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State school, Steiner, home school or other?

(12 Posts)
elgoldenflower Sat 06-Oct-12 20:52:28

Our LO is just about to turn 1, but the big debate in our household at the moment is school - DP is all for home school, I'm not so keen. He's coming from a slighty protective POV. I worry about integration into mainstream schools with all alternative education choices but quite like some of the Steiner school principles particularly for upto 7yrs. I'd love to hear people's different experiences particularly about how children have coped with going into the mainstream system from alternative education. Any links to further reading would be gratefully received, thanks in advance.

onceortwice Sat 06-Oct-12 20:56:04

Honestly, I think you just have to look at the options open to you and then... wait....

I had DS signed up for a super selective school (which is where his 3 sisters go - 2 older, 1 younger... It wasn't the right school for him) and didn't really consider any other options until my back was against the wall.

Steiner is not good for all children. My DS has HFA and that sort of education would not be right for him.

We have gone with MS state, as it's the most flexible which is what we need for our DS (4)

There is every chance your child will relish the education you choose for them, but there is a chance they won't, so you have to keep an open mind.

CoteDAzur Sat 06-Oct-12 20:57:50

Search this site for discussions on Steiner schools before you make a decision. Good luck.

expansivegirth Sat 06-Oct-12 21:17:51

why don't you go along to a steiner play group, if you have one near you. You can start going once a week, for a morning, from the time your child is a year old. then you can find out what you think of it. i did this, thought it was lovely in some ways, but not for me. i would consider the kindergarten then until they were seven but older years would not really suit my famly. if there are home schooling groups near you, also go along to those and see how they feel and whether you think you would like to be a part of it. if you have an intensely sociable child you might think that home education is not right for you after all (though i know lots of home schoolers have great social lives). in short, give it a go while your child is young and see how you feel.
ps integration from steiner at seven - you can always teach your child to read and write yourself at home and then it won't be such a big leap if they did enter mainstream school. in any event they would probably catch up within a year anyway.

moonstorm Sat 06-Oct-12 21:29:48

!Gnome alert!

Klaxon!!! Run for your lives!!!

OFRS at the ready!

<runs around screaming>

elgoldenflower Sat 06-Oct-12 21:40:14

I just read some of the recommended threads, I hope I don't cause any gnomic chaos moonstorm wink but genuinely interested in experiences including Montessori and home-schooling as well as Steiner.
Thanks expansivegirth was going to start the parent toddler group at Steiner to check it out but not heard of home-schooling groups so will look into that.

moonstorm Sat 06-Oct-12 21:43:15

Is there a home school section here? It's worth remembering that no choice is permanent - you can always change your mind smile

ThreadWatcher Sat 06-Oct-12 21:55:31

Unless you have an interest in Anthroposophy (or want to be interested) I would avoid avoid avoid steiner schools even for the younger years. Google anthroposophy and read any of the related threads on MN (though many have been deleted I think)
Run for the hills.

Home education is a great choice smile
Mumsnet Home education
You could try going along to meetups in your local area and meet some local HErs and have a chat with a few.

I would also have a look see at local schools and see what your local options are.

I agree - no choice is permanent, fine to change your mind and as your dd is only tiny you have still got plenty of time to make up your mind.

moonstorm Sat 06-Oct-12 22:08:09

ThreadWatcher - would you like some salad? wink

ThreadWatcher Sat 06-Oct-12 22:46:40

grin moonstorm!

Saracen Sat 06-Oct-12 23:58:01

Integrating into mainstream is a red herring. If you find an environment in which the child is happy and confident NOW, adjusting to mainstream or anywhere else in later years is not going to be an issue.

You wouldn't choose a primary school according to how closely it mimics secondary school, for example. You'd choose it because you felt it met the needs of your young child. Choose the right primary setting, and by the time your child is 11 he will be well equipped to tackle whatever comes his way. Unless, of course, he is the sort of child for whom secondary school was never going to be good. But in that case, it wouldn't have helped to throw him into such an unsuitable environment at a younger age, when he is even less capable of tolerating it.

If a previously happy, well-adjusted child struggles hugely with a transition to a different setting, it's because the new setting is wrong for him, not because the previous setting failed to prepare him for it.

My older dd was home educated in what you might consider a very radical way, being allowed to choose for herself what, when and how to learn. She'd only opened a couple of workbooks in her life. She had never done handwriting practice or studied spellings or set out to learn number bonds. When she went to school in Year Five, she had adjusted to school ways within a few weeks. She was popular and was not behind the rest of the class academically. By her nature she's the sort of child who could cope with school well, and having had a happy upbringing gave her the confidence to try anything.

On the other hand, I have serious doubts that my younger dd (also home educated) would jump into school easily in Y5. She isn't cut out for primary school, and it isn't cut out for her. No amount of "preparation" would ever make my square peg slide painlessly into a round hole. Sending her to mainstream at the age of four would only have brought the problems on earlier.

Don't fix your eye on the horizon. Forget about that hypothetical seven-year-old you will someday have. Anticipating his needs is a black art; you haven't even met him yet. Look down at the child in front of you. The child you now have is the one you now need to educate. Meeting his needs right now is the way to ensure he will grow into the best possible seven-year-old.

SeventhEverything Sun 07-Oct-12 00:04:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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