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Home-schooling: the future?

Calculusmadeeasy

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A friend has been looking at having her child home-schooled. She's skeptical of the Irish education system (can't say I blame her - I've heard one teacher refer to addition as a "mathematical function"), and is giving this serious consideration. Has anyone here home-schooled their children? What advice would they have for a budding home-schooler?

Whilst I think the media exaggerate about the poor state of pedagogies and the curricula - the poor performance of boys in particular - and whilst I also believe that most teachers do a good job, there is some truth in the allegations that the Irish education system is faltering. Most of us agree that subjects like maths and physics, the bread and butter of numeracy, analysis, experimentation and rational thinking have been watered down (some say "dumbed" down) considerably since the 1990s (anyone who did the higher level math pre '94 must have painful memories of the algebraic methods of extracting roots of third degree polynomials and all that malarkey). Various arguments have been proffered to explain "why", but we won't go back over that, since it's covered on other threads.

As portable computerised devices like iPads are further miniaturised, become more sophisticated, and more powerful (perhaps even with interactive holographic tech) and with the inevitable rise of strong AI, I believe home-schooling will become the norm amongst the upper and middle classes. Moreover, I think working from home will become widespread, and that will lend itself to home-schooling. Those of you who attended primary school in the 1980s will remember the Isaac Asimov short story, "The Fun they had". I believe that the musings of the childer in that story will become reality, and soon too. If I could be a kid again when this comes to pass, I would heartily embrace it. School was a rather dreary experience, more akin to brainwashing than learning, and what better way to learn than in the confines of your own home?

What does P.ie think?

Irish parents who home-school: 'It isn't something we decided to do on a whim' - Independent.ie

Teaching your child at home

The Fun They Had
 


GDPR

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The socialising aspect would be a major loss and one not to be sniffed at.
 

Bea C

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What about the social development aspect?

I can think of only one family being/having been home schooled: I was watching their behaviour in a shop recently. It was weird. I don't mean standard in-need-of-a-swift-boot-up-the-arse boldness, I mean a certain unsettling aspect.
 

PBP voter

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All you need do is go over in the evenings what your children covered in school.
Give them extra tuition on the basics-the three Rs as some call them.


Test them out using the Drumcondra tests or some other system as they go along.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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No
I went out with a lass who had been home schooled when it was a rare thing. Her father had a very good library and I recall expressing my envy of that as I had disliked school intensely.

She did point out to me that she felt she had missed out on a simple thing like having schoolfriends which might seem a small thing but to her had an isolating effect that she really felt.

I hadn't looked at it like that but it was something that she felt she had missed out on.
 

stopdoingstuff

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All you need do is go over in the evenings what your children covered in school.
Give them extra tuition on the basics-the three Rs as some call them.


Test them out using the Drumcondra tests or some other system as they go along.
Ah yes...religion, reactionary thought, and rezoning scams.
 

silverharp

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never considered home schooling , what we did was get the kids reading very early and I focused on teaching them maths at home, my son is about 4 year ahead in maths with little and often at home. basic logic if they are rocking English and Maths school is a piece of pish.
 

The Field Marshal

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The socialising aspect would be a major loss and one not to be sniffed at.
When one sees some of the brute trogs forced to attend Irish primary schools one really has to dispute that.
 

farnaby

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Given that happiness and much career success is based on forming relationships with peers you like/respect and learning to deal with those you don't, school remains an invaluable social education.

Sure, home schooling doesn't preclude a social life; but I suspect parents in full control of their kid's education would maintain some control over their social lives too, i.e. an artificial, mediated introduction to the outside world.

Maybe home schooling would be best applied in small doses to get the best of both worlds.
 

cabledude

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Children need socialisation. Not going to get that at home with Mummy.
 

silverharp

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Children need socialisation. Not going to get that at home with Mummy.
you have a point there , for thousands of years boys would start learning skills with the father etc from about 8 or 9. it might work better if it was the dad which would be difficult to organise unless doing a fair bit of downshifting
 

GrainneDee

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What about the social development aspect?

I can think of only one family being/having been home schooled: I was watching their behaviour in a shop recently. It was weird. I don't mean standard in-need-of-a-swift-boot-up-the-arse boldness, I mean a certain unsettling aspect.
Some people argue they get socialisation from an hour or so a week in scouts or whatever, but that's no substitute for a healthy amount of time away from parents, who can be quite stifling.
 

Ellen Ripley

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Very bright children become bored in Primary school, and of course parents, as their primary educators, should supplement their education and help broaden their general knowledge if they can.

But we all need to develop the ability to get along with a wide variety of character types in life, and that tolerance is fostered in the school environment.
It's also very difficult to be objective about the aptitude of one's own children, and the familial bond can make discipline a problem with home schooling.
Some people can't remember a time when they were unable to read--but others struggle for years in school before developing literacy, and schools have more resources and skilled teachers to enable children with dyslexia and dyspraxia.
 

GrainneDee

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Given that happiness and much career success is based on forming relationships with peers you like/respect and learning to deal with those you don't, school remains an invaluable social education.

Sure, home schooling doesn't preclude a social life; but I suspect parents in full control of their kid's education would maintain some control over their social lives too, i.e. an artificial, mediated introduction to the outside world.

Maybe home schooling would be best applied in small doses to get the best of both worlds.
School is a microcosm of society, with interactions with various groups of different sizes and people of different backgrounds. As you say, the kind of socialisation "homeschooled " children might be involved in might be controlled or influenced by parents, and could limit the child's contact with people that are different.
 

GrainneDee

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Children need socialisation. Not going to get that at home with Mummy.
Especially the overbearing kind of mammy who can't let go the apron strings and consider her child as an independent individual who has the right to his or her own place in the world, outside the family unit.
 

GrainneDee

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you have a point there , for thousands of years boys would start learning skills with the father etc from about 8 or 9. it might work better if it was the dad which would be difficult to organise unless doing a fair bit of downshifting
Dad or mum, same difference. A child needs to be able to get out of the family circle and have an independent life where it can develop. Kids can't always do that with a parent fussing around.
 

NYCKY

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I heard a recent radio discussion on this with a lot of input from callers. The callers mainly parents who had home schooled their children for all of their school lives or parts of it.

The feedback was mixed, the home schooled kids missed out on a coterie of friends as they got older, that social skills aspect and also for leadership roles, class captain, leader of debate team, that kind of stuff.

On the other hand, the subjects were able to get covered much more quickly than a regular school day,, there was a lot less time wasted, as they weren't wandering from room to room, standing in queues waiting when breaks were over and when they did go back to classrooms, they were generally far ahead at reading, and maths, and would be at the higher end of the grade ranges.
 

GrainneDee

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I heard a recent radio discussion on this with a lot of input from callers. The callers mainly parents who had home schooled their children for all of their school lives or parts of it.

The feedback was mixed, the home schooled kids missed out on a coterie of friends as they got older, that social skills aspect and also for leadership roles, class captain, leader of debate team, that kind of stuff.

On the other hand, the subjects were able to get covered much more quickly than a regular school day,, there was a lot less time wasted, as they weren't wandering from room to room, standing in queues waiting when breaks were over and when they did go back to classrooms, they were generally far ahead at reading, and maths, and would be at the higher end of the grade ranges.
That's fine if school is just about ingesting information, but it's about friends, meeting people understanding difference, tuning in to what makes people tick. This is learned just as much in the hanging around times as in the classroom.

I kind of feel sorry for kids subjected to the unrelenting attention of mum or dad - where's the escape?
 

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