Friday, August 15, 2008

Back to Homeschool

It is that time of year again. The time of year when our little college town is taken over by students, children are anxiously getting ready to go to school, and I can feel the stress level of the town go up a notch or two. One of the things I love about homeschooling is not going back to school. Our life is about learning all the time. We don't just learn from 8am until 2pm during the school year. Obviously, no one else does either...traditionally schooled, private schooled, or homeschooled...we are all learning something all the time.

While we were at the beach, Dema asked our friend, Marty, from Wilmington if she was homeschooled (I wish I could remember why he brought it up, but I think it was because she was talking about working from home). Marty said something to the effect that no she was too old to go to school. I cringed. No one is too old to learn and I know Marty didn't mean it that way. We don't stop learning just because we aren't in formal school anymore so as adults we are all homeschooled and my sister is a perfect example that you are never to old to go to school.

The other day I was sitting our neighbor's hot tub chatting with a couple neighbor boys (did I ever mention we live in a cool neighborhood?). One of them said, " of my friends said they wished they were homeschooled." He looks at me sideways. "But I told him that it is no different that being at school. I mean, he thought you could eat anytime you want and not raise your hand and stuff..." He looks at me with questioning eyes. I said, "Well, everyone I know who homeschools does something a little differently. I don't know anyone who makes their kids raise their hands and at our house we eat when we are hungry. The kids don't sit at desks all day unless they want to. We learn while we are waiting for the bus, while we are at the park, from books, from doing things, from going places..." The boy's eyes got very big. "Wow, really? They can eat whenever they want to and go to the bathroom and talk?" I'm always amazed at what people think homeschooling is about and it is interesting to talk to kids in school and find out what they would or wouldn't change about school.

I unwisely went to Staples today not thinking about the "back to school scene". I just needed some recycled paper for our printer. It was insane. I chatted with one of the workers about it and she said it is the same thing every year. She looked like she needed a vacation. Most of you know of my dislike of all things plastic, but I just couldn't pass up the Desk Apprentice Rotating Desk Organizer. It is already packed to the gills (Parker loves to organize things) and it will keep everything up high away from tornado Josie (at least for a little while..she is a big climber so nothing is really safe). We'll see how it holds up, but I like it already.

So now we are ready. Ready to do what we do all year long...keep on living and learning.


half pint pixie said...

Linda, quick comment to invite you to join in a blog carnival I'm running on Monday. It's basically everyone writing a post about a regular everyday day with their children in their household, so we can see how we all do the things we do! So if you're interested I'd love you to join :)

Homeschooling sounds wonderful by the way, it's a shame it's really not done in Ireland, there is very little support for it or networking for parents etc.

VeganLinda said...


That sounds like fun!

I'd love to pick your brain sometime about schools in Ireland. I wonder why homeschooling isn't done and how the public schools differ from here in the states.

half pint pixie said...

I think perhaps one of the main reasons that homeschooling isn't common here is possibly due to the stranglehold the Catholic Church used to have on the country along with a legal requiremnet for all children to attend "school". Almost all children were educated in Catholic primary schools, even today there are very few non-denominational schools.

AFAIK, you are allowed to homeschool in Ireland, I found this site which discusses the situation here. I suppose the main thing against it is the lack of a large homeschool community in Ireland, your child would possibly be the only one in the town not attending the local school and Irish people don't tend to like to be the "only one" doing anything (a generalization I know, but I'm Irish so I'm allowed say it!).

We're sending LP to an educate together school when she's old enough, it's non-denominational and parents are very involved in it, so that should be good.

Looking forward to reading your day!