Sallyh

Homeschool?

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    I have just looked back through all the threads stared in this section and looks like no references to homeschool... not a good start then!

     

    I suppose that means no-one on here either in the UK, or in Adelaide schools their children at home?

     

    We have decided that for now, school isn't for us. Always had reservations about it (I'm weird I know) and in the UK we put up with it, found probably the best school to suit our needs there, but really intended it only a short term measure till we got DS1 into the school we knew we wanted him to go to here.

     

    It hasn't worked out. Didnt settle in anything like he had previously done in the UK, and we limped through last term and saw a great difference in classroom management, expectations placed on 5 / 6 YOs (Reception - he was repeating the last bit of reception having done pre-prep at an independent school in Norwich). He was top of his class in UK, and even allowing for the expected regression (do watch out for that, and don't worry too much about it) on moving country and moving schools I felt he was taught too formally for his age, expected too much in the way of writing (his reading is, and was, amazing) and he was stressed himself about the written work to begin with, then fell into the new way of doing things and managed ok.

     

    This term he went back to school - what, 2 1/2 weeks ago? Different teacher (not Australian - or British). I don't believe her classroom management is either a) suitable for 6 YOs, or b) typical of either the school's style (although I am left wondering whether it actually has a school style or ethos that carries through the school) or typically Australian. It belongs in a genre entirely of its own.

     

    We have had a disturbing meeting with the teacher (well I sent DH because I was too upset and knew I'd get angry and just cry if I had to talk to her!) and heard a lot about DS1 at school and what she expects of him - and he is failing to meet her expectations. COupled with the fact that it is R-12 and all the entire school have recess etc together, I am also not particularly happy with the safety / supervision aspect of activity outside the classroom. She can't rule out bullying (but doesnt know). And she won't - its impossible to watch one child, and he doesnt say anything at 6.

     

    We happen to be moving house - found long term rental in Kensington Park, exact size of property we were looking for etc and far closer to DH work meaning he will only have a 20 min drive each way.

     

    School has been such a disaster DS1 is going to need to recover from it, and we want to give him some positive learning experience at home before we decide what to do next. Its a shame he's 6 and not 5 cos leaving once having joined the system presents annoying little legal problems with the registration requirements to Homeschool.

     

    So - does anyone homeschool? Have you looked into it in Adelaide? Any tips on registration / or just observations from what I've said? PM if you think its too difficult to make professional comments in public, because I know there are a number of teachers on here. You may well be diametrically opposed to the idea of HS ( my parents are teachers so explaining that to them is going to be as difficult as telling them we were coming here). We may just do it for the remainder of the academic year, or whatever. Just want to catch our breath first and undo some of the damage she's done to him.

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    Surely it would make more sense to look at a different school.....you mentioned you were moving? What about in that area?

     

    IMO, keeping him home will only make things worse in the long run....you may never get him back to school. What about the social aspect of school? How will he make friends? Surely that is also an important part of 'education'?

     

    I'm suprised at how much your child is expected to do in reception...my son is in reception and certainly has no pressure.

     

    Also...surely the different years have different play areas where only certain year levels are allowed to be?

     

    I've seen at first hand what happens when a child is 'allowed' to stay home...and believe me you dont want to go there.....

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    Thanks for your thoughts lorluc. I won't respond in depth to each of your queries about HS, only because I know they are frequently asked / stated ones but I have confidence about how each of those sit with us. Its not so much about him being 'allowed' to be home and not getting him back to school, more of a question of our doubts about wanting him to be educated en masse at this point in time - and expect in the future to know when it is right to send him back.

     

    Socially he has more going for him out of school than in, and that (socialisation) was our main deciding factor against HS (which I have always been interested in) in the first place. I think the social factor at this age is overrated (in our case - perhaps its just a personal experience / view) and we can allow him better social interaction in other settings. We've also much contact (including families who've done it or further / higher ed teachers / lecturers) with anecdotal evidence that says actually children going back in to the system can be further advanced socially and educationally from those educated in it.

     

    I'm sure its like anything - there are always extremes. I love homebirth but I don't leave the baby attached to the placenta till it falls off, I just like to have my baby in my own home and not have doctors fussing around me telling me what I can and can't do. There are extremists I don't get on with in many areas of my life! So I am completely certain that you have indeed met really bad examples of home educated children, just as I have also met extremely bad examples of school educated ones - as well as lovely children who thrive on it!

     

    I'm really not up for a debate of the rights and wrongs, but just wondering if there were any contacts through PIA. I know HS is rare (although probably rarer here than in the UK) and was just wondering about anyone coming here with that intention. Well I guess next time someone asks that question I will know a bit more by then!

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    There are more home schooled kids than you think. There is an association. We know of a family who rents some offices in town and that is their "school". They have a teacher come in for specifics like dance. They utilise the art gallery, the museum etc if the kids want to do something during school hours they can, but have to make up the time.They are well adjusted sociable kids who can fit in in dance companies etc. But as you say there are differences in extremes. I know of some children who entered our primary having been home schooled and was behind in maths and the way things get done when you have to deal with large groups. It took a few years for that child to fit in.

     

    Have a look at Kirinari, which is not a religious school. It is in Unley and has small classes and is very child centred with lots of emphasis on creativity. Also if you are over in the eastern suburbs the state primaries over there are good. Burnside and Linden Park both give avery broad education. Have a look before you definitely decide to home school, but if you do there are plenty of frameworks etc to follow and advice from other places. You could even sign up for Kumon english and maths to give a pattern to work from at your child's own pace.

     

    http://sahome-ed.beverleypaine.com/

     

    http://ehlt.flinders.edu.au/education/DLiT/2002/environs/Michaela/hintro.htm

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    Guest lynne

    Hi Sally,

     

    Your child must be happy. If that means home schooling than let it be.

     

    But it would be worth going to look at other schools near your new house and explaining the problem. A school that is open and will work with you and your child is a wonderful thing.

     

    I hope you sort out your problem

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    Thanks Rachiegarlo, there are some helpful signposts in your message. Will look up all of those. I think we will be HS fairly temporarily so that we don't get it wrong when we do move to a new school, and also need to build up confidence and self esteem and get him doing some of the things he has now 'chosen' to fail at, or rather he just seems to have frozen up out of fear / anxiety.

     

    I think in the context of moving from overseas to come here, there is a big plus to having him at home for a while; in the UK with no other changes we would have changed schools in all likelihood without much of a gap.

     

    I am wondering if we overestimated the settled in factor (were here about 3 weeks before he started last term). Its misleading perhaps because we have so much family around us here (more than in the UK) so everything went really well, just unpacked our suitcases, and started living. Family gatherings, grandparents to babysit / spend time with them etc and the boys were thriving on it. I think school is the area that DS1 has felt it hard and it has probably emphasised how different he is, etc, whereas in the rest of his world, he is accepted and accepts those around him as 'his people'. Even our friends here who he hasn't seen since he is 2, he's just accepted and taken to, and I think we made a mistake in timing of school, when actually the current problems are magnified. You can't expect to love every teacher at a school, but an experience of school should be bigger than just one teacher. Ours isn't and an entire year of it will be damaging.

     

    I feel really sad it hasn't worked out. I have never failed at anything in this sense, and I feel a real sense of failing him, and his experience failing. I so don't want to take him out - so much that I know we are doing the right thing, cos its not rash, its scary, and I feel we are taking something away from our family that had much hope and faith placed in it.

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    Don't worry too much, you have many years of education ahead of you and although you want it all to be a rewarding enjoyable experience for your children, there will be times when they just don't thrive as well under a particular teacher, or their best friends suddenly drop them for some other kids, the best thing to have under their belts at a young age is resilience. Then hopefully this will aid them in some of school's lesser moments. 12 years or so from now you may look back and wonder why you worried so much, or didn't move schools sooner or whatever, it is hard with your first to know if you are doing the right thing. Go with your gut feeling, when you are feeling right again your son will pick up on this too. We live near you but my kids bussed to school to the other side of town cos that was where the school I felt comfortable with was. Your son is young yet and there is probably not as much damage to his school life as supposed, many kids take time adjusting to the new teacher at the start of the year. My youngest had a disastrous teacher in gr 4, the teacher never adjusted to having a class load of bright kids who were eager to learn and actually sat at their desks instead of throwing them.....I'm sure whatever you decide will be right for you and yours. Plenty more years of school so no reason to rush through them.

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    Guest the4hopes

    There is a home school group in Adgate/Stirling.We have quite a few friends who live there.

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    Guest seank

    Hi Sally,

     

    sorry to hear about your son's experience. We've been home schooling our 14 year old for over a year now. He was very unhappy at school because of the anti-learning culture (it's an all boys school in an economically deprived area). It's been hard work, but worth it as he is much happier as a result.

     

    One thing we do feel is that all of the responsibility is on our shoulders - if we were to go through the process again we would try and get support from the school or LEA. Perhaps your son's school would allow you to have him at home but provide work for him to do and let you take it in to school to be marked?

     

    Don't worry about other people's views on the home school issue - like us, do what's best for your child. Parents are the ones who know their child's needs better than anyone else after all!

     

    Hope it works out for you and him

     

    best regards

     

    Sean

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    Guest smit
    Thanks Rachiegarlo, there are some helpful signposts in your message. Will look up all of those. I think we will be HS fairly temporarily so that we don't get it wrong when we do move to a new school, and also need to build up confidence and self esteem and get him doing some of the things he has now 'chosen' to fail at, or rather he just seems to have frozen up out of fear / anxiety.

     

    I think in the context of moving from overseas to come here, there is a big plus to having him at home for a while; in the UK with no other changes we would have changed schools in all likelihood without much of a gap.

     

    I am wondering if we overestimated the settled in factor (were here about 3 weeks before he started last term). Its misleading perhaps because we have so much family around us here (more than in the UK) so everything went really well, just unpacked our suitcases, and started living. Family gatherings, grandparents to babysit / spend time with them etc and the boys were thriving on it. I think school is the area that DS1 has felt it hard and it has probably emphasised how different he is, etc, whereas in the rest of his world, he is accepted and accepts those around him as 'his people'. Even our friends here who he hasn't seen since he is 2, he's just accepted and taken to, and I think we made a mistake in timing of school, when actually the current problems are magnified. You can't expect to love every teacher at a school, but an experience of school should be bigger than just one teacher. Ours isn't and an entire year of it will be damaging.

     

    I feel really sad it hasn't worked out. I have never failed at anything in this sense, and I feel a real sense of failing him, and his experience failing. I so don't want to take him out - so much that I know we are doing the right thing, cos its not rash, its scary, and I feel we are taking something away from our family that had much hope and faith placed in it.

    I know you dont want a debate .........................but if you put yourself on a forum!!!!!!!!!!.

    Hes only 5 , education here has barely started , a lot of it is all about interaction with others.

    PS ...cant see how you can fail his education at that age.

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    Guest sandar1

    Sally sorry that you are having such a quandry regarding your move. I have lived overseas in many different countries with my two boys and can feel your anguish at moving a child with you. I have been down the route of do I homeschool, send them to public school, parochial school, or private school. My two guys both had learning difficulties and so at times it seemed that home schooling may have been the best way to go. As a child my parents immigrated and I so missed my family I decided that they probably needed to have friends to take the place of the missing family, in the long run it worked out for the best, I spent a lot of time looking at the schools that were available and (whilst living in America) found the perfect placement for them. They are now both extremely successful in their adult life and have formed amazing attachments from their school days. It is a matter of finding a comfort level for them, and for you. Check out some of the schools that others have mentioned on this site, I knew I had found the correct place for one of my sons when I went to visit the school and the kids were sculpting amazing statues in the woods outside, probably somewhere I would have liked to have been taught myself. It turned out to be an amazing placement for him, and one I never regreted. My son was always rather quiet and withdrawn and the school and his friends he made from that school bought out the best in him, and have remained in his life for many years. You made this amazing move to make a difference to all your lives, and I am sure that whatever you do will eventually be the right thing. Remember just don't feel guilty and don't blame yourself for everything that happens, unfortunately that is life, and when we make the decisions to take off on these ventures it is easy to do blame yourself for all these things. All these years on my kids loved their life travelling the world and meeting different people and they have grown up to be the most amazing adults, everyone that meets them makes the same comment they are so at ease with themselves, and I am sure that your child will be also and will thank you for the sacrifices you have made for him.

     

     

    All the best and good luck with your decisions, I look forward to hearing how it transpires.

     

    Sandra

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    Just updating after finally getting back on PIA after moving to Kensington Park (must update profile!) and getting busy with much life since (plus the enforced Adam broadband relocation blackout which was actually quite nice for a while!). Anyway, been busy meeting people, getting to homeschool meets etc and definitely HS is for us. Getting the registration was easy but I did put a lot of hours research and prep into the application so I suppose the work was done before the meeting with the HS moderator.

     

    Anyway, thanks for the helpful replies, and DS is enthusiastic, doing really well and its already a blessing all round. Getting really into scouts and stuff too (looking forward to the Milo cricket incentive thing later in the year, tho will find him a gym club or something with his brothers to keep him going till then).

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    well that's good you are happy and your son is happy. KP is a lovely area to live in with loads of parks and a few creeks to mess around in.

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    Guest Nick11

    Have you thought about a montersorri school. Basically learning at their own level and teaching independent learning.

    As a teacher its not my cup of tea BUT each to his own. I know quite a few children who have excelled there when main stream education didn't suit them.

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