So my 14 y/o daughter is being told by her friends that she will be 'dumb' and not learn anything homeschooling for high school
Most of her knows this is bulls@%*#, but I can tell at least a little of it is taking hold and causing doubt and worry in her mind. I know her friends truly don't mean harm; they honestly don't know what homeschooling looks like- Side note- One of her friends actually told her that she will sit at the dining room table all day doing worksheets! Thank goodness my girl was able to scoff and laugh that one off! We had a good laugh about that at home too, but it just goes to show how little they understand about homeschooling.
Anyways, any recs for maybe teenage blogs and stuff from homeschoolers she could look at and follow? How have your kids responded to this sort of stuff?
I am planning on buying her that 'teenage liberation handbook' thing/ book at the end of this school year. Any other suggestions to help her gain confidence in her choice to homeschool? (It was her choice).
No advice, my girls are too young. I do know that at that age, your intellect can say one thing, but hearing something different from friends, however silly it sounds, can still sting.
Give me a few minutes while I caffeinate.
Awesome blog here: I'm Unschooled. Yes, I Can Write. I think if I were you I would no longer wait until the end of the year to give her "The Teenage Liberation Handbook." She needs it now. She needs to truly believe that it is largely up to her how well-educated she becomes while homeschooling, and that means that the sky is really the limit. She can go far beyond what kids at school are doing. She can delve deeper, pursue interests farther, engage more fully, challenge herself to do more. Grace Llewellyn's other book about unschooled teens, "Real Lives: Eleven Teenagers Who Don't Go to School Tell Their Own Stories" would probably be another good read for her if you can find a copy.
My kids have grown up in a community with enough homeschoolers and enough respect for alternative education that they haven't run into this sentiment. I expect the skepticism of her friends will abate as they get used to the idea, especially once next year starts and they realize that while she is missing out on a few high-schooly things, they are missing out on things that she is getting.
Mountain mama to three great kids and one great grown-up
Thanks for weighing in guys
@ SweetSilver- Exactly. Those words do sting her more than she cares to admit. She knows she made the best (and bravest) choice for herself, and to have it so knocked down by her best friends sucks for her.
@ moominmamma- Thanks for the blog rec! I checked it out briefly, and it looks like something she could definitely benefit from viewing! Too bad she's at a sleepover, I would show that to her right now!
Maybe you're right about giving her the liberation handbook now. I thought it would be a good 8th grade graduation present, like "You're free! Happy Liberation day!" but I realize that she needs something more tangible Now, and fast before her friends' misinformation really gets under her skin. I will also look into that other book you mentioned- She really needs to see this from the eyes of other teens. Thank you :)
Also you might want to share some statistics with her about how well homeschoolers tend to do when it comes to testing.
Well, statistics show other wise. Home educated children always outscore schooled children on pretty much any test. School, in my opinion, is becoming a thing of the past. Unschooling (the new term for home schooling) is not only becoming trendy and "cool" it's also fighting back against the institutionalizing of children.
I was home schooled when it was not cool, 20+ years ago from a mother who had no college degree or teacher training-- hmm, my oldest brother is an MD, my other brother is a mining sales rep making over 6 figures, and I am a home schooling mama who does have my undergraduate in English Lit and an M.Ed. (taught public for a few years and said, when I have kids, NO WAY will they ever step foot in school)...if anything is making kids "dumb," that would be school, my dear.
Tell your daughter to stand up to her friends, which I know is hard, and inform them that home schooling has been around A LOT LONGER than formal schooling...and while it may sound "new" to them, it's has a much better and longer history than public schooling.
If this helps any, my DD's BFF (next door neighbor, they run back and forth and have sleepovers, and are like sisters and have grown up together for several years now), goes to school and used to try to persuade my DD that she was missing out on something great, that she ought to go to school. She wasn't outright insulting about homeschooling, but she really wished DD went to school with her. On the other hand, the other neighbor friend who went to school, WAS insulting about it and often derided homeschooling to DD, saying "how will you learn anything?" and that homeschooling should be illegal. I chalked it up to misery loves company, and sour grapes, respectively.
My DD eventually realized, after we had a few heart-to-hearts about it, that her BFF always looked forward to school vacations, and wasn't excited to go back to school when the vacations ended, so that told the real truth. The friend is now going through a lot of misery in junior high, getting all the worst of the gossip and meanness, but not having time to have real friendships (20 minutes to scarf down food after spending half that time standing in line, and no recess, and PE once a week, basically means absolutely no time for friendships or conversations, at school). She wishes SHE were homeschooled, these days!
Having been the confidant of a girl who goes to school, and needs a friend to tell everything to (which is my daughter) has really helped my daughter get perspective on what school is REALLY like, and why other kids would either feel angry and defensive about anyone who escaped that fate (like hey, that's not fair! Everyone tells me my whole life I HAVE to go, and look at her, not going!), or else not trust it, because all the adults around them have been telling them all their lives that school is a necessary evil, because how else can you have friends and learn anything?
Ever notice how much time and energy kids' shows these days pour into trying to brainwash kids that school is the greatest thing in the world? I asked my daughter, do they do that with chocolate or ice cream? No, because they don't have to. Kids already like that. But to try to get kids to like something they otherwise normally don't, they have huge TV campaigns to try to drill it into their heads. That tells the story, also.
If school were naturally so enjoyable, all the kids' tv series and scholastic fiction books wouldn't have to sell it so hard, all the time.
As for the learning aspect, my DD has also benefited from seeing the work her friend does. Her friend is 3 grades above where DD would be placed because they are sticklers about age-placement regardless of intellectual capacity or social/emotional function...they believe like it's their religion, that all kids have to be around, and will identify most with, kids their own exact age in years. School would be a social emotional disaster for my daughter, whose friends are between 3 and 6 years older than herself. Those are the girls she has things in common with. Around the neighborhood girls her own age, she feels like a babysitter.
But when she looks at the worksheets her friend does, she can't believe they are doing such basic stuff, still! So even if my daughter were grade-skipped ahead 3 years and could be in the same school with her friend, she'd still find the coursework insipid, at least how dumbed-down the language is, and the expectations.
So homeschooling has not harmed her education, even though we've been loosey goosey with it for the most part.
For Cricketschirping, with 3 kids, , and planning another
My dd has a lot of homeschooling friends and a fair amount of public school friends. Her homeschool friends were found through a bookgroup. Her public (and private) school friends are great too, they do pretty well in school, etc. I point that out because dd said the other day that if she needs to "feel smart" she knows it is time to hang with (the public/private) school kids. I thought that was odd because she IS smart, etc. She laughed at me and said that the homeschool friends (most are older than her) know so much about everything and the public/private school kids only know a lot about a little. Sure, they might be able to tell her a lot about a particular subject, but even then, it is regurgitated information rather than information they enjoyed discovering. Her public school friends have tried to get her to go to school with them, but they are pretty open now that it is for their benefit (they want to see her at lunch, etc) than for my dd's.
So, start looking for some homeschoolers in the area! Sometimes being around others that are like you can be wonderful! Perhaps you already have done this. . .
Thanks for the input guys. She is still steadfast about homeschooling, so I don't think any harm has been done. I think her friends have dropped the issue. I really think a lot of it was just shock and hurt that they wouldn't all be together next year. I can understand that (They have been a pretty tight knit group throughout elementary and middle school).