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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does this matter?<br><br>
Our daughter is still an infant, but we are trying to explore our options for schooling her. I found a montessori school that I LOVE, but it's very $$. I think my 2nd choice would be homeschooling/unschooling.<br><br>
I've been researching to find homeschooling groups in our area. There are some cool sounding groups, including one co-op that meets 1x a week and teaches some really interesting subjects. They also offer physical education. I really like the idea of this, as I've never been a very social being and I don't want to pass my anti-social/shy tendencies to my daughter, or compound them. The problem is DH is pagan and I am a very liberal christian/searching. We attend a UU church. All these groups are very christian. One of them cites a bible scripture as a basis for all their 'rules'. In fact, one of the bible scriptures says something about treating all people with love - even tax collectors and pagans. Ironic, no? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll"><br><br>
Sooo.. how much does this matter? I feel like I'd have to lie to even be a part of any of these groups, as they all have names like "Blah Blah Christian Homeschoolers Organization".<br><br>
I mean, I think my daughter will be better off socializing with mainstream kids than extremely fundamentalist christians. I have NOTHING at all against them, I just have a feeling they might have something against us (her). I don't want to have to fend off attempts at saving us, ya know?<br><br>
What are your thoughts?
 

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"I think my daughter will be better off socializing with mainstream kids than extremely fundamentalist christians. "<br><br>
I think that there's a big difference in her being stuck in a school setting for seven hours a day, away from sunlight and fresh air, than socializing with Christians once or twice a month. The way I look at it, there are a lot of drawbacks to public school, and nothing would make me send my kids there.<br><br>
There's got to be other groups you can take her too, even if they aren't specifically homeschool groups. What about La Leche League, a swim class, or even just the playground?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes, I see what you are saying... you are right. I guess I just can understand the benefits of having her socialize with other homeschooled children, and I want that for her. But, I am afraid these groups wouldn't accept US.<br><br>
I sincerely hope this isn't coming across like I don't want to spend time with Christians, that isn't the case at all. These groups just label themselves as fundamentalist christian organizations, and I know from experience fund. christians can be less than welcoming to pagans. I know from experience that extremely right wing Christians and I don't tend to have alot in common in alot of areas.<br><br>
I am just really concerned, going into this, that we won't have a community. Has anyone dealt with this at all?
 

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I could have written that post myself. And to answer your question~ Yes, it does matter. I'm not saying Christians are 'bad' people, my best friends are Christian.<br><br>
in my area, all the homeschool groups are Christian based. One so religious they recite the pledge to the bible at every meeting and ask you to sign a faith pledge with you join. i tried to fit in with these groups. I tried with every ounce of my being for my dd's sake. It just didn't work. Being pagan, we just didn't mesh. Where I taught acceptance of others, they said pity others that aren't Christian.The small things that don't matter to you will show up. We shop at garage sales and Goodwill, I SAH and dh has a blue collar job. We didn't make enough money, have new enough vehicles, wear the expensive clothes, i don't work and we have more then 2 kids. Others made sure I knew it. They made sure my daughter knew it.<br><br>
My daughter wants to go back to public school partly because of this. It was a bad experience for all of us.<br><br>
I have decieded that any groups we join ( if I can homeschool next year) will NOT be Christian based. if I can't be accepted as me ~ screw 'em.<br><br>
Just my .02
 

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I'm lucky enough to live where there are a number of quite open groups. I am a lesbian mom and a Catholic. Even though our family is religious, I wouldn't be comfortable joining a fundamentalist Christian homeschooling group (not that they would have us. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> ) I don't keep my dc from playing with our fundamentalist neighbors, but I see participating a group as a different thing.<br><br>
It doesn't sound like you are considering public school. It sounds like you have found a Montessori school that's too expensive and are considering homeschooling because of the cost. Did I get that right?<br><br>
One possibility is looking at finanacial aid at the school. Another possibility is to start *really* looking for a secular hs organization. We found ours through a friend. Some of the smaller ones can be hard to find. We're looking at joining a second b/c they have a coop with a great reputation. A third possibility is to start your own. Start a yahoo group, put up flyers at the crunchy/AP places in your town (run an announcement at your UU church), pick a day of the week for a park day. Take lunch and stay for a few hours.<br><br>
Even if you don't have a homeschool group to start with, you and your dc could get really involved at church and in service/sports/interest organizations and build your community that way.<br><br>
Just thinking out loud here. HTH
 

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yep I know the feeling, we are Catholic and one Christian hs group we belonged to had a couple families that kept trying to 'save' my older ds <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
my advice is to make your own group if you need to connect and don't think because you are only seeing fundy groups right now that is all there is, could be that is the most visible but the others are out there just quieter<br><br>
homeschooling is growing very quickly and I would bet 5 years from now there will be very dif kinds of hs groups in your area<br><br>
(((HUG)))
 

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I think that it is important to find a group that you mesh with whether it be for religious reasons or homeschooling philosophy. I am very lucky, our group is varied religiously but has common hs beliefs and no one pushes their ideals on another - we have discussed differences but I am very open to that. You did not mention where you are from - perhaps you can find friends right here.
 

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I would be very uncomfortable to join a group that had a motto that offended me. ( like the example you gave of the christian group).<br><br>
I would seek out some of the other options the other ladies have given you. Why join a group that would make you wary and unsettled ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
NHEN? I am a newbie, what is that?<br><br>
Excellent ideas, though - to look here and ask at church! thanks!<br><br>
I am in NW Pennsylvania, btw - Erie, PA. Anyone?
 

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I wouldn't join a HS group that identified it'self as a Chrisitan HS group. My dd does have Christian friends, in fact her best friend goes to a private Catholic school. But we are pagan and I wouldn't join a group that was for a religion that I'm not a member of.<br><br>
If you really want to be a member of a HS group why not look for a secular one? Although there is no rule that says anyone must join a HS group to HS. My dd has had plenty of people to socialize without being part of an official group.
 

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I know where you're coming from. It's not that you can't accept them, it's that you're afraid they won't accept you. I finally found one hs org. in my province that doesn't have a religious base. Maybe you could start one? I was considering it, until I found one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
As of yet, I haven't been able to find a secular one! All the homeschooling groups in our area are Christian. And it sucks, too, because some of them sound really cool.<br><br>
One of my good friends said it best, "No, don't join. Christians homeschool their kids to keep them away from ppl like you!". :LOL<br><br>
I do realize you don't -need- a group to HS, but it's something I really would want. It's not a deal breaker (no group so I won't HS), but it's something I really really want. Also, I'd love to talk to a likeminded HSer in my specific area to get some more information on it, ya know?
 

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Maybe the community will have changed some (some more HS groups will start) by the time your dd is ready? And you never know, you might end up starting one yourself with the other parents that share similar views.
 

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We never had a lot of luck with hs groups.dc always had alot more fun with scouts or ccd.It seemed like the hs groups always have some neurotic "leader" who needs to run everything and everybody.And to be honest i got pretty tired of running into fundies always trying to save us <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll"> Hs is a great educational option,and getting out of the house to visit and sociolize should be just that and not more SCHOOL!
 

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I have an infant as well, and also have been concerned about this. Just by chance this week I came upon an organization that my help this situation. My husband and my self being Pagan I think this is what we will do once my baby is old enough. The organization is called spiral scouts and is has a troupe in Oakland. It is an alt. to the regular boy/girl scouts. The starting age is 3 yrs. and learn about "woodland lore" symbols etc. and is intended for alt. religions not one specified major religion, (ie christianity).<br>
I really don't know anything about it first hand.<br><br>
I told this to someone today and they mentioned a group called Spiral cord. I have been online trying to find out something about them. No luck so far., From what I understand you meet once a month (if you want no obligation) and they have an event run by a member that is based on the time of year/element. They do things from May poles in spring to activities in the cemetary in fall. If anyone knows about this group please let me know.<br><br>
This person also seem to thing that waldorf schools although having some christianity in it was very pagan sympathetic. I also know nothing about them.<br><br>
Just remember instead of being forced to say Jesus Christ in crowds/public your kids can say "beans and rice." From the book Bee Season<br><br>
Sorry I'm wordy<br><br>
Mse
 

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Opps forgot to give this to you. Maybe by the time our babies are 3 there will be more troupes/we'll start some.<br><br><a href="http://www.spiralscouts.org/index.php" target="_blank">http://www.spiralscouts.org/index.php</a>
 

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Earlier today, I typed you a long reply, but my ds hit the refresh button right as I was finishing! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/splat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="splat"><br><br>
Anyway, here's the medium version -- I'm incapable of short versions <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> : Don't give up until you have talked to people in your area. Our non-religious hs group is *very* hard to find outside of word-of-mouth. I didn't know about it until I started talking about our plans to hs with aquantances.<br><br>
Second, you are right to be wary of the exclusively christian groups. I grew up in an evangelical church and they are usually *very* nice people who *genuinely* believe that you will suffer eternal damnation if you do not accept Jesus as your savior (as *they* understand that process.) They have every right to their beliefs, but you can see how it would be quite hard for many of them to *not* try to evangelize to you, especially if they like you! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rolleyes"> I've seen evangelical christians in tears over friends or family members they love dearly whom they believe are destined for hell. Even as children, we were encouraged to "witness" to our friends if we really cared about them. Not witnessing to them was basically saying that we didn't care if they went to hell. Talk about pressure -- it's a big reason I left. I just don't think God opperates that way. (I still consider myself a Christian, btw, but the folks in our local Christian HS group might beg to differ! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> )<br><br>
Good luck finding a local group! Re spiral scouts: One of the moms in our HS group just started a sprial scouts troup here, although I'm not interested in attending right now -- maybe later. Sounds like it might be something for you to look into, even if you end up sending your child to school! You could easily start your own if you don't have a local one by the time your dc is old enough for it.
 

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Keep looking! You might still find the right homeschool group for your family.<br>
If you don't find what you are looking for, has it ever occurred to you to start your own group? That's how our local eclectic homeschool group got started, a mom wanted an alternative to all the Christian-based groups, couldn't find one, so she started one herself!
 

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<span>Wow you moms of infants really impress me doing your homework so far in advance! When my son was a baby, i met some homeschoolers thru LLL but I was sure I wouldn't be one! (also had no idea I'd nurse past a year <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> )<br><br>
I'm also a UU and planning to homeschool in the fall now that my son is 5 yrs old. I'm on a UU Homeschooling Yahoo group and ironically they have a thread going on exactly this topic right now. You might try joining that list as well as a note in your church newsletter. There are quite a few homeschoolers in our congregation but it took me quite a while to learn that. And there are lots of truly inclusive groups out there but as someone already mentioned, they can be hard to find. I bet you'll find (or start) a nice group by the time you are ready. I know people who do co-op preschool groups which can graduate into a co-op homeschool group. I'm lucky to be in the DC area where there are TONS of homeschoolers so I know we will find a good fit. We're already getting to know 2 different groups that are just forming. Thank goodness for the internet.<br><br>
Another thing to note, for some states, you must be affiliated with a "religious" school in order for homeschooling to be legal. There are 2 umbrella organizations that i know of in this area and they both have religious ties but aren't actually religious. One is actually based in PA and is called New Creation Academy (717-338-1896 or <a href="mailto:[email protected]">[email protected]</a>) - i know several Maryland families who use this group. I don't believe there are any formal co-ops but i bet the mom Wendy who runs this could connect you with others in your area with similar philosophies. And yes Homeschooling seems to be on the rise so I bet you'll find more and more folks as the years pass.</span><br><br>
Good luck!<br>
Warmly,<br><span style="color:#000080;">Emily</span> <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 
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