12 June 2008

Homeschooling Hows and Whys - Part Two

Do you ever think, "I can't do this!"?

Sometimes. Usually when I have both a toddler and an infant crying at the same time and one of the other children wants help on a math problem or needs me to explain something. I'm pretty sure public school teachers think the same thing, but instead of crying infants, they face administrative rules, angry parents, and a class full of gifted, average AND slow children. She (or he) is expected to teach them all from the same curriculum, not allow the gifted kids to get too bored or the slower to learn children driven too hard. Oh, but it all has to get done that year regardless, and there are no unit do-overs even if she discovers a quarter of her class didn't understand the concept when she graded their tests. She also has to maintain order and justify every consequence she gives to the child, parents and sometimes principal. She also has lunch duty.

Do you find it intimidating or do you enjoy it or both?

Do you know what I find intimidating? Teachers, principals and special ed folks at the schools who use teacherese to show they know more about your child than you do. I have a BA in English from a prestigious university (no, not Ivy League, more like ... one of the places people who can't get into the Ivy Leagues wind up), but I still don't understand eduspeak. I have figured out over time that, "Elf made some bad choices today" really means, "Lady, your kid sure acted bratty! You need to fix this and fast!" Otherwise, I'm nowhere close to bilingual on that one.

I like homeschooling most of the time. I especially like that I don't have to deal with snotty special ed teachers and principals, phone calls about my son's "bad choices," and homework. You'd think homeschooling is really homework, but it's the absolute opposite. Homework is when the teacher is basically telling YOU what to do with your evening. Homeschooling is you deciding what your kiddo learns, when and how. I no longer have to do mathematics in some strange convoluted way by adding left to right. I can teach my children right to left just as I was taught, and as long as we get the right answer, it's all good.


  1. I do like it... but because I have a curriculum I follow. I've always been someone that needs direction, like a path, to follow. I could never just wing it! THAT would be stressful. I still choose what I may think is excessive and cut it out if I like. I teach it the way I want to.

    But, oh, yes... there are the days when Ryan and Kyle are fighting, Chaz (my Aspergers one) is off in another room screaming like crazy because upset, my two year old is getting into daddy's tools in the garage, and a baby that needs to be fed. I TOTALLY understand. Those are the days that I try to just sit back a bit and not do as much. I make it up on a day that is going much, much better.

    I agree about the homework. I mean, come on! My boys would be in school a total of 9 hours, (that's including bus ride) and have homework to take home. I'm like, Huh? What did you do with all that time? Don't you think they might need a break? Now I don't have to worry about that anymore.

  2. After the week we've had, it's starting to sound more and more appealing.

  3. Homeschooling is tough for me, but I have no desire to put my kids in school. The sacrifices I have to make are worth knowing that I'm not going to raise children who feel like they need to follow all the goofy things schools are teaching these days. I'm so glad my kids are growing up without the overdose of peer pressure I had to endure in school.


Non-troll comments always welcome! :)