View Full Version : Weekly Poll: If Wishes Were Horses, yada, yada

02-01-2012, 10:15 PM
I don't let myself play the "what-if" game concerning our homeschool experience too often. The last 12 years have been incredibly fulfilling and our kids have - - at least so far - - turned out to be lovely human beings with their natural curiosity still intact. But, there HAVE been times that I found myself fantasizing about other options. What if there were a school for geeky, twice-gifted kids who like to fix computers for fun, for instance?? Might I have traded in our homeschool experience for a picture-perfect school straight out of a Wishbook Catalog?

It's an interesting question, and one I'm not sure I can answer in hindsight, but one I might readily have answered in the thick of a particularly difficult homeschool day. :grin:

What about you? Is there a perfect school scenario which might tempt you to throw in the homeschool towel? Or are you so absolutely certain of your choice that the most targeted and optimized school experience wouldn't sway you in the least? Let's find out...shall we??

(You may choose more than one option on this poll)

02-02-2012, 09:39 AM
I chose "other" because there wasn't a choice for "all of the above." And since pigs will fly before public schools manage to change "all of the above," we'll be homeschooling for a long time. :)

02-02-2012, 10:56 AM
We would almost certainly continue to homeschool no matter what.

But... if there were really small schools (100 kids or less) that were really learning communities that we could choose... I might be tempted. But my vision for what school could be ain't happening any time soon, so it's not like it'll lure us away.

02-02-2012, 11:05 AM
I looked at all my checks and, well, we'd probably still homeschool anyway.

02-02-2012, 11:22 AM
The big thing for me is gifted ed and differentiated learning. Had we not PCSed, my daugther would still be in school, because York County Schools in VA met these needs very well (and they were concerned they weren't doing enough for her). The school here? Not so much. In fact, not so much to the point that they wanted to have her diagnosed for ADHD and drug her and complained that she asked too many questions and was interested in things that none of the other children were interested in, so they didn't want to be friends with her. When the crap on the playground got to be so bad that she was purposely not finishing her work in class so she would be held in from recess, and they weren't able to see that she didn't want to be out there to be bullied where there was no teacher supervision...well, a lot of bad things added up that made me homeschool.

02-02-2012, 11:54 AM
For us we'd have to find a small K-12 school, where grade levels intermingled at least some of the time, with teachers trained in this extremely specific way that I've thought up based on what is important to me. With lots of emphasis on nature study, lots of reading and kids would have the ability to follow their interests to the very end of where their interest leads.

So, homeschool, basically. In a pretty little schoolhouse. It's never going to happen. Oh! Even if we did find it, it would have to be able to be hitched up to our mitsubishi and taken with us wherever the DHS sends us. haha. Homeschool is definitely for us, just in every way imaginable.

02-02-2012, 02:56 PM
I put we would continue to homeschool despite any improvements. We aren't homeschooling due to any shortcomings of the schools (my oldest has always gone to public school) but due to some of my sons particular quirks. He would not do well in even a fairly small classroom. We know because he was in Early Intervention with only 6 kids and 3 teachers and there were still issues. He almost definitely has ADHD, probably has a touch of atypical autism, definite sensory issues especially noise, smells and taste/textures, and can't handle a lot of writing. He's also very smart and working at mostly 2nd grade level right now. So, I guess he'd be termed 2E. He really needs very individualized education, one that allows him to work around his issues while also working at his own level so he doesn't get bored. I don't think any school situation would be able to provide all that.

02-02-2012, 03:10 PM
My biggest beef with school is the institutionalization of children. I think kids deserve more than that and I don't see how public education could ever fully address it, so I really don't see ever giving up.

02-02-2012, 03:23 PM
I think we'll continue to home school. It would have to be a very individualized, relaxed learning environment, with kids able to follow their own interests and work at their own pace. Since I don't see a school actually offering that, we'll stay with our current plan.

02-02-2012, 05:41 PM
We're only two years in and we've certainly had our challenges, but I can't imagine not homeschooling at this point. (As a matter of fact, we increased my life insurance policy so in the event I kick off, my husband could hire an in-home tutor until Zack is old enough to school independently - it's that important to us.)

The only way I could envision a return to school is if there was actually a "school for introverts" as described by Zack:

Five students per class.
The option of staying inside and reading instead of running around outside at recess.
A "quiet room" with comfortable chairs and soft lighting and pleasant music playing where kids could go any time.
The ability to get up and use the restroom without having to announce it to everyone.
No noisy assemblies, pep rallies, parades or field trips.
A cafeteria with restaurant-style tables and the choice to eat alone.

Gee, sounds kinda like our house. I think we'll stick with it for now.

02-02-2012, 05:59 PM
My biggest beef with school is the institutionalization of children. I think kids deserve more than that and I don't see how public education could ever fully address it, so I really don't see ever giving up.

I can see this, too. Just the logistics of shuffling around large groups of kids requires all those absurd rules. I don't see how there's any way around it.

"Shorter school day" would also interest me. I would like to see schools figure out how to educate kids more efficiently so that kids didn't spend six or seven or eight hours a day at school (when the actual instruction time is a fraction of that). When my daughter was at her swimming class yesterday, I overheard the women sitting next to me were complaining how the school day was too short. Why do people think this is a magic bullet for a better education and not a sign that things are seriously screwed up?

02-02-2012, 06:24 PM
I chose "other" because there wasn't a choice for "all of the above." And since pigs will fly before public schools manage to change "all of the above," we'll be homeschooling for a long time. :)

This. . .all of this.

02-02-2012, 06:47 PM
If we could do away with the stupid essays on math tests, if we could actually have the teachers talk to the students about what they read and recognize that they understand even if they dont use the "appropriate vocabulary," if the classes were smaller and there was an actual GT program that wasn't viewed the same way as special ed (either immersion- doesn't work as the class can't keep up, or pull outs- where the child feels like there is something wrong with them). If the teachers would write notes home to the parents talking about where the student is, what they need help with and other observation instead of a standard class letter and having to constantly email the teacher to find out if there is a problem or not having enough information to make that judgement call. Then I would be happy. Oh and remove those children with the "I know everything, you are here to serve my will additude" and the parents who look down on my family because we homeschool and my kid acted oddly.

02-02-2012, 07:14 PM
I chose 'other' but really it's more like... it might as well be never.

There is no way they could fix all the issues I have with ps unless there was a complete change of mindsight- more respect for parents, more emphasis on actually educating the kids instead of pushing them into remedial programs. More understanding of kids and developmental stages, less emphasis on medications to make kids sit still, and no harsh punishments (including detention and trips to the principal) for little kids still learning the social ropes (excluding bullying). Better attempts to help kids excel at whatever level and less emphasis on the median- which loses kids both at the top and at the bottom. Ps needs to be a place of education first and foremost- not a daycare center to police parents and warehouse kids until they are adults. Ps needs to start when school starts, and end when school ends- leaving time for kids to play and be children (instead of assuming without a bizillion hours of homework, ALL kids will be on the street and getting into trouble). Education needs to concentrate on solid skills AND understanding, not just one or the other, so that kids in college with A's don't fail out due to complete inability to do math or write an essay. Schools need to stop saying, "well, we failed all the kids for the last 5 years, but we'll try something new for the next 5," forgetting that there are now 5 years' worth of kids with a crappy education.

I know homeschooling can't work for every family. But at this point, I wish it did.

02-02-2012, 07:18 PM
the stupid essays on math tests,


It's been a long time since ps for me... wth do you write an essay about??

02-02-2012, 08:12 PM
ok. I've fantasized alot about this. A LOT. To the point i'm actually starting to go down the road of founding my own private school. So - all of the above would be my answer. but more details include creativity, self-expression, and self-directed learning with great teacher structure and help with how to do that, then yes - we may go back to school. Some of you might be interested in purusing the website: www.blueschool.org It's a private elementary school in NYC started by the founders of the Blue Man Group to help fix some of the problems including the need for conformity and mass education at the expense of individual learning and creativity and a child's ability to find their own passions. It's not a Sudbury/unschooling approach though. It's fascinating!

02-02-2012, 08:28 PM
I ticked other but maybe I should have ticked all of them.........
Not sure if the system implemented all of the above and more that I would send my dc back into the depths of he** (ds's words)

02-02-2012, 10:23 PM
I cant imagine a school situation that could work for my crazy boys. I mean, i kinda wish I could. Small classes and better gifted/specail ed and customized learning . . . that would come pretty close. The anti-bullying . . . i dont even know i believe it as a dream. I mean, if even the teachers are picking on my special needs son . . . there's just no way. I know I still yell at them sometimes when they are being totally unreasonable .. . but sometimes I just need to get their attention and let them know they've gone too far - but at school, on bad, days, there are always going to be 'consequences' meaning punishments and loss of respect, no matter what. On the days that Orion is swearing that he will NOT do his math today, or Raven is rolling around on the floor crying because he has to write 3 sentences . . . wtf would any school do with that? All I can do is handle them the best I know how and pretend to believe that there will come a day that they mature enough to WANT to be able to control themselves, and to actually be able to.

and just to point out, the days of Orion flat-out refusing math are getting fewer, and Raven wrote 3 sentences today with NO crying or rolling on the floor. So it gets better. But they simply dont handle stress in a way that ANY school is going to be able to cope w on a regular basis. IMO.

02-06-2012, 07:00 PM
Testing is a big deal to me. I think with less testing and more free time and flex time, I would consider public of private school.

Accidental Homeschooler
02-06-2012, 07:33 PM
I checked all of them. I think that is what it would take for my dd6 to thrive in school. My dd14 would probably be fine with customized learning, a good gifted program and smaller class sizes.

02-09-2012, 11:01 AM
I don't think any improvements would change my mind. Maybe testing, but that's about it. If we ever did changing schooling options, it would be personal reasons.

02-10-2012, 07:00 PM
we would continue to homeschool regardless. the most important aspects of homeschooling to me are things that are impossible for brick and mortar schools to provide. i'm jealous of the time i have with my kids and i don't like being beholden to outside schedules any more than i absolutely have to be. what would make me put my kids in school would be circumstances that make it impossible to homeschool, not any improvements in the school experience.

christina in lawrenceville