Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Northampton, MA
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Sorry you experienced that. I just wanted to give you permission to stop kicking yourself. Most of us have been in situations where we thought of the perfect thing to say after the fact.
You were asking a very good question--If I'm a homeschooler who also believes that learning along with other children can be an important experience, then what are some good ways for me to provide that for my child along with the gifts of individualized instruction, my time and attention, and the freedom to learn at his/her own pace and to follow special interests? Unfortunately, this teacher was not at all prepared to answer that as she has a completely biased view of homeschooling.
And honestly, I think that homeschooled kids get things that schooled kids don't get, and schooled kids get things that homeschooled kids don't get. I think there's always some tradeoff. Hey, kids who don't watch 5 hours of television a day are missing something, and it's something that will often show up as a lack in some of their conversations or play with other kids. And no, I'm not saying that sending your kids to public school is like watching 35 hours of TV a week. In many places though, both ps and lots of TV are "the norm", and kids who don't get either may feel out of touch or like they are missing out.
Maybe you can connect with the other Mom again. If she homeschools, too, your children may have lots of fun learning together. I do think that group learning, experience, and play is a good thing. Your kids could share some lessons (if you both do lessons), plan and plant a garden together (I have a curriculum called _In the Three Sisters' Garden_ which is integrated, not didactic, and can really grow year by year).
Well, I'm rambling and should be in bed. Sorry you had such an annoying experience. Unfortunately, people make weird assumptions about homeschooling and just don't get how flexible and varied it is for many of us.