Do you feel your own experiences with school colour your attitude towards your kids' schooling? - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: s/o: Do you feel your own experiences with school colour your attitude towards your kids' schooling?
I have had mostly positive experiences myself and approach my child's schooling generally with an open mind. 5 21.74%
I have had mostly negative experiences myself but have been able to generally keep an open mind. 2 8.70%
I have had mostly positive experiences myself but am now put off by my child's experiences. 3 13.04%
I have had mostly negative experiences myself and it colors all my interactions with my child's school. 6 26.09%
I have had mostly negative experiences, but have been so positively surprised with my child's schooling I am more open-minded now 2 8.70%
None of the above (please tell me what I've forgotten) 5 21.74%
Voters: 23. You may not vote on this poll

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#1 of 20 Old 01-03-2012, 07:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I feel I have been fairly traumatized by my own school experiences, particularly elementary school. Now that elementary school for DS is approaching and I will have to have all these conferences regarding early entry (he's born about two weeks after the cutoff and may be entered on request with the public schools principal's consent, if applicable the private school's principal's consent, and the preschool's endorsement) I am afraid of getting all sorts of "flashbacks", not being able to keep my humble cool, getting on the wrong side of all these people and generally ruin things for DS before he's even started!

I am wondering if this kind of projection is typical for the parents of gifted kids, since chances are one or both of the parents has been a gifted kid themselves, whether it is cultural thing (I live in Europe and attention to gifted education is pretty much a new thing) and how making new experiences as parents has played out for you.

It's my first poll, I hope it works. Suggestions appreciated!


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#2 of 20 Old 01-03-2012, 07:51 AM
 
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I had negative and positive experiences.  The same with my kids in school.  I've learned that I need to be as involved as possible and really get to know their teachers.  I'm friendly with both of them this year.  Last year I had a screaming match with DD1's second grade teacher and I ended up pulling them out of school.  This year my back bone is steel!  There will be no pushing around and if there is a problem I'm first to respond.  If something good is going on and I'm first to respond I will make sure I'm involved at all costs.  So far this year has been pretty damn awesome and both DD's are very happy.  

 

Also DD1 is in their gifted and talented program.  Only part of it because she stinks at math.  But she gets to be involved in all the other stuff.  Last year her teacher said he thought she wasn't smart enough and felt it would be a treat for her to go and he said she wasn't good enough to do it.  Even after all her former teachers pitched a fit because they knew she belonged there.  It was UGLY!  He's a jerk and I treat him that way when I see him.  He won't make eye contact with me this year but he's super uncomfortable around me.  DD1 has no problems being around him since she knows he did her wrong and she's like me... So she won't cower to the turd bucket!

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#3 of 20 Old 01-03-2012, 10:30 AM
 
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I voted "had mostly negative and it colours my view" but I tried to vote for both "negative and colours view" and  "negative but positive experiences are causing me to be more open minded".  Both would be true.

 

My kids were mostly homeschooled during the early years.  I was not impressed with the brief forays into schools.  The academics were wishy washy, the school handled social dynamics poorly and they were much more inclined to focus on any negative than positives.

 

My middle child decided to go to middle school (one of my least favourite places in the world) last year and it has been mixed.  The academics are fairly horrible (worse than elementary) but she has a gifted IEP in place and a real advocate in the learning resource teacher.  DD took on an assinine teacher last year, and with some support from the IEP and myself prevailed!  I was so proud.  I think it was a very empowering experience for her.

 

My Ds has chosen to go to grade 10 this year.  It has been borderline fantastic. He is receiving appropriately challenging work for the most part, and his teachers seem OK.  Even if they weren't:

1.  He only has them 1 period a day

2.  he is almost 16, dealing with not-OK teachers is something he is developmentally able to do without internalizing things as much as say a 7 year old. 

 

 IMHO if your negative school experiences colour your views sufficiently that you cannot usually get behind whatever the school is doing you should homeschool or consider alternate school arrangements.  Spending most of your time fighting your kid's school is not fun or beneficial for anyone.  

 

 

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#4 of 20 Old 01-04-2012, 07:00 AM
 
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I've worked really hard to separate my own experiences from my son's reality. For starters, schools and what is expected/required of them is very different from what it was when I was a child, which means that school won't really be comparable. Second, while I felt mostly positive as a child, I realize that my experiences were lacking. I had an extremely unstable childhood and lived off and on with various relatives. I also was abused. School was a refuge that I loved. I knew the rules, and I could excel there. When I look back as an adult, I realize that a third-grader whose teacher is checking out books from the high school library for her needs more than the highest reading group as an accommodation. In 4th grade, I was accelerated 2 years in math & 3 in science (which was an odd decision, but...), and it still wasn't "enough." I never learned what it meant to be challenged, and I regret it. I'm fighting very hard for that not to happen to DC, but so far I'm failing miserably.


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#5 of 20 Old 01-04-2012, 07:50 AM
 
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 ETA: Whoa! Somehow I missed that I accidentally landed in the gifted forum. While we know DD1 is bright, she certainly isn't considered gifted academically because of her struggles. She is a gifted athlete and is on numerous competitive teams and trains with the "big kids" 7th/8th graders instead of with her real age bracket. 

 

 

My early schooling years were mostly unremarkable. I was gifted in reading but not in math and the school would not put me in any gifted program unless you were all around gifted. I was never challenged in reading in school, like other posters, I was reading at a high school level by 4th grade. I was one of the quiet, easy kids in school, very easy to over look and for most of elementary school I was put between two of the more difficult boys to assist them. I feel that my life long aversion to math could of been prevented had I gotten any attention in school. I clearly remember in 3rd grade needing just a little more help with the concepts but the teacher was so busy with the many kids that really needed attention that I was overlooked, it just snowballed, and I never got a good math foundation underneath of me.  I started struggling socially when my family moved cross country in 6th grade. Those struggles continued into high school. My parents ended up pulling me out of school when I was 15 because I started getting into quite a bit of trouble. I home schooled myself the next year, and graduated right as I was turning 16. 

 

 

I always swore I would homeschool. And I did until DD1 was 6, not long at all! She is severely dyslexic, she was dxed at age 5, then she could not even recognize her own name, could not even count. I couldn't help her, her needs were so great.  We looking in the local public school, what services they could offer DD1 were just awful. We even considered hiring an advocate but in the end decided that because we did have the ability to go private that is what we would do. We tried to go to a tiny school for dyslexic children but she has other issues as well, anxiety disorder, SPD, and they wouldn't take her. We ended up a small christian school with a therapist that works with her 4 days a week. They accommodate DD1 in every single manner possible. We don't do standardized tests, she doesn't do spelling tests, when she does take a test, it isn't graded because she always fails and she doesn't need to know that now, on and on. I've worked so hard to protect her self esteem, she is in 3rd grade now, at grade level actually but everything is difficult for her and probably always will be. She just can not process the info like a normal chid would. I am very mindful of social issues within school because of my own experiences. DD1's school is short on girls, she is the only girl in her grade and there is only 1 girl in the grade above her and 2 in the grade below her. This won't work forever and we can't always pay for private with 4 kids. We are frantically trying to get our volunteer hours for a project based learning charter middle school, we are on a time crunch because the current 4th grade slots for 6th grade are already gone. I think she will do will there and if not, I guess we'll figure the money thing out and keep her at the current school which goes to 8th grade. The middle school grades at her current school are not strong, and I worry because she already struggles so much that if she is used to working at a lower level, when she goes into 9th grade, it will be a disaster. She has no desire to homeschool currently. 

 

 

I do worry that DD1 will fall behind in something like I did and just not catch up again, she works 3 times as hard at every thing to begin with. She started having trouble in math this year and we've been doing tutoring, extra hours, just making sure she does have a solid foundation. And I try to make sure school isn't everything even though it consumes so much of our lives. Sports is where she excels and we try to let her dance, snowboard, etc... every minute that she can because that is her talent, that is what drives her. 


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#6 of 20 Old 01-04-2012, 07:59 AM
 
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I answered that my experiences were negative and it colors my interactions with my kids education, but it's clearly not that simple.

 

School wasn't horrible. I probably could have used a grade acceleration for both social and academic reasons. I defiantly could have used more challenge. I was a definite underachiever. School utterly failed my older brother, socially, emotionally, and academically.

 

I am aware of the biases that my own schooling has on my perception of my kids education. I try to make sure I am focused on the hear and now and on my child's situation not on how I wish it had been different for me. But I don't know that anyone is actually capable of completely separating it. I know I'm not. I do know that my experiences made me a lot more open to my son's grade skip and to the add mission to the full time gifted program he's in. I know that I do advocate more, push more, etc.because of my experience. I guess only time will tell if that is a good thing or a bad thing.

 

I am having a relatively negative time with my son's school. But they managed to piss me off without any preconceptions. I'm pretty sure I'd be irritated right now no matter what my own experience growing up was. I'm meeting with the school next week to work on some of the issues. I'm also looking at other options for next year.


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#7 of 20 Old 01-04-2012, 11:50 AM
 
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Lost a longer reply (there seem to be problems with the board today?), but the gist was that I had both positive and negative experiences. For years, I viewed my grade acceleration as a BIG negative, but I've come to understand that it was probably the best option at the time available to my parents. I've kept an open mind about education and schooling for my children, making sure that my own experiences inform but don't constrain decisions we make for them. I admit at one time, I swore I would never allow them to grade accelerate, but I've softened on that somewhat. It's never been necessary, because their needs were met in other ways (including subject acceleration) but if it were, we would have considered it. 

 

My dc have had positive and negative experiences, but mostly positive. At the end of their high school careers (DS is finished, DD is almost there), they both say they would make the same choices if they could do it over, so that's good to hear. Probably because we've had good options available over the years, and explored and experienced many different ones to keep meeting their needs as they changed.

 

 

 

 

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#8 of 20 Old 01-04-2012, 12:01 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post

I voted "had mostly negative and it colours my view" but I tried to vote for both "negative and colours view" and  "negative but positive experiences are causing me to be more open minded".  Both would be true.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by VisionaryMom View Post

I've worked really hard to separate my own experiences from my son's reality. For starters, schools and what is expected/required of them is very different from what it was when I was a child, which means that school won't really be comparable.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JollyGG View Post

I am aware of the biases that my own schooling has on my perception of my kids education. I try to make sure I am focused on the hear and now and on my child's situation not on how I wish it had been different for me. But I don't know that anyone is actually capable of completely separating it. I know I'm not. I do know that my experiences made me a lot more open to my son's grade skip and to the add mission to the full time gifted program he's in. I know that I do advocate more, push more, etc.because of my experience. I guess only time will tell if that is a good thing or a bad thing.



All of this. I had an acceptable high school, but horrid private, roman catholic grade school, that effectively killed all joy, creativity, ambition and learning. And my social life there was even worse. It was a good school for my brother and sister, who are more by-the-book rote memorization style. So, as a sibling, I just had to go along for the ride - 5 years of it. That 5 years of suffering makes me trigger-happy towards my kids education. The minute something happens, I analyze it and am on top of it. But I know this reaction is an issue, in and of itself. So normally before I react, I can step back, cool off, realize this is a different place and time. But yes, that background does creep in. I have had three more serious aggressions that I could not step back from. I dealt with each one and was very pleasantly surprised in each case. The day care and school addressed each issue appropriately and head on, did the follow up and made sure there were no further issues afterwards. This makes me more and more confident in the new school system. I am an older mom, so a lot has changed in the educational system. Plus I am in a new country, so education and social development are much different that what I grew up with. This also helps me let go of some of the past. My kids are not me. They have different needs, interests and are in a totally different time and place than I was. But they will never have a mother who lets one suffer long-term for the convenience and benefit of the other.  

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#9 of 20 Old 01-04-2012, 01:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all for sharing your stories!

 

I realize I should have ticked the "several options allowed" box or whatever it was (it appears you can't edit polls?) because not only do people of course have mixed experiences, they may also have different experiences and issues with their various children! For instance I realize that I feel already a lot less apprehensive about DD's schooling because it appears that she is so much more social, does not struggle at daycare the way DS did etc. I realize that it isn't rational and i should be more open-minded for them both, but that's kinda the point of this thread, isn't it...

 

A common theme in this thread seems to be "the one thing I've taken away from my experience is that I won't back down in the face of my child's unhappiness". I imagine our parents still deferred much more to school authorities, and did not know how to or did not dare advocate. I have similar resolutions. I also realize that I have more options than my parents ever had. Even changing public schools was almost unthinkable. Private simply wasn't around. Montessori was unheard of. Differentiation did not exist even as a concept. My grade skip was the first one in living memory and had to go all the way to the state department of education to be approved. And so on. So while some of our public school's principal's attitude sounded eerily familiar, I know that even though I need her to approve early entry, I have reason to hope not to have to depend on her school as the only available choice.

 

Quote:
That 5 years of suffering makes me trigger-happy towards my kids education

Though I am afraid that for me, too, this will be an issue in my determination to advocate!

 

Quote:

IMHO if your negative school experiences colour your views sufficiently that you cannot usually get behind whatever the school is doing you should homeschool or consider alternate school arrangements.  Spending most of your time fighting your kid's school is not fun or beneficial for anyone.  

 

I think that depends. After all, I need to remind myself that I do not have to go - DS does. And I may come to the conclusion that for whatever reason this school is the right one for now. (I should point out that living in Europe, homeschooling is illegal for us and is thus no option - it is about finding the least worst option in brick and mortar). The one school environment that has mostly made me feel good is the local Montessori, so that is a strong candidate. It does have definite drawbacks since it is quite a commute and thus will place a strain on our family organization and on our community relationships such as they are ( I am not that into our village preschool moms' crowd but DS does have a few friends and occasionally goes to playdates. No really close relationships though, I think).

 

 

Quote:

For years, I viewed my grade acceleration as a BIG negative, but I've come to understand that it was probably the best option at the time available to my parents.

I have very mixed feelings about my grade skip. I approve of them in principle, as the right choice for many children who need more challenge if the school handles it right. For me, it was the only feasible choice at the time. Academically, it worked. Socially, it was a disaster, and that disaster so badly handled that my gut reaction for DS would be  "no way"! It is one of the reasons I want to push for early entry, because it may help us to avoid a grade skip for an old-for-grade kid that may make him stand out even more - early entry is so much less conspicuous! But again, my own experiences colour all of my thinking!


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#10 of 20 Old 01-04-2012, 01:41 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tigerle View Post

A common theme in this thread seems to be "the one thing I've taken away from my experience is that I won't back down in the face of my child's unhappiness". I imagine our parents still deferred much more to school authorities, and did not know how to or did not dare advocate. I have similar resolutions. I also realize that I have more options than my parents ever had. Even changing public schools was almost unthinkable. Private simply wasn't around. Montessori was unheard of. Differentiation did not exist even as a concept. My grade skip was the first one in living memory and had to go all the way to the state department of education to be approved. And so on. So while some of our public school's principal's attitude sounded eerily familiar, I know that even though I need her to approve early entry, I have reason to hope not to have to depend on her school as the only available choice.

 

Though I am afraid that for me, too, this will be an issue in my determination to advocate!

 

 

My lost post had a much longer discussion about the importance and advantage of having options available. It sounds like you didn't need to read it - you've already recognized it. 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tigerle View Post

I have very mixed feelings about my grade skip. I approve of them in principle, as the right choice for many children who need more challenge if the school handles it right. For me, it was the only feasible choice at the time. Academically, it worked. Socially, it was a disaster, and that disaster so badly handled that my gut reaction for DS would be  "no way"! It is one of the reasons I want to push for early entry, because it may help us to avoid a grade skip for an old-for-grade kid that may make him stand out even more - early entry is so much less conspicuous! But again, my own experiences colour all of my thinking!

 

 

I had a similar experience, although I think the full grade skip didn't even meet my academic needs, really, so it wasn't very successful either academically or socially in my case. Socially, on the surface it probably looked like I was coping well and in some ways, I did. On the whole, though, I look at how well my dc have thrived by having their academic needs met by other means and how confident, connected and happy they are, socially speaking. Based on my experience, and theirs, I would explore - even exhaust- other options before turning to a grace acceleration. Others, of course, will have a different opinion. So perhaps my negative experience has left me more close-minded than I want to admit, lol!! 

 

 

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#11 of 20 Old 01-05-2012, 05:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ollyoxenfree View Post

 

I had a similar experience, although I think the full grade skip didn't even meet my academic needs, really, so it wasn't very successful either academically or socially in my case.

 



Hey, I said my grade skip "worked" academically, I didn't say it met my academic needs! lol.gif

At least it made the difference between "coping" ie more or less managing the boredom by daydreaming, doodling, reading in secret etc in between occasionally perking up whenever something actually new was introduced and "going completely bonkers". And there weren't any issues with "gaps" or graphomotor or general writing demands, or problems with literary topics I wasn't interested in or couldn't handle, so no academic problems either. Which is what I meant and what you probably mean by "on the surface, I was coping well."

We didn't ask much at the time, did we? I hope I shall be able to ask for more for my children.


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#12 of 20 Old 01-05-2012, 06:32 AM
 
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My early school experiences were great!  And because of that, I'm deeply disappointed in my childrens' schooling so far.  I went to a public school in a small, rather well-to-do district outside NYC.  We had great teachers, full range of "specials", tracking by ability in math and reading and lots of great learning experiences.  I really look fondly on my first 6 years or so of school (of course that all went to heck when I entered the social nightmare that was Jr High/High School, but even there, the academics were exceptional).  The school my 3 kids attend now has among the highest per pupil spending in the state and STILL limited specials, no tracking, no G&T or modifications of any kind for gifted students.  DS hasn't gotten a grade lower than a 98 all year, with minimal work.  His teacher is lazy. They have no art instruction.  No creativity allowed in the teach-to-the-state-test curriculum.  I could go on, but I'll spare you eyesroll.gif.


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#13 of 20 Old 01-05-2012, 09:17 AM
 
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My school experiences were on balance pretty negative. I was radically accelerated in an era and system where acceleration was fairly common, and it was assumed that this alone would solve any mismatch issues. Which it didn't really.

 

However, I was in primary school in the early 70s, and experimental classrooms were very much "in" at the time -- open concept, "new math," anecdotal school records with no grades, project-oriented learning, unusual multi-grade-split arrangements (KG&6th?), etc.. I had the good fortune to end up in 5th grade in an innovative classroom with a teacher in his first year of teaching who was filled with outside-the-box can-do idealism. That year was probably not as radical and innovative as I tend to remember it, but it was just enough so that it was the highlight of my entire schooling career. I've moved many times since, changed educational and career paths several times, my family has moved away from that town, and I keep in touch with no one from there ... except that my 5th grade teacher and I are still in touch. He left teaching after a dozen or so years and now teaches downhill skiing part-time, lives half the year in a little log cabin in the woods and spends the other half of the year running eco-education sailboat charters. Definitely a kindred spirit. The trust, challenge and creativity I was privy to that year really filled my tank up.

 

That 5th grade year taught me what education could be ... and inspired my unschooling approach with my children. So much of the rest of my education was dismal and stultifying. I figured my kids would have flexibility and innovation assured if I was their educational facilitator. So we homeschooled for many years.

 

And eventually when my teenaged children saw fit to enter the school system, that memory of my 5th-grade year allowed me to believe that innovation and excitement were at least possible in the public school system. Luckily there are at least two real movers and shakers at our local public school here who are very much of this mindset, and my kids and I have been able to work closely with one of them to make it all work for them.

 

So I had mostly negative experience, but my one really positive experience has served as my inspiration as my kids have entered the system.

 

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#14 of 20 Old 01-05-2012, 01:20 PM
 
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Dang it. I wrote a long reply that got swallowed up. At least it was cathartic for me to write. 

 

I answered that I had mostly positive experiences and try to keep an open mind, but the reality is a little different. I mostly liked school (except for 8th grade, but no surprise there). I was in the GT program and took AP classes, etc., but in hindsight I want better than what I had for my kids. My schooling was very conformity-oriented. There wasn't a lot of wiggle room for square pegs in round holes. And my dd1 is a definite square peg.

 

We sent the kids to a crunchy private school up until this year. They were able to offer a lot more flexibility than a traditional public school environment. The school closed, though, and we ran out of money about the same time, so the kids are at public school this year. We live in a great public school district with lots of gifted programs, but if money was no object I would prefer to have my kids in an alternative setting. I really like the diversity in our public schools, but the structure is pretty rigid and doesn't allow as much flexibility for those who dance to their own beat. 


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#15 of 20 Old 01-07-2012, 02:41 PM
 
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It has coloured my attitudes and actions immensely. DD is just about to turn 4, so not K-12 age yet, but my mind was made up long before she was even preschool age: no compulsory schooling.

 

School was hell to me. I wasn't picked on much, it wasn't that, I was never that social and didn't feel a need to be. Kept to myself out of choice mostly, it wasn't like I suffered because of other kids. I was just terminally, painfully bored. My mom took my brother and I travelling all over during the summer, and that kind of freedom and wonder made it intolerable to go back to school and spend 95% of my day feeling my body and brain atrophy from lack of use. Waiting and wasted time was the worst.

 

Waiting for the teacher to stop yammering so I could do my work and be done with it, waiting for the other kids to finish their work, waiting while the teacher repeated the same thing 20 times in a vain effort to get the lowest common denominator to at least absorb something. Spending 40 of a 55 minute class bored out of my skull because I completed the work in 10 minutes. Getting sent to the principal's office like clockwork within the first week of a class starting, because I couldn't possibly have done my work that quickly and gotten a good score, therefore, I must be cheating. Eventually either the teacher adapted and learned to turn a blind eye to my reading or drawing quietly in the back, or I adapted by pretending to be busy so that no one would bother me. The A's I got in school meant nothing to me other than a measure of how well I could play the game and an unhappy reminder of my wasted time.

 

It felt like a cage and at times I behaved like an animal in a cage. My relationships with other students were contentious as I got older, I got in physical fights (and even picked them sometimes), antagonized teachers out of sheer boredom, and violated every rule I possibly could. I held the school record for most suspensions in year without expulsion and the only reason they didn't expel me was that my grades were as good as they were. The moment summer hit, it was like I was human again. I learned more in 2 months of freedom and experience than I'd learn in 2 years or more in a classroom, all of my "behavioural problems" magically went away. Then when I had to go back to school, it was like having to march myself into prison every day.

 

My schooling absolutely affected my daughter's. Because of my experiences being a gifted child who languished in a school environment (skipped grades, enrichment programme and all), and my partner's similar but less tormenting experiences, we have chosen homeschooling/maybe unschooling for DD. She's as bright and as easily bored as I was with what I call, "stupid bullshit." She's not half as intense as I was, but she craves stimulation and new experiences, and I am unconvinced a classroom environment of any persuasion could provide her that. Life in the real world can, with my and my partner's guidance. She's the kind of kid who would do well academically in school, but be as unhappy as I was. She'd be worse off, because her placid and agreeable nature would make her the suffer-in-silence type. I don't want it to ever come to that for her. I could not and would not turn a blind eye to her growing up wasting her youth and watching her spark go out little by little, just for the sake of conforming to social norms.

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#16 of 20 Old 01-08-2012, 11:35 PM
 
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Originally Posted by moominmamma View Post

However, I was in primary school in the early 70s, and experimental classrooms were very much "in" at the time -- open concept, "new math," anecdotal school records with no grades, project-oriented learning, unusual multi-grade-split arrangements (KG&6th?), etc.. I had the good fortune to end up in 5th grade in an innovative classroom with a teacher in his first year of teaching who was filled with outside-the-box can-do idealism. That year was probably not as radical and innovative as I tend to remember it, but it was just enough so that it was the highlight of my entire schooling career. I've moved many times since, changed educational and career paths several times, my family has moved away from that town, and I keep in touch with no one from there ... except that my 5th grade teacher and I are still in touch. He left teaching after a dozen or so years and now teaches downhill skiing part-time, lives half the year in a little log cabin in the woods and spends the other half of the year running eco-education sailboat charters. Definitely a kindred spirit. The trust, challenge and creativity I was privy to that year really filled my tank up.

 

That 5th grade year taught me what education could be ... 


I wonder how many of us have had an experience like Mirandas? A savior year. A year that showed us what learning could be, what our life could be later, if we held on to some of that spark and used it as a torch on our way forward through the "system"? My 8th grade was my savior year. Also 70's - I had the hippie teacher in the handmade bucky fuller house who recycled his waste because the world climate was changing. (I don't think the term climate warming was around). Everyone thought he was nuts. I also had a great mythology teacher, which was refreshing after religious grade school. I found out about Sartre and Salinger... Anyway, this 8th grade made 9th-12th pleasant. I learned to day dream through the junk and grab at the things that would spark me.

 

Totally off topic: Vrai - this makes your other post more clear. If you choose a home-base, location-location-location.... Somewhere maybe with some active home-schoooling groups, cultural attractions, museums....

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#17 of 20 Old 01-09-2012, 04:32 PM
 
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Eighth grade was my savior year.  I had an amazing life-changing teacher for science, who challenged a few of us to the maximum.  I was able to take algebra I in 8th grade, which was probably the right amount of "honors" or "acceleration."  My MS kids are accelerated more in math than I was.  Really though, even though 7th grade was a bomb socially, I enjoyed several of my classes--English, math, social studies, and science were all good classes in 7th.

 

  Actually, I had the benefit through 3rd/4th/5th/6th grade to attend a tiny DOD school in West Germany on post.  There was only one class in each grade and everyone knew each other.  I went to 6th grade reading group from 3rd through 6th grade.  I don't know what they really did for the 6th grade.  But the teachers had a lot of flexibility, I think, because the school was small and so there was a lot of adjustment of curriculum.  We made up plays, sang songs with our 5th grade teacher, wrote poetry with our 4th grade teacher; I don't remember being accelerated at all in math; except in 3rd grade I felt completely bored out of my MIND because we had just moved there and the teacher had me do page after page of long addition and subtraction when I already knew those skills.  The school I had moved from had been small and rural southern school, but they were very much of the "yes ma'am, no ma'am" but also good fundamentals, so at least I learned good fundamentals of multiplication and division.

 

 

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#18 of 20 Old 01-09-2012, 04:43 PM
 
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Also, I didn't vote, because I liked school.  Looking back I had a few experiences that were negative, but in general I did well in a school environment and my parents really encouraged lateral learning, music, and sports.  We played outside a lot, learned to sew, and I did terribly at softball.

 

One thing that I am NOT afraid of is being "that parent."  I speak up promptly for my children.  I don't think that my learning experiences color my expectations.  My husband is highly gifted/exceptionally gifted, and he has said that he has to be careful to keep his experiences out of his assessment of our children's experiences.

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#19 of 20 Old 01-09-2012, 04:53 PM
 
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I guess I colored outside the lines.  Ds is home/unschooled and thriving.  I hated schooled, every friggin part of it and even when I tried to find something to work for him, I just couldn't.  I honestly looked for a school for him, and still do look.  Now the choice is his, at age 11 he can make the decision.  And he chooses to stay the path I've made for him.


Mom to J and never-ending , 0/2014 items decluttered, 0/52 crafts crafts completed  crochetsmilie.gif homeschool.gif  reading.gif  modifiedartist.gif

Seeking zen in 2014.  Working on journaling and finding peace this year.  Spending my free time taking J to swimteam

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#20 of 20 Old 01-14-2012, 05:51 PM
 
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I voted "something else."  I had a generally positive experience with school itself--the only real negatives were due to my family moving a couple times in elementary school, and having to make/lose friendships repeatedly due to that.  I was in regular non-gifted classes in kindergarten and 1st, moved into a gifted school in 2nd, then we moved and I was in regular non-gifted classes for 3rd and 4th (between which we moved again), and in a 4/5/6 gifted split for 5th and 6th and thankfully in the same schools from 5th grade on.  I did have a lousy time in 5th/6th but it was partially because my non-gifted-track friends from 4th grade dropped me like a hot potato when I was moved into the gifted program and at that age I took the snubbing really hard.  I actually don't remember being particularly bored at all in any of the environments, but I was always pretty self-sufficient as far as entertainment. I think I did a lot of drawing.

 

My husband, on the other hand, had a horrible experience with school.  He's the sort of person who is NOT at all self-entertaining--for one thing, he's very ADHD and he's also less creatively inclined, so the stuff I would've done for entertainment as a kid (I loved to draw, for instance, and could entertain myself a lot that way, and I loved to read) wouldn't entertain him at all.  He was never routed into any gifted programming, though in high school he was moved to a higher performing high school, which didn't really do anything because he hadn't learned any study skills and didn't really fit into the peer groups and had a difficult time hanging out with kids there since it was a really long way from his home.  So that was a flop.  He claims he only managed to graduate by fixing all the teachers' computers, and he got into college strictly on test scores, because his grades were pathetic.  He also did horrible in college when he was college-aged because he had no use for anything that he didn't find interesting and no study skills to work his way through curriculum that he wasn't already good at (say, English). 

 

My daughter is quite a lot like my husband so it worries me quite a lot when she complains about being bored (and truly, she has learning nothing whatsoever in school this year and not been challenged one iota by her schoolwork).  However, I also think I've learned from HIS experience that dealing with her ADHD characteristics is as much a priority as anything, because my MIL never did and look where that got my DH.  He didn't develop enough intrinsic motivation to do well in school until he went back when he was 28, and being a work adult at the time with many commitments, he still hasn't managed to get a BS because the scheduling was just too hard.


Erin, mom to DD (1/06) and DS (10/09)
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