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Would You Homeschool Your Child?

by Spiceup (follow)
Children (252)      Home (187)      Education (92)      School (54)     

If you had the chance and the opportunity would you home school your child or children? With bullying on the rise and schools not doing their duties, many parents are turning to home schooling. In fact there has been a 60% rise in parents who have turned to home schooling their children in Australia this year. How do you feel about this? Are teachers really the experts or are parents the experts of their children?

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We have been homeschool our three children ages 6,8 and 14 with positive results. We follow a curriculum, allow them to learn at their own pace. They socialise in their sporting groups, in their neighbourhood, library, at Scouts and amongst family members. School is not the only social avenue and in my opinion shouldn't be a social avenue at all. Our children learn with care, patience and love; something they will never get in school where they are just a number.
Homeschooling is not the solution for bullying. Keeping your children at home means that you are separating them from society. At school, children not only gain more knowledge but also learn how to deal with different social situations. There they make new friends, practice their social skills, learn how to stand up for themselves and establish their own place in society. These are the skills they have to acquire sooner or later in their life. And to be honest, it is better to make mistakes earlier when they are still young than to have difficulty settling in later when they are grown up. Therefore, I think parents should guide their children along, teaching them how to deal with the bullying instead of taking them out of the scene. Admit it, you can keep your kids home with you and educate them yourself, but you can't follow them all their life to help them with problems that will arise because you don't let them learn these kind of lessons themselves when they are still young.
I disagree. Keeping your child at home is not separating them from society. School is not society. If anything, it's school that separates them from society by segregating them so they can only associate with a relatively small group of the same people day after day, all of whom are the same age as them, which hardly prepares them for "different social situations." It also absolutely does not teach them to deal with bullying, unless by "deal with" you mean "learn to bully or be bullied." There was a whole lot of talk in the schools I went to about preventing bullying but nothing was ever really done about it. Lots of kids who are bullied at school go on to be bullied in workplaces and social groups, lots of kids who bully gon on to be adult bullies. Just being at school doesn't somehow magically fix it.

With a full-time job, home schooling really isn't an option. I would have liked to try it, as it sounds interesting, but on balance I think that children learn something more important at school than just to read, write and do maths. The social environment, and learning to empathise, work with, support others, and also manage conflict, is a huge part of the school experience. I'm not sure how I could have replicated that at home. I also think that I wouldn't be as good a teacher as the ones who have been trained to do it, and had many years experience.
I always wished I could have been home schooled. I think with a proper tutor, children will learn a lot more with one-on-one education. There will be no distractions from disruptive students, the teacher won't have their attention divided between different pupils, and they will be able to learn in a way specifically geared towards their needs. There are other benefits as well, such as not having to travel, which means children can sleep longer in the morning and not be so tired when it comes to starting lessons.

There are of course downsides. First off, hiring a personal tutor is expensive, and not many parents can afford that kind of education Second, children won't have the opportunity to make school friends, and might find themselves isolated, and lonely.
But then there won't be any competition. My parents tried to homeschool my little brother once, and it turned into a disaster. He didn't find any motivation with his study since he didn't have anyone to compare. Of course he had our full attention, but then it was not enough. We had to modify the schedule to fit his progress, so that might not be a good thing.
by annep
It all depends on the individual. Not all children need competition to be motivated. Some can compete against themselves, trying to out do their last performance.
I think you're right, Bryony, that there are loads of upsides to having a personal tutor who can give the child full and undivided attention and a learning plan that is tailored to the child.

Most people I've encountered who are homeschooling are just doing it themselves though, rather than hiring a private tutor, so they need make sure they deliver the the curriculum and they do get support from the local authority to do it.I'm not sure how easy that woud be to do if you weren't a trained teacher.
When the parents are teaching, it can be more problematic, as they are probably not qualified teachers. They might be able to teach up to primary level, but I think at secondary school age, they need someone who is specialised in certain subjects.

As well as the difficulty of parents teaching when they have to work themselves, I think there is something beneficial about a child learning from someone who isn't their mum or dad. It might be a bit like having your mum and dad trying to teach you how to drive. Doesn't always quite work.
I don't think I'd like to be home schooled. If I did head down that path, I'd prefer the idea of hiring someone to do it. It's pretty normal for teens to get sick of their parents, resentful etc and imagine if that parent is also your teacher? And pretty much in your face 12 hours a day, and then at dinner and at night? Where's your escape? Not really about the education. I can pick up the slack or look at a different school, if that was my concern.
I don't think I'd like to be home schooled. If I did head down that path, I'd prefer the idea of hiring someone to do it. It's pretty normal for teens to get sick of their parents, resentful etc and imagine if that parent is also your teacher? And pretty much in your face 12 hours a day, and then at dinner and at night? Where's your escape? Not really about the education. I can pick up the slack or look at a different school, if that was my concern.
None of the homeschoolers I've met spend 12 hours a day in their kids' faces. Some use a method called unschooling so they don't have formal classes at all. Others get all their schoolwork done in a couple of hours, since a large part of what you do in a mainstream school day is lining up and waiting for everybody to finish things etc. not to mention travel time.
I meant more along the lines of where is your (the teen) world not involving the parent (or the parents house or parents opinions). Not necessarily that you were physically next to each other the whole time.
My daughter began home schooling her children from birth. Although money is tight, she is putting their well being before creature comforts. They are both under five, but their vocabulary, including French for the 4 year old, and general knowledge is amazing. As for the variety they experience in the science and art spheres........Physical and social activities are not neglected. The latter is always the argument against home schooling, but their is nothing to stop them participating in extracurricular activities, and home schoolers are a supportive bunch. I had the pleasure of seeing this in action at one of their camping activities.
Yesterday I saw a school noticeboard with a very obvious punctuation error. I've seen other schools advertise their spelling and grammar shortcomings in a similar manner. Add bullying to the mix and there are plenty of reasons why the caring and thoughtful parent is home schooling.
I home schooled two of my children for two years. The elder boy had been at school for two years and loved it, but now he was being teased, he found the classroom environment difficult to concentrate in, and his younger brother was missing his company. There was a 4 year gap between them so I had to give them separate tasks to do, but they were happy to work independently, sometimes pausing for long periods to play an elaborate game together in a way that would have been impossible if my elder son had been at school all day. I never pressured them to stick to a timetable, but at the end of the real school day I sent my son off to play with his best friend who was still at the school he'd left. Even so, he eventually got bored with being at home, so I sent him to a new (very small) school that his best friend had been moved to, and my younger son started at the same school at the same time, a year later than he would have otherwise started school. Both boys thrived at the new school - the teachers were quite surprised that they weren't 'behind' in any way - in fact their reading skills were well in advance of most of the other children's, and their social skills hadn't suffered at all. My reward was to get to know both my boys in ways that I wouldn't have done otherwise, and to see them develop a strong bond that has stayed with them into adulthood. Yes, it was a full-time job, but far less stressful than being a class teacher!
I am homeschooling my 5 and 6 year old after years of working full-time and having my children in daycare out of necessity. We have formed a wonderful bond which we would never have had the opportunity otherwise to forge, and the children are doing splendidly - learning at their own pace with the love and care of a home environment. We are fortunate enough to have made friends with other homeschooling families so the children don't miss out socially either, in fact, they are confident among adults and children.
No I wouldn't. I am not sure if I would be patient enough and I think children learn social skills and meet lots of new friends.
I homeschooled for a couple of years. Worked well with my independent child but not so well with the more social one. We knew quite a lot of other homeschoolers though and did visits and outings. It can work really well for children who don't fit the school system. I am a teacher so I know the pros and cons from all sides.
No I wont, the exposure you get in school, that kids wont get at home school.
In my opinion, if parents are academically competent, home-schooling is a great educational option. I home-schooled my daughter for two years in primary and another two years in high school, and she's not been disadvantaged by it at all. In fact, she's excelled academically, much more so than many of her peers. She's almost 22 now and has just about completed her BA, with really incredible results. Next year she plans to do her honours and wants to progress eventually to her PhD, so she can be a museum curator and academic. She loved being home-schooled and often says that it helped her discover her passion for history as well as develop an ability to be an independent, self-motivated learner.

Regarding socialisation, like Jennifer said, in many ways schools separate kids from real life and society. When our daughter was little we took her out to various nature and craft books, and also met up with homeschooling groups and excursions once in a while. We also spent a couple of months travelling around Australia and another few in Asia where she met people from all different lifestyles and backgrounds, something most kids never experience. When she was 14 we found her a part-time job (which taught her a lot about responsibility with money) and she also did volunteer work at Oxfam, where she learn about global issues such as poverty and human rights.

Regarding teachers 'not doing their job', I don't believe that's the case though. Most teachers I know are sincere and hard-working...and often overworked, having to deal with all kinds of kids (including large classes, huge variations in academic ability and kids with learning and emotional problems, and much more). If some parents made more effort to teach their kids basic manners, the classroom would be a much more pleasant environment for all.
Yes and I am doing it now
by Gia
Definitely NOT!

Their chances of landing a really GOOD job would be zilch!

Can't buck the system. It won't work. Detrimental to children big time, & is a let down for them for their life, actually! Stupid, too!

Recognised Government Schooling is a must for their future.
Just the fact they're NOT inter-acting with other children, & gaining social skills, ability to play sport as a team member, is negative, & wrong for the child.

Personally, at ALL my job interviews', it was remarked at my Sporting achievements, in many different fields. So I was 'literally' a 'team player' already, in many ways! Any job for which I applied, I was successful, thank goodness!

Our children went to local State School, which was excellent, & had a marvellous Headmaster, Kindy to Grade IV.

Then onto Private Schooling, which was THE best in the City, Grades V to XII, inclusive.
They are now both Professionals in their chosen fields.
Son is a Head Chef, with Patisserie Certificate, & B.Hosp.Mgt.
Daughter has B.Fin.Plan, & M.Fin.Plan., & is a JP.

NONE of the above would've been able to be achieved through 'home schooling'. Pffft!

yes. if we had the money. But the other half is very negative on the idea. I really don't like institutionalising people from the age of 4.
Personally I would not as I think children need to spend time learning from other children and adults, not just me.
However I can certainly see the attraction in educating your kids the way you see fit, especially with prep starting at such a young age and being quite full-on.
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