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3 hours ago, square_25 said:

Oh, you're right, I misunderstood. I wish those conversations were still happening, because I really enjoy them, and they give me so much food for though (even when I violently disagree with people.) 

As soon as my tutor kids come back in February, I'll post some issues I'm having, and we can have an excellent argument about how to move them forward.  🙂 

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2 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

How often have so many of us gotten a "what is the point of XYZ?" when someone hears what we are teaching? I know I have. People wanted it related to how kids are going to get into college and get a job, and I think thanks to "job and career readiiness" that thought path is pervasive. 


I started 1st grade in 1979. Back then my parents were kind of guaranteed a job until retirement age. My parents could focus on education and paying for the best tutors they could find for me because they didn’t need a big emergency fund for unemployment and my dad has a nice pension plan.  

Now the college tuition has gone way up from my days, job security has gone way done. Add to that there is an outsourcing trend that is costlier than even a decade ago. The summer school my kids go to have added online courses to their offerings because it’s a good revenue stream. I do think being able to homeschool without having to worry about affording community college and state university, and kids getting a job as soon as they graduate, is a privilege. My DS15 spent thousands on non-credit math and science courses because those were the best options at that point in time. I don’t have the physical, mental and emotional energy to homeschool without outsourcing and I am thankful my parents (born earlier than boomers) helped bankroll a chunk of outsourcing expenses. I spent $120 per week on Uber (20 mins ride) to get DS15 to and from community college because of my bad health (aggravated by cold weather) and not because DS15 is unwilling to walk and take public transport (2hrs each way including transit transfers). 
 

ETA: I come into homeschooling as a public school refugee though. I started reading these forums when my oldest was a baby because we have always intended to after school.

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I think there are a lot more people homeschooling due to learning disabilities or bullying or non-neurotypical children who were getting lost in the public schools.   Public school refugees seems to describe it well.   They aren't looking for rigor or a classical education for their kids, they're often just looking to survive and avoid educational neglect while they figure things out.

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I think fewer people these days understand the concept of academic argument. I've had requests to shut threads because posters were arguing over educational philosophy. (No. I did not shut the threads.) What we used to do around here can't happen because manners have changed and what used to seem like jolly good fun to most is now anxiety inducing to most.

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I would love it if anyone had bookmarked any of EM's rants on foreign language/Latin. I'm trying to search but am not coming up with anything...

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4 hours ago, sweet2ndchance said:

Generally, posting "Here, let me Google that for you..." has become regarded as rude rather than a humorous way to point out the obvious. Pointing out another's person ineptitude or laziness is also considered rude more often than it used to be. Personally, I think that the fact that homeschooling has become so much more mainstream is at least in part what has changed the landscape of the homeschooling movement. You now get people who don't turn to homeschooling because they want much higher standards than what their local public school provides. They just want to fill the requirement that their child be educated, they just don't want the public school to be the one to fill that requirement for whatever reason. I don't think there is anything inherently wrong with that, but they certainly don't want to put in the time and effort to learn what they didn't learn in school in addition to teaching that to their children. Is that the "wrong way to homeschool"? I can see an argument both for and against that idea. I honestly don't know the answer to that question but I do know that it has changed the landscape regardless of what I think on the topic.

 

Snipping so I don't get sidetracked as you gave me a thought around public school refugees and landscape- this is a general thought so forgive me if it meanders-- I think it is fair to ask parents what exactly they (and in particular) the child are gaining from removing their child from school if they do not have a standard to uphold and have not given any thought to an educational standard when they ask about homeschooling. I get emergencies happen, but after that initial regroup time, facts need to be faced. So when they ask people- be it IRL, on FB, here, wherever, I think it's appropriate to mention standards, and that they should be discussed in a context that isn't "you can't do this," but rather, "if you are doing this, then you should be prepared to take on this responsibility....." Removing the kids from whatever the reason they are fleeing they system is not enough justification to just go home and do the bare minimum and be able to have a clear conscious, or it should not be. I understand there are a percentage of people who leave PS  dealing with non-NT students with disabilities, LDs or more severe extreme mental illness in which case I will offer an exemption to a degree- but those are special cases where oftentimes the schools are only wharehousing those kids anyway- and ironically, as someone mentioned in either this thread or the other, the LC board here is still the remnant popping with discussions because people there don't have a choice but to tailor and interact with the kids. 

But let's take the case of bullying, which is often thrown around as a big reason for pulling kids out from school. Okay. So the kid was bullied- the parents made a choice and pulled the kid out after the deciding the risk merited it for their child's safety, but that shouldn't let them rest on their laurels, plop the kid in front of a screen and not have to do anything, and I think that is one of the more frustrating things we've all seen come up in numerous threads. People should not be patting them on the back and saying that is okay. People shouldn't have a kid who hits a wall in math and not even be able to answer the question of where the child is hitting the wall, and still be patted on the back and told, "well at least he's home so you can have some time and btw, have you tried CLE?" (and nothing personal about CLE, it's a lovely program) and that become the predominant message. I don't know that homeschooling and not wanting to learn about what you are teaching is much different from wantint to have a kid and refusing to learn how to cook and planning to use McDonald's for all of your meals. 

I don't think there is a one size fits all. I don't think Classical, or Neo-Classical is *the* answer. I don't think there is one right way, but there is definitely a wrong way. I do think that the public school refugees (like I was) are helped immensely by the idea that you can *exceed* the PS and in fact should probably try, and if conversations like that offend people then maybe they shouldn't be homeschooling. I am all for parent's rights and I adore homeschooling, but I do not think that all parents can/should do it, I don't think the PS is a worse option if you are too lazy to Google something, and I don't think that someone should get offended if pointed out they should Google something LOL. I mean, how would one homeschool without a tough skin anyway?! Its a thing where i think we should support homeschoolers, but I also think we should expect it to be done responsibly and make mention when asked, that the easiest way isn't necessarily the best. Homeschooling is messy- all of those pretty boxed packages are misleading in a way. And as has been mentioned here before- some of the most minimalist homeschools require the MOST effort by the parents to do that because it is intentional- it isn't simply a case of "strewing" and seeing what happens. Not everyone here long term is a classical school person, but almost without an exception, I think most of them are extremely, exceptionally intentional about their kids school- what they make seem effortless and borderline unschooling in some ways in actuality takes a lot of effort, a dedicated family, and that should continue to be conveyed.

Anyway, I do think there is definitely a wrong way to homeschool and I think lowering the bar and the vocalization *when asked* just to keep from hurting anyone's feelings isn't doing anyone any favors. We can couch it in a more polite tone, or try, but at the end of the day, if someone comes on here for instance, says "I've tried 8 math programs and my kid cries every day through math, what can we try next that is self taught?" we aren't doing anyone any favors if we just spit out "Have you tried TT? BJU DLO? CLE?" instead of saying "Maybe the program is not the problem!" That might be a novel concept for some people and if they don't hear it here, I'm not sure where they're going to?

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1 hour ago, Rosie_0801 said:

I think fewer people these days understand the concept of academic argument. I've had requests to shut threads because posters were arguing over educational philosophy. (No. I did not shut the threads.) What we used to do around here can't happen because manners have changed and what used to seem like jolly good fun to most is now anxiety inducing to most.

That's unfortunate. 😞

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48 minutes ago, Noreen Claire said:

I would love it if anyone had bookmarked any of EM's rants on foreign language/Latin. I'm trying to search but am not coming up with anything...

Here you go:

 

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I'm so glad these threads are popping up!  I was getting bored around here!  😀

I talk to my dd, studying to be a teacher, all the time and we go all crazy about teaching and education and dh thinks we are nuts😄, so it's nice to have some virtual conversations and hear everyone!

I'll try and pitch in if I can catch up.

 

 

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10 hours ago, RootAnn said:

I remember EM for her teaching foreign language rant (especially Latin?). I wonder if there is a link between my oldest DD being a linguaphile today and EM's posts influencing my thoughts 10 years ago?

I remember not agreeing with all her points & thinking what a high bar she set. I have a vague recollection of when she left ... because we weren't  <something> enough for her. Rigorous? Classical? Not those, but something...

She would be disgusted at the homeschoolers who want to be able to sit their kid in front of a computer or book & not be hands-on teachers.

I refer a lot to EM's old threads on latin. I was not posting much on these forums in those days but was following along on her threads where she goes into much depth on the study of latin. There is a direct link between my child becoming a latin enthusiast with hopes of studying Latin as a minor at the college level and how much her posts influenced me. I do not belong to the classical education camp at all and do not even own the WTM book, but, I have used so many tips and resources from old-timers on this board on latin, math, writing etc. I wish that she were still around to contribute her thoughts (or knew which forums she went to so that I could follow her).

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10 hours ago, sweet2ndchance said:

As was often said on these boards back then, "classical education isn't for everyone". A lot of people took offense to that statement. TWTM boards became famous, or infamous maybe a better word, for being full of elitist jerks who wouldn't let newbies and those with different ideals join their club. I don't think that was really the intention of the posters though, at least not all the time.

 

Well, to be fair, there was a certain amount of that, and sometimes it was intentional. There were some very outspoken posters, including Ester Maria, who seemed to feel that a very traditional, Eurocentric, Classical/Neo-classical education was the apex of educational achievement and the only form of education that could possibly be considered rigorous. I remember her posting about how her younger daughter, who was not gifted in languages like her older daughter, would be crying over Greek lessons and begging to drop Greek (while still of course continuing with Latin, Hebrew, French, and English) and not being allowed to, because how can you even call yourself an educated person if you can't read Ancient Greek fluently? She complained bitterly about how ignorant and uneducated Americans were ("fachidiots" was a favorite term) and how awful it was to attend dinner parties here because there were no intelligent educated people to converse with. She literally used the phrase "crème de la crème" to refer to her (very wealthy) family's position in Italian society, and opposed chores for children because "that's the maid's job." She was also staunchly opposed to the provision of any kind of accommodations for students with LDs, who just "needed to learn their place in the food chain" (i.e. at the bottom). As the parent of a highly gifted kid with dyslexia and ADHD, we had some rather lively discussions as you can imagine, lol.

I also used to get PMs on a fairly regular basis (not from Ester Maria, but from others) telling me to piss off and go find an unschooling board to post on, because my approach to interest-led, project-based learning (which has nothing to do with jello models!) was inappropriate and unwanted on a classical homeschooling board. Which I found quite ironic given the fact that my kid actually ended up studying far more Greek and Latin and Classical history and archaeology than many of the people who were sending me snotty PMs, lol.

 

Edited by Corraleno
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8 minutes ago, Corraleno said:

 

Well, to be fair, there was a certain amount of that, and sometimes it was intentional. There were some very outspoken posters, including Ester Maria, who seemed to feel that a very traditional, Eurocentric, Classical/Neo-classical education was the apex of educational achievement and the only form of education that could possibly be considered rigorous. I remember her posting about how her younger daughter, who was not gifted in languages like her older daughter, would be crying over Greek lessons and begging to drop Greek (while still of course continuing with Latin, Hebrew, French, and English) and not being allowed to, because how can you even call yourself an educated person if you can't read Ancient Greek fluently? She complained bitterly about how ignorant and uneducated Americans were ("fachidiots" was a favorite term) and how awful it was to attend dinner parties here because there were no intelligent educated people to converse with. She literally used the phrase "crème de la crème" to refer to her (very wealthy) family's position in Italian society, and opposed chores for children because "that's the maid's job." She was also staunchly opposed to the provision of any kind of accommodations for students with LDs, who just "needed to learn their place in the food chain" (i.e. at the bottom). As the parent of a highly gifted kid with dyslexia and ADHD, we had some rather lively discussions as you can imagine, lol.

I also used to get PMs on a fairly regular basis (not from Ester Maria, but from others) telling me to piss off and go find an unschooling board to post on, because my approach to interest-led, project-based learning (which has nothing to do with jello models!) was inappropriate and unwanted on a classical homeschooling board. Which I found quite ironic given the fact that my kid actually ended up studying far more Greek and Latin and Classical history and archaeology than many of the people who were sending me snotty PMs, lol.

 

I Was mostly amused by her elitism.

fwiw, I learned a lot from your exchanges with EM and really I have to give you full credit for helping me let go of EM’s unreachable ideals and embrace some unschooly methods. If you and she did not have such heated debates and I hadn’t encountered the work of Ella Frances Lynch at just the right time, my poor children would all be hot housed.

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@Corraleno Lol, yeah that's why I added the "at least not all the time" on there. Maybe I should have added "at least not everyone" as well lol. It could get absolutely ugly and brutal at times. When the conversations started veering away from holding your child to a higher standard than what passes for "a good education" in public school and into the elitist territory, that's usually when I decided to stop reading the thread.

The reputation these forums earned was not undeserved. While I am glad the tone has changed in some ways and it feels friendlier here, I also miss the lively debates and discussions that helped me think about what I really wanted for my kids and the posters like 8fillstheheart who helped me figure out what that looks like in practice with real life kids and not hypothetical perfect children who beg for just one more Latin lesson or just one more page of copywork lol. I think it is sad that new homeschoolers don't get that experience like I did when I was a new homeschooler. But would it even be relevant to the current generation of new homeschool parents now? They don't seem to have the same needs, wants and desires as previous generations of homeschoolers.... just kinda wondering to myself out loud at this point, don't mind me lol.

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4 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

the LC board here is still the remnant popping with discussions because people there don't have a choice but to tailor and interact with the kids. 

Yes!  The homeschoolers who have helped me the most are those with children with learning disabilities, both here and in real life.  Even when tailoring an education for my older boy who is quite gifted, they helped me think through breadth vs depth, allowing him to focus on math to the exclusion of other things, asynchrony and how it impacted learning, development of social skills, etc. They *have* to tailor their kids' education so they are still the remanent of the past. 

But I will also say that the threads of the past 2 weeks have shown me that there is still a core group of old timers here and a bunch of newbies who are keen to discuss difficult issues.  We just need to keep asking them.  I'm about ready to start a thread asking people to define rigor.  That should get people going. 🙂 

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1 minute ago, sweet2ndchance said:

But would it even be relevant to the current generation of new homeschool parents now? They don't seem to have the same needs, wants and desires as previous generations of homeschoolers..

There is a subset that do.  Sure, there are definitely a larger percentage of homeschoolers who are on-line/school-in-a-box types than before, but there are also a lot MORE homeschoolers.  So the absolute numbers of do-it-yourselfers may be close to the same. The problem is bringing them together in one spot when the internet has only proliferated. But there is a core here.  I'm seeing 30+ deep-thinking posters in these threads. 

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11 minutes ago, lewelma said:

There is a subset that do.  Sure, there are definitely a larger percentage of homeschoolers who are on-line/school-in-a-box types than before, but there are also a lot MORE homeschoolers.  So the absolute numbers of do-it-yourselfers may be close to the same. The problem is bringing them together in one spot when the internet has only proliferated. But there is a core here.  I'm seeing 30+ deep-thinking posters in these threads. 

Not to mention the amount of views on these threads vs replies! 

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1 hour ago, sweet2ndchance said:

I think it is sad that new homeschoolers don't get that experience like I did when I was a new homeschooler. But would it even be relevant to the current generation of new homeschool parents now? They don't seem to have the same needs, wants and desires as previous generations of homeschoolers.... just kinda wondering to myself out loud at this point, don't mind me lol.

 

They wouldn't know if it was relevant to them or not, just like I didn't when I started poking around here, because it's beyond their imagination.

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5 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

Snipping so I don't get sidetracked as you gave me a thought around public school refugees and landscape- this is a general thought so forgive me if it meanders-- I think it is fair to ask parents what exactly they (and in particular) the child are gaining from removing their child from school if they do not have a standard to uphold and have not given any thought to an educational standard when they ask about homeschooling. ... and ironically, as someone mentioned in either this thread or the other, the LC board here is still the remnant popping with discussions because people there don't have a choice but to tailor and interact with the kids. 

I don't think there is a one size fits all. I don't think Classical, or Neo-Classical is *the* answer. I don't think there is one right way, but there is definitely a wrong way. I do think that the public school refugees (like I was) are helped immensely by the idea that you can *exceed* the PS and in fact should probably try, and if conversations like that offend people then maybe they shouldn't be homeschooling. I am all for parent's rights and I adore homeschooling, but I do not think that all parents can/should do it, I don't think the PS is a worse option if you are too lazy to Google something, and I don't think that someone should get offended if pointed out they should Google something LOL. I mean, how would one homeschool without a tough skin anyway?! Its a thing where i think we should support homeschoolers, but I also think we should expect it to be done responsibly and make mention when asked, that the easiest way isn't necessarily the best. Homeschooling is messy- all of those pretty boxed packages are misleading in a way.

Anyway, I do think there is definitely a wrong way to homeschool and I think lowering the bar and the vocalization *when asked* just to keep from hurting anyone's feelings isn't doing anyone any favors. 


My grandparents and my parents treated educating their children as part of parenting. Each newborn is unique and unfortunately does not come with a parenting manual. If people treat educating their children as part and parcel of parenting regardless of whether they use the public/private schools, after school, homeschool (including unschooling), then they could use the same resourcefulness, grit (and maybe lots of chocolates and beverage of choice) to give their children the best education they could. Can’t parent without a tough skin anyway because there would be people questioning my parenting choices.

I am the one who mentioned about the LC board. My kids are quirky as am I, though none of us qualify as 2E. Life would be easier and probably less exciting if boxed packages worked. My DS15’s Singapore Primary math books looks more like art doodle pads than math books because he wrote down the answer without working and filled the working area in the workbook with doodles (my avatar is one of his numerous doodles). 

Since my kids thrive on peer pressure, my kids might have gotten as high a GPA as my husband if they have stayed in brick and mortar school. My husband’s rationale for homeschooling was that our kids would not be held back by rigid school district policies that we would have to expend energy negotiating and arguing with. My wish was for our kids to be allowed to try stuff without worrying whether it’s going to check any boxes, just like my childhood’s afterschooling was.

I have led project based learning sessions in my high school after school science club. It was mentally and emotionally exhausting but worth it. PBL is great done right, like in 4H and scouting. I was a girl scout and there were lots of opportunities in PBL there. The issue with PBL is similar to the issue with math education. Not every teacher can do PBL well just as not many teachers can implement common core maths well. 

I am obviously not a classical homeschooler. What I want is the best fit for my kids. We made homeschooling flops along the way, such is parenting.

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Part of teaching the child you have is being the parent you are. I strongly believe in actual face to face teaching at least in the younger grades but not everyone has the same skills or personality or goals. 
 

I had very different goals and methods for my son vs my daughter. I actually would have preferred to give my daughter the neoclassical education that I gave my son but she isn’t my son and fought me tooth and nail on it. It made more sense for me to teach her in a way that actually reached her instead of sacrificing her for my “standards “. 
 

 

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1 hour ago, Arcadia said:


My grandparents and my parents treated educating their children as part of parenting. Each newborn is unique and unfortunately does not come with a parenting manual. If people treat educating their children as part and parcel of parenting regardless of whether they use the public/private schools, after school, homeschool (including unschooling), then they could use the same resourcefulness, grit (and maybe lots of chocolates and beverage of choice) to give their children the best education they could. Can’t parent without a tough skin anyway because there would be people questioning my parenting choices.

 

I think the Cult of the Expert has done a lot of damage in these areas. So many people don't know they are allowed to teach their own kids academics at all.

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15 hours ago, Rosie_0801 said:

I think fewer people these days understand the concept of academic argument. I've had requests to shut threads because posters were arguing over educational philosophy. (No. I did not shut the threads.) What we used to do around here can't happen because manners have changed and what used to seem like jolly good fun to most is now anxiety inducing to most.

 

Well, I think people used to be much more conversational and friendlier (?).  I don't know.  I've been on here for about 10 years.  I usually just move on when someone is rude.    

Arguing over educational philosophy is the whole purpose of this forum, right?  😬  If not, then oops....  

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There are posts which are philosophical in nature and there are posts that are personal in nature. Arguing educational philosophy when someone is pouring their heart out looking for answers is bad form (but I have seen it happen). You are much more likely to reach someone in those situations if you ask “have you considered “ or “I have found that this works for me and this is why”, than to slam them for having the wrong philosophy or no thought out philosophy at all. 

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11 hours ago, Corraleno said:

 

... including Ester Maria, who seemed to feel that a very traditional, Eurocentric, Classical/Neo-classical education was the apex of educational achievement and the only form of education that could possibly be considered rigorous.

 

Not to be too snarky, but every time I read these polemics about the absolute superiority in every way of the Italian educational system, I could not help but think -- look what this system has given the country of Italy:  A completely unstable government system, where they've had 60 post-war governments,  local governments so incompetent that they can't even pick up trash for years on end,  a failing economy, held up only by their European neighbors, corruption and mafia influence rampant throughout large parts of the country, a birth rate falling well below replacement, because many can't afford to have kids, and many other problems.  But, at least they (or at least some of them) can read Greek. 

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44 minutes ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

There are posts which are philosophical in nature and there are posts that are personal in nature. Arguing educational philosophy when someone is pouring their heart out looking for answers is bad form (but I have seen it happen). You are much more likely to reach someone in those situations if you ask “have you considered “ or “I have found that this works for me and this is why”, than to slam them for having the wrong philosophy or no thought out philosophy at all. 

I agree and wouldn’t ever suggest things to someone who didn’t ask. But on the thread a month or two ago, where people were talking about getting High school done in 2 hours a day or less, and the advice given on FB etc made me think that type of thing should be challenged when it’s thrown out for comment. I wouldn’t ever walk up to someone saying that who didn’t ask my opinion, but if they posted one of these “does this look like enough?” threads where there were no mitigating factors of why a teen could not so more than 2 subjects a day I think one could politely pop up and say no, doesn’t seem like enough. What are your goals here? 

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14 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

Not to mention the amount of views on these threads vs replies! 

Yes. I am always a reader just don't have much more to add. 

There are new homeschoolers, like me, who want rigor. Who want to talk whys and hows and whats. We are out there! 

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2 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I agree and wouldn’t ever suggest things to someone who didn’t ask. But on the thread a month or two ago, where people were talking about getting High school done in 2 hours a day or less, and the advice given on FB etc made me think that type of thing should be challenged when it’s thrown out for comment. I wouldn’t ever walk up to someone saying that who didn’t ask my opinion, but if they posted one of these “does this look like enough?” threads where there were no mitigating factors of why a teen could not so more than 2 subjects a day I think one could politely pop up and say no, doesn’t seem like enough. What are your goals here? 

That thread wasn't even personal! It was about Calvert changing to online vs book based. That thread is definitely an example of  posters wanting affirmation-only  responses based on the sideline commentary.

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5 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I agree and wouldn’t ever suggest things to someone who didn’t ask. But on the thread a month or two ago, where people were talking about getting High school done in 2 hours a day or less, and the advice given on FB etc made me think that type of thing should be challenged when it’s thrown out for comment. I wouldn’t ever walk up to someone saying that who didn’t ask my opinion, but if they posted one of these “does this look like enough?” threads where there were no mitigating factors of why a teen could not so more than 2 subjects a day I think one could politely pop up and say no, doesn’t seem like enough. What are your goals here? 

I have had to walk away from several online homeschooling groups because 95% of the members were looking for a program that would require ZERO parental input. Most were looking for the cheapest possible online solution, and the rest were generally dropping their kids off at a Classical Conversations group one day a week and leaving them to get the "homework" done on their own. Comments to the effect that students deserve to have at least one actual human who can at least answer questions and clear up misunderstandings, whether that's a parent or online teacher, fell on deaf ears or got snotty replies.

The largest of those groups is focused on athletics and the parents totally panic when they realize they have to submit course descriptions and outlines and list the assessments they based the grades on because they literally have no idea what their kid has been doing for HS. I have seen people post that a kid is "doing Khan Academy for HS" (and literally nothing else) and ask how to write that up so it looks like actual classes in order to get approval to be eligible for athletic scholarships. I have seen many posts asking for copies of other people's paperwork and/or recommendations for someone they can pay to basically "invent" the course descriptions they need. Parents of juniors or seniors who suddenly discover that plonking a kid in front of a computer with an ALEKS subscription and zero teaching or supervision for four years will not be approved are advised to just look up the names and authors of textbooks on Amazon and add those to the paperwork as if the student used those texts in a parent-taught class.

The handful of parents who are using actual books and interacting with their kids are often doing things like giving a full English credit for completing one volume of Easy Grammar and another full Literature credit for reading 2 books per semester and writing a couple of essays (and we're not talking War & Peace here, we're talking The Giver and Animal Farm). Parents have been angry that a few months of a co-op robotics class plus helping grandma with email wasn't accepted as a science credit, or that two years of Algebra 1A and 1B plus a Dave Ramsey program wasn't accepted as 3 years of math. A parent whose 9th grader was struggling through a basic prealgebra course, doing selected parts of a middle school Life Science book, and doing a 4th or 5th grade history book as a read aloud was advised to give HS credits for Algebra 1A, Biology, and World History anyway. 

When someone asked what the "required courses" are for NCAA approval, I provided links to the documents that spell out all the requirements and procedures for homeschoolers and was told "I don't have time to read all that, I just want a list of required courses and approved curriculum." Well if she could be bothered to take 30 whole minutes out of her busy day to read the documents, she'd know they don't require specific courses and there's no such thing as pre-approved curriculum. When a parent asked about hiring someone else to write up and submit their student's paperwork, I pointed out that in order for someone else to accurately write up what a student did, the parent would need to provide all that information anyway, in which case they have already done 99% of the work. The response was "my time is far too valuable for that, " lol. Much easier and more efficient to just pay someone to totally fake the paperwork for you!  So I don't even bother any more. 

 

Edited by Corraleno
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On 12/18/2019 at 7:04 PM, mms said:

Here you go:

 

Thanks for linking these!  I am new here and haven’t figured out how to bookmark threads or search very well.  I also haven’t figured out how to add a signature, but that is way off topic.

I have only made it through the first thread about Cheryl Lowe’s article, but it is a great discussion.  I haven’t posted much on these few related threads, but they certainly have been fun (although a bit time consuming) to read...just what I was hoping for when I came over here.

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On 12/19/2019 at 2:09 PM, 8FillTheHeart said:

That thread wasn't even personal! It was about Calvert changing to online vs book based. That thread is definitely an example of  posters wanting affirmation-only  responses based on the sideline commentary.

Some of the sideline commentary (in another thread) was directed to folks who were feeling like their choices were being disparaged, even though there are mitigating factors that maybe weren't fully spelled out in that thread. People need encouragement, even when they aren't able to deliver what they wanted or wished, due to life happening or quirks of the kid(s) in front of them, or whatever. They're still deeply involved parents trying to meet the needs of their children.

What I observed in the Calvert thread was some talking past each other, with one camp saying, "This isn't enough," and the other camp saying, "Usually, I agree, but there are *these situations* that aren't ideal but we have to deal with anyway." I don't know that people were just looking for affirmation, just as I don't think anyone was trying to shame anyone else.

I have no comments about fb groups, because I'm only part of the MFW groups (general and the year we're doing) and our local co op/support group page. I vastly prefer the conversation here, so here is where I come.

I love the threads that are popping up, even if I don't contribute much to them. I'm working hard to be actively involved and I'm dedicated to my own education as a means of enriching my kids' education as well as being a good example, but I admit to being intimidated by wading in here too often. I don't have a strong educational background, I use a tweaked version of a boxed curriculum, and I make a lot of mistakes and have to back up often and navigate another way. I feel like maybe I'd be ripped apart in discussions, lol, but that could easily be my insecurity talking. But I'm learning and pondering so much from these threads, and I really appreciate everyone who is taking the time to verbalize their thoughts for the enrichment of the rest of us.

(These comments aren't all directed at you, 8, I just used your post as a jumping off point.)

ETA: I hope this post is somewhat coherent. I have a two week old, and the sleep deprivation is real. 🤣 Y'all have been great company for all those nighttime feedings, and I thank you!

Edited by ThatBookwormMom
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1 hour ago, ThatBookwormMom said:

I love the threads that are popping up, even if I don't contribute much to them. ....[snip]..... I admit to being intimidated by wading in here too often. ...[snip]..... But I'm learning and pondering so much from these threads, and I really appreciate everyone who is taking the time to verbalize their thoughts for the enrichment of the rest of us.

Me too!  You aren't the only one who is insecure and intimidated.  I appreciate you voicing this point-of-view.

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2 hours ago, ThatBookwormMom said:

Some of the sideline commentary (in another thread) was directed to folks who were feeling like their choices were being disparaged, even though there are mitigating factors that maybe weren't fully spelled out in that thread. People need encouragement, even when they aren't able to deliver what they wanted or wished, due to life happening or quirks of the kid(s) in front of them, or whatever. They're still deeply involved parents trying to meet the needs of their children.

What I observed in the Calvert thread was some talking past each other, with one camp saying, "This isn't enough," and the other camp saying, "Usually, I agree, but there are *these situations* that aren't ideal but we have to deal with anyway." I don't know that people were just looking for affirmation, just as I don't think anyone was trying to shame anyone else.

I have no comments about fb groups, because I'm only part of the MFW groups (general and the year we're doing) and our local co op/support group page. I vastly prefer the conversation here, so here is where I come.

I love the threads that are popping up, even if I don't contribute much to them. I'm working hard to be actively involved and I'm dedicated to my own education as a means of enriching my kids' education as well as being a good example, but I admit to being intimidated by wading in here too often. I don't have a strong educational background, I use a tweaked version of a boxed curriculum, and I make a lot of mistakes and have to back up often and navigate another way. I feel like maybe I'd be ripped apart in discussions, lol, but that could easily be my insecurity talking. But I'm learning and pondering so much from these threads, and I really appreciate everyone who is taking the time to verbalize their thoughts for the enrichment of the rest of us.

(These comments aren't all directed at you, 8, I just used your post as a jumping off point.)

ETA: I hope this post is somewhat coherent. I have a two week old, and the sleep deprivation is real. 🤣 Y'all have been great company for all those nighttime feedings, and I thank you!

This actually demonstrates what I am describing. The posts were about the erosion of objective standards, not about individuals. Objective standards should be able to be discussed without causing emotional reactions.  If objective standards cannot be discussed without causing an emotional reaction, the ability to converse objectively has equally eroded.

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
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1 hour ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

This actually demonstrates what I am describing. The posts were about the erosion of objective standards, not about individuals. Objective standards should be able to be discussed without causing emotional reactions.  If objective standards cannot be discussed without causing an emotional reaction, the ability to converse objectively has equally eroded.

While I agree with this, I also see a need to encourage and support engaged and caring parents who aren't necessarily meeting that objective, for whatever reason. Is there room for both? I agree that an affirmation only culture tends toward lower and lower standards, and that we should be holding each other accountable for a decent level of education amongst homeschoolers, but what do we do when there are legitimate needs in our community, either in the parent's or the child's side? Does our objective standard preclude taking individual needs into account? And to what degree? Where does a culture of encouragement begin and end, and where does it become a culture of affirmation?

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2 hours ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

This actually demonstrates what I am describing. The posts were about the erosion of objective standards, not about individuals. Objective standards should be able to be discussed without causing emotional reactions.  If objective standards cannot be discussed without causing an emotional reaction, the ability to converse objectively has equally eroded.

To be fair, it seemed to me that there were emotional reactions being expressed on multiple sides in that discussion--dismay that some would defend minimal academics, dismay that some would cast judgment on minimal academics, and dismay that the discussion had become heated.

I personally wrestle a lot with the question of desirable goals. Standards can and do vary significantly--not just among homeschoolers, from family to family, but across communities, across nations; I am not sure what standard would be most desirable, or even if standardization of any kind (inherent in adoption of standards) is desirable. And I mean that as a true question--potential value balanced against potential limitations and I don't know which comes out ahead.

Standards to me imply a nice, tidy checklist; education as a concept is, inside my own head, much too large a concept, with boundaries that are too fuzzy, too non-linear, to be reduced to a checklist.

I find discussion with people whose perspective and opinions and experiences differ from mine to be much more stimulating and thought-providing than endless discussions with myself though. I see a great deal of value in that with or without emotion involved.

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1 hour ago, ThatBookwormMom said:

While I agree with this, I also see a need to encourage and support engaged and caring parents who aren't necessarily meeting that objective, for whatever reason. Is there room for both? I agree that an affirmation only culture tends toward lower and lower standards, and that we should be holding each other accountable for a decent level of education amongst homeschoolers, but what do we do when there are legitimate needs in our community, either in the parent's or the child's side? Does our objective standard preclude taking individual needs into account? And to what degree? Where does a culture of encouragement begin and end, and where does it become a culture of affirmation?

If someone needs help planning academics in the midst of a crisis, then helping them find a path that is a feasible option during that time is a unique scenario discussion. It is not a conversation that is generic. Same for kids with special needs. To reduce every generic conversation to the lowest denominator bc x might exist reduces expectations as a norm vs an exception.  

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53 minutes ago, maize said:

To be fair, it seemed to me that there were emotional reactions being expressed on multiple sides in that discussion--dismay that some would defend minimal academics, dismay that some would cast judgment on minimal academics, and dismay that the discussion had become heated.

I personally wrestle a lot with the question of desirable goals. Standards can and do vary significantly--not just among homeschoolers, from family to family, but across communities, across nations; I am not sure what standard would be most desirable, or even if standardization of any kind (inherent in adoption of standards) is desirable. And I mean that as a true question--potential value balanced against potential limitations and I don't know which comes out ahead.

Standards to me imply a nice, tidy checklist; education as a concept is, inside my own head, much too large a concept, with boundaries that are too fuzzy, too non-linear, to be reduced to a checklist.

I find discussion with people whose perspective and opinions and experiences differ from mine to be much more stimulating and thought-providing than endless discussions with myself though. I see a great deal of value in that with or without emotion involved.

I dont get an emotional reaction to the statement that it impossible to provide a solid academic program at the high school level in 2 hrs/ day. Justifying that you can is off in lala land from my perspective. Not an emotional reaction. I absolutely do not believe kids with that low level of daily expectations are being served well for functioning as adults, and most definitely not for functioning in college.

Again, if the discussion is about unique individual scenarios then it is not a generic discussion but individual specific.

Reducing every conversation to "but what about" is not reality. Exceptions are exceptions, not the norm.

And, I absolutely disagree that standards reduce education to a checklist. Standards represent minimal thresholds.

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29 minutes ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

I dont get an emotional reaction to the statement that it impossible to provide a solid academic program at the high school level in 2 hrs/ day. Justifying that you can is off in lala land from my perspective. Not an emotional reaction. I absolutely do not believe kids with that low level of daily expectations are being served well for functioning as adults, and most definitely not for functioning in college.

Again, if the discussion is about unique individual scenarios then it is not a generic discussion but individual specific.

Reducing every conversation to "but what about" is not reality. Exceptions are exceptions, not the norm.

And, I absolutely disagree that standards reduce education to a checklist. Standards represent minimal thresholds.

I don't see how standards are not a checklist if they are a list of things to accomplish

I will grant that a minimum standard certainly does not need to be a limit--only a starting point.

I'd be interested in what you personally would consider minimum standards.

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19 minutes ago, maize said:

I don't see how standards are not a checklist if they are a list of things to accomplish

I will grant that a minimum standard certainly does not need to be a limit--only a starting point.

I'd be interested in what you personally would consider minimum standards.

I think most states' diploma requirements represent a minimal academic threshold that should be a goal for the majority of students. That means at least 5 core subjects (that can be intertwined but still requiring significant time) per yr as the lowest expectation standard. (and, honestly, I see that as a very low threshold.)

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28 minutes ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

I think most states' diploma requirements represent a minimal academic threshold that should be a goal for the majority of students. That means at least 5 core subjects (that can be intertwined but still requiring significant time) per yr as the lowest expectation standard. (and, honestly, I see that as a very low threshold.)

Lewelma has described the New Zealand system in which students may study just three subjects in depth in high school (last two years I think?).

This is less than five core subjects; would you consider such an education necessarily inadequate?

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11 minutes ago, maize said:

Lewelma has described the New Zealand system in which students may study just three subjects in depth in high school (last two years I think?).

This is less than five core subjects; would you consider such an education necessarily inadequate?

I actually suspected you would cite her in response to my post. My answer, yes, if you are discussing  3 subjects based on an understanding of US standards.  FWIW, what she describes is in no way an equivalent conversation to the subpar 2 hr high school that was being discussed. Apples to oranges. You can have standards met by different methodology that exceed state diploma requirements quite easily which is what she describes.  Plus, they have testing requirements that must be passed. (Pretty sure those 2 hr kids would not pass.)

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
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24 minutes ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

I actually suspected you would cite her in response to my post. My answer, yes, if you are discussing  3 subjects based on an understanding of US standards.  FWIW, what she describes is in no way an equivalent conversation to the subpar 2 hr high school that was being discussed. Apples to oranges. You can have standards met by different methodology that exceed state diploma requirements quite easily which is what she describes.  Plus, they have testing requirements that must be passed. (Pretty sure those 2 hr kids would not pass.)

 

So it is not the actual number of subjects that matters.

Would you consider a deep study of one subject to be adequate?

I am not, by the way, trying to argue against you--I am trying to understand what you do consider to be an adequate education standard.

Is such a standard dependent on hours spent in formal study?

Is it dependent on results achieved by examination?

Those are entirely different things--we know that one student can put in lots of hours with little understanding (this is especially true in a classroom environment in which some students may not be actually engaging with the material at all) and another student may grasp some things with very little formal instruction.   

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I think one major variable in the equation of "adequate education" is what is happening outside of formal academic study. Learning isn't something that only happens during formal study.

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57 minutes ago, maize said:

I think one major variable in the equation of "adequate education" is what is happening outside of formal academic study. Learning isn't something that only happens during formal study.

 

One of the reasons Ester Maria wanted academics only in school was so kids could go off into the world, to music lessons, sport or whatever it was their families encouraged, and still have time left over for family and sleeping.

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14 minutes ago, Rosie_0801 said:

 

One of the reasons Ester Maria wanted academics only in school was so kids could go off into the world, to music lessons, sport or whatever it was their families encouraged, and still have time left over for family and sleeping.

In that context, I wonder if she had opinions on homework?

 

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Another question that I personally think about is the relative importance of academic learning and achievement in the context of whole person development. 

One more equation that will necessarily vary from individual to individual. 

I think I would name at least the following domains as significant to whole person functioning and living:

Intellectual

Social 

Emotional

Spiritual

Physical

Artistic/Creative

Maybe Practical ought to be a domain as well--encompassing life skills and such?

That would give us seven domains. What percentage of a child's waking hours ought to be devoted to each?

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1 hour ago, maize said:

 

 

So it is not the actual number of subjects that matters. Not necessarily. It takes deliberate planning to cover multiple subjects in conjunction with each other vs subjects in isolation. Considering the mantra of not wanting to teach/plan/ease of use, it may boil down to, yes, the number of subjects does matter. You can't have it both ways. If a teacher designs a course specifically to encompass multiple fields of study, then "number of subjects" becomes a different conversation.

Would you consider a deep study of one subject to be adequate? No.

I am not, by the way, trying to argue against you--I am trying to understand what you do consider to be an adequate education standard.

Is such a standard dependent on hours spent in formal study? No, but equally, studying at a high school level requires time. If a student is completing all academics in 2 hrs, they are not being appropriately challenged.

Is it dependent on results achieved by examination? In NZ it is. My pt is you can't compare a homeschool 2 hr computer generated high school ed to NZ's 3 course study. They are not correlated, so the discussion makes zero sense.

Those are entirely different things--we know that one student can put in lots of hours with little understanding (this is especially true in a classroom environment in which some students may not be actually engaging with the material at all) and another student may grasp some things with very little formal instruction.   FWIW, I think discussing NZ's public ed is a complete side issue. I also dont see any pt in discussing classroom environments when we are discussing homeschooling. 

Honestly, I think trying to "justify" minimal standards is not worth my time. To me, it is a given that does not require a proof.

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
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