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Homeschooling Moms Homeschooling Moms

My husband and I come from two different schools of educational thought. My husband was homeschooled (along with his siblings) years ago and seemed to like it. Fortunately, his mother is strong in math and science and he developed his own interest in literature and history, so he's pretty well-rounded. I attended both public and private schools and had wonderful experiences at both (I only switched between the two because I went from living with my mom to living with my dad who insisted that a private education would be better for anyone). We've been talking--rather, my husband's been insisting--that we (read: I) homeschool our kids. I've been doing research on the subject for quite some time and can't get over the fact that every single book I've read is written by an author who had a horrible school experience (be it personally or vicariously through their spouse or child). Reading so much bashing on the school system is hard for me because I loved it so much and flourished in that environment. I understand that everyone is different, but I can tell that my oldest child would do really well in school, also. Can anyone recommend any resources that simply present homeschooling simply as another option and not some way to escape 'the evils and terrors of the school system'? What's also frustrating is that I am doing all this research when my husband (who never went to school himself) just keeps dogging on how awful schools are. The only reason I'm up for homeschooling as of now is because of drastic cuts being made to our local schools in all areas--I think if things were like when I was younger, I'd be 100% for putting my kids in school. I'm not dogging on homeschooling, I'm just looking for unbiased information...if it exists.

by on Jan. 29, 2012 at 2:29 PM
Replies (11-15):
jennabean1511
by on Jan. 30, 2012 at 1:58 PM

There have been many wonderful suggestions, and I really appreciate that. Let me be clear--I'm not trying to say that I think my kids will perform better in one place over another, that one form is better than another, or that anyone is lesser than another for whatever decision they make. Since I had such a great school experience and was very ready and prepared for college, I don't have any reservations about sending my kids to school. I understand that times now are different than when I was in school. I just find myself really torn when deciding between the two methods because there seems to be so much bashing in what I'm reading. I am reading a book by Linda Dobson currently about early years homeschooling (the title escapes me right now) and I remember another 'why I homeschool' type book that did nothing but basically come right out and say that you don't care about your kids if you send them to school (although the Dobson book has been fairly unbiased until about getting 1/2 way through). My husband even came out and said one time that people who send their kids to school are just looking for a babysitter and don't love their kids enough to spend time with them. That's a bit excessive, to say the least. So you can understand how I want to find some unbiased information that simply presents every educational option (i.e. public, private, charter, parochial, montessori, co-op, homeschool, unschool, etc) in an even light so I can openly explore what option will be best for my kids, as opposed to what my husband wants vs. what I want. I'm especially nervous because I'm wrapping up my bachelor's currently and will be starting graduate school in the fall--things are just getting very overwhelming all around and maybe I'm stressing out too much. Any way you slice it, I just want to make the best decision for my kids without feeling like I'm failing them or myself.

Knightquester
by Bronze Member on Jan. 30, 2012 at 2:53 PM

First I wouldn’t suggest reading any “why I chose to do something that is a personal decision” type books because it is types of books are opinionated.  If reading is a way for you to learn try to read books on how to set up a homeschool, different types of homeschooling, ways to schedule and types of curriculum for homeschoolers.  Those types of books might be less opinionated and more informative.  I haven’t read any so again I have no suggestions.

Yes there are some that use public school as a babysitter and they don’t partake in their children’s education, but this isn’t the case for all.  I have met lazy public school parents, lazy private school parents and lazy homeschool parents so really your husband’s theory that one type means more love then another cannot be proven true and is his own biased opinion.  When my children were public schooled I made sure they knew how to read, write and do arithmetic prior to entering school, I still worked with them every night, I volunteered in their classroom, I helped run the library and to raise money for their school.  I participated in their education no differently then I do now that we’re homeschooling because that’s the type of parent I am, an involved one.

Quoting jennabean1511:

There have been many wonderful suggestions, and I really appreciate that. Let me be clear--I'm not trying to say that I think my kids will perform better in one place over another, that one form is better than another, or that anyone is lesser than another for whatever decision they make. Since I had such a great school experience and was very ready and prepared for college, I don't have any reservations about sending my kids to school. I understand that times now are different than when I was in school. I just find myself really torn when deciding between the two methods because there seems to be so much bashing in what I'm reading. I am reading a book by Linda Dobson currently about early years homeschooling (the title escapes me right now) and I remember another 'why I homeschool' type book that did nothing but basically come right out and say that you don't care about your kids if you send them to school (although the Dobson book has been fairly unbiased until about getting 1/2 way through). My husband even came out and said one time that people who send their kids to school are just looking for a babysitter and don't love their kids enough to spend time with them. That's a bit excessive, to say the least. So you can understand how I want to find some unbiased information that simply presents every educational option (i.e. public, private, charter, parochial, montessori, co-op, homeschool, unschool, etc) in an even light so I can openly explore what option will be best for my kids, as opposed to what my husband wants vs. what I want. I'm especially nervous because I'm wrapping up my bachelor's currently and will be starting graduate school in the fall--things are just getting very overwhelming all around and maybe I'm stressing out too much. Any way you slice it, I just want to make the best decision for my kids without feeling like I'm failing them or myself.


Anna92464
by Member on Jan. 30, 2012 at 2:55 PM

I cannot give you any resources, but I can tell you about my experience.   I chose to homeschool, not because we were having problems with the school. In fact, my oldest was doing great there.  I started homeschooling her in the 5th grade, and my younger daughter in the 1st grade.  I did it because I wanted to have fun with  them, and build a strong family in this way. I don't think it's the ONLY way. It was just the way I chose.   I homeschooled them through high school.  My oldest married young, and my younger daughter went on to college (she's 21 and in college now) and doing great.  My youngest is 11 now.  I put him in school for 1st , 2nd, and 3rd, and started homeschooling him this year.  This time for different reasons.  He needs one on one attention that he was not going to get at school without a fight from me, so I took the more pleasant for us route.  Homeschooling has it's positives and negatives just like public and private schooling have theirs.  I like to focus on the positive.  I am struggling right now because of my son's learning issues and it's a challenge teaching him.  But they were not doing it at school at all, and that was the negative.  He misses music class and art class, but sings in the choir and has time for taekwondo and being part of our communtiy theater, so he certainly is not lonely.  Hope that helps you in your research. Just another story out of many.  Good luck!

Knightquester
by Bronze Member on Jan. 30, 2012 at 3:00 PM

You need to stick to your guns and choose what you feel is best and you want.  If you feel private or public school right now is best then go with it.  You need to do whatever is best not only for your child, but also you as a parent, because a parent not into homeschooling will have a hard time making it a successful and good experience.  The beauty about homeschooling is you can always try it out when you want to, if it doesn't' work you can always step out of it, so it's not like you'd be closing a door permanently if you were to not homeschool your child initially.

Now I will say I was public schooled, had a bad experience and asked to be homeschooled as a child.  My homeschool experience (while good) is very different then what my children are getting.  We chose a different route and approach that would work best for us.  You should do the same no matter what type of education you choose as long as you stay an involved parent working to do what you feel is best for your child then you really can't go wrong.  Good luck :-)

globalhorse45
by on Jan. 31, 2012 at 1:58 PM

I hated school as a kid.  I was always moving around and so was always the new kid and got picked on for that in addition to being in resource math and being in physical/occupational therapy from Head Start to beginning of 6th grade.  I was Speech Therapy from Head Start to beginning of 9th grade when I got myself suspended and then expelled.  I wish homschool had been something that had been suggested when I was a child and wish I had been given the opportunity for that.  But I know mom would never have allowed it at all.  My bullying was brushed aside and I was told to stand up for myself and quit being weird (I had a phase as a teen where I dressed in nothing but black/dark blue and dark red clothing).  I'm naturally shy and overly sensitive so my feelings get hurt easily.  I haven't read any books on homeschooling.  Never knew it really existed outside of watching Little House on the Prarire and Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman.  I've read that HS kids are better socialized than PS kids and better prepared for college then PS kids.  Think about it.  When are you EVER going to be working with the same age group or going to school with the same age group?  NEVER!  PS doesn't give children that extra attention they could get at home with HS.  There's bullying, gangs, sex, kids cutting class, drug use, smoking, making out under the bleachers at sports, teachers having 'favorites', gun violence, sexual harassment, teachers possibly screwing their students.  But perhaps I'm biased due to my own experiences.  I won't ever allow my kids in homeschool.  Perhaps you could search on Amazon for books about homeschooling or maybe try to interview PS and HS kids.  Good luck and make the best decision for your family.

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