Sunday, August 5, 2012

Homeschool Myth Busters

Find image here.

Kelsey over at Mom to 4 Blessings wrote a post on homeschool myths. As she states, "Many parents have been turned off to the idea of homeschooling because of common myths that perpetuate society’s idea of what homeschooling means." I'm using the myths she picked and responding to them from my perspective. lmk what you think:

1. Your children won’t be socialized. I've said it before and I'll say it again (as a person with 2 master's degrees in the social sciences) IF your child is part of a social group (wolf, family, 3rd grade or whatevah) they are The REAL question is NOT if the homeschool child will be socialized but HOW they will be socialized. My kids are socialized: they don't swear, don't wear skank and don't objective people. They spend time outdoors every day (for hours, not 17 min. increments), read more than look at a screen and use manners. They are socialized by wiser, older, more mature adults who have a personal investment in them, not same aged peers who are scrambling to get to the top of the food chain.  

2. Your child won’t learn as much. "As much" means nothing until it's defined. My kids don't know "much" about Phineas & Ferb but can recite almost the entirety of the Charlie Brown comic strips, along with huge portions of a couple of Shakespeare plays, along with entire portions of the Story of the World CD’s. They don't know "much" about social studies but can identify a time period in history by weaponry or dress and can discuss intelligently people, places, time and era. They don't know "much" about leaving the house early to catch a bus, but they can talk with passion and purpose about weather and navigating the NOAA site, understand current NASA developments and read articles in Science News each week. They don't know "much" about current on-line gaming but they can draw with confidence, style and grace, with a clear understanding about the elements of design. They don’t know “much” about “character counts” but they do have a deep understanding of our faith system,who they are in God’s plan, the Bible and that Jesus loves them and His plans for them are good.
They don't know "much" about a lot of things but they know several subjects broadly and a few quite deeply.

3. Since you are not a teacher you are unqualified to teach your child. I am a parent, and by definition, my child's first and most important teacher.
Furthermore, I know my children better than anyone else and am therefore more qualified to teach to their strengths and weaknesses.
In addition to that, I am a curious autodidact, with several degrees to my name, and insatiable love of literature and humor and the ability to research in-depth areas of interest. I am a passionate lover of people and God, and am more than qualified to share my interests, passion and purpose with the people most important to me- my family, and most specifically, my children.

4. Your child will miss out on all of the important events in traditional school. My kids have and do participate in AYSO soccer, Awana's, Scouts, riding and piano lessons, Lego League, Ballroom dancing, ultimate Frisbee, trips across the county and to other continents, yearly formals, fund-raisers, service projects, theater, camps, internships, ministries, classes, chorale, competitions, missions trips etc., etc. Remind me again of what important events they are missing out on?

5. Your child will have a harder time getting accepted into a good college.  Colleges and universities are businesses. They are as hit by the financial times as anyone else. They need your child's warm body to pay for their facilities, offer salaries to their professors and run their programs. The real question is not IF your kid can get into the school of their choice (because, believe me, there IS a school out there that will accept all but the most profoundly handicapped learner) but HOW to PAY for the education that your child needs and wants. Even if, (highly improbably) your kid doesn't "get into" a school of higher education, they can go a non-traditional route (which are many). 
Furthermore, schools are looking for students that have good/great test scores and unique life and leadership experiences. One of our older adult kids had a much skewed high school transcript and skewed test scores (100% in English, well below average in Math). She was offered a 50% scholarship at a local private institution (who had yet to see her transcript) and a full ride scholarship to another institution. She was offered these scholarships because of her unique life experiences and test scores.

What are your responses to homeschool myths?  


educator said...

Good article. By the way teachers are now the biggest influx into the home school venue

Chris Coyle said...

Popping in via the Tues Archive Link-Up.

It sounds like you MORE than have all the bases covered, but sadly, not all home schools are created equal. In all seriousness though, neither are all schools. I think so long as the kids are involved in other outside activities like a sport, etc. and can pass whatever the required state tests may be, there can be a lot of value to a non-traditional education.

Wish I had gone to your school! Your passion/enthusiasm would have probably rubbed off and made me pay closer attention than to some of my "regular" teachers. ;)

Debbie said...

I think home school is fabulous for those that can and choose to do it. And it is so popular now that there are a lot of home school programs for the kids to come together for sports, field trips, parties, etc.
Although I have no desire to home school, I admire those that do.