Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Homeschooling Discussions

Doug and I have been fairly vocal in our decision to homeschool the boys for quite some time now. Aside from a question here and there, nobody in our family has seemed the least bit concerned about our choices. Now, most people would probably be content with that and let it go, assuming that their family members have no problem whatsoever with this alternative method of education. But for us, we know with some certainty that many people in our family aren't comfortable with homeschooling. I've been waiting and waiting for "the big discussion," armed with loads of supportive info, but it didn't come. I started to wonder (and maybe worry) that people know we're going to homeschool, don't agree with it, but just don't care enough to bring it up. You see, I'm the paranoid type. ;)

But, anyway.. much to my surprise and pleasure, my grandmother initiated a discussion about homeschooling the last night she was staying here. Mom, Dad, and Kristine participated as well (not Doug, he was upstairs interviewing for a dev position in the MUD/MORPG we play), and we talked for about two hours. Grammy's main concern was socialization, and though I made many good points (in my opinion, anyway), she didn't seem to convinced. As far as Mom, Dad, and Kristine, though, I think I was able to assuage a lot of their worries. And I was so pleased that Kristine was interested in the conversation and came up with thoughtful questions of her own.

I really feel like we've put so much thought and effort into our decision to homeschool (and virtually every other parenting choice we've made), that if our family has concerns, I'd love to try to explain where we're coming from and where we hope to go. While I have little desire to debate with strangers or acquaintances, I do care quite a lot about what our family thinks of us. That's not to say that their opinions/thoughts will change our minds, but I'd like them to feel as good about homeschooling as we do.



At 12:36 PM, Blogger Jen said...

Good job sticking up for what you believe in! School socialization is not really healthy socialization. The kids are so competitive and petty at a young age. I don't remember caring about what I wore at 5 years old or being made fun of.
My bro was homeschooled. I know my brother really missed his "real" friends. A lot of the homeschool kids in our area were homeschooled for religious reasons so.. he didn't really fit in with that crowd.
I recently found out my husband was homeschooled until 8th grade by his mom and at times a tutor (he grew up in asia where it is more common).
I know I am a little sad not to homeschool my son (his pedi and teacher think he may be autistic which would explain a lot!).

just wanted to mention: I am reading "the last child in the woods". Really interesting read! It sounds a lot like what you have been talking about. How important it is to learn through nature.

At 8:08 PM, Blogger Rachel said...

Last Child In the Woods is a fantastic book! I'm not sure if I mentioned it in another post, but it was a fascinating read.

If you really want to homeschool your son, would it be possible to send him for the therapies but keep him home for the rest? A friend of ours has a 3 year old who is somewhere on the autism spectrum, and they're trying to figure out what to do. They're homeschooling their 5 year old and I think would prefer to HS their 3 year old as well. Check out the HS forums on, I know there have been posts on HSing autistic kids.

At 8:56 PM, Blogger Jen said...

great book! I heard about it on NPR.
I was so hesitant about sending my son to school but all the special therapy he receives in school and in the classroom helps so much. If we lived in another school district I would probably homeschool him but he has made such remarkable strides this year that I don't want to tempt anything. We do a lot of homeschooling with him after school. He mostly goes to school to socialize and see his therapists. Last year he went to school for 2.5 hours 4 days a week. This year he is going for 6 hours. If it isn't working in a few months then I will homeschool him but he loves going to school and it makes him happy. He has a great team right now and they really do work with us a lot. If it changes I know I have options. I have a friend with a son with the same issues in beverly and her experience with his team is so different.


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