Home Schooling

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Home Schooling

Post  sunset30 on Mon May 04, 2009 12:10 am

What do you all think about Home Schooling?
I am seriously considering it as an option for J.
Just wondered what the consensus is?
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  Mrs Big Boobs on Mon May 04, 2009 12:19 am

It depends on the reasons for doing it and how ...can't think of the right word...*qualified* ..not the right one ...the parent home schooling is.

I think there are specifications you have to meet if you are considering it.

As well as being an institution for educating, schools are also there for socialisation - how would you ensure you were doung that?

I know you won't enter into it lightly and you will fully research everything but IMO education should happen at school.
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  sunset30 on Mon May 04, 2009 12:47 am

Yeah, it's a HUGE decision for us, and one we are NOT set on just yet.
There are a lot of things that we would like to see different within the education system in this country right now, enough that we are concerned about being a part of it.
naturally we would have to prove that ds learns something, and that we have a plan, and that he follows some sort of beneficial "curriculum"
I had concerns about social aspects, but not only are there LOTS of other ways of getting socialisation experience, there are also home schooling networks, so that homeschooled children can socialise together.
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  northern soul on Mon May 04, 2009 7:40 pm

There are two home schooled children on my road, they are lovely kind intelligent children whose parents are lovely..HOWEVER...

They find it hard to socialise, they only ever play with each other, other children seem to almost scare them and for that reason as documentraries I have seen also seem to confirm that its the socialisation they miss out on most. There may be programmes and meets with other home schooled kids but they are other home schooled kids with the same insecurities and fear of socialising (possibly obviously this is a generalisation) ....As my son will be an only child socially I have an extra duty I feel to make sure he socialises with other children on a regular basis....

I find as well people who choose home schooling tend to have had a bad experience at school either through bullying or not achieved as high as they could and that they place this negative aspect of their life on their children and expect them to also struggle/be bullied....

What is it about the school system that worries you in particular?

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Re: Home Schooling

Post  sunset30 on Mon May 04, 2009 8:29 pm

I had a great time at school! For the most part - until something happened that was my parents' fault (NOT the fault of the school)

I also have a very sociable child, so I already have a responsibility to make sure he is socialised. I would continue to do that irrespective of where he gets schooled.

I am concerned that schools don't provide for the individual learning requirements of pupils, they don't equip children for the world as it is, and they don't offer the support needed at ALL levels through the class - how can they?

The education provided to children is certainly of a less high quality than it used to be.

I KNOW that there are fabulous teachers out there, but I also know A LOT who I would be worried about leaving my son with, with a view to them equipping him with knowledge and an ability to think and question.

Education is the MOST important thing you can give someone. But it has to include an element of individual approach, and the time and interest to be questionable, and be thorough. To include a wider goal of achieving people who are ready to be individuals who are ready to try things they are not gifted at and find ways to understand, and also to celebrate their gifts and achievements.

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Re: Home Schooling

Post  northern soul on Mon May 04, 2009 8:36 pm

I agree to a point but I also feel I can tailor education to my childs needs at weekends and when he is home from school. Teachers can do so much but too many parents then feel thats the job done....I am sure your son is very sociable now but will he be in 10 years when he has just been socialising with Mum and Dad most days?

If my son is great a art there are loads of after school clubs he can attend in that field, if he is great at sports the same again....

I am not totally anti home schooling I (and please dont take offence) find it a bit arrogant of some parents to think they can do and are able to achieve what a school strives to do....teachers with a vast experience and knowledge of specialist subjects....

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Re: Home Schooling

Post  Mrs Big Boobs on Mon May 04, 2009 8:42 pm

Laura, there is (another) huge overhaul of the curriculum in schools on the way. It will hopefully address the issues of 'content' being pushed down children's throats without the development of life skills. It is hopefully going to teach children HOW to learn and cater for individualised learning. I*think* it is ready to roll out for September. It follows research by ROSE and will try to redress the 'anything goes ' of the 60s and 70s to the complete swing the other way of the National curriculum of early 90's.

I for one try to encourage enquiring minds and independence of thought to my class but it's hard to strike out on your own and not give a worksheet when everyone else in the school is. I am now in the fortunate position where I CAN make a difference and am supported by the head teacher.
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  Mrs Big Boobs on Mon May 04, 2009 8:44 pm

northern soul wrote:

I am not totally anti home schooling I (and please dont take offence) find it a bit arrogant of some parents to think they can do and are able to achieve what a school strives to do....teachers with a vast experience and knowledge of specialist subjects....

I wanted to say this but thought being a teacher might make me sound a bit 'blowing my own trumpet'

Also the advice teachers have recourse to and continuing professional development means that their knowledge does not remain static but changes are supported. As a home schooler how could you keep up to date?
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  sunset30 on Mon May 04, 2009 9:45 pm

Older children probably do benefit from the individual subject knowledge of a teacher - IF I weren't prepared to put ds into school for that, then I would not presume to be able to cover everything myself. I would ensure he recieves education from someone who DOES know what they are talking about.

I will be looking at this overhaul with interest.

I have also had my opinion very negatively coloured by friends of mine who went into teaching as it was "easy" to get into, they can be in the pub by 4pm, they drink whilst on school trips, they take drugs, they get good holidays, they do retrospective lesson plans, if at all, cos "it doesn't matter", they use the same work sheets year on year, and they have time to take on private pupils AND weekend work! What kind of education are the kids they teach getting????!!!!! I have NO teacher training (except a year of TEFL) and I spent a large number of weekends marking books for some of them!

OF COURSE not all teachers are like this, but how do you know what you are REALLY getting?

Then what if children are potentially expected to learn 11 YEARS worth of stuff before anyone definitely knows how they are doing (and with my friends feeling able to tell me x or y child is "just thick" this is a worry)

The prescriptive curriculum, as it stands, doesn't allow even the good teachers to be flexible and respond to someone's interest or need for support. From my experience the discipline in school is much worse than it used to be, which makes it hard for the good teachers to teach anyone anything anyway.

The teacher at Jamie's preschool is lovely to him, the minute or less she speaks to him each week. usually she is nowhere to be found, even though she teaches the nursery class, and will be working with all the children who go to the group when they start school there. She HAS improved recently, and OCCASIONALLY remembers his name. I am sure there are children who she has NO IDEA who they are - since J is quite noticeable, as he has a door closing fetish and often shuts her in her supply cupboard (for a second- she should not have to tolerate this, of course, I do my best to dissuade him, although she spends a lot of time in there anyway)

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Re: Home Schooling

Post  northern soul on Mon May 04, 2009 9:54 pm

If that is your experience then I can understand totally why you are considering this.
My experience is I have a BF who is a teacher and he is constantly striving to be a great teacher. He spends at least two hours every night either marking or researching so his lesson plans are interesting and fun. He says the majority of teachers are like this (and he is very honest and opinionated) and I am sure it would sadden him that the minority have clouded your judgement....

My son also goes to pre school and my opinion again couldn't differ more. I get a sheet every week from his key worker advising what they have worked on that week, he went to a pre-school valentines disco in February and a local Farm in April. They already encourage the children to be creative and independent thinkers even at 2. I couldn't be more happy that my son is having such a fun age appropriate introduction to education....
Also as someone who is studying to be a teacher and has been for 2 years with a further 3 years to go I certainly dont see it as an easy option Shocked

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Re: Home Schooling

Post  Mrs Big Boobs on Mon May 04, 2009 9:57 pm

Laura I am shocked at the behaviour of some of your teacher friends and feel sorry for their pupils- out of interest are they primary or secondary?

I WISH I had the time to go to the pub! especially for 4pm!

I have never met anybody in teaching who was at the pub for 4pm! I have rarely met teachers who go out on school nights. I know I like to be tucked up in bed by 10...

[/quote]The prescriptive curriculum, as it stands, doesn't allow even the good teachers to be flexible and respond to someone's interest or need for support.

And this is why it has been done...

From my experience the discipline in school is much worse than it used to be, which makes it hard for the good teachers to teach anyone anything anyway.[quote]
Do you not think this is because some parents don't discipline their children at home and the society we are living in is a blame culture? - our hands are quite often tied - a looked after child - who had thrown a chair- wasn't allowed to be give a fixed term exclusion ( suspension) because they were looked after...

ETA - GAH can't do the quotey bits!!! sorry!

Have you looked at dcsf website? look for creativity and Rose report..It may give you a bit more info on new curriculum but its a pain to navigate! If I find anything through school will pm you with details if you want?

Jane


Last edited by Mrs Big Boobs on Mon May 04, 2009 9:59 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : did it ALL wrong and had to say sorry!)
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  northern soul on Mon May 04, 2009 9:58 pm

I would also add again, as a parent I would like to think it wouldn't take me 11 years to see that my son was being failed by his school.

I intend to spend a lot of time at home educating my son but feel it will be in partnership with the great foundation he has learnt through school not as a replacement. I think you know your own child enough to know how he is doing and hopefully I will have a relationship with him where he would feel he could tell me of any issues as they arise?

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Re: Home Schooling

Post  mummyloves3 on Mon May 04, 2009 10:04 pm

we pays our taxes that goes into schools. our local schools aint the greatest in thw world but i dont know why anyone would want to teac them at home. i tink teachas goin down the pub when they have finished work aint a good reason to not wanna send your kiddies to scool. i need a bloody drink after they have gone to bed and i only have 3. having 30 of the lickle buggas all day wuld make me an alkie! lol!
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  sunset30 on Mon May 04, 2009 10:08 pm

I KNOW there are great teachers out there - I personally had one who literally saved my life. I think people who try, despite the government's best efforts, to give children a genuine and positive education experience are amazing.

People who go into teaching late, in my experience, seem to have better motives than people like my friends - who just had to do one extra year of free studying after degrees with which they could do very few other things.

I TRY not to let my own experience of the state secondary system cloud my judgement, and it is actually secondary that I would be happier for him to go to regular school for.

My experience also tells me that private school really IS a LOT better, which worries me. Is it just becasue they can cherry pick students? Or is there something else - I know that the discipline and expectations were wildly different in my time. Although one of my friends is in a private school teaching, so it doesn't guarentee you any better actual teaching, just a better environment imo.

BUT I DON'T ever want him to experience the pivate / state schism that I endured, so I cannot go that route.
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  sunset30 on Mon May 04, 2009 10:17 pm

I wouldn't care what teachers did outside of school except I have seen the state of my friends some mornings on their way to school, when it DOES impact on their teaching!

I am SURE if they did the WHOLE of their job they wouldn't have time for the stuff they get up to, but honestly, this is how they behave, and, it's over 2 schools and not one or two people either, but a large group. I just felt like I was always in a minority expecting tat they would take responsibility for the huge and challenging task of educating the great thinkers and world changers of the future.

Definitely please pm me some info! I really want to feel better, as I DO think school offers some valuable things, but I also want, given the things I know, to be sure that he is in the best environment.

As to me knowing over 11 years, yes I would, but I ALSO know that if a whole school has a problem, and I want to move him, then it can be one of THE most distressing and damaging things to do to a child. I have already decided that, excepting issues around moving house UNavoidably, I will NOT move J once he is (IF he is) settled in secondary school
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  Moomin76 on Mon May 04, 2009 10:36 pm

The issue of education is a very interesting, but thorny one. I already feel the weight of these decisions on my shoulders - the way we decide to go could literally shape my daughter's future. I find that thought very depressing!

Home schooling would never be for me though. I have forgotten most of everything I ever learnt and I know that I couldn't do anywhere near as good a job as a professionally qualified teacher could. I'm not the most social of people either, so there would be a significant danger that both of us would become introverted and hardly ever see the outside world.

For me, the issue is whether to push our finances to the limit and go for private school, or whether to stick with the state system. I don't feel like either option is that great tbh, for various reasons.
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link to review

Post  Mrs Big Boobs on Tue May 05, 2009 7:39 pm

Hi Laura, found this- thought it might be of use.
http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/pns/DisplayPN.cgi?pn_id=2009_0081

On another note I read that you though private schools were better than state ones- they are the same as state schools- you get good ones and bad ones.
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  sunset30 on Tue May 05, 2009 7:47 pm

Thanks for that.

I am sure that individual teachers vary and individual facilities vary between state and public school, but I am SURE that the environment in public school is better.

I have been in several public schools (I have been educated at both public and state school) and I REALLY feel that there is MUCH more of an atmosphere of learning, and much better discipline. Also, public schools seem better able to foster joy in achievement, and the desire to do well at school.

IF I made the decidion to send my child to public school though, I would not put any less effort into ensuring that it was the right one for J, as of course they are all different.

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Re: Home Schooling

Post  Chameleon on Tue May 05, 2009 8:38 pm

Hi Laura,

I seriously considered home-schooling my daughter. I don't think the local schools are that good, and she has specific needs that I was unsure would be met in formal education. What pushed me to enrol her in school, in the end, was the social aspect. I know that she could attend home-school events and meet others through extra-curricular activities, but I thought in the end that the school would meet that need better than I could.

There are many home-school forums with lots of excellent information and support, and I'd recommend you look at those as well as visit your local schools before you make up your mind.

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Re: Home Schooling

Post  3for3 on Tue May 05, 2009 11:23 pm

Hi Laura,
I share many of your concerns about the quality of teaching and the desire for my children to learn how to learn as much as subject knowledge. Not just that but also the way that teachers speak to children I think can have such an impact and what happened to being able to meet an individuals needs rather than tick boxes??? I am also very interested in the changes that have been mentioned. I long for the days when teachers are allowed to teach again and we apply some common sense to it rather than overload with beuracracy. And what has this country done to a teacher's ability to discipline? It's all gone crazy!
I know there are some fabulous teachers out there and we can all probably name a teacher who had a profoundly positive or negative effect on us. A good teacher is worth their weight in gold.
Home teaching would be quite an undertaking and I know it isn't something that is right for me as I also have concerns about the other aspects that make school so important - like the mix of students and learning about making friends and dealing with different people. I also don't have the know how (altho ironically am looking to make a career change into secondary teaching)

In honesty my major concern is how to ensure my children go to a school where the teachers and teaching is done in a way that fits with what i believe to be so important. You are very experienced and knowledgeable in an educational and language setting so perhaps it is worth exploring (if you haven't already) what each school is like in terms of the things that are important to you. I know there are no guarantees you will get that school but you can at least get a feel for the styles employed by the school as a general culture.
If after all that home schooling still seems the best option then there is plenty of support available, as you know.

On private schooling - i may be wrong (teachers out there help!) but I thought you didn't need to be a qualified teacher to teach at a private school. I know most can cherry pick students and i also know a qualification doesn't ensure quality of teacher but it does mean things like CPD are measured. I guess I'm saying private school may not always be the best option - some of our best UK teachers teach at state schools...

Good luck with the decision!
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  Mrs Big Boobs on Tue May 05, 2009 11:28 pm

yes 3by3 you don't have to be a qualified teacher to teach at a private school.

Education is a 2 way thing..if you're not happy- let the teachers know asap. Don't just judge schools by their SATs results or OFSTED reports. You CAN get a real feel for a school by having a look round...honestly.
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  3for3 on Tue May 05, 2009 11:47 pm

Thanks MrsBB Very Happy

I'm with you - you put it in 3 lines and I took many many more lol
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  Anybugger on Wed May 06, 2009 4:34 pm

Hi Laura, everyone!
I thought I would put my 2p in,
On a light note I can't imagine having my three home all day! God I'd be in the pub by 10am!!

In regards to home schooling I think that you would need to make this decision after you have looked into all of the options available to you. It is unlikely that you will find a perfect school/teacher/environment, but if you can find one that ticks most of the boxes then you are doing well.

I think that being an "aware" parent is more than half the battle, I know my childrens weaknesses and their strengths and I am not afraid to talk about either to the school.

As you probably know we moved both of our boys from a small village state school (80 children 4 classes) into a private school.

Yes there are grossly varying standards in the private sector. Unfortunately the "good" private schools tend to know they are and charge more than the others. For example one of the private schools here is £2000 per term cheaper, however you can tell the difference. I am sure that the cheaper one would have been better than some of the state schools in the local big town but I would not have moved ours there.

The biggest difference that I have found is in the attitude of the parents. They have put their children at the school to learn and to develop as well rounded people. There is a real environment of learning, across all sectors of ecducation. K is on a cricket match tonight that doesn't finish till 7. He will eat supper with the boarders and is beyond excited. Doms recently went on a trip to battle abbey and spent most of the day reenacting the battle in the school field.

I know not everyone will agree with the private system or a HE parent, At the end of the day we all do what we believe is best for our children,
Only time will tell if we are right, Best of luck with your decision
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  EeeGee on Wed May 06, 2009 4:43 pm

I don't disagree with it at all, but I know there's no way in the world I could devote enough time to give my children the education they require.

Plus my DH is a teacher and I know he'd be watching me!! Laughing
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Re: Home Schooling

Post  northern soul on Wed May 06, 2009 10:43 pm

I have spent a long time thinking about this since you posted Laura as it was really thought provoking..I think if you feel you are just as able to teach J and you really feel the schools are just not suitable around you I would respect you for choosing that option.

There are many reasons I wouldn't mainly admirable - but I think its a lot that I am looking forward to DS1 starting school. I love spending time with him and will miss him I am sure at first but GOD to have some free time ... Embarassed I also would ahve a major problem having the confidence I was teaching him well and as i feel guilty about almost every aspect of my parenting and feel I am failing this would just cause me so much stress..

I also cant wait to walk him to and from school as my earliest and loveliest memories were those walks with my Mum and the chats we had and the fun... Very Happy

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