| Register  | FAQ  | Search | Login 
It is currently Sun Aug 31, 2014 1:33 am

All times are UTC - 6 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 66 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Sat Oct 23, 2010 6:42 pm 
Offline
Trapped On A Desert Island With A Cow
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 1:30 pm
Posts: 431
Location: ATX
i would love to hear from any parents who currently are or who have homeschooled for all or part of their child's education, and their thoughts as to benefits for child and for the parents who are staying home.

we are seriously considering this for milo. the portland public schools are kind of notoriously bad, so everyone starts at kindergarten age trying to get into one of the charter schools, which are based on the lottery system. listening to parents talk about getting their kids into KINDERGARTEN sounds like my friends and i did when we were 16 trying to get into ivy league schools. i mean WHAT THE HELL. do i want to take part in this? i'm starting to think NO.

i am already running a daycare out of our home and spending a lot of time with milo, teaching him and the other children in my care through play and exploring what they are interested in, ala reggio emilia with a little waldorf and a smattering of montessori thrown in, and some heavy mary griffith and john holt influence. i feel like i could continue to do this with success, and maybe even get some like-minded parents involved, co-op style, so that there is a lot of socialization and activity.

am i crazy and possibly going to get in over my head?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Sat Oct 23, 2010 6:46 pm 
Offline
Has gasoline in her veins
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 1:58 pm
Posts: 3332
Location: pdx
I don't have kids but I was homeschooled off and on until high school. If you're dedicated to your child's education and provide them with enough chances to socialize with other kids, it can be a very rewarding experience for both of you. Are there any local homeschooling groups you can call for suggestions?

_________________
"I rebuke this thread in the name of Jesus." -Jagadeesh


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Sat Oct 23, 2010 7:13 pm 
Offline
Making Threats to Punks Again
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 2:22 pm
Posts: 1117
Location: va
I don't think you are going to get in over your head. You have a background in child education to start with which helps you. I would also like to hear about it from parents in the know, as I am seriously considering this for my girls.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Sat Oct 23, 2010 8:57 pm 
Offline
Grandfathered In
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 1:41 pm
Posts: 9520
Location: Seattle
My (sketchy) knowledge of unschooling tells me it's not for me. Or GlueGun. I don't mean homeschooling, which I'm ambivalent about, but unschooling, which doesn't necessarily happen at home. I believe that while children wilt in a rigid environment, they float away in an unstructured environment.

And by that comment, I may have demonstrated that I know even less than I thought about unschooling.

_________________
Did somebody say Keep on rockin?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Sun Oct 24, 2010 4:33 am 
Offline
Tofu Pup Forever
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 1:19 pm
Posts: 17
Joanna, I think if you decide to do this you're going to make sure to do it right. I'd love to hear how this process goes for you and Milo.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Sun Oct 24, 2010 7:42 am 
Offline
Be afraid... be very afraid
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 7:10 pm
Posts: 295
Location: HadToMove
Look, I think you could handle anything, so in my mind it's not a question of ability. One of my dearest friends homeschools, and her advice would be to stay flexible. Her oldest ended up going to public school in middle school, and she's been in a homeschool teaching "group" for years. Find what works and be willing to be objective so that you can make adjustments.
As for dealing with parents, strap in - I have been nothing less than shocked at how everything - from what clothes they wear to whose mother comes in more for story time to playdates - is a competition.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Sun Oct 24, 2010 10:47 am 
Offline
Trapped On A Desert Island With A Cow
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 1:30 pm
Posts: 431
Location: ATX
we haven't decided for sure if this is what we're doing. we are still reading books and websites and talking with friends and fellow parents. milo is turning 3 in december, so there is no real rush. we don't know what the next 2 years of our life holds, frankly! i mean, the fact that we own a house now means that we probably won't be picking up and moving anytime soon -- across town or across the country, which we were wont to prior to a year ago -- but there could be life changes that make this impossible. in the last eight months alone, everything has drastically changed in our lives. it would be silly to think that how it is now is how it will be when he's school-aged.

i just wanted to put feelers out and hopefully get some input from parents who are currently doing this.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Sun Oct 24, 2010 1:20 pm 
Offline
Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 7:47 pm
Posts: 1810
Location: vancouver island
i haven't done this yet as my son's only 2 1/2, but i'm hoping to! you sound like you already have a good idea about it, but just in case you haven't read Guerilla Learning yet, please do! it's useful and inspirational, and it lists tons of resources. i think as long as you're able to provide a lot of socialization time, it will be great combined with your child education experience. i think i'm in a similar position as you though, with the whole "wait and see" as to where we are we he's reached the age where we have to decide if he's unschooling or going to public school. (although, we are planning to put him through french immersion if we don't unschool.)

_________________
when you realise how perfect everything is, you will tilt you head back and laugh at the sky. -buddha


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Sun Oct 24, 2010 10:04 pm 
Offline
Loves Carrots (in the biblical sense)

Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2010 6:00 am
Posts: 78
We've been unschooling for four years now, since my son was in second grade. Most of the families in my homeschool group unschool as well, and I don't think any of us set out to do anything less than school at home with a full curriculum. We just found over time that formal schoolwork with Mom or Dad playing teacher didn't work in our families, but we knew sending them to school didn't work for us either. I believe that anyone who wants to homeschool can do it as long as they remain flexible and have the resources to have a parent or caregiver at home all the time.

I love it. It's the best decision we ever made and I'm grateful every day for the opportunity. I do wish for more time to myself sometimes, that's probably my only gripe. But the older they get, the less urgently I feel that need because they aren't as high maintenance as they were when they were younger. They do fight, but they mostly enjoy each other's company and all the time we spend together makes us exceptionally close. I also love that they have so much time to have fun. It's 10:30 p.m. on a Sunday as I'm posting this and they're on the trampoline in the back yard with three of their closest friends from the homeschool group. Another perk is the ability to avoid crowds almost everywhere we go. Once you've had a museum or an amusement park almost entirely to yourself, you never want to go on a Saturday again. Ever.

My kids are so hungry for information and they soak up so much more than I ever did in school because they are genuinely interested in whatever they choose to learn about. My son learned to read and write in public school, but my daughter has learned written language as easily and as naturally as she learned to speak. They amaze me constantly with all of the things they know that I did not teach them. But it's still a full time job making sure they have access to the things they want to learn and do. Unschooling is not unparenting. It's leading by example rather than just letting the kids sink or swim (or float away).


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 10:40 am 
Offline
Trapped On A Desert Island With A Cow
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 1:30 pm
Posts: 431
Location: ATX
thank you so much for your thoughtful post, heathenmama.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 10:50 am 
Offline
Bathes in Braggs
User avatar

Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2010 7:03 am
Posts: 1308
Location: Nova Scotia
FootFace wrote:
My (sketchy) knowledge of unschooling tells me it's not for me. Or GlueGun. I don't mean homeschooling, which I'm ambivalent about, but unschooling, which doesn't necessarily happen at home. I believe that while children wilt in a rigid environment, they float away in an unstructured environment.

And by that comment, I may have demonstrated that I know even less than I thought about unschooling.


Yep, it's along the lines of "You can't possibly get enough protein if you are vegan."

To quote one of my favourite unschooling moms, Sandra Dodd, "Unschooling is not unparenting."

My oldest son unschooled until he went to school in grade ten (the start of high school here). He's a fabulous kid and did really well in classes and extracirricular in school. He graduated with high honours and the highest mark in his grade twelve advanced (honours) math class though he had never done any cirriculum-like math before he went to school.

My second son is not going to go to public school at all. He is 15. He will very likely go to university, though, as I think he is brilliant. I know, I know, I am his mother but he has a depth and quickness of understanding that is amazing. He is also different from most kids in a nerdy kind of way and hates large crowds, loud noises, and what he perceives as imbecility and wastes of his time. He does his own thing while I am at work.

My youngest, the demanding, outgoing one, started school when he was 8. He loves school and has been lucky to have good teachers and go to a great neighbourhood school 5 minutes away.

I know at least 20 children who are now adults who were unschooled and they are all intelligent people leading the lives they have chosen. Some are extremely successful in graduate school or as professionals, and some are leading more "alternative" lives that suit their personality. People, including unschoolers, often want to hear the stories of unschoolers who go out in the world and have great public success (becoming a doctor, winning acting awards, e.g.) but my intent in raising my children this way was to foster their pursuit of the life that would feel successful to them regardless of how others perceived it.

joanna - you should try it. It's not like you have to commit to homeschooling/unschooling forever. When I started with William I said I would try it for a year. Each year I would say the same thing until he was a teenager and decided for himself to go to high school. He was my test model, though, and I worried a lot less about the other two.

http://www.unschooling.com/


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 11:05 am 
Offline
Level 7 Vegan
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 11:53 pm
Posts: 1564
I was reading articles on the unschooling website, and now I'm curious about what happens when a child is a teenager and no longer expresses any specific desire to learn something. Does anyone have experience unschooling a teen? What kind of roadblocks are there?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 1:02 pm 
Offline
Grandfathered In
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 1:41 pm
Posts: 9520
Location: Seattle
I'm just thinking of (again, what little I know about) Sudbury schools: no academic requirements, no academic expectations, completely child-driven. On the one hand, I say, "Wow! That sounds great! To have the kids follow their passions and interests and strengths!"

On the other hand, I say, "When do you learn the stuff that isn't fun to learn? When do you do the stuff you're not good at? When do you discover new things you didn't even know you might be interested in?"

Would I have learned anything about calculus in such an environment? No. Chemistry? No.

I would have studied Latin, true. And biology, yes. (But I did those things in a traditional school.)

Has studying calculus or chemistry made me a better person? Prepared me for the job market? No. But this is education, not vocational training.

I know for myself, I require some pushing, some guidance. Maybe not all kids are like that. You can turn them loose and watch them gather what they need to become educated and to satisfy themselves. I know that GlueGun needs pushing. He is a very bright kid who needs guidance and expectations. And he needs to experience failing, as strange as that might be to say. He needs to experience struggle. And if it were up to him, I don't think he'd ever pursue anything that required struggle and carried the possibility of failure.

_________________
Did somebody say Keep on rockin?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 5:15 pm 
Offline
Not NOT A Furry
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 4:44 pm
Posts: 470
Location: la la land
I think homeschooling can be an amazing thing, if it works for the parents and child(ren).

Joanna - you have experience with children education and have been doing well with your daycare. I think it sounds like a great environment for you to homeschool Milo if you decide to go that route. I always had this fantasy of finding other families that wanted to homeschool as well and set up a rotating "school". For example the do science experiments with Kid "A's " mom, hiking and botany with Kid "B's" dad, etc etc. Each family bringing something different and wonderful to the group. That way each family gets a break, not having to do all the schooling themselves and the children get variety too.

_________________
http://vegan-mom.blogspot.com/


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 5:19 pm 
Offline
Trapped On A Desert Island With A Cow
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 1:30 pm
Posts: 431
Location: ATX
erin32mc wrote:
I always had this fantasy of finding other families that wanted to homeschool as well and set up a rotating "school". For example the do science experiments with Kid "A's " mom, hiking and botany with Kid "B's" dad, etc etc. Each family bringing something different and wonderful to the group. That way each family gets a break, not having to do all the schooling themselves and the children get variety too.


i have the same fantasy!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 5:23 pm 
Offline
Remembers When Veganism Was Cool
User avatar

Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2010 1:04 am
Posts: 2425
Location: UK
FootFace wrote:
On the other hand, I say, "When do you learn the stuff that isn't fun to learn? When do you do the stuff you're not good at? When do you discover new things you didn't even know you might be interested in?"



This is my thinking. Even at a traditional school I was able to avoid things that, at 14, I thought I wasn't interested in. Now, thirty something years later, I deeply regret the huge holes in my (mainly scientific) knowledge.

eta: I mean the holes in my knowledge are scientific things, not that I only know science stuff.

_________________
Everyone turns into Boo Radley, if they live long enough ~ seitanicverses


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 5:27 pm 
Offline
Grandfathered In
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 1:41 pm
Posts: 9520
Location: Seattle
joanna wrote:
erin32mc wrote:
I always had this fantasy of finding other families that wanted to homeschool as well and set up a rotating "school". For example the do science experiments with Kid "A's " mom, hiking and botany with Kid "B's" dad, etc etc. Each family bringing something different and wonderful to the group. That way each family gets a break, not having to do all the schooling themselves and the children get variety too.


i have the same fantasy!


Me too.

Last year, a bunch of families in GlueGun's school talked about setting up our own school. But the discussion never went anywhere.

_________________
Did somebody say Keep on rockin?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 5:36 pm 
Offline
Loves Carrots (in the biblical sense)

Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2010 6:00 am
Posts: 78
Yeah I wondered after I posted if I'd given the impression that there is something magical about my kids that makes them autonomously pursue Latin or molecular biology in their spare time rather than play video games. They don't, and their lives aren't separated into subjects, but they do learn an amazing amount of information daily that could be categorized into subjects such as physics, biology, math, social studies, history, chemistry.

They are not curious about trigonometry, but they're 8 and 11. As far as when they'll learn such things if no one forces them to, they'll do it when and if they have a goal that requires it. If they want to go to college they're going to have to deal with some algebra. They'll learn it if they want to go badly enough. And they'll use the phenomenal problem solving, critical thinking, and information gathering skills they have developed through unschooling to do it. Until then, why stress about it? I stressed about it throughout high school, failed pre-algebra three times in college anyway, and never really grasped anything I supposedly learned in class.

Why does education have to involve anything that we'll never use and that bores us to tears?

Life itself provides plenty of opportunities for struggle and failure. Right now my son is obsessed with parkour. Desire to do what the guys he sees on youtube are doing consumes him. So he tries, and he fails, and he struggles, and works out and practices and tries and fails again and then once in a while he succeeds, and so on it goes. He doesn't need an arbitrary test for any of that.

Now I will tell you that when I first took him out of school he was a complete slug for almost a year. Unless I forced him to do schoolwork (which I did try for a while, and it was hell) all he ever wanted to do was play on xbox live with his friends. He was so utterly burned out from 7 hours a day of paperwork with no recess plus up to an hour or two of homework, that the thought of actively learning anything at all made him miserable. And even after I spent countless hours reading about unschooling I still was extremely stressed out worrying about whether my kid was ever going to willingly get off of the couch. But he did. He recovered from his aversion to all things school-ish. He still loves his xbox, but with the freedom to play it when he wants to, he'll often pick up a book instead. Or get out the baking soda and vinegar. Or try to climb a wall. Or look up how viruses spread and then play Pandemic for a while. Human curiosity really is a powerful force when it's not steamrolled by, say, hours of standardized test practice.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 5:49 pm 
Offline
Invented Vegan Meringue
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 2:18 pm
Posts: 3561
Location: It's hot. All the time.
I see homeschooled children all the time at the library. Sometimes their parents drop them off there while they go to work. (Then we have to call the truancy number because that's not allowed.) A few are great, most appear to be mediocre and a handful are completely awful. Sort of like the public schools. I don't think that it's a magic cure or that everyone should do it.
Has everyone else seen a rise in online school? These kids appear to spend a lot of time on a website, taking tests, reading information and turning in assignments.

_________________
A whole lot of access and privilege goes into being sanctimonious pricks J-Dub
Dessert is currently a big bowl of sanctimonious, passive aggressive vegan enduced boak. Fezza
You people are way less funny than Pandacookie. Sucks to be you.-interrobang?!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 6:25 pm 
Offline
Grandfathered In
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 1:41 pm
Posts: 9520
Location: Seattle
heathenmama wrote:
Yeah I wondered after I posted if I'd given the impression that there is something magical about my kids that makes them autonomously pursue Latin or molecular biology in their spare time rather than play video games.


I don't think anyone thought that.

(And my eight-year-old is at his parkour class right now!)

_________________
Did somebody say Keep on rockin?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Mon Oct 25, 2010 6:40 pm 
Offline
Loves Carrots (in the biblical sense)

Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2010 6:00 am
Posts: 78
FootFace wrote:
(And my eight-year-old is at his parkour class right now!)


Now that's a class my son could really get into.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:08 pm 
Offline
Bought a crop of bad girls
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 1:34 pm
Posts: 571
Location: PDX
I am so intrigued by unschooling. My son won't be ready for school for years but I am beginning to think about it. I think like most public school raised people I have a hard time fathoming that kids can learn and enjoy doing it if left to follow their own interests but if it works! How amazing would that be! I know I didn't appreciate learning until I was an adult. For a child to retain that amazing love of learning that they have when they are younger would be incredible!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2012 6:30 am 
Offline
Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 05, 2010 9:57 am
Posts: 1827
Location: Scotland
I'm resurrecting this thread, since we don't have any other homeschooling thread here (that I was able to find, at least).

I don't think Beetroot would have to start public school until either the spring or next fall, but since we are paranoid (having already had a run-in with our health centre on the vegan-thing), I decided to start this fall, so when they find out we're not sending him to the local school, I will already have a folder of projects and documentation of what we've been doing and what we've accomplished.
And this is some of what we've been up to so far: We're just doing an hour a day at the moment, since he is just 4 and has a very short attention span. I'm lucky because Beetroot taught himself to read (he has read a few words here and there since he was 2 and a half, but really got good within the last 9 or so months), so we're ahead of the game there, but when we started at the beginning of September, he could only write his name (I don't let them colour much because it ALWAYS ends up on the walls (we rent and I have scrubbed and painted over the walls so many times -- we have quarterly inspections and get in trouble if the house is messy), even though I am right there, actively trying to stop them) and Mr Crabby had only just started going over simple addition with him. Basically, he wasn't very good with a pen or pencil until we started working on it with him. He's gotten a lot better at writing, but isn't very motivated to write letters. However, he really likes numbers at the moment and is always running around the living room with one of his maths books and Mr Crabby's calculator, so when I made up a maths quiz for him, he was delighted. We've been doing these every day for about a week; he always asks me to make them for him:
Image

Mostly we just work on maths, reading, and writing, but I do try to also do things that interest him. I showed him how my compass worked today and we also took apart my pen to see all the different parts (both of those were his idea). I also tried to get him to learn how to read an analogue clock, but part-way through, his attention span was shot.

I don't know of any other people homeschooling here in our area and when I ask my friends who homeschool, they are kind of vague about kindergarten-stuff (or too busy to give me detailed responses). I couldn't find much on-line -- most of the homeschooling-kindergartener advice I found seemed to say that it's not a big deal and that kids are too young at that age anyway, but actual schools have lists of what they expect kids to be able to do at the end of the year, so I'm basing my goals for this year on those (Beet really needs to work on being able to write sentences and begin a little subtraction).

(In my day, it seemed like if you knew your letters and numbers and colours and shapes, you were set.)

_________________
http://reallycrabbycrafter.blogspot.com
http://www.etsy.com/shop/TheTartanVicar


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:52 pm 
Offline
Invented Vegan Meringue
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 12:16 pm
Posts: 3832
Location: Panama City, Florida
That's awesome, crabby! Smart little guy!

We aren't planning on homeschooling persay, but I do basically homeschool Silas until he starts public school. I did the same thing with Shae. They both are/we really into it and seem to find it just as fun as any other play.

_________________
etsy shop: teeny tiny tantrums


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: homeschooling/unschooling
PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2012 3:52 am 
Offline
Mispronounces Daiya
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 9:21 pm
Posts: 1480
Location: Hamburg, Germany
Little kids who do maths and logic for fun make me insanely happy.

My grandparents' neighbors had a little girl, 5 years old at the time, I think, who was very maths oriented, and I found it sad that her parents didn't help her develop those skills (even though the dad was an engineer...) Since she hung out at our house all the time, we did some number/logic games with her: simple sudokus (starting with 4 by 4 grids when she was just learning to count), reasoning board games like rummikub, and card games (I have no idea what card games are popular in the US, but we played a lot of Nain Jaune as a family, and Tarot with older kids).

Games don't necessarily develop skills that translate immediately into progress in a curriculum, but I'm convinced that working those logic muscles makes it easier to apprehend mathematical concepts down the line.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 66 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next

All times are UTC - 6 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group
Template made by DEVPPL/ThatBigForum and fancied up by What Cheer