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Anyone homeschool their High-Schooler?

Discussion in 'Parents Off Topic' started by Big Hair Momma, Dec 8, 2010.

  1. Lucky 868

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    Having just finished homeschooling my two boys last June and seeing how well it worked for them, I have to chime in here again. For the posters who wrote that the OP mentioned her child ?having academic problems? and felt that homeschooling would ?not fix that?, the truth of the matter is ?academic problems? are one of the most significant ?problems? homeschooling ?fixes?. Here?s my experience. My younger son (the diabetic one diagnosed last April at age 16) was born in Nov. and started kindergarten at the age of 4 (cutoff in our state is early Dec.). He skipped second grade, was tested as highly gifted, and entered a third grade classroom at the age of 6. This put him one grade level behind his older brother (also tested as gifted, doing fine in school). As that school year progressed, he completed both third and fourth grade math curriculums. In talking to the fourth grade teachers, they were both uninterested in giving him the fifth grade curriculum (because what would the fifth grade teacher do the following year?) or in challenging him beyond the traditional fourth grade curriculum. With the support of both his first and third grade teachers, I began homeschooling him for his fourth grade year. He flew through curriculum, during his middle school years he learned additional subjects not offered at public school (geography, more history, continued to advance in math). Went through a distance-learning high school so he wouldn?t have a problem getting into college and he graduated with a 4.26 gpa. Doing wonderfully in college and about to face his first finals week. And he?s going to major in Statistics when he transfers to a four year university. So, yes, homeschooling most assuredly ?solved? our ?academic problems?. I cannot imagine the damage that would have been done to him if he had been held up in his desire to learn had we left him in public school.

    I also homeschooled my older son from fifth grade on. He wanted to learn at home so he could study at his own pace and go more deeply into his interest in history. He finished high school in three years. He?s now a junior at college, loves it, and will be on the Dean?s List for the third quarter in a row. And his major is History. While that may be bragging, it is also evidence that homeschooling didn?t fail him, either, although he was not having ?academic problems?.

    I am not saying public school is bad. Ours was wonderful, in fact. I am not against anyone putting their child in public, private, homeschooling, religious-based schools, any educational option they choose. The key phrase is ?they choose?. Just like with diabetes, one size does not fit all with education.

    To the posters who think homeschooling is ?copping out? - that?s funny! Homeschooling is one of the most difficult tasks a parent can do. Most are involved in finding their own books and designing their own curriculum, they have to wear the ?teacher? hat as well as the ?parent? hat, and incorporating school into their family?s home life isn?t always easy. It is far less work for a parent to send little Poindexter off to school with his lunchbag and leave the teaching to someone else than it is to teach Poindexter themselves.

    The reason so many of us homeschoolers get defensive is because we get dumped on a lot ? not just by strangers, but mostly by family and close friends. People think we are keeping our children isolated from the world. Far from it! Biggest question we get is ?how do they get socialized?? Answer ? they get socialized by living in the world. What they don?t get by being homeschooled is bullied, harassed, called filthy names when they are called to the stage to win an academic achievement award, and that isn?t ?being socialized?. Parents put a lot of time and work into educating their children, but because they are ?home all day? people think they are available to talk on the phone ad naseum (just let Poindexter read a book or something so we can visit) and wonder how their house can get messy (we teach first, clean later).

    OK, I?m off my soapbox.

    Cyndy
    Mom to N, 17 (and G, 19)
     
  2. Sarah Maddie's Mom

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    I don't believe that anyone here called home schooling, "coping out".
     
  3. Karenwith4

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    With all due respect Christopher you asked a similar kind of question to the last person who posted about homeschooling. The assumption that the parents considering homeschooling are making a rash decision or haven't thought through the implications of that decision is tiresome. I don't know one single homeschooler who hasn't done a tremendous amount of research and soul searching before coming to the decision about how best to educate their child. You may be "innocent" but that doesn't mean it shouldn't be pointed out that you are communicating a tired stereotype about homeschooling.

    OP
    We're just getting into highschool level curriculum in a formal way. We aren't big curriculum users in general but I'd absolutely second the Teaching Company recommendation.
    We also love Bravewriter for writing/language.
    For math we are using a mix of a Canadian school program, Singapore and Challenge math supplemented with some online courses/vides from the Khan Academy and MIT open courses.

    I'd suggest contacting your local homeschool group or State organization to see if you can hook up with some local homeschoolers who might let you take a peak at what they are using and where you can probably find out about supplementary classes etc.

    Good luck with your decision.
    Karen
     
  4. Christopher

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    You are wrong. Based on the limited amount of information in the OP's original post, I think my question was completely in line and appropriate. I in no way, shape, or form indicated she was making a rash decision. I was asking a question. Period. If anyone is making assumptions, it is you making one about the intent of my question.

    Additionally, the OP has since posted that she took no offense to my original question, and was even glad I asked the question. She saw it for what it was, a simple question.

    (I really am trying to stay out of this thread, but people keep dragging me back in) :eek:
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2010
  5. Karenwith4

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    Well actually you suggested that homeschooling may make her issues worse despite the fact that it was clear in the OP that the school system was not serving the child very well on multiple levels. It's pretty clear what your bias is. You imply that the child is better off remaining in problematic school situation until/unless the parent has determined all the root causes of the issues can be resolved with homeschooling.

    Sometimes the only way to get at the root cause is to deal with the symptoms immediately. And often the root cause is a function of the system - not the child.
     
  6. Christopher

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    Please do not twist my words around. I did not suggest anything of the sort. What I said was, "simply removing her from school may not solve the problems and may make them worse". I said nothing about homeschooling. So defensive......

    Look, the OP does not have a problem with my comments, and that is who this thread is all about, so if you really feel the need to continue this then just PM me. I am done.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2010
  7. NaturalMom

    NaturalMom New Member

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    I have considered that myself! Now that I work for myself it is more feasible. I like the advice everyone here has!
    I feel the kids could get a better education from my direction and extra curricular events vs stifled conforming public ed.
    (not knocking on pub ed b/d that is where I learned...not the same here vs where I grew up and the things I think the kids deserve to be exposed to are available) ..
    ((pondering))
     
  8. Sarah Maddie's Mom

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    "Stifling conforming public ed." ... clearly both sides are capable of casting aspersions.
     
  9. zakksmom

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    Your not the only one..

    Chris,
    I have noticed a lot of folks feeling like they get slammed on this site- me included. I have privately chatted with many that have totally backed off of posting and are merely just on lookers now or just dont even come back to the site because they feel so crushed because they were called out either by not looking stuff up to back up what they said or they were made to feel stupid, ect, ect-hell they were already crushed before of why they are even on this site in the first place and then to get more bullets in your heart is just aweful. Its to bad that one cant just express geniune concern or an opinion on any topic without getting thrown under the bus. Considering there really arent really that many D kids we have all looked for geniune support and all the really great important tips that are found on this site- I guess its all in how people throw their words back, and Im sure that some dont necessarily mean to come across as aggressive but it does always seems to be the same ones and not necessarily those that posted on this particular thread.. but hey Ive already got my beating so:p Anyway.. I am sure that you feel disappointed just like a lot of us have being here and for that I am sorry..

    And OP my 16 yr old son does virtual online home school with Connections Academy-its a public on line school. We like it. It was a personal choice for us and has worked out well. I travel a lot with my job and us being newbies to D it has just made life easier for us. However, I have found it to demand more accountability than ever before so it is in no way an easier way out.. If your child is not goal oriented or a self motivated person or if you do not have a lot of time to work with your child- I would really not reccomend it- just my opinion-
     
  10. Christopher

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    Thanks Donna, I appreciate that. And when I said I was done, I just meant with this thread, not this site. :cwds: This is a great site and it has helped me quite a bit. I think some topics are just sensitive ones and no matter how they are broached there are going to be disagreements. And of course you have people here who are sleep deprived, stressed, anxious, etc...so it is no wonder things can get heated at times.

    I think in order to be involved with forums in general you have to have somewhat of a thick skin and not take things people say too much to heart. I hope that those people you mentioned who have had their feelings hurt don't give up on this site. I do think the majority of people here are decent people trying to make the best of a tough situation.
     
  11. TheFormerLantusFiend

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    I did one year in a traditional (sort of- it was a showcase gifted kids kind of place) high school.
    After that I had enough, I was done, I was absolutely not going back.

    I then spent two years homeschooling/unschooling before going to college.

    Which is how I ended up with a bachelor's degree and no high school diploma.

    During the first year, my mother and I met about once a week and I stuck roughly to a curriculum that we dreamed up. Neither she nor anybody else officially taught me anything (except in hebrew school- where I got high school credits for language).
    In the second year, I sat in on a college calculus class because I had a rough time teaching it to myself. I upped my volunteer hours and started volunteering at the place I currently work. I don't believe I turned in any work to my mother, although I could be misremembering. I took the ACT and two of the AP tests.

    During those two years, I also had the very valuable experience of taking care of my baby brother pretty much full time (he is fourteen years younger than I am).

    Leaving school was one of the best things I ever did for myself. Even though it was a school where I was not bullied and could probably have eventually graduated (I got an F for second quarter English due to not turning in a term paper, and otherwise passed my courses), I was extremely anxious, having panic attacks daily, and not enjoying or learning much.
    Outside of school, I was active, went to numerous educational events (classes at the libraries especially), volunteered in multiple places where I had mentee sorts of relationships with adults, and read voraciously.
     
  12. skimom

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    Just curious - if someone homeschools, does the local or state education dept check that the students are going through curriculum? Here, if you homeschool, you must be connected to the public school system - ie they know you exist and in some cases can provide support to parents , group classes ( eg my school organized field trips, weekly classes for homeschooled kids etc)
    As a teacher, I fully believe that there is no right or wrong answer - what ever is chosen must be in the best interests of the child. However, there still need to be checks and balances to ensure that the provincial curriculum is met - these kids also write diploma ( government exams) worth 50% of their course grade so they have to cover the curriculum content and outcomes.
    Go with your gut as you know your child best.
     
  13. Lucky 868

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    Skimon,
    In the U.S. each state has their own homeschooling laws. In California no one checks on you, your curriculum, nor do you turn any schoolwork in to anyone. A homeschooler has no involvement with their local public school system. To legally homeschool in Calif., you fill out an affidavit that is mailed to the State Dept. of Educ. that tells them you are a private school. You decide on your own curriculum, acquire your own materials, and do your own thing. There is no support or assistance from the local public schools.

    Cyndy
    Mom to N, 17
     
  14. zakksmom

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    Accountibility

    With Connections Acadamy- they are a public school. Depending on the grade I am required to log so many hours in a day for his work, research, ect. Zakk virtually attends live multi webinars on a daily basis. Its as if the teacher is right there with him but she is in fact teaching hundreds of kids at once. They have contests while on line, the kids instant message their responses and they have a blast- They keep track of Zakks grades as after each lesson there is a quiz or test, Due Portfolios are ever constant-he does science projects, it is a real public school but online. At grade 10- 30 logged hours a week are required. We keep in close contact with his 6 teachers via email, or phone calls. In my opinion I would have to say that this is better than old school as far as his education is concerned, it is definately preparing him better for college- and not to mention less or no costs for brick, electric, transportation, staff, ect.. :)
     
  15. nanhsot

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    It varies by state, some states have very rigid standards and an accredited teacher checks curriculum while in other states the standards are simpler.

    In my state I am considered a private school and have the same standards as any other private school.

    I'd certainly welcome a discussion on my opinion of rigid state standards (as it opens a whole other can 'o worms that many don't realize) but not in this thread, I feel this thread has gone off course enough!
     
  16. Big Hair Momma

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    Thanks, Everyone, for the input. We have decided to use the co-op for 5 classes (Math, Science, 2 English, Chapel) and home school for two classes (world history and Rosetta Stone for Spanish. I'll let you know how it goes. Thanks again for all the help and input.
     
  17. czardoust

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    I'm excited that we will once again be homeschooling next year! By then my oldest will have graduated already, but I will be teaching 9th, 7th, and 5th grades for my younger three children. We used mostly Christian Liberty Press (CLP) with some LIFEPAC and some family-created curricula between 2000-2004, and judging from what I have been researching, it looks like we will begin using CLP again :D You need to research your states homeschooling laws. http://www.hslda.org has them. Every state has different laws. :cwds:
     

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