Homeschooling Comparison - IMHO (ok,... IMO)

I often am asked (well, I see it on Facebook, so they MUST want my opinion, right?) for my input on the difference between homeschooling and other options.

I was a public school teacher in that far away life that occurred before we had our children. I LOVED my school. I LOVED teaching. If we were ever blessed with children, we decided during that time, that we would homeschool them. There were lots of reasons. None of the reasons included "fear." Here is the list I wrote up about 7 years ago. I've edited it slightly for who we are today.

(Oh, at the end, there's a discount code for my Spanish Geniuses: Level 1 Lesson 1 - I can't write a blog post without a coupon of SOME sort!)

Homeschool

Public, Private, Charter School

Low teacher student ratio (1:3 or so)

“Low” teacher student ratio is considered 1:15

Teacher is whole heartedly dedicated to student

Frequent subs, burn outs, but also often GREAT, passionate teachers (who are frequently over worked and underpaid)

Family time is never lacking

Other people’s priorities and schedules often rule family’s time

Good relationships take time and happen automatically, because you HAVE to get along

Time for family must be scheduled in, and everyone has to learn how to be together (it’s a minority of your time which is lived together, just do the math on travel and hours in school and activities)

Character issues are not/ cannot be overlooked.

Character issues are sometimes hidden because they aren’t “big enough” or “bad enough” to write/call home about.

No time-wasting with roll call, absences, busy work, announcements, reviewing stuff because the “other students” didn't catch it the first time.

Lots of paper work, forms, legalese that simply is required when dealing with a conveyor belt system, to protect all parties involved.

Books and planning costs money, you do have to put in the hours.

Use the system that your tax dollars pay for.

Children become passionate about their learning when they can direct it (My son is an excellent chef - write his own recipes. He began at age 8. Has his own website. Etc etc. Doubtful public school would’ve allow time for that, simply because of the lack of hours at home.)

Children have little to no say what they will be studying day to day or year to year.

 

You do have to plan the day and curriculum.

You get to send the kids off to be schooled by others trained to do this stuff!

Each education is custom. Go as fast or as slow as you need to get mastery. Passions can be fed, hard concepts can get sorted out.

Teachers must stay on pace with the ISD, or the other classes, or the neighboring school, or simply with the other 20 students. If your child gets it, and is bored, sorry. He has to learn that learning is boring. If he fails, sorry, we have to move on. He fails. Gaps are created, or discipline issues.

The parent deems the material worthy at the developmental appropriate age. If your 11 year old son is still playing with action figures, he may not be ready for a course on Sex-Ed… It could actually be damaging. You don’t get a say in someone else’s system.

A school board/ committee decides what is appropriate, and the teachers must adhere. The teachers, the ones who love your child, have very little say in the curriculum - when, what, to teach… even sometimes HOW to teach it is mandated.

All the patriots —- all the great inventors, the great artists, the great…. anythings… Homeschooled. Look them up. Jefferson, Franklin, Adams, Davinci… or their school was a scholar format - 1 mentor, 3 students. Hey! Just like mom and her three kids! Except with LOVE.

The public school endeavor is quite new - only 250 years old. We’re still figuring it out. And the results are stellar only from the ones with extremely engaged parents…. hey - just like home schooling!

Children are in a loving, respectful environment day-to-day with many ages and backgrounds.

Children are in an environment with 20+ children their same age- very difficult to learn from someone your own age - all vying for attention and  a pecking order in this unusual social environment concocted by a system needing to educate students all at once, as if they match in abilities and interests. (Can you think of ANY other situation where all the participants are the same age?)

Childhood is short. We miss it because we don’t get to see our kids enough. Homeschooling helps us to soak it in, and do what WE want to do with our lives.

Childhood is short, and competition is rampant - children automatically compare what they have, how they act —- and they’re given 20+ other children to measure up against daily. Thus starting them on the “not enough” rat race that we try to get out of when we look around at age 40 and say - hey! I’m half done here. What did I actually WANT to do with my life?

Training is easier (manners, respect, normal habits) when you spend more time with your “trainees.”

Children pick up habits everywhere. It’s harder to train them when they’re with another main influence for the bulk of their day. We spend many hours on agonizing lessons de-coding the negative habits they pick up.

Faith is a hard fight when it’s fought against by others. Whatever you want to pass on to your children… is not “caught” it must be taught. When will you do this? Just on Sundays?

Faith is not “programmed or deprogrammed” here. We know people who homeschool because they are atheists and feel the schools have too much religion in them, and they want to protect their child. Faith has no place during school hours.

Authority figures are easy to choose - classes, scout leaders, church leaders, grandma and grandpa, piano teacher, co-op parents…. etc etc

Authority Figures are given - and if they aren’t whom they seem to be or someone we’d admire and respect ourselves, we frequently find out AFTER the trauma has occurred.

Scheduling is great. We go to the grocery store when it’s nice and empty, not hungry, not in a rush. Everything is learning - budgeting, ingredients, planning, all these things happen in LIFE, not in a classroom on a worksheet.

 

Field trips, family vacations, even WHERE WE LIVE is more free, because we don’t have to worry about school calendars, school district lines, bus schedules and routes.

Vacations and normal daily errands have to be when everyone else in the world is at the grocery store, and you have a time limit to get all your “stuff done.” Fun stuff and otherwise, is dictated by others.

Bullying. No where near our house. Ever. The kids wouldn’t event think twice about telling a kid off, for treating any one of them poorly. (And they’ve had to do it. The first question to the bully was: 'Hey man, what’s the matter with you?' It was unusual, unexpected. They were not accustomed to children being unkind in their world. The bully backed off pretty quick after he pushed my second eldest, and my eldest jumped up and pushed him right back. Our kids are a team. They’ve got each other. For life.)

Kids have bullying clubs, classes, posters, etc. And the bullying is increasing. The children need an advocate. And there are none in the hallways and on the bus. They simply aren’t there. Their advocates (siblings, family) are in another homeroom, somewhere else, trying to fight this rat race we’ve put them into beginning at age 4, now.

Clothing can be whatever is comfortable. They can have a uniform school in pjs, or super hero costumes or whatever. Saves money!

 

Our children are treated good or negatively based on actions and attitudes. This teaches that worth comes from the inside out.

Unfortunately, people treat us based first on what they SEE. So we have to make our outside match as closely as possible to the expected and accepted  “look” - teaching our children that worth comes from the outside in.

Sports: Students get to play more often, usually, and have more games. But parents have to put in more energy to commit.

Sports: Easy to implement, lots of passionate instruction, cost wise, WAY cheaper, not as much chance to shine.

 

As always, this is all based on MY opinion. But maybe it'll make a few people stop and think about the system. It's a good system for the masses. If you don't want to be in the masses, you can step out. I believe in you.

Spanish Geniuses Coupon code for Lesson 1 of Level one (60% off!)

Use this code:  VAMOS

 


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