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The Bitter Homeschooler's Wish List (familyhack.com)
7 points by Alex3917 on Jan 22, 2008 | hide | past | favorite | 13 comments

Homeschooling might be great, but if the author finds it insulting when people suggest they can't teach early grades because the material is so easy it makes me worry that they know nothing about education. I don't think successfully educating young kids has a lot to do with knowing the material or not, past a certain level of familiarity anyway.

I was thinking the same thing myself while reading the article. But playing devil's advocate, they don't exactly teach a lot of theory to education majors either, let alone those in teachers cert. programs.

Personally I decided to put off graduating a few more weeks to take, among other things, a human development course in child cognition because lately I've been wondering how closely the parenting books mirror what's being published in scientific journals. If I learn anything useful then I'll post it at some point in the future.

Actually my wife is a teacher of young kids here in Australia and they do quite a lot of developmental psych, even more in the special needs graduate stuff she did. For the higher grades there seems to be very little, which goes some way to explain a lot about the crap high school teachers out there.

Most people seem to feel you need a good high school, but for my kids I really want to concentrate on the early years of learning. Home schooling in high school would probably be a massive improvement, but kids seem pretty happy to be with their friends then.

Anyway, I'd love to hear what you find out. I'm about 6 weeks away from being a father for the first time, so I'm very interested in the topic.

As I said I haven't taken the class yet, but if you haven't already, check out Goleman's book Emotional Intelligence. It's really scary to realize not only does EI play a much greater role in future success than IQ, but that the brain is 85% percent formed by age five, after which EI is basically fixed. The good news though is that maximizing this is mostly a function of doing easy things like holding your child for the requisite amount of time each day and such. I guess my point is that it seems important focus first on the stuff you can't fix later if you mess up.

Cool I'll have a look. Freakonomics analysis of schooling also suggests that early years are also more important.

I'd be interested to hear what you find.

Well - yes I can see the need for specialised training when dealing with a lot of kids with a diversity of abilities, disabilities, cognitive levels, etc. And faced with a roomful (30+ kids) - yeah that's a challenge.

What about 1 kid though? Maybe Mom-with-a-high-school-education is only 25% as effective at teaching a 6 year old phonics as somebody with a couple years of upper division child development and educational pedagogy would be. Homeschooling can still be a win for the kid, however, because Mom can afford to spend 3-4 hours of one-on-one instruction a day. There's no way the (granted: much more effective) elementary school teacher can match that sort of investment of time.

I don't doubt it. I think anyone on this list could probably learn enough about reading programs and development psyche to teach their kids quite well. It's just that its nothing to do with being able to read yourself.

The wife of my brother in law is a homeschool evangelist.

The bad side of me wants to commit this list to memory so that I'll be prepared the next time I see her. :-)

Were/are many of you homeschooled?

Just the last few years of high school.

I wanted to be. Does that count? :)

Yeah, it's more about the attitude towards learning, so I'd say so. The main way homeschool benefited me was to not kill my intellectual curiosity (and give me plenty of time and freedom to do my own investigation).

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