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What would be your first reaction on hearing that a child is being home-educated?

by VerityG (follow)
A life lived in fear is a life half lived.
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A lot of families who home educate find they get some very negative responses from other people. What would be your first reaction on hearing that a child is home educated?

#Home School
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I think home schooling is great for several reasons:

1. There is serious lack of school places available
2. When your at school, disruptive students will hinder your child's learning
3. Children learn at different speeds and in different ways, so it is best to have your child's style specifically catered for
4. One on one learning means that your child has the teacher's full attention, and far more work can get done.
5. No school, no school bullies.

My first reaction to hearing someone is being homeschooled is 'lucky; I wish I had been homeschooled.'
My own kids are currently home educated so I would probably think something like "cool! Maybe we can be friends," or "so, do you unschool or...?" A lot of people do respond negatively, often without much knowledge about homeschooling in general, let alone our situation in particular, but mostly I can't really be bothered getting into a discussion with them about it. We don't have to prove anything to random strangers, and for family and friends hopefully they will see the proof in our happy, well educated kids.
I think "tell me more!" on the whole, as I am currently considering home educating our son but I have now heard a lot of stories of people being investigated by social services as nosy neighbours have reported them to the authorities, as they think all children should be in school and not educated at home. Families can also be quite negative about it, so it would be interesting to hear what everyone else's first reactions are.
Families tend to be negative before they see it in action. As for reports to social services, if you are sure to tell people it's legal, and that you are following the laws in your area … who cares ;) Social services come to your house, look at the fact you're well within the law and write it off as a vexations report.
by meggf
I'd want to hear more! I'm giving consideration to homeschooling so I'd like to hear how it all works. I'd have lots of questions like: Will it work if I have a job? how do we meet other families so my kids can interact with others? How does it affect their options for uni? We are most likely going to be sending our kids to mainstream school, at least to start with, but the idea of home education excites me!
I would live to hear more. How do they do it.
by Gia

by Gia
School is a ridiculous concept. You shove a whole lots of kids together simply because they are the same age - even though they may have nothing else in common. Lots of children get on better with older or younger children but this is discouraged - even in the playground! The curriculum fits no one because it is aimed at "the average", bullying is rife and there is such a huge stress on academic subjects that even art and music require long boring essays and assessments. If your child is different in any way, there's a good chance they'll be unhappy at school and the social interaction they are subjected to can be heart breaking.
If you try it and it doesn't work for you, you can still send them to school later. I've met lots of delightful well adjusted home schooled kids who can hold their own in any social situation.
I would say

"I could NEVER do that"

"how do you socialise them?" and

"how do you teach them maths?"

Actually no I wouldn't. I'd heave a sigh of relief at not having to explain how it's not actually as hard as you think, they have heaps of friends, and they just learn maths coz no one has told them it sux.

I"m probably the wrong person for this question :P
I hate the idea for a few reasons, unless it is the only option.
Children need to be able to interact, with other children.
All part of being healthy and well balanced.
Do you think that children can interact in the classroom? My memories of school mostly involve being told to be quiet and sit still, with little interaction or co-operation encouraged. I suppose there's always playtime but that was only a few minutes each day.
My kids have heaps of friends, we attend homeschool social groups and classes with lots of other kids. They also have each other and masses of cousins. Homeschooling is MORE social than school because my kids play with lots of kids from all walks of life, and different ages.

It's a myth that home schooled kids sit in a room alone all day. If you google your local area the odds are good you'll find a group that meets near you!
by meggf
I have many reasons why I feel the way I do, and another one is that children have 'time away' from parents.
As silly as that may sound, it helps in life later when the time come to get a job.
I can talk from experience.But! I do understand 'why' a lot of people do home school believe me.

by jonaja
Thats the primary concern but children are socialized in many different situations such as church, playground, with neighbours, going to the store etc. There may be instances where children are isolated but thats not the norm.
by Gia
I'd be genuinely interested to know why and hear how it works. I have two friends who home school and did it later on in their children's lives as both schools did not tackle the bullying epidemic occurring at the respective schools. It took one of the girls years to recover from the bullying she'd received and home schooling was the absolute best environment for her. In terms of being 'socialized' the children attended group sports and other extra curricular activities the same as many children do. There was no issue.
My children will be going to main stream school but if I faced these terrible instances I'd consider all of my options. The school system does fail some children and I'd rather home school than have them fall victim of the consequences of severe destructive bullying.
I certainly think that homeschooling has its benefits. I know several people who've been educated that way, and they loved it. Of course, I imagine it also has its challenges.

Had we not found a school we like for our son, I would have entertained the idea of homeschooling him.

by Vee
I think home schooling is a great alternative education choice - however, the temperament of the child needs to be taken into account. It may not be the best choice for all children/parents, so careful consideration is a must. Maybe a trial period is a good idea to begin with?
by Lucy
My friend's sister does it, in country NSW. She had to get some basic textbooks, etc, but has chosen to do it because they couldn't afford the fees for the local Catholic school and the country bums were in the state school.
Home-schooling is wonderful, providing that you and your children enjoy it. I home-schooled my 22 year-old daughter for two years in primary school and another two in high school, and it certainly didn't hurt her at all. In fact, we both agree that it enriched her life and her experience of learning. She's one of the most enthusiastic and self-motivated learners I've ever met...and often says that homeschooling encouraged her to independently pursue areas of learning in ways that she could never have done if she had only been in the classroom. As a child she developed a strong attraction to learning about history through children's literature and documentaries, and now as a young adult she's almost completed a BA, majoring in history, and plans to go post-grad.

So...go for it!!! It's such an awesome way to bond with your children, share their learning journey and to teach them that learning really is fun. It's hard to ignore negative relies and nosy neighbours, but when they see the positive results they're always impressed.
At first I thought homeschooling a child was a strange concept. However, since the birth of my two sons we've decided to homeschool our children for at least the earlier years. I've noticed that they are performing at the same level and many times higher than the kids that go to school regularly. It really works.
I do get a lot of negative feedback when I mention that I homeschool. People keep talking about the need for socialization.
that mom is super

nothing wrong with home schooling, they grow up to be intelligent people able to hold their own in any situation.

Being at home cuts out all the long travelling time by bus or train to get to and from school.

many children in country areas learn from home in their early years.

My first response would be "Us too!".
If the parents have the patience to do it and have done their research and genuinely believe its the right thing for their child then they should totally go for it! Home schooling these days can mean many things from "unschooling" to distance education, school of the air, tutoring or parents following the national curriculum. I think that some children are not designed for mainstream school for a variety of reasons. They may have special needs, for a mental or physical setback or social issues, they could have learning difficulties or be particularly gifted or maybe the parents just want to have more control on providing their child a better variety of options when it comes to learning. As the child of a teacher I am well aware of the fact that many children get lost in the system, large class sizes, a lack of support for teachers when it comes to dealing with disruptions to the class by other students and the difficulties in personalising plans for individual children to excel. The waiting list on good schools can be long and therefor some if not all schooling may need to be done from home.
My son wanted to be home schooled after being bullied by students and humilated by his teacher. I think if you are able there is not an issue. Some children need more stimulated than what the school can provide. My child needs the social interaction as he is an introvert. I also dont have the time as a care for my husband who is disabled.
I take my hat off to these parents, as the public system is less than desirable, I would love to home school my kids but wouldn't know how and I work 6 days a week, so it's financially not possible
With bullying so much worse than it ever was. And also kids stuck in a class with other kids with learning / behavioural problems (adhd) are not able to learn anything because the teachers time is totaly consumed by the problem child. I can perfectly understand why some mothers are home schooling, and with one on one tutoring their children have the oportunity to become more advanced than children held back by a strict learning curriculum. Good luck to all mums home schooling your children. DO NOT let any (jealous) person make you feel bad or giulty.
With bullying so much worse than it ever was. And also kids stuck in a class with other kids with learning / behavioural problems (adhd) are not able to learn anything because the teachers time is totaly consumed by the problem child. I can perfectly understand why some mothers are home schooling, and with one on one tutoring their children have the oportunity to become more advanced than children held back by a strict learning curriculum. Good luck to all mums home schooling your children. DO NOT let any (jealous) person make you feel bad or giulty.
someone has loads of cash its expensive not to work.
Are the parents capable of educating the child?
Hats off to the parent(s) that home school. I realise you are dedicated to providing the best teaching you can offer and give up spare time to put your children first.
I would be very interested as I have never met anyone who has taught their own chidren or been taught by a parent. I think they are mostly thought as fringe nutters, which is a bit sad. I would probably ask what sort of curriculum they are using, how they structure lessons and breaks, whether they do a lot of that marvellous outdoor schooling, if they have one or several children being home schooled and if they would accept that a child needed help due to medical issues, autism etc. Fancy never having to be at the mercy of the vagaries of the weather either! What bliss.
by Rice
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