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Author Topic: Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?  (Read 11694 times)

Dan

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Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« on: October 20, 2003, 04:10:38 PM »
There is this great popularity of homeschooling all of a sudden in this country, and I cannot help but think that this is the latest craze with conservatives. I just saw a program on TV where it's now all over Pennsylvania and they just had a conference on it resently.

Has private Christian education (which has been the mainstay of Parenting), fallen out of favor? I would think the answer is no. It's just that this fad has grown legs and many people naively believe that homeschooling is the answer to all their parenting problems. This is what is fueling this craze.

I think that this will pass and Christians will again choose to educate their children more with private christian schools instead of isolating them in an unhealthy non-social environment where they do not mingle with other children their age. This is unhealthy isolationism in an age where parents are afraid to let their children play in the neighborhoods as they once did.

What do you all think?



Christ_Alone

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2003, 08:38:30 PM »


What do you all think?

LOL... you really want me to answer that?  ;)

Honestly Dan, I think, you dont really know what you're talking about, and I dont mean that in an insulting way.

While it may appear that homeschooling is a recent "fad", the truth is, believers have been educating their children at home, since time began.  What you may not realize, is that this 'public education system' is a fairly new method of teaching, considering human beings have been around 6,000+ years, and the public education system has been around less than 200 years.

There have been Christian homeschoolers, for alot longer than most people realize.  Many states, provinces and local municipalities have regular annual, or semi-annual conferences, workshops, seminars, etc. They're great, and attendance is huge, by homeschoolers and non-homeschoolers alike.

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Has private Christian education (which has been the mainstay of Parenting), fallen out of favor?

By and large, private Christian education is very expensive, and most Christian families cannot afford it. Especially those families that have many children.  Some can, and praise God for that, but I dont know that I would call it the "mainstay" of parenting.

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It's just that this fad has grown legs and many people naively believe that homeschooling is the answer to all their parenting problems. This is what is fueling this craze.

Homeschooling is certainly not an answer to all our parenting problems, and I guarantee you, the large majority of parents who do choose to educate their kids at home, do not do it from a naive or uninformed position.  Most parents research the options quite carefully, the costs, the laws, the pros and cons, and most of them take the matter to prayer, and consider the choices for a considerable amount of time, before making a decision to teach at home.

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I think that this will pass and Christians will again choose to educate their children more with private christian schools instead of isolating them in an unhealthy non-social environment where they do not mingle with other children their age.

This was really the reason I said I dont think you know what you're talking about.  ;)  The thing is, as more and more parents take a closer look at what's being taught in public schools, more and more of them are taking their kids HOME, and teaching them there - and these are not just Christian parents, mind you.  There are many religions, and many non-religious families, that recognize that the public education system is NOT working for our children.

Private Christian schooling is simply not an option for most average-income families.  Just as an example, where we live, there is 1 option for a private Christian highschool.  The annual tuition is $7,500.00, per child.  I dont know about you, but to us, 7.5 grand is no small amount of change.  We could check under the couch, but I doubt we'd find it.  ;)

Alas... the real monster comes out... (as it always does).

The Socialization Monster.  The "you're stunting their social skills by locking them down in your home day after day" monster.

Honestly Dan, I really wish people would take the time to consider this accusation, before they make it.  

Re: "lack of socialization" issue.  I'll speak for my own kids, and let it at that.

My own kids are various different ages, and participate in different things.  From sports, to visiting with friends, to church, shopping together with me or their dad, field trips, etc....  there are so many different ways they each have, to interact with not only other kids their own ages, but with people of all ages, varied religious or non-religious backgrounds, different races, different languages, ethnicity etc.  

My kids are not uncommon in this, as most homeschooled kids do NOT spend 6 hours a day, 5 days a week, stuck in a room with 28 other kids of the same age, like they have to do in public and even private schools.

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This is unhealthy isolationism

Tell me again, which is more isolating?

Just a few thoughts (you did ask for it, eh  ;D )


In His love... CA

Dan

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2003, 07:49:02 AM »

Honestly Dan, I think, you dont really know what you're talking about, and I dont mean that in an insulting way.


That's your opinion. I think that I do know what I'm talking about. It's a fact that home schooling has grown in popularity, I didn't make that up. Maybe you should be more informed.

I'm merely asking if perhaps this latest growth is a temporary fad or a reaction to poor or immoral private education. Is it a fad, something that will come and go.

As for the money issue, I find it interesting that the average american can afford a new $25,000 car (most, two of them), $3000 a year for insurance, a $3000 vacation, a $1000 computer, a $80.000 home (min.), etc., etc, but can't afford $3000 for christian education?

And if they are charging you $7,500.00 per child per year in your area for private Christian education, then I wouldn't send my kids there either, because they are "price gouging" you. Look for a Christian organization that is interested in schooling, rather than profits.

Private Christian schooling is an option for most average-income families. If where you live is a rural area where there is a below average income, then OK. Perhaps you are right. But for the average family, it's a viable and good option. And I still feel that children do need to be in an environment with other christian kids, rather than stuck at home day in and day out with nothing but parents and family members. Despite what you say, they do need to develop some social skills. Nothing is worse than to send naive children out in the real world who have been sheltered from meeting and reacting in a social environment.

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This is unhealthy isolationism

Tell me again, which is more isolating?
Just a few thoughts (you did ask for it, eh  ;D )

Yes, but it's one thing to isolate them from the unsaved. It's another to isolate them from other people by doing everything at home and not letting them be able to experience, react and question with other Christians children, such as  in a private Christian setting.


Dan

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2003, 07:54:19 AM »
Excerpt from USA Today (Magazine)


What's behind the growth in homeschooling. (public school problems prompt parents into homeschooling)


The rise of homeschooling reflects broadening dissatisfaction with formal education in the U.S. Discontent is high for two reasons. First, public schools are turning out a poor product--illiterate and unprepared graduates. For example, American 13-year-olds have been documented as having math skills that rank below their counterparts in 14 other developed countries. One survey noted that just one-third of high school juniors could place the Civil War in the correct half-century. Equally troubling, public schools have become crime scenes where drugs are sold, teachers are robbed, and homemade bombs are found in lockers.

Compounding the situation, teachers' unions, school officials, and many politicians adamantly oppose the use of public monies for innovative solutions, such as vouchers and charter schools. Those alternatives, although not a panacea for all the present problems, are at least promising vehicles that could help poor and middle-income parents to find better schools for their children and break up the monopoly of a "one-size-fits-all" philosophy of education.

In light of the educational quagmire the U.S. finds itself in, many parents, impatient for reform, are taking matters into their own hands. One alternative that is gaining growing public acceptance is the educational option known as homeschooling.

-------------------------------------

And so I do know what I am talking about with regards to the growth in homeschooling. So my question remains. Is it a passing fad, or will this trend continue as things get better in public schools.


Christ_Alone

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2003, 09:34:11 AM »
Dan,

I do not deny, or disagree with you that the number of families choosing to homeschool has increased over the years - indeed it has - and with many good reasons.

What I do disagree with, is your perception that this is a fad, or the latest 'craze' among Christian families.  As I said before, those making this decision do it from a well-informed position, it's not a knee-jerk reaction.

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Is it a passing fad, or will this trend continue as things get better in public schools.

You seem to assume that public education will improve, and more Christian families will begin sending their kids back to these places.  I'm not sure why you think they'll improve.  Maybe you can elaborate on that a bit?

Your comments about socialization indicate to me that you didn't really read what I said about that topic.  You might want to go over that part again.

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My own kids are various different ages, and participate in different things.  From sports, to visiting with friends, to church, shopping together with me or their dad, field trips, etc....  there are so many different ways they each have, to interact with not only other kids their own ages, but with people of all ages, varied religious or non-religious backgrounds, different races, different languages, ethnicity etc.

My kids are not unlike most other Christian homeschooled kids.  They socialize with a variety of age groups, genders, nationalities, saved, and unsaved.  They are not locked in the house with their parents & siblings all day, being stunted in the social growth - as so many non-homeschoolers, have a tendency to falsely assume.

As for your figures on what the average American can afford - I'm not real sure where you get those figures, but of all the people I know, Christian and non-Christian, most of them cannot afford the things you mention here:
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I find it interesting that the average american can afford a new $25,000 car (most, two of them), $3000 a year for insurance, a $3000 vacation, a $1000 computer, a $80.000 home (min.), etc., etc

Granted, I am quite certain there are many people who can afford this, but is this honestly the 'average American'?
Do most people you know, spend 3 grand each year for vacation?  Most people I know, vacation only every few years, and certainly dont spend 3 grand.  Most Christian homeschooling families I know, dont have 2 brand new cars in the garage either - they have 1.  

They also (for the most part) have 1 income, and 1 parent working outside the home - unlike the typical "keeping up with the Jones" American family, who have been duped into believing they can't live comfortably, or be happy unless they've got all the new toys.

The cost for tuition at private Christian schools varies considerably, from place to place.  Some schools are even free, if you're a member of their church.  While I do not knock private Christian schools for those who can afford them (and for those schools who are teaching from a Biblical, fundamental foundation), the truth of the matter is, it is not an affordable option, for many.

Those who have chosen to homeschool, take their children's education very seriously.  I do not refer only to their academic education, but social, moral, psychological, and spiritual education.  All of these things are of great importance to the Christian parent, and all of these things are considered when making this decision.






In His love... CA

Robert63

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2003, 06:24:17 PM »
Dan,

  There's nothing wrong with Homeschooling, and there's nothing wrong with private Christian schools. It all depends upon what area you are from. If I was from Utah, maybe home schooling would be better. But if I was from New York, I think private Christian education would be better. Likewise, if both parents work, probably private christian school is in order. If the wife is a stay at home mother, maybe homeschooling is best. I think that it all depends.

But in no circumstance would I say public school is better.

Dan

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #6 on: October 31, 2003, 08:24:56 AM »
Dan,

  There's nothing wrong with Homeschooling, and there's nothing wrong with private Christian schools. It all depends upon what area you are from.

But in no circumstance would I say public school is better.

I'm not disparaging home schooling, but I just think that private Christian schools are a better environment for children. Maybe some people down south don't have the money, but most people can afford to send their kids to christian schools. I just don't like this isolationism with family. Homeschooling conjurs up in my mind visions of right wing anti-government types who think we should all go back to no taxes, farms, and cleaning our own streets. That's fine for those who want that. But I want my kids to be able to get a job in the real world, without the "shock" of growing up to find out that the real world is not like the sheltered homes they have grown up in, and real people not like their family members and friends.

Dan

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2003, 08:33:55 AM »
Dan,

I do not deny, or disagree with you that the number of families choosing to homeschool has increased over the years - indeed it has - and with many good reasons.

What I do disagree with, is your perception that this is a fad, or the latest 'craze' among Christian families.  As I said before, those making this decision do it from a well-informed position, it's not a knee-jerk reaction.


I think that sometimes it is a knee jerk reaction to things they find distasteful in schools, but we'll agree to disagree on that.

Is it a fad? That's the question I asked since it has grown in popularity over the last few years. If we had better christian schools, I think that there wouldn't be so many people homeschooling.

I'm not against homeschooling, it's just that I would like to see Christians join together and organize non-profit private Christian schools where Christian children can meet and associate with hundreds of other people. I don't like isolating them in the home. I know you say you don't, but there are many cases of those who do.

My main point is, I think Christian schools are better than home schooling. Of course, there are always exceptions. But I'm sick of Christian schools for profit. I don't think the words Christian school, and the word profit, should go together.

Christ_Alone

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #8 on: November 01, 2003, 12:30:41 PM »
Hi Dan,

I just wonder, do you personally know any homeschooling families?  The reason I ask that, is because of statements like these:

"I don't like isolating them in the home"

"I just don't like this isolationism with family. Homeschooling conjurs up in my mind visions of right wing anti-government types who think we should all go back to no taxes, farms, and cleaning our own streets. That's fine for those who want that. But I want my kids to be able to get a job in the real world, without the "shock" of growing up to find out that the real world is not like the sheltered homes they have grown up in, and real people not like their family members and friends."

If you do know some homeschooling families that are isolating their kids from the real world, and Christian fellowship, then I feel bad for those kids. Isolating children from sinful influences has it's place, but some parents CAN go too far.

However, it seems like it doesn't matter how many times you say that your kids are not isolated, many people still prefer to believe their own misconception of what it's like to homeschool.

There are so many more options for homeschooled kids to interact with other people, day to day, than kids who are in a set schedule in public or private school.  Not only "real people" as you put it, lol, but other Christian people as well.

Anyway, the myth of isolation is just that, a myth.  I wish I could get more people to see that, but I suppose folks see what they want to see, sometimes. (I dont mean you personally, that's just a general comment).
In His love... CA

Bryan

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #9 on: November 09, 2003, 10:02:52 PM »
Dan said:
Homeschooling conjurs up in my mind visions of right wing anti-government types who think we should all go back to no taxes, farms, and cleaning our own streets.

Dan, you need to stop watching the liberal media coverage of homeschoolers.  They will find one or two weirdos who have multiple problems in their lives and make a generalization about the home school movement.  In reality these people have nothing in common with the majority of homeschoolers except that they homeschool their children.  Do you actually know anyone who homeschools?  I know many homeschooling families, and their kids are well adjusted and have no problem socializing or functioning in the real world.

As for the money issue, I find it interesting that the average american can afford a new $25,000 car (most, two of them), $3000 a year for insurance, a $3000 vacation, a $1000 computer, a $80.000 home (min.), etc., etc, but can't afford $3000 for christian education?

I'm not sure where you live, but it is very difficult for a family with children to find a house for less than $80,000.  Not all families purchase $25,000 vehicles, but when you have a family, you need a vehicle large enough to transport everybody.  Laws that require carseats and other similar things make it very difficult for a family of 5 to get around in a small car.  My point is not to argue over money so much as it is to point out that there are some expenses in today's society that are unavoidable for all practical purposes.  Housing costs have gone up considerably in the last 5 years nationwide.  Where is a family of two, three, four, or more kids going to get the money for private Christian education when it takes most of their resources to make a living?  For those who can afford it, great.  But not everybody can.

But I'm sick of Christian schools for profit. I don't think the words Christian school, and the word profit, should go together

Dan, do you know of Christian schools that actually make a profit?  I don't mean schools that charge more than $3,000 per year (which by the way is every school I know of).  I went to Christian schools from K-5 to 12th grade.  The schools that charged $7,500 per year provided exceptional education.  They didn't have a revolving door with their teachers.  They had all kinds of academic, athletic, and fine arts opportunities for the students.  The schools that charged about $4,000 per year had a mass exodus of teachers every year because they were getting paid peanuts to work there.  The educational options were limited because of the school's tight budget.  If that is the best the school has to offer, then why not homeschool your kids?

Homeschooling allows students to learn at their own pace.  They can take field trips whenever they choose.  They can get together and socialize with other kids whenever they choose.  Homeschooling is 100 times more flexible than a regular school environment.  Do you realize that most of the greatest minds in the Christian church were educated at home by their parents?  Were they social misfits who couldn't face the real world?  Of course not!

I would urge you to read the literature put out by homeschoolers.  Talk to people who actually homeschool their kids.  I think you'll find that your assumptions are way off base.


Christ_Alone

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #10 on: November 10, 2003, 06:59:18 AM »
Hi Bryan,

you said: "Dan, you need to stop watching the liberal media coverage of homeschoolers."

You've hit the nail squarely on the head here.  I cannot say if the liberal coverage is all Dan follows, but I can say that it's all most people ever hear or read, and then go on to base assumptions, on that.  It can be truly frustrating at times to explain the same exact issues over and over again, to have them just fall on deaf ears, because "well, the news report I watched said this or that..."

If folks really want to know what homeschooling is all about, get to know a homeschooling family, talk to the kids, ask questions, do some unbiased research.

One good link to investigate is the Homeschooling Legal Defense Association - they have all kinds of info at that site, articles, pending legislation, international links, etc.  That site is here:
http://www.hslda.org/
In His love... CA

Dan

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Re:Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2003, 10:58:04 AM »
Hi Bryan,

you said: "Dan, you need to stop watching the liberal media coverage of homeschoolers."

You've hit the nail squarely on the head here.  I cannot say if the liberal coverage is all Dan follows, but I can say that it's all most people ever hear or read, and then go on to base assumptions, on that

I read the liberal media as well as the conservative, because I want to get a balanced view. Because if I didn't, I would think Home schooling was the answer to all the problems concerning children, and that former president Clinton was the antichrist, and the government was out to tax and brainwash it's citizens into communism. I don't know your point of view, but mine is that it's always good to get both sides of the story. I'd hate to think what this country would be like if we only had the right wing media telling us what was true. We'd probably stay in Iraq 20 years and have thousands more of our sons and daughters killed because of a lie about weapons of mass destruction. The same in Home schooling. It's best we have both sides in order to make an intelligent decision.


Raybob

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Re: Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #12 on: September 02, 2004, 01:24:39 AM »
Dan,
I really don't think you understand how grammar schools got started.  At least here in America, until the industrial revolution, there was no such thing as schools other than colleges.  All reading, writing, and rithmatic was taught at home.  Once Mr. Rockefeller built a railroad, daddys had to work outside the home to make a decent living.  Early on, kids could get jobs that paid more money than daddy made.  That is when child labor laws and schools began.  Then it was law that anyone under 16 had to be in a school and could not work.

Yes, homeschooling may be on a recent increase in popularity but with just cause.  If you ever watched one of those national spelling bees televised in America, you will notice that is ALWAYS a homeschooled kid that wins.

Here in South Lake Tahoe, CA., there is a good network of homeschoolers and the local high school allows the homeschoolers to be involved in all extra curricular activities such as baseball teams, etc.

When I went to school as a kid, I spent most of my time in school learning how to do drugs, get laid, drink, fight, and just enough book learning to pass the tests.  My two children will never have to be subject to such nonsense as long as I'm alive.  My 2 year old boy knew every letter of the alphabet and could find each letter on a keyboard before his 2nd birthday, thanks to the great free alphabet games and all that's available on the net.  He'll be 3 in October and can already spell his name and a few other words. 

We are fortunate that my wife and myself both work home based jobs and can easily do this.  Not everyone can but I think they could if they just realized what is more important, their kids or the money from two incomes of a husband and wife both working.  :)
Raybob

Christ_Alone

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Re: Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #13 on: September 02, 2004, 08:32:45 AM »
We are fortunate that my wife and myself both work home based jobs and can easily do this.  Not everyone can but I think they could if they just realized what is more important, their kids or the money from two incomes of a husband and wife both working.  :)
Raybob

Raybob,

this is an issue that alot of families deal with, even those who have no intentions of homeschooling. 

We as a culture have worked our way INTO this situation.  We've bought the line that tells us we have to have this, that, and the other, and made a way to HAVE, this, that and the other.  Once we get our families into debt, to pay for all these things - giving up that second income becomes illogical.

The good news is - it CAN be done.  You can, with the help of credit counsellors, preferrably Christian credit counsellors, work your finances into a plan that will reduce or eliminate debt, and also put you on a financial budget to help you spend wisely.  This is a good idea for anyone - no matter if they homeschool or not - but for those who want to take control of their financial situation, instead of letting their finances control them.

A simple search on any web search engine for Christian credit counselling, will yield a good starting point.
In His love... CA

Sam

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Re: Is Homeschooling the latest Fad?
« Reply #14 on: June 15, 2005, 08:16:53 AM »
Homeschooling is an incredibly selfless act on the part of parents.  Personally, I cringe when the ace-card "social isolation" is thrown in the face of parents who, quite often, are running rings around themselves to provide ample opportunity for socialisation - at cost to their own social lives? ( What social life?! )

Blessings to all who do it.

Sam.

 


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