Monday 20 February 2012



This is a brilliant article. I was fortunate to have my children in an "experimental" school that was one step short of home schooling and the results have been wonderful.  However, it was not perfect of course. This writer, Bohemian, addresses her solution to the planned demolition of the minds and morals of today's children. There is not word to be changed or argued with here; it is all common sense, something sadly lacking in today's world. 

And, interestingly as she notes, it is true. Home schoolers are actively head hunted because they have higher standards and can THINK better than the majority of their publicly educated peers.  

There is a great reason for the current bias against homeschooling if one is a bonafide member of the Elite. Home schooling teaches children critical thinking, self-awareness and critical consciousness. These are NOT deemed positive benefits for a compliant populace. 

For more reasons to homeschool, after reading this article, please read:



By Bohemian
February 20, 2012
Puzzled by what homeschool is all about?
Since we decided to homeschool and eventually unschool our boys, I get asked a lot of questions. It's understandable, as the lifestyle we have chosen definitely goes against the grain of societal norms.  Even I had a lot of trepidation and found myself asking some of the very same questions.

It took me over five years to fully settle in the ideas and, truth be told, I still question myself at least once a year.  Over the eight years plus since we started to homeschool, my perspective through research and experience has grown considerably.  This perspective has allowed me to address the most commonly asked questions.


This is probably the most commonly asked question.   The short answer is YES, homeschoolers can go to college. So can unschoolers.  And they do!  Millions of them in fact!  With the advent of online college courses one can simply continue with a homeschool model even in college.  Otherwise a student can take tests like GED and SATs, put together a transcript or examples of their work and apply, same as anyone else does.  
Prestigious universities such as Yale, Stanford, and Harvard accept and even seek out homeschoolers.  Oftentimes they are MORE prepared then conventionally schooled children to tackle the pressures of a higher education.
The longer answer to this question will be covered in the next installment of this series, so check back next Monday for my rather unconventional (but gaining more momentum) ideas regarding college and if it really is the best path anymore.

Travel, the best education!
Some conformists actually argue that our kids won't be prepared for the real world because they aren't socialized in school.  Pardon me for any typos from here on out, but I can't help but laugh out loud at this common misconception.
As if herd pressure to look, dress, or behave a certain way is required to function in the world.
Or that facing daily bullies is necessary to toughen somebody up for the "real" world.  
Or that learning about sex or relationships is better taught by confused pubescent middle-school peers who claim to be experts because they've gotten to second base.
It's nonsense.

And just because we homeschool doesn't mean we stay home like hermits.  Even before adopting a travel lifestyle we were on what seemed like a permanent field trip.  Hikes, waterfalls, skiing, surf lessons, science centers, museums, and play dates of all kinds, etc.  
Most homeschoolers use the world as their classroom and spend lots of time exploring and engaging with people.  
Additionally, our children have taken numerous classes outside of the home from karate to cooking, Spanish to gymnastics where they have met many of their friends.

Finally and most importantly, they learn to respect others because we respect them, not because they are forced to at the threat of detention.   We spend every day out in the world interacting with and observing people of all ages.  Our kids have MORE time to interact with people and observe the differences. 
Being cooped up all day in forced silence with 20-30 similarly-aged kids is not what anyone should call proper socialization that translates into the real world. Homeschooled children typically gain a tolerance, empathy, and understanding of all different age groups including adults.
Ultimately, I would argue the socialization that homeschool kids experience is beneficial, while what passes for socialization in school is, well, unnecessary to put it kindly.
 Kung fu class with all their best friends!
I guess the best answer is  ~ WHO CARES?
Do you realize that the mathematics concepts taught in the first seven years of school, drilled into children's heads day and night under intense pressure to perform, can be learned by a 14-year old in a single day?
Many of those concepts can be learned by playing card games or by managing an allowance. 
ED: If you want a child to learn his math fast, give him $.25 and send them to the local penny candy shop. It is amazing how swiftly they figure out how many jawbreakers or candy doohickies they can manage to buy! It worked like a charm for mine. Or, counting the pieces as they set the table. There are opportunities everywhere! A wise parent can find teachable moments everywhere.
"On par" with others? 
I don't want my children to be like anyone else, and I fundamentally disagree with putting them in a box called "on par".  Because par or even above par becomes the accepted level.  
How many of us bragged that we barely paid attention in school and still got As and Bs?  As if that's something to be proud of.

Children are developmentally diverse and have different interests just like adults. One of the most amazing things about being human is its beautiful diversity. The LAST thing I would want for my children is to see them morph into being the "same" as everyone else.  
We should celebrate our children's differences and help to ensure that they follow their own path in life!  How else can we cultivate the self esteem that so many schooled children seem to be lacking?
It seems to me that if children have the basic tools to learn (reading and mathematics) and are encouraged to pursue their inquisitive nature, they'll likely excel at being happy and enjoying life no matter what a book says they should be like at age x,y, or z.  
Part of home-or-unschooling for the parent is to be okay with where your child is at developmentally and to unconditionally love the person that he or she is.

 "On par" for happiness

This question is most often asked by people with young children, and it's the hardest to answer.  I understand the need for a break as much as the next person, but 8-10 hours a day?  Come on, no one needs that type of break from the things they love most in this world.  That is just an excuse!
It can be a challenge, don't get me wrong, but most moments I just prefer to enjoy the precious time with them while they're young.
Frankly, I have never understood the parents with the "yeah, thank goodness the kids are back in school" mentality.  
Is that the message you want to convey to the people you love the most?
It's true that I have less free time than most parents I know, but I do have free time, whether it’s a short walk, long bath, or just when the kiddos are in bed and I can snuggle up with hubby or a good book.  
In my opinion, the thing that really needs to change to make homeschooling a success, is to change the way you view your child-parent relationship.  Re-access what you want out of your relationship with your children and question if you are doing all you can as a parent.  You need to take care of yourself, but making an excuse that you "need" 8-10 hours a day is just plain silly.  
No one said parenting was easy, but it should be the most amazing and important thing you'll ever do. Enjoy it, soak up their giggles and won't last forever and you will most certainly miss it when it is gone.

Why would anyone need a "break" from this

Since when does anything about a school resemble the "real world"?  
Unless you are planning to be in prison, or landing a brainless job with a dress code shuffling paper all day, then I do not see a correlation at all.  My boys are IN the real world everyday while schooled kids are stuck in one room, with the same age children, segregated from the "real world" and their family.   
"Still another Times editorialist, Thomas Friedman, begins a column on the desperate state of American education by quoting Bill Gates. Gates, Friedman informs us, gave a 'remarkable speech' in which he declared that 'American high schools are obsolete.' . . . What do our kids need to know today? As far as Friedman is concerned, whatever will get them hired by Bill Gates." ~ Mark Slouka, "Dehumanized: When Math and Science Rule the School,"Harper's, September, 2009
Homeschooled children are well prepared for the world they will face because they have been preparing first hand their entire lives.

When you see what goes on in school you wonder what part that plays in real life.  
A family member of mine actually said that kids need to be bullied and picked on to be able to handle it later in life.  
I just cannot remember when I was bullied anywhere but in school.  As an adult it just doesn't happen unless you're conditioned to invite it.  Likewise, when, in adult life, are we so distrusted that even going to the bathroom requires permission.  No job I have ever worked has declined my right to use the bathroom.  
Finally, how much of what you learned in school applies to your happiness and success now?  
Think about it and be honest.  
It's probably very little.
Mahout training, who needs the "real world"

ED: One trip to India will teach a child more than a century in the classroom every could!

In addition to these 5, I want to clarify that:
homeschooling IS legal in all 50 states;

homeschooling is NOT expensive or only for the wealthy;

homeschoolers DO have friends;

and finally you ARE smart enough and more than well equipped to teach your own child.  
Society likes to tell us that we are not a good enough option for our children, but we know and care about our children most, making us the best option.

In the end we all need to do what works best for our families. But if you're considering homeschooling, be sure to research it well to clear away any of the common myths before deciding. Or, better yet, try it for a year; the worst case scenario is that they go back to school if it is not working.  If you go into it with flexibility, love, and encouragement then it will be a success. 

"Yes, young Americans are energetic, ambitious, enterprising, and good, but their talents and interests and money thrust them not into books and ideas and history and civics, but into a whole other realm and other consciousness. A different social life and a different mental life have formed among them. Technology has bred it, but the result doesn't tally with the fulsome descriptions of digital empowerment, global awareness, and virtual communities. Instead of opening young American minds to the stores of civilization and science and politics, technology has contracted their horizon to themselves, to the social scene around them. Young people have never been so intensely mindful of and present to one another, so enabled in adolescent contact. Teen images and songs, hot gossip and games, and youth-to-youth communications no longer limited by time or space wrap them up in a generational cocoon reaching all the way into their bedrooms. The autonomy has a cost: the more they attend to themselves, the less they remember the past and envision the future. They have all the advantages of modernity and democracy, but when the gifts of life lead to social joys, not intellectual labor, the minds of the young plateau at 18. The fonts of knowledge are everywhere, but the rising generation is camped in the desert, passing stories, pictures, tunes, texts back and forth, living off the thrill of peer attention. Meanwhile their intellects refuse the cultural and civic inheritance that has made us what we are up to now." ~ Mark Bauerlein, The Dumbest Generation, 2007

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