OP: Sorry to derail, but I read this and felt I had to comment.
I was homeschooled for the beginning of my education and we sure learned a lot but yes, I did enter public school eventually WAY behind my peers socially and it was very very hard.
I was public schooled all the way through, and that was very hard...and I was always socially behind. I still am. I don't get how the social rules work, and I learned to be very afraid of other people, particularly in groups, at school. In fact, that's one of the few lessons that I really learned in school. Most of the things we were formally taught have long since faded from my memory.
If given the choice, I would have had my parents choose public (or private) school with peers earlier. The system of learning to work with large groups, according to rules you sometimes do or dont like, teachers you do or dont like, etc. All of that is very valuable in my opinion. It is a lot like working for bosses according to rules you do not set.
FWIW, I completely disagree. I've had multiple jobs in my life, and done very well in all of them. I've been congratulated on how good a team player I am by every boss I've ever had. I also temped for a while, and was a top notch, very flexible, temp. I didn't learn any of that in school, either, because I hated group work, and wasn't good at it. I sat there at the table and said nothing - every time - for all of school. School and work are different. I've known people (like me) who functioned very badly at school, but very well in the workplace. I've known people who have functioned very well at school, but not very well in the workplace. They're simply not the same. And, if I dislike a boss as much as I disliked a couple of my teachers (the genuine disrespectful bullies), I'd leave the job and move on. Nobody should have to put up with that, but students do have to put up with it, a lot of the time.
A child benefits by learning to thrive in this system.
Yes. But, there are a lot of chlidren who don't learn to thrive in the system, and they don't benefit. They don't benefit at all.
I just dont see why it must be either or. Can you tell us more what you are worried about re: public school? (Not saying there arent reasons to be worried, I just think it might help you address this problem more fully).
I don't think any of this is relevant to the OP. She wants to homeschool. The reasons are relevant to her husband, but she doesn't need to tell anybody else why she wants to go that route, yk?
I took art lessons, music lessons, writing lessons, everything in public school and it was an ENORMOUS outlet for my creativity, espeically at the point (around age 9) that I began to surpass my parents musically, creatively and artistically.
LOL. DD1 left me behind musically, creatively and artistically by the time she was five or six. So did her big brother, who graduated from public school last year (and also took music, writing, art, etc. - he's now at university, studying acting). But, her big brother has noticed that she has more time to work on her art than he had, and that she's developing her visual arts in more directions than he did. DD1 also takes art lessons (multi media and pottery, so far) and music lessons (piano - she also wants to learn the French horn at some point, and is talking about violin). She takes dance. I see this kind of comment a lot, but I'm surprised to see it from a former homeschooler. There is no reason why homeschooling means "never takes lessons in anything". (My homeschooled kids take, or have taken, ballet, "Stomp" dances, piano, Tae Kwon Do, circus, multimedia art, swimming, skating, and pottery. We also have lessons planned in a wide variety of other activities - dueling, painting, musical theatre, etc. They take workshop style classes in science, music, etc.) There are all kinds of options for clases and lessons, outside of school, and most homeschoolers that I know take full advantage of that.
My dad taught me calculus long before I learned it in school, so I just dont think education at home stops when education at school begins.
That depends on many factors. For ds1, education at home pretty much did stop for about three or four years (grades four through seven), because he was so loaded down with homework. The homework itself was mostly busywork, and very little of it actually taught him anything, but it cut massively into our family time, and he wasn't learning much at home at all.
They each bring something important. If I were you, I would send them to a high quality school if one was available, with good teachers (oh that's another plus! The teachers I encountered on the way were some of the most important people ever to come into my life. I would not be the person I am today without them). I guess I feel like, the more exposure to more environments, people, different languages, cultures, etc the better.
We had good teachers, but I didn't thrive, even in those classrooms, because the classroom environment simply doesn't work for me. It doesn't work for a lot of people. I can't say that any of my teachers (with the possible exception of my third grade one, who first introduced me to yoga) had a significant impact on who I am today. They were pretty much irrelevant even when I was at school, and completely irrelevant as soon as I'd graduated.
How many environments is a child exposed to in public school? In your case, it sounds as though there were many opportunities, but that hasn't been my experience. The only environments I was exposed to were classrooms, gyms, and the library (where I pretty much lived, outside of class). During the hours of the typical school day, my kids are exposed to the science museum, aquarium, zoo (before it lost it accrediation, anyway), forests, stores, the public library, gyms, music rooms, etc. .
which is why I studied abroad every chance I got, learned 4 languages, met my husband overseas . . . I just feel like, I am sure you will do an absolutely AMAZING job educating your children at home, but what they will lose from that will be all those different people they would have met along the way. The different cultures, teachers, mentors, challenges, etc. I would really want my kids to have that. IF (and only if) the schools were very good.
Good schools don't always mean all of that. My high school was a good school, but it was also almost completely white and upper middle class (actually, I was the "diversity", as a white lower middle class kid - it was hell). I never had a mentor. The only challenge was surviving from one day to the next (not being terribly dramatic, either - I first contemplated suicide after a particularly bad day of bullying in 8th grade). A good school doesn't mean it will be a good fit for any particular child.
As I said, I really feel like you can continue to teach that am home too. It is always very important for parents to supplement their children's learning. And, if for any reason, they werent doing well at school (this happened to my learning disabled cousin) by all means pull them out and homeschool them! It did wonders for my cousin and 5 years later, she was able to rejoin school and really succeed, when at first she was just floundering and suffering. So attend all the schools, find a teacher you feel will enlighten your child's mind and spirirt, can offer them a different point of view than yours (which in my opinion is always valuable) and continue lessons at home and get some well deserved time off. Just my two cents :)
Did you go to a school where your parents could pick your teacher? I've never heard of that. What you get is what you get. Sometimes, if there are really serious issues, and enough parental pressure, a child might be able to move to a different classroom, but it's hardly a matter of "find a teacher" the way you phrase it here.
You're obviously entitled to your own opinion. But, the fact that public school was an awesome experience for you doesn't carry over into it being an awesome experience for everybody. Some people (I've drawn on my own experience, because it's what I know best, but I've known many, many, many other people who were shut down, one way or another, by school) simply don't fit into the way that school works. In any case, the OP wasn't asking for input on whether her views are valid or not.