Saturday, February 05, 2011

Why I Homeschool

I just started Homeschooling this January.  People often want to know why.  They assume there is something wrong with my daughter or they think it's for religious reasons.  Nope sorry - you're wrong on both counts.  Here is why I homechool;

I do not HS due to academics.  My child is bright and has always done well in PS.  She's not a genius, she will not be the next great percussionist to hit YouTube, she will not be on Ellen for being an extraordinary kid. She will not go to one of the Seven Sisters Schools. She's just a kid and that's what my husband and I are looking for in her life.  To let her be a kid.

She started being bullied and the school thought 6th grade girls could work it out themselves.  She's a quirky kid who often wears two different colored socks either just 'because' or she's feeling lazy and doesn't think pairs of anything are a big deal.  She's everyone's friend but doesn't get that not everyone is her friend.  She is upset when others are upset - she is the most empathetic person I'll probably ever meet.  My daughter doesn't understand why people don't feel as passionate about things as she does.  She tends to find something she's interested in and is like a dog with a bone...she will not let go until she has it mastered - be it her love of Elmo at age 2 or her current focus on building snow caves all over our yard. 

My child doesn't need to know about mean girls, peer pressure, wearing the right clothing, and who is kissing whom.  She can learn those things a little later.  We want her to go with what she's passionate about and not be tied down to strict schedules.  Do we have a schedule?  Yes, but if something comes us we leave plenty of wiggle room to finish up the next day.  PS's are stuck with tons of rules and regulations, especially since NCLB. When I was working at my daughters school I saw how burnt out teachers were.  So many were retiring - the best of the best - because they just couldn't do it anymore.  All the joy of teaching had ended.  It's now teach for the test or face not making AYP and being on the bad school list.  Taking my child away from that situation means she can actually learning things and not just touch the surface.  She doesn't have to wait for the slower kids to catch up to her.  She doesn't have to feel she's not one of the smarter kids because she can't finish the work as quickly.  She doesn't have to beg for a library pass for lunch and recess because their were too many loud kids in the cafeteria and too much nastiness on the playground.  She doesn't have to fit a predetermined mold of what a 6th grader should be like.  The only four letter words she'll learn are the ones coming out of my mouth.  She calls them the BLANK words and thinks they are pretty lame. 

Bottom line - she can be herself, an 11 year old girl.

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