Sunday, January 27, 2008


If I had a popular blog, this post might get some people riled up, but I don't, so I don't think this will offend anyone. And that is not my intention anyway.

Sometimes for kicks, I check out the Homeschooling Blogs Carnival. I find it interesting, amusing, and even a little sad to read what the various homeschoolers out there are up to. As a former teacher, homeschooling is something that I have thought a lot about. I had already made up mind that I probably wouldn't homeschool, but if I were still on the fence, these other bloggers would have pushed me off the fence into the public school camp. Why?
1. Holier-than-thou attitudes
2. Paranoia regarding the "government monopoly" schools
3. Poor writing skills
4. It seems like many homeschoolers are just flying by the seat of their pants.
5. A lot of them take great pride in reinventing the educational wheel (waste of time).

Additionally, I've known a few homeschooling families myself. Their homes were in utter chaos, and nerves were frazzled. The kids often are just set down with worksheets - not a quality, demanding education. The mother/teachers did not have college degrees. Basically, teaching is a full-time demanding job. You can't do it all. If you have an only child, maybe. But how can you care for a baby, toddler, home, AND teach the older ones all they need to know? Someone will be shortchanged.

That said, I do sometimes feel the lure of it. I am well aware of the shortcomings of the school systems, and I know I could do so many more interesting things with my kids at home than a teacher can with them in a class of 30. Whenever I'm in the library, I look at all of the books and imagine myself reading them all with my kids. How fun! But really, I would go crazy. There's not enough time in the day to do it all properly.

However, I would homeschool under a few conditions:
1. my child needed special ed services
2. my child was miserable in school and wanted to be homeschooled
3. the school was very low-performing, dangerous, etc. (but we would try to move first)

Hopefully, I won't have to. I'm not opposed to others doing it. Just don't act self-righteous about it!


missyjeanne said...

I'm all for letting the school do it.. .and I will make up for their short comings. . . (although I'm considering private school at some point)There would be no one there to make up for my short comings if I were the teacher. Besides I would bring back smacking hands with rulers if I had to teach my kids!!

Heather said...

Yes, I agree. I'm willing to do extra on the weekends and during summers to supplement their education.
Being your kids' only teacher for years is a lot of responsibility, but some people seem very confident of themselves! I don't think they realize how much effort and time and KNOWLEDGE are needed to properly plan a curriculum and deliver it.

denning dialog said...

yeah - homeschooling just seems like WAY too much work. Sometimes i think it would be neat- for like maybe one day out of the week. then i would be exhausted. i started trying to do something educational with todd while alissa does her homework,oh my! it is exhausting- i think pulling brooke off the table 15 x's does me in, but still. too much work. if the school system goes WAY downhill then it could be an option...

Ashley said...

I completely agree with you too. Public and private schools have their own issues, but I think about the responsibility, knowledge, and time it takes to homeschool and I just don't think that I could do it all. Especially with younger kids at home like you said. There are some people who homeschool and do a fabulous job, and their are others that would have been better off to leave their kids in public schools. I know for me, just like you, there are circumstances in which I would consider homeschooling, but that's after moving and researching the local private schools. Anyways, I also don't like when people won't listen to the other side of an argument regardless of what its about, or the whole I'm better than you will ever be attitude. It just bugs me.