is that most homeschooled kids have a way to escape the "fray". It isn't consuming 24/7 the way it is when you're in a class with peers all going through the same thing 8 hours a day, five days a week- which then continues online the remaining hours of the week. So the drama is a lot easier to cut out for a lot of homeschooled kids. That is kid dependent though I would guess, as much as school dependent. Some kids like the drama. But for those who don't, it's easier to flee not being in B&M school when it peaks in jr high.

 

I don't think the physical experiences are different- but homeschool girls at least have advantages like not having to deal with PE or any other classes while navigating a heavy period and all of the other joys of becoming a woman. That's the biggest difference I've seen on that side between my kid and my friends' of the same age. Their kids ask to miss school a fair amount for various reasons at this age- tired, period, drama etc. We don't have to deal with that, which is a relief for me as I'm not sure if I could take it!

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I think the big difference is being able to escape. One of my friends told me last night that her 11 yr old (who, like mine, struggles socially at times) has basically become a tag-along with the "mean girls"-she's not being the snotty, excluding one herself, but she is one of the group that hangs around with them, and lets the group dictate her clothing choices, media choices, who she can be friends with, etc, and that she hates it, but at the same time she's relieved because she figures her DD's only other option would be to be the excluded nerd. She commented that it was good that my DD was still able to be herself. Her older DD was much more able to march to the beat of her own drum and she was surprised that her younger one, who often seemed like she was in a world of her own when younger, was now in the "beautiful people clique".

 

And I do think that's the main difference. There are cliques in homeschooling, too-but it is a lot easier to avoid them. I know good and well there is stuff that happens that DD (and I) aren't invited to, but the difference between occasionally seeing pictures on someone's FB wall about going to something as a group and being excluded from the popular people's lunch table every day is dramatic. It's also easier to partition friends/acquaintances. As DD puts it, she has her own "small, harmless clique", so why should she care about someone else's clique?

 

Oh, and sleep. I don't think it would be possible to live with my kid if she had to get up and be at school at 7:00-which is what the middle school we're zoned into is. Especially since she has cheer practice that doesn't end until 9:00!

Edited by dmmetler
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In two words - peer pressure. My nine-year-old begged and begged me for a bra even though she is nowhere near needing one. Because all her 3rd grade friends were wearing them and she felt like the baby. I decided this was not a hill to die on, so to speak, and got her some Hanes crop-tops from Target which I assume I made for precisely this issue.

 

Going forward I could foresee more of the same and I did not want more of the overly-teenage peer group preoccupations to influence my daughter. Hence home-school. In my opinion, children need to be children and hit milestones in their own time. 

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Seriously?

 

I forgot, all public schooled children are Devils and homeschooled children are all angels.

I didn't say ALL public school kids are like that and ALL home school kids are better. I meant..if you see a child flying off the handle at the parent in public, it is usually a public schooled child. Public school can be a pressure cooker. Those children are under a lot of stress and pressure at school. There are consequences from that stress.

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I didn't say ALL public school kids are like that and ALL home school kids are better. I meant..if you see a child flying off the handle at the parent in public, it is usually a public schooled child. Public school can be a pressure cooker. Those children are under a lot of stress and pressure at school. There are consequences from that stress.

 

Considering the vast majority of kids are public schooled, I would expect most kids I see doing anything in public to be public schooled. I don't believe you are making the point you think you are making.

Edited by ChocolateReignRemix
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I have noticed a big difference between my kids' public school friends and homeschooled friends.  The public school friends are so incredibly rude and just really have terrible attitudes.  The homeschool kids are not nearly as aggressive in their snottiness :)  I attribute a big piece of this to lack of sleep in public schooled kiddos.

 

this is a pretty elitist attitude.

 

I've had to deal with some pretty darn snotty hs 'tween girls bullying dudeling at a hs gathering when he was six.

I've known snotty brats in hs, and ps.   I've also known some pretty great kids in both groups.

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I think the sleep issue may be huge, I've read some of the research on adolescents and sleep and kids who get enough sleep--and whose natural adolescent need to sleep in later than adults and young kids is respected--perform better both academically and emotionally.

 

 

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I've raised one of each in each gender.  Oldest son and daughter went to PS, the younger two HS'd.

 

Biggest difference as others mentioned is convenience.  When my younger two were more tired as teens, they slept in or took a nap - the older two had to tough it out.  More convenience to deal with teen menstruation issues as well - DD15 doesn't have to wait until between classes to change a pad or tampon out or deal with cramps during PE.  Same with feeding - when they go through a growth spurt and hte eating ramps up, snacks are close at hand during the day for the HS kids.  My PS kids would come home from school ravenous.

 

As far as the social drama thing - that must be kid-specific.  None of my kids have had rude friends over to the house (PS or HS), but some friends have been more into drama than others.   In my experience, HS kids can get into just as much trouble as PS kids, so definitely no angels here!

 

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I think this is completely child specific. Mine are slow to physically mature (some of this is related to athletics), public schooled, and we have had minimal drama or need to fit in issues. I only just convinced dd15 to wear a bra and that was primarily due to the mount of running she does and having to wear skin tight XC uniforms. ;)

 

A couple years ago she did ask me why she was the only one in her class (8th grade) who hadn't started her cycle, but has since made peace with it and is happy she does not have to deal with that right now. 

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Agree on the sleep issue. My son went through public high school and played sports. So the average day was...

 

Up at 6am to finish homework

 

7.15 I drove him to school because otherwise it would have been 6.45am for the bus

 

2.45pm home. Homework.

 

Then practice or a match starting around 4 or 5pm depending on location. Often we were not home until 10pm.

 

Then shower and homework which had to be finished in the morning. So it was really hard to get to bed before 11pm. 

 

The crazy really started when he was doing additional work for SAT and ACT. Oh, and college visits. And socializing. 

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I think sleep, and just being able to pay attention to their bodies' needs, is the biggest difference. Being able to sleep extra and have extra snacks when needed is huge. Plus, I think my kids eat healthier most of the time than public school lunches.

 

Peer dependency is generally less in homeschooled kids, I think, although that's going to vary. We're right there to squelch typical adolescent mean girl or rude boy sorts of attitudes too, before they can get to bullying stage.

 

I think the biggest thing that I see in my kids and their homeschooled friends is acceptance for everyone. Maybe the public schools are better about this now, but they were not when I was in them. You just didn't hang out with older or younger kids much in middle school, and girls and boys didn't interact much unless they liked each other in a more than friends way. The homeschooled kids I know do tend to find similar friends, but it's not uncommon to see a gang of 7-10 year old kids, girls and boys, running around together. DD, afaik, gets no flak about "oooh you must looooove him" when she hangs around with the boys who have been her pals since she was eight, because I think they just see people as people. There's a lot less pressure to pair off too, amongst the homeschooled kids I know, compared to when I was in school.

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I would agree that there is a big difference in peer acceptance from the 10 yr olds vs the 12-13 yr olds. DD had several bad experiences when older friends hit puberty and rejected her quite suddenly as a "little kid" which has made her adamant about not excluding the younger kids-but at the same time, she sometimes gets frustrated with the kids more because her interests are shifting, and while she might have been quite happy with a 7 yr old a year ago, she's less so now with an 8 yr old-and if she includes the 8 yr old, she sometimes finds herself excluded along with the 8 yr old by the kids her age. And that's in a homeschool world.

 

 

 

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this is a pretty elitist attitude.

 

I've had to deal with some pretty darn snotty hs 'tween girls bullying dudeling at a hs gathering when he was six.

I've known snotty brats in hs, and ps.   I've also known some pretty great kids in both groups.

 

 

Stating the the difference that *I* have noticed between my kids homeschooled and public schooled friends is NOT elitist.  It is simply a statement of my personal observations.  Someone having different opinions and observations that you does not make them elitist.

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It always surprises when on this board people tend to discount the real advantages of homeschooling on the social and emotional development of children and teens. Yes, I do see that where they are schooled matters. I have kids from 2-19 and we interact with both hs and ps kids and while there are individual variances, the trend is definitely in the favor of homeschooled kids. I get so much positive feed back on my kids over and over again people comment on just how impressed they are by their behavior. These are people like those who work with the teens at church. The big difference between mine and the other kids is where they go to school and these differences are noticeable. I just know in my heart that they would be different if they had been raised in Public school. There may be families for whom where they are schooled doesn't matter for how they navigate puberty or their social development but yes, it has mattered for us. A great great deal.

Edited by busymama7
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It goes without saying I think that there are individual differences between kids.

 

But my observations of the ps kids and hs kids here suggest to me there are some general trends.  I notce the hs teens seem to deal a little better overall with both adults and younger kids - they don't seem to hive themselves off into same-age peer groups in such an excusive way.

 

And I tend to agree with what a lot of others said - they seem to have less of an overwhelming pressure cooker atmosphere from peers, and their sceduals seem to allow more time for getting enough sleep.  I suspect the sleep thing might actually be really significant.

 

Of course these rea generalizations.

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I didn't say ALL public school kids are like that and ALL home school kids are better. I meant..if you see a child flying off the handle at the parent in public, it is usually a public schooled child. Public school can be a pressure cooker. Those children are under a lot of stress and pressure at school. There are consequences from that stress.

 

I'm sorry but haven't you posted about your older kids giving you a hard time with attitudes and not cooperating, and you were considering public school for them?  I'm sorry if I'm thinking of someone else.

 

My oldest was always public schooled and puberty wasn't too bad.  She was extremely active in dance so was getting plenty of exercise daily, ate healthy, had a good set of strong, close friendships, the teachers at her dance studio were very experienced at dealing with girls going through puberty and good about dealing with bs, plus time to just be alone when needed.   Not that she didn't get cranky, angry, etc. but it wasn't an awful time. 

 

My younger two seem to be just starting puberty.  We are getting the moodiness, weepiness, crankiness, plus physical development.  I'm working on making sure they are getting enough exercise, eating healthy, having time alone when needed.  We've discussed what is happening and my Aspie-ish son will often come out after a moody/weepy display and discuss it in a very abstract way.  It seems to make him feel a lot better knowing there's a reason for how he feels. 

 

I realize we're just starting out with the younger guys but I don't expect it to be magically easier because they are home.  The three of them are very very different people.  I expect my youngest to be the hardest, and I think this would be true regardless of how she is educated.   The issues would likely manifest differently if she was in public school but I don't expect them to be eliminated at home.

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this is a pretty elitist attitude.

 

I've had to deal with some pretty darn snotty hs 'tween girls bullying dudeling at a hs gathering when he was six.

I've known snotty brats in hs, and ps.   I've also known some pretty great kids in both groups.

 

Agree!

 

IME, I've noticed better behaved HS students vs. PS students in public situations (restaurants, outings, etc.)

 

However, when we did HS and hang out with those families, those children absolutely stared at my kids. Yes, my kids are loud, can be argumentative or obnoxious at times, but I don't think too far from the norm from their PS peers. But the glaring bothered me. The adults were always kind, but the HS kids did not accept my kids very well. (went back to PS for other reasons)

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I didn't say ALL public school kids are like that and ALL home school kids are better. I meant..if you see a child flying off the handle at the parent in public, it is usually a public schooled child. Public school can be a pressure cooker. Those children are under a lot of stress and pressure at school. There are consequences from that stress.

 

most kids attend public school.   kids who have uninvolved parents all attend public school. kids who have involved parents might be home schooled,or public schooled or private schooled.

 

eta: kids with involved parents tend to do better, both academically and socially.

Edited by gardenmom5
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I think the issue isn't so much schooling, but differences in families.

 

Homeschool families have such wide variety. Some have concerns with outside influences and spend most time with like minded friends.

 

Other families that hs have kids in so many activities that they still have a lot of time around peers.

 

I am not giving a judgement just stating their are differences in hs families. Some teach and expect certain behaviors as normal, others look a lot like most ps families.

 

We look a lot more like average ps families than conservative hs families. We are not at puberty yet, but I think my expectations will shape our experience a lot more.

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Hmm, I guess I kind of feel that any differences in how girls handle puberty is related to how their moms (and to a lesser degree, dads, maybe?) teach and model bodily autonomy, self-control, self-care, and low drama.  That may seem to apply more to homeschool kids because they just spend more time with their parents on average.  But all puberty is pretty unique.  My sister's and mine were night and day!  She suffered horrible cramps (ended up having cysts, fibroids, and a hysterectomy at 40) and I never had cramps until my 40s!  Never had what anyone would call PMS at all until my mid-30s, either.  My daughters are all very different, too, but they all know to take care of themselves and yet also not be whiners about the whole thing.  If you need help or meds, ASK. Don't make anyone else suffer for your hormonal swings; learn to control it now so you have more freedom and control later!  I had a dd come up to me once and say, "Mom, I'm hugging you now so that I don't punch someone else in the next 5 minutes. And pray for my uterus."  LOL!  :P

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All I know is, when I first made the choice to HS, which was around 2001-02, I heard a lot of talk about social and familial benefits as if it were virtually guaranteed. Family bonds will be closer, siblings will be best buddies, the kids will not be peer-dependant or worried about peer approval, they eill not be prematurly sexualized, they will view kids of many ages, or even adults, as friends and companions without noticing age difference.

 

Having been swimming in this stream for long enough to have earned the Veteran badge, I realize that most of those predictions have, at best, a slightly higher probability of being the case if/while all the kids in the family are hsing. But I have found that puberty is when the child's true personality and tendencies come to the forefont, no matter how they are schooled.

 

The ONE statement I am willing to apply in a pretty blanket way, at least as applied to the hsing IRL community and co-op we have been part of all these years is this: most of the hsed kids of every age don't seem to care or pay much attention to name brand things, and what kind of things are "in" or "out" to have or do. The majority of HS teens I know either have a cheap cell phone or don't have one at all, especially before they are driving. This is not true for the majority of b&m school kids I know. They entirely ALL have phones by age 12 at the latest and a fairly large number have iPhones. I don't see HSers shunning kids or kissing up to other kids based on what brand of clothes/shoes/backpack/electronics they have. However, I HAVE DEFINITELY seen HSers form cliques based on their own interests such as "we're the Drama kids" or "we're the Robotics kids."

 

But ultimately, I see rude school kids and rude hsers, adorable school kids and adorable hsers, smart kids in both groups, dim kids in both groups, capable kids in both groups and incapable kids in both groups. I have known at least one major Mean Girl hser.

 

I also think once the schooling situation changes for one kid in the family, all bets are off. The dynamic in my family changed when my eldest went to (private) school and we were no longer an entirely hsing family. And my teens have not developed in a predictable way in High School; as I said, one teen is more concerned about peers than the other teen. But I have also realized that the anxious-about-peers kid is pretty much just doing exactly what I also did at that age and has a different emotional way of interacting with the world than my other teen does/did. So the tendency for my one teen to be peer-conscious seems to be rooted in psychological make up most probably through heredity and inherited from me. Had this child remained hsed throughout high school, perhaps I would not have seen peer anxiety, but that doesn't mean it wouldn't be there under the surface. I'm rather glad I understand this about this child now because it comes with a psychological ball of wax that I am now aware of and can monitor for signs that all is not well.

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In the "hormones are hormones" evidence bucket, my severely disabled 19 yo dd who is blind, nonverbal, and in a public school lifeskills class had obvious upheaval while going through puberty. Peers have no effect on her, home vs. school environment really doesn't apply to her, and yet she had major mood swings, temper tantrums, need for sleep, etc. in middle school. Her moods stabilized and she became a much happier camper on the other side of puberty. There is a certain amount of biology you can't escape, whatever environment you're in.

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I think time for sleep (especially sleeping in) is probably the main difference between a kid who is homeschooled and one who follows a public school schedule in terms of their ability to cope with puberty. Otherwise I think the process of puberty is pretty individual.

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I've only had one go through puberty thus far, but overall not too bad. He was/is normally easy going and slow to anger, never back talks, but during the height of the hormone rage we did have some acting out, back talking, and anger issues that had to be worked through. Overall mellow compared to some of his peers (both HS and PS), although there were a few that handled it even better than him. I'm firmly in the camp that it is more a mixture of parenting and personality, rather than HS vs. PS. Along with better sleep - that's a biggie!

 

Oddly enough, our biggest puberty issue was with other HS parents (although from my own experience I know it happens in PS, too). There were a few girls in our usual a HS group that got hit with puberty pretty hard, at least in their fathers' eyes. Which for some reason made these two dads think it was okay to threaten the boys in the group with physical violence if they laid a hand on the girls. Note that at least my son, and to my knowledge none of the boys, hadn't behaved in any way that could be deemed out of line towards these girls. They still didn't get it when my husband and I let them know that threats of violence against kids would result in us filing charges if it happened again -- it isn't acceptable, cute, nor a joke for an adult to threaten a child even if it's considered a "puberty right of passage" in some circles.

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I'm wondering how people know if random kids they see at Target or the park or whatever public place are homeschooled or public schooled?  Are your communities that small that you know every single homeschooler so can be absolutely positive that kid throwing a fit in the store goes to public school?

 

Anyone who has seen us at Target in the past few weeks, buying crates, notebooks, pencils, backpacks, etc. would probably conclude the kids go to public school.   But I know a lot of homeschoolers who stock up on supplies during the back-to-school sales, so that doesn't really indicate anything.

 

The only time I have been absolutely sure of where a kid goes to school is when they are wearing a uniform from one of the many Catholic schools in the area.

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I had the illusion that interaction between homeschooled kids in their preteens/early teens would be less nasty than the climate at public school, but what I observed in our local group was the contrary. There was disgusting bullying, made worse by mothers getting involved. There was no escape except for the victim to leave the group.

I know delightful homeschoolers and delightful public schoolers, and I know homeschooled girls who turned mean and vicious in puberty. 

 

ETA: Homeschooling is also no recipe for avoiding emotional turmoil and mental illness that tends to rear its ugly head during those years.

Edited by regentrude
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The only time I have been absolutely sure of where a kid goes to school is when they are wearing a uniform from one of the many Catholic schools in the area.

 

I don't know about other people, but in my neighborhood all the public and charter schools have uniforms, and so do our local private schools.

Edited by Tanaqui
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My social circle is filled with nice teenagers from public and private schools from three different counties :) The one time we had problem was actually with a homeschool mom who was bragging about how her kids are too smart for school to the public school moms :(

 

I know a family who has three daughters in the same school and only one kid is having a hard time through puberty. My SIL's identical 19 year old twins has one daughter on a emotional roller coaster ride and the other smooth sailing.

My middle school schoolmates who were identical twin sisters had similar contrasting experiences when they were attending the same middle school. One was competitive while the other doesn't need to be first at everything (or anything). The non-competitive twin was actually sent to the school her dad was teaching so that she won't be bullied by her twin.

 

What was nice about homeschooling is that my night owl can wake up at noon and eat whenever he needs to. He had to go hungry in school as he couldn't eat fast enough for a full recess or lunch.

 

There are no guarantees in life, same goes for puberty. No one in my extended family would bet on it.

 

I'm wondering how people know if random kids they see at Target or the park or whatever public place are homeschooled or public schooled?

...

The only time I have been absolutely sure of where a kid goes to school is when they are wearing a uniform from one of the many Catholic schools in the area.

We can't tell where random kids go to school. Sometimes, I can't remember which private schools my neighbors are attending.

 

Some public school schools have uniforms, some have school t-shirts and sweatshirts. The private schools (secular and religious ones) have uniforms. However people do go home and change for sports and other activities so it isn't common to see kids in uniform except at libraries after school.

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Public schools kids also aren't raised by the school - they are raised by their families and educated at the school.

Our oldest went to PS. Yes, she was raised by us, but many, many times we felt that what she was witnessing at school outweighed the way we were raising her. Weekends and evenings was not enough to outweigh the influence ps had on her.

 

In our case...yes, we were raising her, but we're outweighed by public school environment many, many times. I'm sure it's not everyone's case, but for sure it was ours.

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Both of mine started ps at age 11 in 6th grade. Oldest going through puberty was rough but youngest was a piece of cake. The difference in this house is with the individual person experiencing it. It seems to have little to do with our parenting or how they are educated. 

 

Even though oldest had it rough, neither one is rude or disrespectful. Oldest was just a lot moodier and sensitive while youngest seemed to continue on as usual. 

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I don't know about other people, but in my neighborhood all the public and charter schools have uniforms, and so do our local private schools.

I figured this might be the case, but I also know homeschoolers who wear uniforms - we've seen posts about it on here too.  Unless it has the school name stitched on things like the Catholic schools, that still doesn't seem any guarantee.

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Maybe because some of us have kids in both public school and homeschooling, and the ps ones get just as much positive feedback as the hs ones.

 

Public schools kids also aren't raised by the school - they are raised by their families and educated at the school.

We aren't homeschooling anymore, so I don't know what my kids would be like if we were. I do know that my public schooled kids are great kids as are their friends. I don't see any of the negative stereotypes mentioned in this thread within my kids' social groups.

 

Here's the thing, though. I do see those negative stereotypes in kids in other social groups. Usually those other kids have families with different values than we have.

 

My experience is that my kids are well-behaved, polite, kind, inclusive, etc no matter where they are schooled b/c of our family influence, and my kids would gravitate to kids like themselves regardless of schooling location.

Edited by 2squared
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There must be. At my children's ages (12 and 14, almost 15 yrs old) other people's children, public schooled, are rude, disrespectful, NEED cell phones, cannot even go to a family event without bringing friends, don't want to spend any time around the parents, etc.

I haven't experienced any of this in my kids' public school social circles at 12yo and 14yo, but kids like this wouldn't hang with my kids for very long. My public schooled kids would have no tolerance for this behavior.

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I think while obviously it's not different physically, it's certainly a different experience. Spending all day surrounded by other kids also going through puberty is going to be a very different experience than spending your days with your family unit. I don't necessarily think one is inherently better than that other, that will vary greatly depending on the family and the child's personality, etc, but I do think it would be very different.

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Mulling more over this topic and I was reminded of a friend of mine that made comments when we first began homeschooling years ago and weren't sure if we would go all the way through. He was adamant that we should at least HS through middle school. His reasoning was that middle schools were prisons for kids going through puberty (he pointed out how most of them have few windows, which is actually true for this area), and how everyone gets upset when young teens act out like criminals after spending a day in prison.

 

Now, I don't really think this is the case. I had a tough go of it in middle school, but I can't blame it on puberty (at least not 100%) or school since I will still catch myself acting out in the same way I did in MS, even though I am now 40 years old, when I am around the same person (yep, my mom). This makes me think that in some ways rudeness and acting out is family related. There is a happy balance you have to strike at this age -- giving them room to begin separating from the nest so they can fly (and sometimes fail), but still being there to coach and catch them when they want it or absolutely need it. Acting out can be the result of either holding too tight or not quite tight enough. The result is then a "tough puberty."

 

Disclaimer: This is absolutely not true of 100% of the middle school/puberty angst and issues that are out there, simply one more piece of the puzzle that may apply in some cases. Each family has to make choices that work for them.

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I've sometimes felt that way about middle school.  It seems like taking all the kids at their worst, biologically speaking, and sticking them all together.  I wonder whether that is a great idea.

 

I do think it is exagerated in larger schools and possible larger classrooms. 

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