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Have you ever had someone trying to debate this point?<br>
I've always known I would home/unschool (probably some strange mix of the 2), and been very open about it.<br>
Most of the antihomeschool points are very easy to debate/dismiss.<br>
But recently, I've had people throw this at me. Along with something about how as a mom, you need to be a safe place to fall in response to the stress of education, or something like that.<br>
I've heard this several times recently. It just started popping up out of the blue. Was there some famous paper written about this or something?<br>
I'm always dumbstruck by this argument. I'm not sure what they mean on one level, and wondering "How can you be their mom and NOT be their teacher?" on another, and just left speechless with what I imagine is a pretty stupid look on my face.<br>
Have any of you heard this one, and what do you say to it? Beyond that, what exactly are they talking about?
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mamakay</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Along with something about how as a mom, you need to be a safe place to fall in response to the stress of education, or something like that.</div>
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I've heard this one. It seems to stem from the idea that "the teacher" is standing over them, drilling them on facts, forcing them to do work, assigning homework, and judging them on a daily basis.<br>
If this is what life at school is like, then having a safe place to fall IS important!<br><br>
Of course, we know that you don't have to be that kind of teacher (if you even call yourself a teacher) at home. But it's one of those ideas that some people have a hard time breaking away from. (Reminds me of when ds1 was a newborn and I mentioned that we didn't use bottles. "You don't give him a bottle? Then how do you FEED him?" Some people just can't imagine any other way than the way they live.)<br><br>
I wouldn't debate the issue with them--maybe say something like your home is a safe place already and you're not planning on making learning stressful or something like that.<br><br>
Although your thought of "How can you be their mom and not be their teacher?" would be a good response too!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>loraeileen</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Sort of a good cop/bad cop relationship to education? That's interesting.</div>
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Huh...I guess that is what they mean. Learning is miserable stuff, so mom need to be the shock absorber.<br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Of course, we know that you don't have to be that kind of teacher (if you even call yourself a teacher) at home. But it's one of those ideas that some people have a hard time breaking away from.</td>
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I guess so. I can't help but wonder if the sort of person who would say something like this has an adversarial relationship with their child in general, and can't imagine that teaching them at home would actually be workable and fun.<br>
I also just have a love of learning. I want to know everything. And I really "get along" with my son.<br>
I guess their whole perspective is just entirely different. Learning is fun to me. I sort of take it for granted that I'll pass this trait onto my son.
 

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Oh no, what next? I hope I don't get that one, I usually just get the 'what about socialization' question.<br>
I would just laugh out loud and ask them, "Where did you hear THAT?!"<br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">
 

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I see no distinction between being a teacher and being a parent. This loss of a distinction is absolutely parallel to what occurs in fully unschooled children. They see no distinction between living and learning, between work and play and education. They don't know that figuring out the origin of the word 'gargoyle' is language arts and history. They don't know that making a picture with a compass and ruler is geometry and art and fine motor skills. It's just life.<br><br>
Similarly, an adult who is fully in the unschooling mindset and whose child is of the same mindset sees no distinction between living alongside a child and teaching, between work and play and education.<br><br>
Just as children are hardwired to learn (naturally, unconsciously, simply in the course of life), adults are hardwired to teach (naturally, unconsciously, simply in the course of life). It is only when we make the choice to separate learning from living that the distinction between teaching and parenting becomes relevant. When we don't cleave reality into Learning vs. Living, there's no need to cleave our parental interaction with our kids into Teaching vs. Just Being a Parent. The line seems artificial, fuzzy, and beside the point.<br><br>
Miranda
 

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Who better to be a teacher than the person to whom they're most connected?<br><br>
Think about your most favorite teacher in school. Emotionally connected or not?<br><br>
duh. people!
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">and wondering "How can you be their mom and NOT be their teacher?" on another</td>
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That sounds like a great response to me.
 

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What a ridiculous argument. Sounds like the statement brought out after you've argued the socialization , education , practicality side. Who taught them to tie their shoes? Who taught them not to bottom-burp at the table? Who taught them to say thank you and please ?<br><br>
Or it could be they are saying you (a general you) aren't smart enough to teach your own kids.<br><br>
I've always maintained that I'm NOT a teacher. I'm a mother. I feel that educating the children is an extension of my motherhood. Not an additional job title. I really dislike it when people (namely my mother) give me things that say "#1Teacher " on it. I don't want to hold the title of 'teacher' but I understand society says I have to have that title if I keep my kids home and educate them.<br><br>
Ramblings. sorry.<br><br><br>
I love the response "who told you that ???". Great. Love it. I'll try that next time instead of my ramblings.
 

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Its difficult to imagine a time when DS would need me to "teach" him anything. Yes, we've had this argument thrown at us and I mostly just accepted what they had to say with a smile.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/nod.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="nod"><br><br>
With most things people dispute I do this and then just let DS himself prove that yes, our path is a valid one. Our confidence, our lack of need to defend ourselves and our decisions speaks volumes, or at least is seems to. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
The thing is, I have no intention of ever teaching DS anything unless he asks. So far, he's shown that like most people he loves to learn. He has his own passions and pursues them to a great degree. At around 3 1/2 - 4, he started writing letters and counting and adding, etc. I am confident that DS will learn what he needs to know, on a 'need to know' basis. When it makes sense and is relevant to him. OTOH, I'm equally confident that DS will pursue those things that he's interested and learn much because he is driven to do so. I don't need to nor do I want to, interfere with that process.<br><br>
I have and will continue to act as a facilitator though. Help DS know how to use the resources around him to learn what he wishes to. We spend a ton of time at the library and I've made a habit of helping him gather materials for those subjects he's interested in pursuing.
 

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<span>Well, uh... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="innocent"> I'm one of those people who uses a simliar expression fairly often, but I don't mean it that way. Many parents who begin homeschooling suddenly take on the role of a traditional classroom "teacher" instead of just staying the same ol' Mom the child has always known and wants to live with - an understanding and supportive parent who helps and facilitates and encourges and promotes mutual respect - and yes, <i>teaches</i> where a child needs help with something the parent can help with. Like my mother taught me to sew: She just taught me to sew - she didn't take on an authoritarian role and assign lessons and drills and tests and grade me. Anything can be approached in the same way we teach sewing or bike riding or kite flying or cooking. I think that's what you're referring to when you say a parent is a teacher - but some people do take one a very different demeanor.<br><br>
This particular forum draws a certain kind of what we used to refer to as <i>Mothering-type</i> parents <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">, but in other places I've seen comments, for instance, about things like "grading" and refusal to change a grade in the "gradebook" even when a child has re-studied and mastered material he didn't master well the first time - because "that's the grade he earned, and it still stands." That's a very different kind of "teacher" than what you're all referring to here - and I think it's what people are referring to when they say you need to be a Mom, not a teacher. Many of us have found that being a facilitator is a <i>much</i> more natural, effective, and all around pleasant thing for all concerned.<br><br>
My feeling and experience is that a child - or person of any age - is his own best teacher for a lot of things. It's not as if a parent can't or shouldn't teach a child some things - but that a parent doesn't need to be wearing a "teacher" hat all the time. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> Lillian</span>
 

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We may run into trouble with this next year. My kids are wanting to try school and as we have moved to a new area with no hs'ing support and having a hard time finding friends, dh and I have agreed. Yes they will go to school, but I still see myself as their primary teacher! I know the curriculum well and will keep "teaching" beyond it to keep them challenged and engaged in life. Their teachers may not like it much, but I see no need for my son to hold back in persuing his interests or his math, when he is miles beyond what they will be teaching him next year. I have no illusions about someone who is NOT the mother doing more than the minimum required - and that just isn't enough.
 

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<span></span>
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mamakay</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Have you ever had someone trying to debate this point?<br>
I've always known I would home/unschool (probably some strange mix of the 2), and been very open about it.<br>
Most of the antihomeschool points are very easy to debate/dismiss.<br>
But recently, I've had people throw this at me. Along with something about how as a mom, you need to be a safe place to fall in response to the stress of education, or something like that.</div>
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<span>Whoops! I was in a rush yesterday, and realized later that I'd misread your question. You were talking about <i>opponents</i> of homeschooling - and I thought you were talking about a whole different thing - homeschoolers saying that kids can learn from and with you without your taking on the role of "teacher" in the classroom sense of the word. So now, let me jump in and say <b>of course you can teach your child</b>, f'r Pete's sake. I think people throwing that line at you are people who have grown to think of learning as stressful and unpleasant work. You, on the other hand, can be leading him down a joyful path of learning to love learning! The stress of education?! Ridiculous. Even some homeschoolers manage to make it stressful, but there are a whole lot of us who loved learning with our kids and watching them become independent and enthusiatic learners. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> Lillian</span>
 
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