Sometimes I feel like a broken record.
I have made it my passion to let people know how different homeschooling is from school, but it feels like it’s falling on deaf ears. Maybe it’s because people have just been so completely
brainwashed immersed in what education is supposed to look like that they just can’t picture it any other way than that of the traditional school setting.
I’m totally thinking of “Another Brick in the Wall” right now…Pink Floyd, anyone?
“We don’t need no education, we don’t need no thought control…”
You’re probably thinking, Why do you care?
By this time in our homeschooling journey, my concern has moved far beyond caring what people think about the way my kids learn. Instead, I’m more concerned with the way that other kids learn. I’ve recently come across so many other moms who realize that the system is broken and want to do something about it but keep hitting a brick wall when the question of bringing their kids home comes up.
There’s that wall again.
I wish I could shout from the rooftops what a huge blessing homeschooling is- one of the biggest reasons being that it is not like school!
Well, okay. I could shout it from the rooftops, but I don’t think that it would accomplish anything other than really annoying my neighbors, so…
…instead I’m going to list the most obvious differences between homeschooling and school here. Again. And I’m really hoping to get through to some people. 🙂
A Comparison of School and Homeschool
- Curriculum mandated by the state
- Textbook learning instituted throughout every major subject
- Some subjects given more weight then others
- Children expected to learn at exactly the same pace in exactly the same way
- Children not learning at the same pace or in the same way pulled out of class for “special education”
- School starts early in the morning and ends mid-afternoon (anywhere from 6-8 hours a day, depending on after-school activities)
- Hours of homework after school is “over” for the day
- School year runs either from Aug. to May or Sept. to June
- Parents must seek permission for family “educational field trips”
- Subjects begin and end with the ringing of a bell
- Children learn in a class with 20-30 other children the same age
- Curriculum chosen by the parents, often with input from the student
- Learning approached in many different ways, from traditional textbooks to following interests to learning from life
- Children encouraged to pursue things that interest them the most; the arts and other interests given equal footing as all other subject areas
- Individuality is embraced and celebrated; curriculum tailored to meet needs of students
- Children learn at their own pace
- School starts and ends whenever the family chooses; “school” often lasts for only 2-3 hours, less for unschoolers
- Well, I guess all their work is “home”work; more time with the family due to the lack of school-mandated homework
- Family decides which parts of the calendar year will be dedicated to homeschooling
- Family has complete autonomy over their own children; no need to worry about unexcused absences or denials of requests for time off for family vacations
- Children can spend as long, or as little, on an assignment as they need to
- Children interact with people in the community of all ages, races, ethnicities, income brackets, and beliefs
If you are a parent considering homeschooling but afraid to jump in, I hear you. But please, please make sure you have an accurate depiction of what homeschooling is actually about before making your decision. This could be the most important decision you will ever make for your family. Do not look to people for advice who have never done it or known anyone who has done it. I’ve found that people in our society love to criticize those things they don’t understand.
Homeschooling is one of them.