That anyone can provide a decent home education for their child(227 Posts)
If they are inclined to?
I have no choice but to HE ds, he has multiple SN and is unable to function in any of our local schools.
Every single time I tell someone I get or a mixture of both. Nine times out of ten I am asked if I am a teacher? No, I am not.
With access to a library and Internet AIBU to believe that anyone who is inclined to do so can provide a decent Home Education for their child?
I've been thinking about this for quite a while now, why the shock, judgement and sometimes downright horror whenever I tell anyone I HE? Is it really so scary and unbelievable that I can provide this to ds without being formally trained?
It seems to provoke incredibly strong opinions, even from complete strangers, which they feel they must strenuously share with me usually. So just wondering really as I can never really ask them.
I think most people could cover basic facts. But making information interesting, holding a child's attention, understanding why a child is struggling or where they can be stretched - these are skills that not everyone would have. I'm not suggesting all teachers can do these things but neither can everyone who home educates.
Nobody who H.eds needs the skills you mention unless they are particularly trying to emulate a school environment. The dc don't struggle usually if they are working at their own level and speed and of course a topic freely chosen by the child. You see there is no requirement either practically nor lawfully where a dc is expected to be compared with dc of a similar age. This was one of the bonuses for us. We felt there was far to much emphasis put on assessment, time taken away from learning.
I always liken it to the quote by Mark Twain "I never let school get in the way of learning".
Just what works for us and some H.edders and not at all a prescribed philosophy.
However there is skill required in making sure that the child's level is ok for what they want to do next. This is where some HEers I know have come a bit of a cropper.
I said previously on the thread that many HE children go to college for GCSE'S and A'levels or do OU.
I read of one boy who on reaching 13 knew he would have to get GCSE's to pursue his chosen career path and did the work and achieved a maths GCSE in 3 months.
I think that works very well, akaemmafrost, in the case of strongly motivated children who have well informed parents who can tell them about what careers there are out there and what you need to achieve them.
But the thread was about every parent. If you are HE'd by parents who are not themselves literate, who cannot show their offspring how to use the internet because they haven't got those skills themselves, and who have no idea what you need to become a doctor, then I imagine it must be harder.
My bf's parents were lovely, lovely people; their parenting skills could not be bettered. But they could only really advise about very low paid manual jobs because that is what they knew about. Anyone trying to get them to facilitate a different type of career would be left floundering.
I am possibly slightly influenced by the fact that both my dad and my maternal granddad were bright working class boys who were discovered by their teachers and encouraged to aim higher than would have seemed natural to their families- and both were very, very happy in their career choices. But it would never have happened if their careers advice had been left in the hands of their parents.
I don't know many families who HE or who have HE. The ones I do know are American and it seems HE is quite well-received by American universities and these parents are all very disciplined, the dc work very hard and work with an American distance learning school. The one family I know whose dc have "graduated from high school" as they put it (I presume some kind of diploma from the distance learning institute) are all in further education/training (one at Westpoint, two at university where one is studying medicine and the other is studying sport with the aim of becoming a personal trainer). The parents are not the type to leave anything to chance IMO and they are a missionary family - pastor and his wife who I think are strict generally with regard to the upbringing of their dc. Can't comment on the success of the other families but the mothers are main teachers and seem to put in a lot of thought and preparation and expect high standards. The boy at Westpoint told me that after living under his mother's regime, he didn't find it difficult to get used to the military discipline at Westpoint.
From what I have read, there are entirely different methods of HE but this is the only type I have personally encountered. These are well-educated, ambitious, middle-class parents so a degree at a recognised American university or the equivalent is definitely a clear goal for these people.
And there is another type of HE parent- well represented in my own family, who are so keep on the learning journey they completely miss the fact that not much learning is actually happening while a lovely time is being had by all. And that sadly, we live in a world where most of us have to jump through the occasional hoop. And that if you don't jump through the hoop in the way and at the time expected, it suddenly gets a lot smaller, a lot higher and the queue to jump gets longer.
It's not clear cut, though, its it.
There is no way I could teach my 14yo maths or science. I would struggle with English.
I always knew I wouldn't be able to teach him beyond Y6, which is why he went to junior school. I thought it would be too cruel to throw him into a comprehensive if he wasn't used to school.
fwiw the people I know who HE probably don't fall into any of the two categories mentioned above, but manage a very good middle way. Wouldn't mind being HE'd by my friend myself.
But that doesn't mean that I believe every single parent out there would do it as well:
some parents are not confident enough
some have chips on shoulders re education
others don't have basic reading and writing skills
others find it hard not to impose their personal tastes too much
if I'd been HE'd by my own parents, my Latin and Greek would be exquisite, I'd probably speak 10 foreign languages and play several instruments - but not have the slightest clue about evolution
Also, It depends what you want from education.
I want my DC to have decent exam results, so they can access higher education, and gain interesting (and hopefully well paid) employment.
This obviously wan't a priority to SIL and she didn't put her DC in for any exams, and although now at college doing some fun course, I can't see what DN is going to long term with her life. But she is extremely well read. She's spent the past 10 years solidly reading novels.
being HE'd by my mother would no doubt have reinforced the idea that having to socialise with people who have different ideas and values is a scary thing that nobody should have to go through
she's lovely really- but not very socially confident
I needed to meet lots of adults to see that they weren't all like that
but I can't imagine my friend has that effect on her offspring
"I found the children difficult to deal with, as they didn't respect/understand conventional societal boundaries"
That is exactly the case with my DN. She has no idea of the appropriate way to speak to the GP during a consultation, for example.
anyway back to the OP, yes, I do think anyone can do it successfully given access to good material if as you say, they are inclined to do it but I would add and also if they take it seriously as a job regardless of the type of HE they are pursuing.
what if they don't have the literacy/intellectual ability to understand the good material, ZZZen?
I just don't see people in that position ever choosing to HE
You can get children leaving the school system who are not able to read and write well and who have poor social skills and who don't understand or respect social boundaries. Making generalized statements doesn't help.
We home educated no 1 and 2 until they were 9 and 6 and they started school in yrs 5 and 2. It didn't cause them any problems, theory had lots of friends who went to school and some who were home educated. They had no problems with social norms etc, but then I am hot on manners and being polite and treating other people as you would like to be treated yourself.
Some of it is parenting, not 'education' and you can get children in and out of the school system who are ermm not well behaved
I think a lot of parents could home educate if they wanted to, most don't want to.
Might be helpful if it was clearer you can home educate, the times the Lea told me couldn't home educate, the form that gets sent to parents about enrolling for school as they MUST go to school once they turn 5, err no they must be educated.
Both ways have pros and cons, different schools have different pros and cons and different ways of home educating have positive and negative points. No one size fits all and it very much depends on the individual CHILD, the parents and family dynamics.
ZZZenAgain Tue 19-Feb-13 14:51:05
"I just don't see people in that position ever choosing to HE"
some do, e.g. for religious reasons
it is a mistake to imagine that everybody is the same
I presume if a H.ed family were working towards 11+ exams and couldn't manage, they too would hire a tutor.
I don't have a GCSE to my name but would be confident to support any subject (except for maths) up to and including A level.
Its not difficult to locate the text books, to find examples on good answers given in exams, essay writing, etc. You don't have to be able to teach as H.ed to most isn't teaching.
morethanpotatoprints Tue 19-Feb-13 15:30:08
I presume if a H.ed family were working towards 11+ exams and couldn't manage, they too would hire a tutor."
If they had the money and the understanding of how much learning was required= how far their offspring fell short.
Going by dh's parents, it is equally possible that uneducated parents would just think the child was doing brilliantly because he knew more than they.
MIL is still convinced that dh did well at the private secondary he went to on a scholarship; she has no idea how lucky he was that the university took him anyway (wouldn't happen these days) because she has no idea of high the requirements were in reality.
Agree that it is crap that LEAs won't tell the truth about HE'ing.
In knew the legalities having done it, do when it came to getting a reception place for ds4 I put down the school that ds2 and ds3 go to but new builds etc mean catchment has shrunk so we are now out if catchment and I was relying on sibling link for his place.
I only put that one school down as I couldn't physically get him to any other school as they are all in the opposite direction. Lea phoned up very stroppu and said he wouldn't get a place and he has to go tho school yaddayadda.
I explained if he didn't get a place that was fine and I would wait for one to become available (high movement area) and if I had to I would keep him at home until yr 2/3 when class sizes can be bigger etc. They were quite insistent that I couldn't do this and I just said I could sand would home educate until a place became available at the school his brothers attended. But they I sister I couldn't do this and I couldn't have his name on the waiting list if I was home educating, etc etc. They were beyond stupid!
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