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Thinking of HE

(11 Posts)
sunshine241083 Sat 08-Oct-11 22:02:33


I am seriously thinking of HE my nearly 6 yr old daughter. She started reception class last January, and should be in year 1 now but has been kept in reception due to the amount of children (60 approx) that needed to be moved up, and again there are almost 60 children again in this year?s reception.

I have several concerns

1, the class sizes, if it?s a problem now won't it carry on?

2, will she fall behind for being in reception still & how will she cope when yr 2 comes along.

She is a bright, confident, and inquisitive little girl who loves to learn; at home we are forever doing things together and feel that her thirst to learn is not being fully quenched at school.

I am a stay at home mum/wife so do have the time, and have a very supportive Family who have already offered to help with different subjects that I may not be so good on.

I was home educated from age 14 to 16 and got my GCSE's with good grades so I have no worries on being able to get access to exams in the future. It was the dark ages of Home education back then and my mum did me proud.

I would love advice from mums that have made the plunge as I keep second guessing myself, over whether it would do her more harm than good to take her out of school

lilyfire Sat 08-Oct-11 23:27:31

The thing that really helped me decide was meeting home educators locally and talking to lots of them about the different ways they did things. Also finding out all the groups and activities that were on locally, so I could get a picture of how our week would look. I found out there were sports groups and social meet ups and loads of trips and joint learning experiences and it was then I could really imagine it working. And it has. Definitely find some groups near you if at all possible and if you can take your daughter along with you and see what you both think. Reading HE blogs and books also helped me picture how it might work. Making the decision was the worst part, because it felt so scary. Since we've been doing it, it feels very natural.

mumette Sat 08-Oct-11 23:47:51

i took my 14 yr ds out 2 years ago and my 7 and 5 year dd and ds 1 year ago. the best move we ever made. we dont meet up with any other HE in leek, stoke-on-trent. i dont drive and i cant get to hear of any thers. but my eldest has his friends round most days and my younger 2 play with friends in the week. we are so happy now though. we do what we want, when we want. i use forums too, they are fantastic when i get 'stuck for ideas' or when i want a general moan.i agree with lilyfiree, it is scary at first, so fingers and thumbs, abit like when you first bringg your baby home. but you son get into the swing of it. what works for others doesnt always works for you, but as long as you and your child is happy thats the most important thing at the end of the day

sunshine241083 Fri 14-Oct-11 20:37:55

Thank you so much for answering me, so far my husband and I have decided that we will use the time between now and Christmas to prepare and also monitor how she is coming along at school, also planning to enrol her at the local rainbows so she has the opportunity to meet new friends in prep for HE

Saracen Fri 14-Oct-11 21:55:36

Hi Sunshine,

You mentioned some things that are bothering you about school and some positives about HE. But you haven't yet mentioned anything on the other side of the scales.

When you say you wonder whether it would do your dd more harm than good to take her out of school, what potential drawbacks do you think there might be if you HE?

exoticfruits Fri 14-Oct-11 22:14:25

It sounds a ridiculous situation. Why do they take the DCs if they haven't got the staff and/or room to deal with them?

sunshine241083 Sat 15-Oct-11 22:09:20

Hi Saracen,
Suppose I am worried I will let her down and also I could be over reacting with the whole school thing, I can get on my high horse sometimes.

Hi exoticfruits
They are in one large class room with two teachers and an assistant. And a few volunteers that read to the children, but not all get a turn every week. Also quite a few of the children are only just starting to learn English for the first time

Should also mention that she had behaviour issues at Nursery, but has got a little better since starting reception not sure how she has been this year so far. All it is, is she is very independent and likes to do what she wants to do, when she wants to do it, and if she is made to do something she doesn’t want to then you've had it. She also has to feel in control, she works lovely one to one and loves to explore and grow things/ bake/ read and is just starting to spell words and blending to read (we was on holiday last week so did some work with her).

A friend once told me "motherhood is the biggest guilt trip you'll ever go on" she wasn't half right x

Saracen Sat 15-Oct-11 22:37:02

Yes, you might be letting her down by home educating her. But you might also be letting her down if you leave her in school. The only difference is that if you let her down by HEing then everyone will blame you, whereas if you let her down by sending her to school then everyone will blame the school. But ultimately, the responsibility is really yours. Not that I am trying to add any more to that guilt trip you mentioned!!!

Hard to know whether you're overreacting about school. It's so much a take-it-or-leave-it complete package, isn't it? And difficult to know whether the bits you dislike should outweigh the bits you like, and whether the bad bits will get better or worse or stay the same...

The thing about HE is that it usually allows you to tinker with whichever bits aren't working well, without discarding the entire package. Personally I find that makes it very hard for me to look at the Big Picture when it comes to school situations, because I'm not used to accepting certain disadvantages as inevitable and just turning my attention away from them and focusing on the positives. I'm used to thinking that problems can and should be fixed.

Does your daughter like school? Sometimes I think kids have a better perspective than we do on whether the school "package" as a whole is working for them. Of course, there's always the chance that a child who likes school would like HE even better if they had the opportunity to try it!

exoticfruits Sat 15-Oct-11 22:41:48

When DS1 was due to start school the catchment area one was like that. We went on the visit and he sat down on the pavement afterwards and cried! I found a small school to take him. I haven't got the answers but I should look for alternatives.

sunshine241083 Sun 16-Oct-11 11:28:55

We did speak to her whilst on holiday, and she doesn't want to go back and said she would like to learn with mummy, but she also said because the teacher won't let me play, so don't really get a good responce as far as working at home would be concerned.

I really do want to give it a go, if it doesn't work she could always go back to school. But at least i would see by experience the the other side of the fence and i could try to get her back up to the level she should be at. Beacuse at the minute she is behind (seriously) except her reading which she loves.

Saracen Wed 19-Oct-11 06:58:13

Wanting to play is a very good reason for a six year old to be keen on home education, and it's a desire you'll probably be able to honour. It's very unlikely you'll feel the need to have your daughter doing structured work anywhere near as many hours as she would at school, so she should have a lot more time to play. One of my main reasons for home educating is so that my kids can play more!

I imagine that if your own experience of home education was studying for GCSEs then you probably remember doing a fair bit of formal work. Your daughter is so much younger that you may prefer for her to learn things informally with nature walks, hands-on projects, educational TV, games, etc, all of which can be chosen to appeal to her interests. Even if you do sit down to do formal work it doesn't have to be many hours a day.

So if you and your daughter are in agreement (and better yet, you even have a supportive family) then why not give it a go? It doesn't sound like you'd have anything to lose!

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