Jump to content

Menu

Sending the kids to school, mostly a fret


eternalsummer
 Share

Recommended Posts

We've moved to a place that has a nice community school - small town, good elementary (according to the statistics, whatever that means), all the neighbor kids will be there, etc.  I am considering putting DS9 (will be in 4th) and DD5 (will be in K) in school there.

 

DD12 has been signed up for a sort of co-op/study group in a neighboring town and will continue to be homeschooled; she would otherwise have to be bussed to a different community's middle school, and it is not a good school.

 

We have had trouble finding friends, is the thing.  I cannot do co-ops where you stay all day because of the littles, so that rules out pretty much everything for DS9 and DD5; we have in the past found neighborhood friends to be significantly more hostile if the kids aren't in school together.  

 

We are not religious so they don't have a community of friends at church.  

 

Socially, I think school will probably be good for them.  Academically - well, they're little.  We can do enrichment stuff at home.  They may be somewhat bored, but they are definitely bored at home without other kids.

 

On the other hand, I am fretting about it.  I don't like full-day K.  I will miss them (mostly).  It seems like a huge time commitment on their part, when we have been covering academics in a couple of hours tops per day.  I am afraid the school will be too much sitting and too restrictive, and I hate giving up control of their education (such as it is at this age).  They're already kind of different anyway as we have a fairly restricted diet, which sometimes causes friction in social settings where all the other kids can eat X and ours can't; I am afraid they'll be ostracized somewhat at school, as both the new kids and the previously-homeschooled kids (I suppose this wouldn't apply to the K-er) and the weird eating kids.

 

 

Ideally what I want in life is a school that:

 

-all the neighborhood kids attend

-meets from 9am-1pm

-has minimal standardized testing

-has lots of going outside and moving around and painting and ball games

-is free

-is drop-off oriented

-doesn't require a statement of faith

 

I could even compromised on a few of the above, if I could just get like 2 of them.

 

 

sigh.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yep. We are in an OK place now but I've often thought how awesome it would be to have a small school, walking distance which is only about 3 hours a day or so. Some basic academics and a bit of free play time with other kids, small enough that an adult can do a good job of monitoring the free play. It would be awesome.

Of course society is moving the other way, toward longer hours, bigger schools and more academics.

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Big edit and NM, I read your post as you had an option of school 9-1 and a lot less seatwork and less testing. skipped over it was just your dream (as it is my dream school).

 

I would take it year by year. Maybe try it for a semester.

Edited by TX native
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

We've moved to a place that has a nice community school - small town, good elementary (according to the statistics, whatever that means), all the neighbor kids will be there, etc.  I am considering putting DS9 (will be in 4th) and DD5 (will be in K) in school there.

 

DD12 has been signed up for a sort of co-op/study group in a neighboring town and will continue to be homeschooled; she would otherwise have to be bussed to a different community's middle school, and it is not a good school.

 

We have had trouble finding friends, is the thing.  I cannot do co-ops where you stay all day because of the littles, so that rules out pretty much everything for DS9 and DD5; we have in the past found neighborhood friends to be significantly more hostile if the kids aren't in school together.  

 

We are not religious so they don't have a community of friends at church.  

 

Socially, I think school will probably be good for them.  Academically - well, they're little.  We can do enrichment stuff at home.  They may be somewhat bored, but they are definitely bored at home without other kids.

 

On the other hand, I am fretting about it.  I don't like full-day K.  I will miss them (mostly).  It seems like a huge time commitment on their part, when we have been covering academics in a couple of hours tops per day.  I am afraid the school will be too much sitting and too restrictive, and I hate giving up control of their education (such as it is at this age).  They're already kind of different anyway as we have a fairly restricted diet, which sometimes causes friction in social settings where all the other kids can eat X and ours can't; I am afraid they'll be ostracized somewhat at school, as both the new kids and the previously-homeschooled kids (I suppose this wouldn't apply to the K-er) and the weird eating kids.

 

 

Ideally what I want in life is a school that:

 

-all the neighborhood kids attend

-meets from 9am-1pm

-has minimal standardized testing

-has lots of going outside and moving around and painting and ball games

-is free

-is drop-off oriented

-doesn't require a statement of faith

 

I could even compromised on a few of the above, if I could just get like 2 of them.

 

 

sigh.

Well, if they are attending a public school there shouldn't be a statement of faith, the other neighborhood kids probably DO attend (unless homeschooling is big in your area), it IS free, and is drop-off oriented.  That's 4 out of 7.

 

As for the remaining 3, well, I wish we had a ps with those things, too.  There is a trade off with anything, though.  There is no perfect scenario.

 

Are you putting the kids in school in the Fall?  If so, then it shouldn't be that big a deal that they are new.  They will be starting when the other kids start.  Unless this is a tiny community where no one every moves away or moves into town there shouldn't be much of a "new kids" issue.  And the kindergartner will be starting at the typical age to go to school so I doubt anyone will be asking how he was educated before.  It probably won't be an issue even for the older child.  I don't think most kids care where someone got their education prior to starting at the school they are currently attending.  If you are concerned, though, you might talk with the boys about how to respond to questions.  It would probably be best if they were prepped to answer honestly but not make homeschooling out to be superior or inferior.  

 

Now with the restrictive diet, will they be bringing their lunches every day?  Do they know not to eat any foods offered by classmates?  There may be some comments initially, depending on what they are bringing to eat but if the boys act like it is no big deal it should blow over eventually, maybe even pretty quickly.

 

One thing I would do is try to see where the local 4th grade classes are regarding academics, especially in things like math and writing output.  Has your soon to be 4th grader ever done classes outside of home?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is a small community and I don't know how much moving in and out there is.  I suspect they will be one of two or three new kids per class, at most.  It's true that it's just an issue for the 4th grader, though - all kinders are new :)

 

They will bring lunch, and they know not to eat offered foods.  I've seen different groups of kids react differently - in some cases (when DD was in 1st-2nd in PS), it was an ongoing source of making-fun; in others, it was nothing remarkable at all.  

 

My 4th grader was in PS for several months of K and then for half a year at a Waldorf charter.  I don't know that output will be a huge deal except maybe for handwriting - his is much faster now and not painful, and he has written a couple hundred words at a sitting, but it is not beautiful.  It is just on the legible side of legible.  Math I don't worry about.  He does have some behavioral tendencies that are often associated with ADHD, especially in groups; he's mellowed a lot in the last year and a half, but I am not sure how much of that is just due to not having to get through a formal school day.  It will be something to watch for sure.

 

That's true, I hadn't looked at it from the positives point of view! :)  And of course there is no perfect solution, but I really wish there were one.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You might find that small schools are more flexible. My daughter is in our small local school and they have been very flexible with us (she is gifted). We're in Australia, though. They play about 2 hrs out of the 6 that they're there, and do music, art etc so I'm ok with the 9-3 timetable. It goes fast! 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The NZ primary school schedule was great too, iirc.  Heck, the high school schedule was better than primary schools here in the US - they had 25 minutes for "tea" (basically a morning snack) and an hour for lunch!

 

It is so hard to let go of them, even as I want them out of the house more!  And it is hard to let go of all those beautiful academic plans.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

:grouphug:  :grouphug:  :grouphug:

 

Do you know anyone with kids that are already attending?  Neighbors?  Perhaps you could strike up a conversation and try to get to know some of the families right nearby.  They could answer some questions and it would give you and the kids the opportunity to get to know others before school starts.  Maybe over the summer new friendships could form so they wouldn't be complete strangers when they start school.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

:grouphug: :grouphug: :grouphug:

 

Do you know anyone with kids that are already attending? Neighbors? Perhaps you could strike up a conversation and try to get to know some of the families right nearby. They could answer some questions and it would give you and the kids the opportunity to get to know others before school starts. Maybe over the summer new friendships could form so they wouldn't be complete strangers when they start school.

That is true, I am sure they will make friends before fall. I don't know why I didn't think of that!

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Find out what math program they use.  Do they have time for history and/or science?  Art?  Or will you be doing this yourself, after schooling when they will already have homework and want to go play.

I'd stick with home school.  They can play with neighbor kids after school/weekends.  Just have the coolest swingset etc. in your yard as a lure. 

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I was living in a small place, I serously considered the public school for similar reasons.  And also, because I think small community schools are really important and I feel like they are really threatened here.

 

In the end, the small school adjacent to our yard was closed the year my eldest would have started, and they built a giant elementary school most kids had to be bussed to instead.  So we didn't do that.

 

It sounds like it could work out in your case.  I'd be interested to know what the expectations were for homework - it's one thing to be over and done by mid-afternoon, another wen they want to take away your at-home time as well.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

Ideally what I want in life is a school that:

 

-all the neighborhood kids attend

-meets from 9am-1pm

-has minimal standardized testing

-has lots of going outside and moving around and painting and ball games

-is free

-is drop-off oriented

-doesn't require a statement of faith

 

I could even compromised on a few of the above, if I could just get like 2 of them.

 

 

sigh.

 

Free

Drop off oriented

Doesn't require a statement of faith

All the neighborhood kids attend

 

All of the above meet the PS standard

 

You will give up

 

9-1

min. testing

lots of outside time (it will have some)

 

4 pro, 3 con.  That is probably the best you can hope for.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You might be pleasantly surprised.  My kids pretty much enjoy school.  There is so much going on, and most of it is positive.

 

I remember you talking about some of the problems you had with the previous school, so I can understand worrying, but I doubt it will be that bad.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Is the school still in session now? If so, maybe they could go spend a couple of days getting to experience school there so it will be less of a surprise next year. Or at least the one going into 4th grade could. Are there any summer programs in the area?

 

The part that would concern me the most is the full day for K. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...