Thinking of home schooling

(16 Posts)
cherrypie147 Wed 28-Jun-17 14:17:17

Hello!
My 3 year old is currently in nursery at the moment and she completely loves it, she looks forward to going to it every day. My partner really wants her to be home schooled once she's finished nursery. He works so that would fall down to me. I have so many questions so bare with me.
Im not very good at maths or science so I was just wondering would that inflict on her learning?
Has anyone bought a child who's been to nursery into home education?
Will I be secluding her from something she loves if I home school her?
Is there set curriculum that you have to teach them, do people come and check they are learning a set standard of work for their age?
Do you have to have money to home school or can you do it on a low income?
I'm getting so many of my family saying that I won't be able to home school, and on the other side his family are saying that public education isn't really good for some children. Please no nasty comments.

OP’s posts: |
DN4GeekinDerby Wed 28-Jun-17 15:01:00

Most home educators I know had kids originally in nursery or school and brought them out. My oldest was in a play group that firmed up my decision to do so but school is pretty different to nursery so I wouldn't liking or not liking one as the main criteria for picking home education. Almost all of the home educators I know are on low income, there are tons of cheap and free resources out there and what I spend is similar to what I'd spend on uniform and supplies and other stuff for them to be in school. It can be expensive but there are certainly ways to do it on a budget.

There are tons of programmes that can help you teach subjects. I was dreadful at maths at school and all my kids over 7 can mentally add and subtract faster than me. It has gotten more challenging as they've gotten older - my eldest is 12/year 7 and we've had a few times this last year where we've had to slowly work things out together (thankfully his maths programme is mainly online and checks it all for him, really reduces arguments). I can give recommendations on what worked here or you can check how home educating forums like well trained mind (US based but great for discussing issues and finding resources). Honestly, I find subjects I was good at at school (English and Humanities) harder to do because I knew I would have trouble with maths so sought out resources for that early while stuff I thought I had in hand I've ended up looking for help later for my kids that learn differently than I do.

There is no set curriculum - home educators don't have to follow the National Curriculum or anything else; however, if you plan to have them enter school at a certain point (Year 9-10 is common for GCSEs as it's getting harder to do them privately - we have a UTC locally that at least my older two are planning to go to for Year 10), you'll likely want to keep an eye on it when they get close to it.

The social aspect does take a lot more effort when home educating - I don't find it secluding and my kids and I have far more time to do what we enjoy and make our own friends, but effort does need to be made to find and continue relationships that isn't there in schools where you see people every day - it's different, with its own pros and cons.

Honestly, the main concern I see in your post is that your partner wants this and that's falling to you. Home educating has it's pros and cons, but if the person doing most of the effort isn't into it I would think the cons would feel a like bigger.

cherrypie147 Wed 28-Jun-17 16:51:15

Thank you so much for your reply, it's really helped, it does sound like there are way more pros than cons! There is a home ed group in my area so I suppose if there was anything I was struggling with I could always ask for help! I'm going to really look into it. Any advice on what online learning tools you use would be fantastic, she will be in nursery until she is five so I have a while to find out everything I need to know. It can be daunting as it's hard to know where to start, but she already knows her ABC's and she can count to 20 so that's a start I guess x

OP’s posts: |
CoverYourKneesUp Sat 08-Jul-17 09:10:02

It's much easier than you'd think, especially at that age! Check out Pinterest for tons of free preschool home ed resources, printables, even a curriculum. Aldi's back to school specialbuys are going to have tons of educational books (like wipe off abc books and counting/first addition workbooks) and The Works is usually an easy place to find stuff too. Honestly though there are tons of resources online; you can also check out YouTube for home ed vloggers to get an idea of how other people do it.

As for the social aspect, look for a local home ed Facebook group, get DD involved in extracurricular activities (sports, scouts, play groups) or even maybe look at a Forest school or something like that once a week? They're getting really popular where I live and I can't wait to start taking my DD once she's a little older.

Saracen Mon 10-Jul-17 08:20:11

I agree with the others!

As you are the one who would be doing most of the home education, you need to decide for yourself whether you like the idea and whether you are comfortable with it. Many home ed groups welcome families whose children are still preschool-aged or who haven't yet decided whether to HE. You might like to go along now so you can get a feel for what is happening in your area and talk to the other parents about how they have found it and what methods they use. That would also help your child to get an idea what HE might be like for her and to see it as a "normal" thing which real children of her acquaintance do. Otherwise she may feel rather left out at nursery as the staff and other children talk about starting school and she wonders what the future holds for her. This could also be a good way for her to find some friends who will be available to play during the daytime, and ease the transition from nursery into home education.

Depending on the nursery, the other children there and your daughter's personality, you may find that she it doesn't suit her right up to age five and she might want to leave sooner. One of my kids wouldn't have wanted to be in nursery still at five, because she preferred the company of older kids and that particular nursery tended to encourage the brighter children to move on to a nearby preschool even at three, so I think she wouldn't have liked staying on. My other child would have been quite content to go to nursery at five - I didn't send her but took her to similar children's centres alongside younger kids, which she loved.

BertrandRussell Mon 10-Jul-17 08:24:33

Why does he want her to be home schooled? What sort of involvement will he have? What will his expectations be? Him wanting it and expecting you to do it sends a few alarm messages to me.........

mohuzivajehi Mon 10-Jul-17 08:31:49

My partner really wants her to be home schooled

Forgive the suggestion if it is way off the mark, but it is a well known tactic of manipulative controlling men to pressure their wives into home schooling in order to prevent them from having time to develop any possibility of independence or possibility of a career once the child is "school age". Do it if it is the right choice for the child and the right choice for you, not for your dh.

If she loves nursery she will also love reception year at school which is not that different from nursery and all about self directed learning through play with some gentle introduction of "classroom skills" like sitting quietly at story time, putting up a hand to answer, etc. If you think you might not be able to homeschool all the way up to gcse/a-level then doing reception year at school might be helpful so that there isn't a mental barrier down the line having never tried it.

claraschu Mon 10-Jul-17 08:45:01

We have three grown children, all of whom were partially homeschooled, and we know lots of people who HE.

I think that for homeschooled kids to get all the possible advantages of HE they need at least one parent who is very interested in how kids learn, very intellectually curious, very open minded, well educated (whether traditionally or in some less mainstream way), and not suffering from serious anxiety or social phobia.

I think it is helpful to have some extra money and also helpful to live in an interesting and enriching environment, (though an inspiring, creative parent can do a lot with very little).

I think that if you are not particularly academic, you risk limiting your daughter quite seriously, which you might not mind doing, but you should be aware of the risk.

Donna1969 Tue 05-Sep-17 23:03:48

Hi, I am considering homeschooling my son who has just gone into yr 10 ....any tips or advice. Thanks

ommmward Wed 06-Sep-17 08:26:23

Recovery time. Step away from academics for a good while, as in, probably at least until the new year. Spend lots of time together, on his terms. Find opportunities (that he is eager about) for volunteering, work experience, especially practical physical outdoor stuff maybe. Give him time to work out what HE wants to do with his late teens and early twenties. Once he has a dream (being a gardener, getting on a plumbing course, whatever) then he'll know what qualifications and experience he needs to make that happen, and he'll be motivated to get them without you nagging.

He's almost a man. This is an opportunity for you to help him make the transition into productive happy independent adulthood, if you can work with him not against.

In our area, there are a few older teen activities, though it's tricky because they rarely want to have adults organise things for them. If there's anything like that going on, make him aware of it without pressure ☺

Saracen Wed 06-Sep-17 09:40:27

Hi Donna, do you want to say more about the reasons you are considering home education for your son? What sort of a person is he; what do you think he needs at this stage in his life? What challenges has he been facing? When is he happiest and showing the best side of himself? That may help us to target the advice better.

"Start with the child" is good advice, I think. There are so many options when you home educate, it makes sense to think about your own son as an individual. This is something of a contrast to school's fairly rigid take-it-or-leave-it options. At school you'd start by looking at what the school actually offers: which GCSE subjects are required, which optional subjects are available, what fits into the timetable, which languages does the school do, what hours does your son have to attend.

With home education, the whole world is available to help educate your son. This can feel a little overwhelming at first, as it may seem that there is too much choice, too many possible avenues. But you and he will figure it out together over time, and there are plenty of helpful home educating families who will be glad to share their own experiences and make suggestions. There are no deadlines. You are working toward bringing up a happy competent young adult, and there is no fixed age at which this project must be "finished".

FinallyHere Wed 06-Sep-17 09:53:26

I think the advice on this thread has been really useful, MN at its finest. I too would encourage you to think about 'why' you are considering home schooling. If your child is not a good fit for the available schools, then HE can be a miracle. However, school gives children a view into the world which is different to that at home.

For myself, i would have been sorry to miss school. I appreciated my parents, especially my mother, a lot more when i had the experience of being part of a large group at school, than when she was my willing 'slave'. In your position, since your child appears to have enjoyed the social experience of nursery, I think i would think very hard indeed before denying them the social experience of school. Let them try school to see how it goes. If they struggle, then consider whether home schooling, or just a different school might work better.

Bear in mind that any HE groups you join will naturally have a strong bias towards home schooling, so if you get your ideas only from there, you might find yourself swept up in their view of the world. Children learn so much more than academics from school, its all about getting along with each other, being a functioning member of society.

Donna1969 Wed 06-Sep-17 21:15:41

Hi, ok so perhaps I didn't outline things. The reason I'm thinking of homeschooling my son is because all through secondary school he has not been happy. He is a very sensitive boy, who suffers from anxiety. Academically he is doing very well, he is a bright boy so I don't worry on that side of things. I have always given him the opportunity to be homeschooled but up until this point he has never been interested, which I have accepted. I just want him to be happy and it breaks my heart seeing him so upset all the time. He has missed a lot of school due to his anxiety effecting him physically so once again I said to him homeschooling is an option if he wants it. He is now thinking about it and is quite keen. Which is why I was asking for tips and advice. I am a bit worried about how he would do his gcse exams etc. He wants to go to college when he is 16 to do photography A level.

ommmward Wed 06-Sep-17 21:59:52

That's quite easy then! Get in touch with the local college. What are their entry requirements for photography a level? What would he want to do along side that a level? Then concentrate on meeting the entry requirements and having the most amazing two years building up a portfolio (join a photography club? Enter contests?) you'll have to enter him as a private GCSE candidate - need to check out requirements (igcse often easier because there's a no coursework option i think). There may be local home educators getting together for tuition for various gcses, or private tutors, or do some of it yourselves. If he's up for the a level, though, half the battle is won, because he'll be motivated to put himself in a position to pursue his passion ☺

PrincessWonderRabbit Wed 06-Sep-17 22:18:27

Home educating is great if that's what you want to do. It's a recipe for misery if you're not interested in it yourself. It can be very lonely, yes, there are groups and events and I do think you can make sure your children get enough interaction. But it's much harder for the adult to do so. At the age your child is now you're right in the middle of being forced to hang out with other people solely because you have children of similar age, with home ed that continues for years

ommmward Wed 06-Sep-17 22:31:16

Not the person who's posted for advice just now,rather than 3 months ago. Her son is year 10...

It's interesting to hear of the "you have to hang around with people you have nothing in common with" argument. I'm much more accustomed to encountering the "you'll only let your child interact with people whose values you share, and horribly limit their encounters with diverse types of people". Just goes to show: Most of our objections to things we don't ourselves have direct experience of start with fear, and then our brains supply a plausible sounding rationalisation. 😀

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