Jump to content

Menu

Aarrggg! New homeschooler advice irritations


Recommended Posts

It keeps coming.  I am on a Facebook group for my local city’s homeschoolers.  The advice for the newbies is HORRIBLE!  Here’s my favorites of the day:

  • I am pulling my kid’s from eLearning public school and want to homeschool.  “I have 3rd, 4th, 7th, and 9th.  Can I just buy a math workbook from Walmart? “. The answers?  Yes!  It’s plenty!  With lots of agreement.  Then following is advice about giving them a break from school for a while and all sorts of nonsense.  The minority are the people who are trying to offer real solid advice, but they get drowned out.  My concern is that this mom is probably going to send her kids back to public school the next year.
  • The advice to make learning a part of the day as in, “help mom write down the shopping list” That’s spelling!  Yes, I agree generally as a side learning activity, but what about the rest of the week that has no spelling?  There are just too many newbies who aren’t giving good advice for older kids. 
  • There is a LOT of advice to use easy peasy homeschooling where you can have your kids less than an hour of school a day and be done (for all grade levels). 
     

Sigh....I’ve told people to just call me and I would help them based and their kid and who they were as a parent including how much time they have to actually homeschool their kids.  I think I’ve talked more than one person out of homeschooling and encouraged them to stick it out with eLearning until their kids could go back with person to person learning.  I’ve tried to do it on the Facebook group also.   Some of the people I’ve talked to really want to go back into the public school so that changes what should be recommended also.  The group leaders are doing a good job having live forums and question/ answer times but it’s still not enough to stop the crazy.

  • Like 4
  • Sad 6
Link to post
Share on other sites

Same thing here. It's never-ending. If I see one more plug for Power Homeschool or Time 4 Learning I think I'm going to scream. 

I think there is a backlash against the amount of time many kids are spending on school with virtual learning. The idea that you can really educate your middle or high-schooler in an hour a day (because lining up a class to go to the bathroom takes hours, or something) is appealing. Throw in the "it's practically free and uses nothing but this awesome website that will totally figure out exactly how to teach your kid with its super-special AI and you don't have to lift a finger" and it's no wonder people are flocking to "homeschooling" as a solution.

I tell people that education is like physical health -- free, fast, and easy don't exist in one space. You get to pick two, at best. The sooner you accept that you'll have to actually do some work to get results, the better off you'll be. But some people just have to have the homeschool crash diet and learn the hard way.

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites

I think that there are actually a lot of homeschoolers who do minimalist homeschooling who end up putting their kids back in school a year or two later.  These are the people who give homeschoolers a bad name among school officials.

  • Like 11
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, bethben said:

It keeps coming.  I am on a Facebook group for my local city’s homeschoolers.  The advice for the newbies is HORRIBLE!  Here’s my favorites of the day:

  • I am pulling my kid’s from eLearning public school and want to homeschool.  “I have 3rd, 4th, 7th, and 9th.  Can I just buy a math workbook from Walmart? “. The answers?  Yes!  It’s plenty!  With lots of agreement.  Then following is advice about giving them a break from school for a while and all sorts of nonsense.  The minority are the people who are trying to offer real solid advice, but they get drowned out.  My concern is that this mom is probably going to send her kids back to public school the next year.
  • The advice to make learning a part of the day as in, “help mom write down the shopping list” That’s spelling!  Yes, I agree generally as a side learning activity, but what about the rest of the week that has no spelling?  There are just too many newbies who aren’t giving good advice for older kids. 
  • There is a LOT of advice to use easy peasy homeschooling where you can have your kids less than an hour of school a day and be done (for all grade levels). 
     

Sigh....I’ve told people to just call me and I would help them based and their kid and who they were as a parent including how much time they have to actually homeschool their kids.  I think I’ve talked more than one person out of homeschooling and encouraged them to stick it out with eLearning until their kids could go back with person to person learning.  I’ve tried to do it on the Facebook group also.   Some of the people I’ve talked to really want to go back into the public school so that changes what should be recommended also.  The group leaders are doing a good job having live forums and question/ answer times but it’s still not enough to stop the crazy.

Sometimes, when people are just this instant withdrawing their children to begin homeschooling, they haven't had time to do the research, all the children are burned out and even damaged, and just getting that workbook from Walmart is enough while waiting for the dust to settle. 

Many on my FB group also recommend those on-line things; I haven't used them myself or reviewed the so I can't discuss the academics (or lack thereof), but I do encourage people to avoid screens as much as possible. Same for all the mods. But you can only tell people so much.  😞

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

If I didn't have a homeschool based business, I would unfollow all these groups. But that's part of the problem too - that us old timers have started to tune it out. Sigh.

I have a lot of sympathy for the families pulling kids because of the insanity of schools this year. For them, I actually do think a math workbook from Wal-Mart is fine for a year. It won't kill them. Just... not for the 9th grader. 

  • Like 8
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
51 minutes ago, Farrar said:

 

I have a lot of sympathy for the families pulling kids because of the insanity of schools this year. For them, I actually do think a math workbook from Wal-Mart is fine for a year. It won't kill them. Just... not for the 9th grader. 

I really agree with this, for people who are homeschooling for one year with the intent of putting their kids back in PS, and are dealing with K-8.

What they do doesn't have to be rigorous because their kids are going back to an environment where EVERY KID spent this year in craziness. The kid who manages to reliably keep up with a math workbook that is at their abilities is going to be set up for success to go back to PS next year.

I am not on FB advising anyone to get workbooks from Walmart, but I truly do not understand everyone’s angst about rigor in this particular chaos.

  • Like 8
Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Bagels McGruffikin said:

I unfollowed the state page. I literally cannot take the sheer volume of relaxed and unschooling families on there, and not ones who seem to be hitting it out of the park in terms of rigor and passion, either.

It was making me unreasonably furious for their kids, so I came back here to bask in the comfort of a group that at least subscribes to similar levels of academic integrity and rigor as we do.

My eyes needed a break from their bugging out and rolling.

So why is it that the relaxed come what may homeschoolers have the bigger voices?  It sounds more popular?  The “ Homeschooling is easy!  You barely have to teach at all and they’ll be just fine!  The public school requires too much nonsense work anyway...”.   Maybe the majority of us here are introverts and just don’t want to cause a scene?😁. Or maybe they just have more time to put their opinion out there?  I don’t have a happy go lucky attitude about homeschooling.  I give it to people straight.  When a mom who wants to get her kids off of eLearning tells me she has 20 hours a week to devote to homeschooling, I feel her it is possible for her two younger children, but it’s another part time job for her.  I don’t lead her or anyone else I talk to down a rosy path of unicorns and rainbows.  This probably explains why most of the ones I’ve talked to keep their children with the public school.

 

  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, EmseB said:

I really agree with this, for people who are homeschooling for one year with the intent of putting their kids back in PS, and are dealing with K-8.

What they do doesn't have to be rigorous because their kids are going back to an environment where EVERY KID spent this year in craziness. The kid who manages to reliably keep up with a math workbook that is at their abilities is going to be set up for success to go back to PS next year.

I am not on FB advising anyone to get workbooks from Walmart, but I truly do not understand everyone’s angst about rigor in this particular chaos.

This will be the next wave of chaos...when the schools open again and some kids have learned the material well because their parents were able to help them vs. the kids who barely squeaked by because their parents just couldn’t.  There’s going to be a huge gap of skill levels across grade levels.  That will be the next thing that make parents question the public school.  
 

You’re right...the Walmart math book may be a good choice considering the alternative of learning nothing.  My daughter was one of those kids last semester who would have learned absolutely nothing with math eLearning.  I basically told her math teacher I was using Saxon math and ignoring the Khan academy math lessons where she was learning absolutely nothing (she doesn’t learn via computers at all—khan does work I’m sure for other kids).

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

Normally, I roll hard core towards encouraging the process of research and well-thought out plans. After seeing the clusterf*** that my school district forced upon working parents, I encouraged everyone to just get out if it was at all possible. I mean, a year of T4L or some other lighter online curriculum isn't going to win them over in the rigor category, but it is going to give them some peace of mind and control over their lives. If they figure out along the way they want more depth, then they should be more familiar with different curricula and what will work for them. If they are recommended workbooks or T4L and don't like it but don't go any further because they are just waiting for schools to open, then I don't see any reason for them to dump a chunk of change on curriculum. They are just looking for something to get by anyway. I don't see them as homeschoolers and I doubt they do as well.

I do change my recommendations and standards when it comes to upper middle and high school.

The majority of K-2 parents are the ones pulling their kids out anyway. In that case, I recommend working on the basics and lots of free play. 

Under ideal circumstances, parents have time to research and do the work. They've already been doing work twice over. 

  • Like 8
Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Bagels McGruffikin said:

I unfollowed the state page. I literally cannot take the sheer volume of relaxed and unschooling families on there, and not ones who seem to be hitting it out of the park in terms of rigor and passion, either.

It was making me unreasonably furious for their kids, so I came back here to bask in the comfort of a group that at least subscribes to similar levels of academic integrity and rigor as we do.

My eyes needed a break from their bugging out and rolling.

+1 if it is the same facebook page I am thinking of. I unfollowed before COVID, so I can only imagine what it is like now. 

Edited by cintinative
Link to post
Share on other sites

I think this winter is going to get bad, in multiple ways. I think few children will "keep up". There will be families that ride through this fairly unscathed and there are families that will be chaos and extreme hardship.

Focusing on the little stuff can temporarily numb us into a false sense of safety and control. If you are fortunate enough to live in a bubble, that is awesome. We are all going to need as many physically and mentally healthy people available to help those that were damaged by this winter. Those of us in bubbles need to be very careful not to burden those that are not in bubbles.

Shipping is starting to fall apart again. And stupidity is rising. I keep thinking I am done being shocked, and then I am shocked again.

We just need to be careful to know who we are talking to, and understand what they have for resources, now and come winter. This is not same old same old for everyone! The rules have changed.

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/30/2020 at 10:21 AM, PeachyDoodle said:

Same thing here. It's never-ending. If I see one more plug for Power Homeschool or Time 4 Learning I think I'm going to scream. 

I think there is a backlash against the amount of time many kids are spending on school with virtual learning. The idea that you can really educate your middle or high-schooler in an hour a day (because lining up a class to go to the bathroom takes hours, or something) is appealing. Throw in the "it's practically free and uses nothing but this awesome website that will totally figure out exactly how to teach your kid with its super-special AI and you don't have to lift a finger" and it's no wonder people are flocking to "homeschooling" as a solution.

I tell people that education is like physical health -- free, fast, and easy don't exist in one space. You get to pick two, at best. The sooner you accept that you'll have to actually do some work to get results, the better off you'll be. But some people just have to have the homeschool crash diet and learn the hard way.

I know this is going to be hugely unpopular here, but Power Homeschool has some decent classes, really. We're using it again this year.

The history classes are really well done and engaging. My 7th grader is doing HS US History this year followed by:

8- HS geography

9- HS world history 1

10- HS world history 2

11- AP US History

12- AP World History

He's starting HS English this year as well and will be taking College Prep writing in 10th and 2 AP English classes over 11th and 12th.

There's a LOT of good there, and it can be a great, workable solution for some homeschool families. My kids mostly enjoy the teachers and educational videos and classes.

Edited by IfIOnly
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

To me, the problem isn't the use of T4L, or K12 or other online programs. There are some good options, @IfIOnly shows they can be used responsibly and to great benefit.

The problem isn't Walmart workbooks. 

The problem isn't even "learning apps" that are the equivalent of sugar with real fruit flavor* (*not from real fruit).

The problem is parents that aren't willing to put in any effort into the education side of things. This is where I get all uppity on this topic.

I can understand being overwhelmed, I can understand being clueless, I can understand needing a stop gap or an easy in. I can really, really understand not having funds to buy the most-recommended programs. Most of us have been there or close enough to know the landscape.

But it's getting past that that's important. And a lot of these parents are looking for permission to NOT go farther than the bare minimum, and not because they CAN'T, but because they don't WANT to.

And so, who knows, maybe the education standard the kids get will still be ok or better even than they're getting in this hybrid or virtual world, depending on their district. But to me that doesn't excuse the lack of effort. 

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

If it makes you feel any better, we just had a post from a new homeschooler saying their kid is bored with T4L and they are wanting to do more. A bunch more chimed in with the same complaint. 
 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a lot of sympathy for parents in this situation, because the way remote learning is being done by many schools is inappropriate at best. If I had a child in that situation, I would absolutely remove them from public school. However, I would not expect to “homeschool” with very little parent supervision. That is a recipe for disaster.

I looked extensively at the Time 4 Learning curriculum a few years ago when a friend was using it. The curriculum itself isn’t bad, but if a child is expected to school themselves, then even the best curriculum is not any good.
 

Link to post
Share on other sites

If it's sucking up too much time and emotional energy, just unfollow that board and remove yourself.  Parents are making least bad choices this year.  The average kid prior to high school in a happy household with engaged parent is going to be fine for a year.  Any parent making a change is likely engaged.  Maybe they start lazy and their kid deep dives into some books or building Rube Goldberg machines, maybe they talk about the election, etc.  It really isn't a catastrophe and no one needs to be on duty to save these people from themselves.  I think it is harder for high school level and it is probably better to find a way to muddle through for those kids if they are going to return to B&M.  And even high schoolers could prep to dual enroll and have a path to college if necessary. 

I unsubscribed from a bunch of homeschool related stuff this year.  I have enough drama of my own at the moment without getting overly sucked into other people's. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing those pulling kids out to homeschool for just this school year don’t realize is that there are hoops they will have to go through to go back to ps.  Elementary and Jr high probably won’t be too difficult, but those pulling out high school kids will run a greater risk of problems.  We’ve all heard stories of high schools not accepting homeschool transcripts or classes.  Those using fluffier curriculum will especially be likely to run into problems.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry to ressurect, just want to add this for the benefit of those who may be able to advise (perhaps grudgingly) others about how to get the most out of online learning. Note-taking is strongly recommended to help with retaining the info. and for studying before tests and exams. There are two Facebook parent support groups for PH (one "official" and the other "unofficial") that one can get note-taking tips from and lots of other practical help and support. Just though this might help someone.

Edited by IfIOnly
Link to post
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.

×
×
  • Create New...