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Valuing education: Do you or don't you? - Page 3

post #41 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by moominmamma View Post
I value education like I value health. Meaning ... immensely.

However, do I personally want to have anything to do with the public institutions of health care a.k.a. hospitals? No, I hope not to. I want to stay healthy and look after myself outside of the confines of a hospital. Just like I hope to have little to do with the public institutions of education, helping my children be bright, well-educated people outside the confines of a school. I'm glad both sets of institutions are there -- some people need them, some people choose them, and someday something might lead me to need them too. So I very much support the presence of humane, responsible public institutions in both arenas. But I would rather not be using them myself.

Miranda
I was going to post but now I do not need to......

The only slight change I would make for my own purposes is I would use the word "school" in place of education.

"Education" is too broad a term for my liking.
post #42 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2xy View Post
I value education, but think that school often gets in the way of it.

I love the saying, "We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today."


This is exactly our thinking!! I keep here about the reasoning for all day everyday kindergarten being that it will help him read earlier in grade one and therefore perform better in highschool and get into better universities and have better jobs.....I mean you just wrote off 20y of this child's life!

WE are contemplating homeschooling (the Montessori here only goes to age 6) because we don't necessarily believe in the school system.
post #43 of 51
I have mixed feelings about the whole thing. I very much see the value in education but I don't think that needs to take place in a school setting (and in many cases is better when it is not in a school setting). DD is still not in school yet but we're definitely looking into some sort of child-led education whether that be unschooling at home, a free/democratic/Sudbury schools, or a Montessori school. It depends on where we live and what options are available to us. I shudder at the thought of an age dependent curriculum for her and, well, for any kids I have regardless of level of giftedness. I just don't think that's the right approach.

That being said. I have doubts if that's right for everybody. DH and I are both overly education (DH has is Ph.D and may become a professor soon and I just need to do my defense for mine). So, clearly, higher education is important to us. For me it's not so much that I would be disappointed if DD didn't go on to get a degree but more that I know most career paths require degrees (and many for a very good reason). I really want her to do something she's absolutely passionate about and if that doesn't require a degree and she can support herself with that GREAT. But, that's not always the easiest road to take, especially since people tend to take you more seriously when you hold that special piece of paper in your hand.


Going back to my thoughts on school (pre-college), I wonder, though, about students where the parents don't put a lot of emphasis on education/learning etc. Like parents that never read, take their children to the library etc. I tend to think that an unschooling (or free schools etc, I'm using the term loosely here) approach wouldn't work nearly as well for them since one of the big things I see as a motivation for learning in an unschooling environment is to emulate those around you. If your family doesn't read why should you learn to? Clearly the current system isn't working well but what would work instead? DH insists that unschooling only works for "smart" kids or at least for kids that have parents that emulate a continued learning environment... I definitely see his point but do wonder about it...
post #44 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by physmom View Post
Going back to my thoughts on school (pre-college), I wonder, though, about students where the parents don't put a lot of emphasis on education/learning etc. Like parents that never read, take their children to the library etc. I tend to think that an unschooling (or free schools etc, I'm using the term loosely here) approach wouldn't work nearly as well for them since one of the big things I see as a motivation for learning in an unschooling environment is to emulate those around you. If your family doesn't read why should you learn to? Clearly the current system isn't working well but what would work instead? DH insists that unschooling only works for "smart" kids or at least for kids that have parents that emulate a continued learning environment... I definitely see his point but do wonder about it...
I think that kids are naturally inclined to explore the world around them, and they do it very well unless someone gets in their way. Certainly a child can't learn in a vacuum, but most kids, even kids from non-academically-minded families, are exposed to enough of the world that they can decide for themselves what they are interested in learning more about. Maybe some kids might choose not to learn a lot of the standard public school curriculum, but I just don't see the problem with that. If they aren't interested, they're not going to remember it anyway (and even if they do remember, there won't be any benefit to the knowledge). What is taught in schools is largely arbitrary (and often incorrect) anyway.

Now, of course, there are kids who are raised in anti-academic and/or abusive environments, and that does make it harder. My mother was ridiculed for reading and wasting paper on artwork as a child. She still grew up loving to read and paint, and those are still two of her passions. The strict Catholic school she went to didn't help much with that, but I'm sure it was better than unschooling would have been, because at least it got her away from her abusive parents and gave her access to a (very limited) library. Of course, her parents couldn't have unschooled her, because they were constantly making judgments about what she learned and how she spent her time. In other words, even if she had stayed home from school, it wouldn't have been "unschooling."
post #45 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2xy View Post
Most homeschooled kids are not sequestered away from other people. You don't have to spend your days in a classroom to be exposed to someone else's interests.

I'm really not wanting to turn this into a homeschool vs. school debate. The thread is about whether we value education. I do. I just don't think that school necessarily = education. The people in the OP's post value school and its programs, and equate that with education. It's just not a path we choose for ourselves, and I don't think there's anything wrong with educating oneself on one's own terms, and being the judge of one's own learning and work.
I am not saying that homeschool kids are squestered. Someone posted that school has been good for her kids because they have become interested in things they wouldn't have otherwise because of the social interaction of that school. And someone else responded saying that it wasn't better if one child had one interest and a second child had a different interest. All I was saying that being interested in both is better and if that happens to come from school then thats fine. In the context of the original post about school having been better for that poster's child, the social interactions of school have been better for them.

My brother homeschools his stepdaughter. She also attends a charter school/co-op sort of situation two days a week. And while I had my doubts about my brother's ability to homeschool, so far, she seems to be doing ok. And, as I originally posted, when a particular system WORKS, I am not going to say that one particular system is better or worse than another. That was not what my post was about. I am sorry if you thought I was saying that formal schooling was automatically better because there are other kids there. That's certainly not what I was saying. All I was saying was sharing interests among other kids is better than than not.
post #46 of 51
Thread Starter 
I think what I'm seeing among parents today is that there seems to be excessive idealism and I think this is related to OP and the over importance that is being placed on education. I think this is why you have all these parents who feel the need to remove their kids from what they think is a substandard educational system. They want to try different approaches, some very costly and risky IMO. And if they want to that's their choice, but I think it is more about them (the parents) and their idealism about what education should be than what is truly best for the children. It's one thing if you live in an area where the schools are very poor, but I see the exact same trend where I live where there happens to be a highly rated school system with an advanced curriculum.

The trend it seems is for parents to lament their own childhood and their educational experience, to believe that they were just too smart for the curriculum and the teachers. Nobody it seems had a good experience...But nobody seems to question the validity of this and it reminds me of the post Freudian culture whereby everyone blamed their mother for all their woes. I think people almost need something to be angry at and for right now it's the schools. The fact of the matter is that all schools whether you homeschool, go private or public, etc., all are going to be imperfect. Imperfect children are being taught from people who are imperfect and from books which are imperfect. People just need to accept that.
post #47 of 51
I think that one of the most important things we can do as parents is to think about our own experiences and try to improve on how our parents did things.
post #48 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by happysmileylady View Post
All I was saying that being interested in both is better and if that happens to come from school then thats fine. In the context of the original post about school having been better for that poster's child, the social interactions of school have been better for them.

...And, as I originally posted, when a particular system WORKS, I am not going to say that one particular system is better or worse than another.
Agreed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by connieculkins View Post
I think what I'm seeing among parents today is that there seems to be excessive idealism and I think this is related to OP and the over importance that is being placed on education. I think this is why you have all these parents who feel the need to remove their kids from what they think is a substandard educational system.
agreed. Some parents really are more wrapped up in their ideals than in what is actually going on with their kids. And some parents are so wrapped up in their kids "education" (be it at home or at school) that whether or not the child is happy and has friends really takes a back seat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by no5no5 View Post
I think that one of the most important things we can do as parents is to think about our own experiences and try to improve on how our parents did things.
I used to think that when my kids were babies. Now I don't. The difference is that I know my kids better so I can parent them based on THEM instead of based on what I think might have worked better for me.

My kids are very different from each other, and they both different from me. The options we have as a family are different than the options I had growing up. If I was still wrapped up in what went wrong with my childhood, I'd be living in the past not the present.
post #49 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by happysmileylady View Post
I totally agree with all of this. I am not at a PhD level (isn't it now an EdD?) in education, but that is where my BS lies. So perhaps I am biased too.
EdD's are for people who become high level administrators (principals, superintendents, people who do special trainings or workshops, start schools, etc.). PhD's are for people who do educational research and write text books and curriculum and stuff.

There is some crossover, but that is the general distinction.
post #50 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post
I do value education. Culture is one of the things that separates us from the animals. BUT

"well, isn't education everything? If a child doesn't have education what do they have??"

I don't feel like this at all. I don't think that being well educated or gifted makes one a good person. I think that each of us has a part inside us that is divine, and our ability to be in touch with that in ourselves and to see it in others is what really matters. I'm not religious. I never go to church or anything like that.

Namasta means "I can see that place in you that is of love, of light and of truth, and when you are in the place in you and I am in that place in me, we are the same. "

That's what I want for my kids. Some one can be brilliant and well educated and use it to harm. I think that whatever is going on intellectually needs to be grounded in an understanding of what it means to be fully human.
I love your take on things. I am going to bed know with your words in my head.
post #51 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post
I used to think that when my kids were babies. Now I don't. The difference is that I know my kids better so I can parent them based on THEM instead of based on what I think might have worked better for me.

My kids are very different from each other, and they both different from me. The options we have as a family are different than the options I had growing up. If I was still wrapped up in what went wrong with my childhood, I'd be living in the past not the present.
I'm certainly not advocating blind reaction to our experiences. I'm advocating rational examination of our past circumstances, followed by reasonable application of what we've learned to our present circumstances. In other words, I think that each generation of parents should make new mistakes, rather than thoughtlessly repeating the mistakes of each previous generation.

I am well aware that my DD is not me or my DH. But I am also aware that she has many of the same traits that made public school education an absolute failure for both of us. I would have to be crazy to simply send her off to school and hope for the best given what I know and what I have experienced. She has very significant needs that would not be met in a regular classroom without very significant accommodations. I don't see why I should pack her off to school when her needs can be met much more easily and with much less expense right here at home.
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