TO CROMWELL

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by alaska3355, Jun 26, 2006.

  1. alaska3355

    alaska3355 New Member

    Hi, I read in another post that you are pro homeschool. I thought it interesting since you have been an educator and a counselor. We have homeschooled all 5 of our kids (some have been in school but all have done a lot of homeschool) and we obviously like it. We are constantly complimented on how our kids have good manners, are well-behaved, and are no trouble. Of course, they are not like that all the time! But it does help to have them around for casual questions....which happens daily. My twins, who are 11, are still finishing up math for the school year. We may get it done by June 30th, but if not, that's OK. One of the twins has trouble with math, so I'm going to have him repeat 5th grade math but do 6th grade work in everything else. It is great to have that flexibility.

    Take care and have a good day! Terri
  2. Cromwell

    Cromwell New Member

    You know, public education spends so much on administration these days. I think when they had small, even one roomed schoolhouses then most kids learned all the basics they would need to live a good life if not more.

    I have been inside a lot of schools, and what I observe, especially these days,is "crowd control". The whole makeup of classes in most districts core curriculum classes have at least 20 kids in often more. They fudge statistics to make it look like less.

    No Child Left Behind has created more problems. I understand the attempt to make public schools more accountable, but all the schools do is again fudge the results to get around failing school status due to gaping loopholes. In nay case what is has done, is caused teachers to "teach to test" so kids acquire enough facts to pass tests, but remain devoid of knowledge.

    I honestly think it was actually cost effective to keep schools local and small, as when you add in all the bussing and heating those huge buildings, having to employ aides, counselors and others, not only are the kids shuffled about
    from class to class often with ten periods a day!!!(-since when did that make sense? From observing kids watching tv they "observed" kids' attention span was about 35 mins.-can you believe this? so they decided periods should be 35mins.)

    So when we look at say a math class of 35 mins. Kids shuffle into class, sit down, hand in homework etc. There is eight minutes gone. Teacher rushes through assignment for that day, gives kids some test questions. The last five minutes are taken up giving out homework assignments. Can we see there is no time at all for kids to practice, or ask questions, be helped 1:1. Is this idiotic or what? Then, instead of saying, "Well maybe we need to do this math in smaller groups, using more time" what do they do? Rush out and spend thousands on newfangled math pograms like Everyday Math which gives kids no numeric/ algorithmic understanding-extremely hard on kids who have no mathematical bent at all.

    Well this is getting long, but I just hate to see taxpayers money not giving best value. I also fel that if we homeschool, especially in our case when we are actually forced to homeschool, like it or not, which means I cannot work, then we should be not required to at least pay school taxes and should be able to get some inancial help as we are saving the government $15,000 a year in our school district.

    Then, here is the other gripe I have. How come our school district spends $15,000 a year per child, yet the small, non church funded private school here can do a better job for $6,000 a year and wow you should see the work the kids do. Plus parents are actively encouraged to be involved.

    I also wanted to let you know that Clue Finders have some quite good math and history etc discs for the computer and they are reasonable. My son, who you know is autistic, loves the visuals and it helps him a lot to see the math visually represented. Their CD's range in price from $8 to $20. I also like Haugton Mifflen and McGraw books that have the work pages the kids can do in natural progression.

    I have to tell you that although last year we had a superb teacher and self contained classroom for Danny, he learned about as much in a year as he can learn in about two weeks using those books.

    Locally, we are lucky as there is a strong homeschool network from all persuasions and political beliefs too as well as ethnic backgrounds. This means parents can exchange skills and offer to teach their strength and also we can do group activities like science, field trips, sports etc.

    I once heard about a homeschool program where one can pay like $2,000 a year and get lessons and direct links via computer but I lost that link. If you have any advice and ups I would love to hear from you.

    I know it is easier when one has a large family. For us, we just have Danny home now as his next brother "up" is 25!!! his oldest brother is 40 and he is 12.

    Much love and keep up the good work.

    Love Anne Cromwell

    ps not only was I a teacher and counselor, I also was a director of education as well as psychologist all in the public sector. The other thing is, they talk about socialization, well I don't see it except in cliques and clubs. I do see the mouthy kids taking over though!!!
  3. alaska3355

    alaska3355 New Member

    I will look up the computer discs - sounds like a good help for my twins.

    To Jolielulu- How is your state with homeschooling? Some states are pretty intrusive, others more laid back. Washington only requires that I send a letter of intent at the beginning of each school year. We are expected to do standardized tests for grades 3, 5 and 7. After that, we are left to do our thing, thankfully. I would recommend you look up "Homeschooling" on the net....there are lots of good curriculum catalogues. I like Rainbow Resource, Timberdoodles, Bob Jones and Abeka. Of course there are lots out there to choose from. Let me know if you need more info....Terri p.s. I teach piano and I do notice a difference with public school kids vs. homeschooled....usually the homeschooled are more polite .
  4. Cromwell

    Cromwell New Member

    I would start by seeing if there is already a network in your area and check them out. Some are great, others, go carefully.

    The library is a great resource for a ton of homeschooling books.

    There is a great old standard, written many years ago by a man called Ivan Illich called "De-Schooling Society" it is short book but what gets me is nothing is changing since he wrote that.

    A lot of parents un-school rather than homeschool and that is another thing to check.

    Terri has mentioned some great resources too.

    I do think it is harder to homeschool just one child. I intend to look around and see if I can do something cooperatively with a few other families, maybe even see if they would like me to homeschool their kids in my home, say three kids.

    I am letting Danny start Middle School as he has been swept away with all the rarara of the other kids going plus it is yards from our home, as this way, he will want to be homeschooled again himself after a couple of weeks as I know what they have to offer is not what he needs.

    To be honest, there are kids there I just do not want Danny around. With his autism too, he tends to imitate and for some reason is always drawn to follow bullies around.

    I will say this, that you can teach your child more in an hour than he will learn all day long in school.

    Check back in and let me know what you decide to do. You can always partially homeschool too, let your son go in for certain subjects or PE and Art, although my son's art was terrific until the art teachers drove his natural talent away by forcing him to do what they wanted rather than from his heart.

    You may also want to check out Waldorf education and see if there is one near you. I love their loving philosophy, moral values and wonderful heart and hands programs. I wish our local one went higher than 4th grade. You can barter for fees too. Also, 7th Day Adventists have really good and cheap schools and there is no prothelising at either, they just make nice safe old fashioned schools for kids.

    Some of these schools will let you use them part weeks too.

    Love Anne Crom
  5. alaska3355

    alaska3355 New Member

    band in the fall at the public middle school. They are nervous, but I have told them that not everyone there is a bully. I like to sometimes pick and choose classes...my older kids used to attend only in the mornings, then do their other subjects in the afternoon at home. That worked pretty well...especially for math and science, which I wasn't great at helping with at the HS level.
  6. Cromwell

    Cromwell New Member

    Yes, I think that some classes attract nicer kids too, kids in band are generally studious too also choir.

    Danny plays chess so chess club or a language club are also options.

    BTW in UK kids stay in school thru most of July too, don't get the very long summer break we do.

    I think districts tend to dump kids in one school too, whereas it should be the school closest to home, our area is so multicultural there really is no need to bus.

    I also wanted to say that kids who excell are often bored at school too, I thought it worked better really when they tracked, if they did it subtly, as the way now they put such a mix in the kids at the top are bored, the kids at the bottom cannot understand and a few kids in the middle would learn but for the bright kids giving all the answers.

    Some smart schools have split the large schools into sub schools with the the school and geared to educational level and they are doing so much better with far more kids graduating too.

    Love Anne C
    [This Message was Edited on 06/28/2006]