Frustrations and some K12 questions - Mothering Forums

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Old 10-17-2010, 08:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, I need to vent. I have an almost 13 yr old in an online public school right now. I took him out of his middle school because he was feeling so much pressure to misbehave and act like his friends. He got really sick of it and felt that he could do better academically at home, and this even though he actually loves going to school and being around other kids. So, I went ahead and took him out.

The online school I chose for him is called iQ academy. I don't recommend it. He enrolled three weeks into their school year. He was not allowed to jump in with the other kids, he had to catch up. So he has been doing double the amount of work the other kids have to do for the past three weeks, and he's had it. He hates the school and wants to go back to his old PS (which is truly a nightmare). I don't want that for him, but I do feel for him. I also cannot handle helping him with his tremendous workload anymore the way I have been because I've started a part time job. The only reason he's been able to keep up is because I've been by his side the whole time. He's simply not academically inclined at all. He hates schoolwork and always has.

I have several options. I could put him back into his horrible getto school. I could force him to stick it out with his current school, which I don't have the heart for. I could see if K12 is still accepting students. Or I could simply homeschool him, which is what I've done before. There are problems with each of these possible scenarios:

1. Putting him back in PS would make him suffer academically, morally and emotionally.

2. His current school has an unintellligible and poorly written and organized curriculum, and it expects so much of him that he has learned to hate learning. He is not capable to doing the work without extensive tutoring from me.

3. I don't know if K12 is still accepting students, and if it is, I don't know if they will also force him to catch up to the other kids. If not, it might be a good option.

4. I love to homeschool because of the freedom to choose my own curriculum and set my own schedule. The responsibility is all on my shoulders with this, though. And my son is not at all a self-starter. He is very irresponsible and can be very defiant. If he doesn't like one of my assignments, he'll just refuse to do it. He want's to go back to PS anyway, so he would probably try to make my life hellish so I would be forced to put him in.

So here's a question for you homeschooling moms who are more into structure: what would you do in my situation? How do you deal with a defiant homeschooling or online schooling teen?

And for anyone reading this who knows about k12, do they make kids who enroll late catch up, or can they just jump in where the other kids are?
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Old 10-18-2010, 12:22 AM
 
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So here's a question for you homeschooling moms who are more into structure: what would you do in my situation? How do you deal with a defiant homeschooling or online schooling teen?
It can be really hard dealing with a defiant kid! I eventually sent my second oldest to school because I couldn't get her to work (when she was 15). Some thing we tried though was tying schoolwork to fun things. "Feel free to play your computer game after Algebra is complete". This worked fairly well... Good luck!

BTW, my daughter now wishes she was homeschooled, but with only a few more months to go at school, I'm not pulling her back home now!

Homeschooling Mama to DD-20, M>F DD-18, DS-10 and DD-7
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Old 10-18-2010, 03:06 AM
 
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I don't have time right now but I couldn't NOT reply as I totally feel for you. I feel very strongly about education and doing whatever it takes to keep teens from falling prey during the most difficult and impressionable time in their lives.

K-12 can totally work for you. They kind of go by when you "sign up." You don't have to force him to catch up, the school year will "end" maybe a little after it normally would had he started in the beginning but even so, he can do very very little extra throughout the year and end earlier. They go by hours.

Having said this it did not work for ME at this time because I have a 1st grade and kinder years. I could absolutely see myself doing this down the road once they are alittle more independent.

Sorry so short.....but I really think it couldu work for you if you need something that is less pressure on him
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Old 10-18-2010, 11:09 AM
 
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I'm not sure of your question but I just withdrew my kids from the k12 because of the reasons you listed (tons of schoolwork and kids needing tons of help).

Stephanie + Dh= Super blessed parents to 1 ds, and 4 dds!
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Old 10-19-2010, 04:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you so much for your replies. Sorry it took so long for me to reply, I'm swamped with ds' schoolwork.

I'm starting to think it's going to have to be either back to PS, or strait homeschooling. I just don't have time to sit with him 24/7 helping him with excessive homework that he doesn't understand. I really don't want him in PS because of where we live. And he is at such a crucial stage right now, I don't want to risk losing him to a gang or drugs or anything else.

I don't know if I can handle homeschooling him though. Argggh! I guess I may have to try. It's better then losing a kid.
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Old 10-20-2010, 03:04 PM
 
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Here are my opinions--
*I vote for #4.
*Do some de-compressing and de-schooling so he can recover from what he's been going through. If he's learned to hate learning, he'll have to unlearn that
*Don't jump into academics immediately. Don't focus on the 3 R's right now--Focus on the 4th R--Relationship. Find ways to capture his heart.
*Do a lot of "fun" things together--field trips, some fall activities, find an "educational" corn maze (the kind that move you through it via questions), go to museums, something music-related etc. (what does he like to do? what are his interests? is he passionate about something?)
*Find homeschooling support and community. Help him phase out some of the old friends by replacing them with homeschooling friends.

I don't know all the details of your situation, so I don't mean to make any of it sound easy, but I think I'd do just about anything and sell anything and everything to make this happen.
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Old 10-20-2010, 04:19 PM
 
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Here are my opinions--
*I vote for #4.
*Do some de-compressing and de-schooling so he can recover from what he's been going through. If he's learned to hate learning, he'll have to unlearn that
*Don't jump into academics immediately. Don't focus on the 3 R's right now--Focus on the 4th R--Relationship. Find ways to capture his heart.
*Do a lot of "fun" things together--field trips, some fall activities, find an "educational" corn maze (the kind that move you through it via questions), go to museums, something music-related etc. (what does he like to do? what are his interests? is he passionate about something?)
*Find homeschooling support and community. Help him phase out some of the old friends by replacing them with homeschooling friends.

I don't know all the details of your situation, so I don't mean to make any of it sound easy, but I think I'd do just about anything and sell anything and everything to make this happen.
Yeah, that. This is how I'm handling our withdrawal from our k12 school. We're just working on the RELATIONSHIP as a family until probably around Thanksgiving, reading favorite stories together every day and enjoying fun stuff like that. Then we'll slowly incorporate math and lang. arts between thanksgiving and Christmas, and in January we'll likely start Sonlight core 1. You need time to decompress from the structure and pace of the ps and then the virtual academy, give it a little grace to relax and just pursue interests. If your ds wants to learn about something, hand him the internet and tell him to GoodSearch it (great way to donate to your favorite charity or non-profit). No pressure, just enjoy time together and work on the relationship for a while so that he may be more open to listening and learning with you. (yeah I know, easier said than done lol I remember when I was his age, it was a very interesting time for me that's for sure)

And what about getting him involved in choosing new curriculum? Maybe if he has a say in what history and science he studies, and which one of 4 different math programs he uses, he will be more receptive to learning with you instead of at the ps. I did a similar thing with my oldest girls in fact. I asked them what kinds of stuff they wanted to study for school that isn't math and reading and then I picked a program that would work for us (coincidentally they wanted ancient world history and to study astronomy and weather, I immediately said Sonlight core 1 and science 1 lol and they agreed after looking at the catalog with me).

Cat- FT ministry student and Sonlight hsing momma to a wild crew of girls
Melissa 4/03, Lydia 5/04, Kimberly 1/06, and Jordan 9/07

And waiting impatiently on baby Isaiah ******* to appear around 3/12

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Old 10-22-2010, 04:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Great suggestions! I've gotten away from the homeschooling philosophy the past few years because necessity dictated that they go to school. Now that I see how deficient the school system really is, and how much unnecessary pressure they put on kids,(something I knew before, but only in theory), I feel more confident about choosing to go back to homeschooling. My son is practically begging for decompression time. What he really wants is to spend more time voluteering for our congregation, which the online school just didn't allow for. He knows that for himself, being more giving and more spiritual will help him be who he wants to be. The pressure of school just works against that.

I already have some resources lined up to discuss with him. Hopefully he will cooperate if he can help decide what to learn and how to learn it.

Incidentally, I'm thinking of pulling my 9 year old from PS also. He needed to be there because of reading problems. But now school is the problem. His teacher has some kind of air freshener in his classroom that he is wickedly allergic to. We had to take him to the doctor for a head to toe allergic rash and asthma symptoms. He also gets so nervous that he gets heartburn and regurgitates his food. He's different from his older brother, very shy and introverted.

Looking at the problems my kids have been having with school, I feel bad for not having taken them out earlier. But homeschooling is very overwhelming for me. My boys all are very active, mischievious, and can be strenuously defiant, especially when it comes to schoolwork and chores. I'm a very sensitive and high-strung person, so having them home all the time is extremely stressful. But watching them suffer in school is even more so. I just hope and pray that I can make homeschooling work this time.
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Old 10-22-2010, 04:51 PM
 
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3. I don't know if K12 is still accepting students, and if it is, I don't know if they will also force him to catch up to the other kids. If not, it might be a good option.
You could contact them and ask.

Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
14yo ds   11yo dd  9yo ds and 7yo ds and 2yo ds  
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Old 10-23-2010, 03:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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You could contact them and ask.
Yes, I did that. This was the last week they were accepting students. I decided not to got that way because I want more freedom to decided on our curriculum, and more flexibility so that ds can participate in activities that he thinks are important and enjoyable.
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