Saturday, August 07, 2010

Home Schooling

Well, I might as well break the news to you.  You're my friends! You won't think I'm a loon!

We're home-schooling the kid this year.  But not for religious reasons!

Well.  Kind of for religious reasons.  A tiny bit.  It's rough being an atheist Jew in the Bible belt, especially when you're only twelve.  She was getting a little weary of constantly having to defend not just herself, but Charles Darwin, James Hutton, and the entire spectrum of Enlightenment Thinkers, throughout not just science class, but literature, geography, history, and music class as well, not to mention recess.

Also, she was bored numb.  It was a good school, but it's a school.  Even at a Montessori school, it develops, there's a lot of you-have-to-do-this-because-the-class-has-to, or -because-the-curriculum-says-you-have-to, rather than because it's actually necessary.

Well, the kid is like HDD and me.  If she's not interested in the work, she won't do the work.  We met with the head of the school several times, since at Montessori the deal is, if the kid's not interested, the curriculum is supposed to shift toward the kid; but we couldn't get the school to shift, or at least not enough.  The kid started to feel like a loser, started hating school, started begging to stay home every day.

So now we're going to teach her. We know nearly everything she needs to know at this age.  (Pre-algebra and biology look a little scary, I admit.)  We filed the papers last week, and actually started teaching her in July.  She's studying Latin, World History, World Geography, Writing (creative and comp I), Literature, Biology, music, Aikido, and Art.

We're not teaching the last two -- Aikido she has at the dojo, and a friend of ours is giving her private lessons twice a week with the art.

Year-round schooling.  That's my favorite part so far.  No more spending her entire summer playing Sims.

5 comments:

Bardiac said...

Sounds like good reasons to home school to me (for what little THAT is worth!)

I bet you're going to give her a great beginning in stuff such as biology and all. And I've heard that there are good, solid curricula out there.

Hope it goes well.

jo(e) said...

My sister homeschools her two kids (right now, they are 13 and 15), and she's found lots of resources, as well as a great community of other homeschooling parents. It's worked out really well for her.

I think some family members (COUGHmyparentsCOUGH) were skeptical about the whole homeschooling movement, but now that it's pretty clear that the kids have turned out smart, mature, and responsible, I don't think my sister gets an flack from anyone any more.

Ashley said...

I've been considering homeschooling my children. Right now they're not "school age" but Luna seems eager to learn. I know I can do pre-schooling with her here at home, but am wondering about when she gets older. I know there are plenty of religious-based homeschooling programs out there, but is there a homeschooling community support system for persons who do not choose to have religious affiliation?

delagar said...

Jo(e) -- My parents too! Mainly they're dubious about our ability to teach the kid math. Which who can blame them! But I think we can handle pre-algebra and algebra & after that we'll seek professional help.

Ashley -- not in Arkansas there is not, or at least not that we're finding. We're relying on non-homeschooling friends to form our network. Don't know yet how well this will work, but we're hopeful.

CCat said...

I homeschooled my son for a year (4th grade) so he wouldn't unlearn how to write a paragraph to fit the state formula. It was a great experience, but there were few like us who were homeschooling because we were afraid of what/how the public school was having to teach for state testing. Most were homeschooling because of the godless, public education system that might teach their kids something to make them question their religious indoctrination. I suspect that many of them are now Tea Party supporters.

I think you will do well. You seem to have thought everything out. Best of luck!