Monday, February 22, 2010

The Home School Hop #3

Theme For The Week - Why?

Why? It's probably the most frequently asked question of homeschoolers, except of course the one about socialisation. So why do you home school? Are the reasons you home school today different from what they were when you first made the decision?

Need a reminder on the details of the Home School Hop, have a look
here >>>

It's not too late to join in, even if you missed the first 2 rounds you can jump on in and join the fun. In only a few short weeks I have already found blogs that I enjoy to read that I wasn't aware of prior to the Hop!

For me my reasons today, more than 2 and half years later are very different to the reasons why I initially chose to remove B from school.

I had never even considered home schooling as an option. It wasn't that I was against it, it was just simply something that never entered my mind.

You know like alot of other things that you just do because everyone else does them and that is what is expected. Have your baby in a hosiptal, vaccinate your children, feed your children get the picture!!!

B had attended a small community kindergarten (2 days per week) and then the following year for preschool (3 days per week). We loved it there, it gave him so much and we all enjoyed that experience immensely. It was a given that he would attend the public school just down the road along with most of his preschool friends.

As the school year approached my feelings of anxiety increased dramatically. At the time however I just put it down to something that all mums feel the first time they send their little ones off to big school. School started, he went off, I cried and I cried and I cried and 6 weeks later standing and watching him on parade I was still crying (hiding behind my sunglasses). None of it felt right to me. I wasn't ready to hand him to a whole bunch of unknown adults (and children) to raise him he was far too young for all of that. (in fact he was a year older than his peers as he did 2 years of preschool, but still far too young).

There was never any major thing that occurred whilst B was at school but overall I just had a feeling of unhappiness. His behaviour had declined dramatically (no doubt due to sheer exhuastion), he experienced 2 bumps on the head in the 6 months he was there and no one told me about them, they were herded about like sheep and the principal spoke to them on parade like they were a bunch of idiots, but the icing on the cake for me was when we were told that they were not having any parent help in the room that year!!!

My mind was made up. I had already been researching homeschooling. I went home, told DH that B would finish out the term and he wasn't going back and he didn't.

Today, however, I see a whole different side to home schooling. We have so much freedom not being bound to the restrictions of school days and school terms. The freedom to learn what we want when want and how we want. The freedom to take excursions during quiet periods and not battle the crowds. The freedom to work at our own pace (this is high on my priority), we don't need to rush through things, just to tick boxes like a teacher in a classroom needs to. We can spend an hour or a week or even a month on a topic if it interests us.

We have time, time to do all of those extra curricular activities that if a 'schooled' child was attending they would be 'over scheduled'. Time to sit together to read, draw, go for nature walks and just enjoy living.

We're not rushing about every morning trying to get out of the door on time, we don't have to spend every afternoon squabbling over homework. I don't have to wake my baby everyday to pick the kids up from school. My kids don't have to be in bed by 7pm just so that they can get enough sleep to make it through the next day, they actually get to spend their evenings with their dad!

My children are safe because I know what they are doing and who they are doing it with. In light of recent events in Australian schools this one is particularly paramount. We have the choice to hire outside teachers/instructors if we so wish, but if they no longer meet our needs then we are free to cease the activity. (If you don't like your teacher at school for whatever reason, then tuff luck!!)

I have come to realise over the past 2 and a half years how much time is actually wasted at school and how much busy work the children do just waiting. Did you know that most children that attend school are lucky if they recieve more than 5 minutes a day of one on one time with their teacher.......5 MINUTES A DAY!!!!!!! That to me is utterly appalling.

Some people ask about playing with their friends. My children get to play in the park with their friends for over 4 hours at a time, that is at least the same if not more free time than your average public school child would receive to play with friends in a week. We also undertake various classes and activities with our home schooled friends, so they are not limited to just park play.

I feel so blessed to be able to spend this time with my children and whilst it is hard work (especially with younger kids) I know that the hard work won't last forever. They are growing quickly and they will eventually be in charge of their own learning, just using me as a guide......that is truly an education.

I could continue but maybe I'll save the rest of my Whys for another day (post).

What about you? What's your Why?

MckLinky Blog Hop


Anonymous said...

I love reading everyone's reasons behind why they are doing this. We are still in the process of deciding what we are going to do. However, leaning more and more towards homeschooling. Thanks for sharing your reasons :-)

Natalie PlanetSmarty said...

I like reading about reasons for homeschool. I have to say - there is no way I could homeschool with my full time job, and I don't currently plan to. I loved school when I was a child even though our Soviet schools were probably a lot more structured. I am going to see what happens 2 years down the road though - but to me a private school would still be a more likely choice than homeschool.

Adriana said...

I very much enjoyed your post and reading the other post on this subject. I am very excited to say that my husband and I have decided to homeschool Diego for kindergarten. He will go to the pre-K classes again next year two days a week since we are very happy with it but the following year I will start to homeschool him. Your stories are so inspirational to me. Thank you!

Supermommy said...

Great idea! Thank you for giving a peek into why you homeschool, I find that it is also the number one question I receive.

Kez said...

Loved reading that - our journey was similar. We were never going to homeschool but it just didn't feel right when we started interviewing for schools. Hubby suggested homeschooling and the more I thought about it, the more it felt right. Like you, it's grown into far more than I expected - its a whole lifestyle now rather than just an academic choice.

Lori said...

Are we doing a week 4 or have I just missed it? Hope you are well!

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