ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Homeschool as a Lifestyle

Updated on December 6, 2010

 Homeschool as a Lifestyle

When does learning begin or end? I consider educating my child as a continuum. From the day my daughter was born, I was homeschooling her. I taught her to walk, talk, and feed herself, among many other skills.  At age five, then what?  I no longer had the responsibility of teaching her. I didn’t think so. To school at home was not just about teaching it was our lifestyle.

From the beginning, I looked at everything and wondered how I could utilize it as a teaching moment. If you think about it, we learn with every experience. I used that philosophy in the toys I bought and the activities I planned. I would encourage my daughter to finish her dinner by telling her she needed to eat 5 more bites, she learned to count.  Driving around town, we played I spy something that starts with a letter of the alphabet.  Later on, while at the grocery store, we discussed math and nutrition.

As we continued on our learning journey, one of my favorite elements was learning with my daughter. I was not just a teacher, but a student as well. History was my least liked subject when I was in school.  My daughter and I started reading historical fiction together.  I can honestly say that I learned more about history during my years of homeschooling than in all my years of grade school.  After reading a book, my daughter and I made a timeline of the events leading up to and during the Great Depression. Another book led to my daughter checking out everything she could on World War II from the library. We followed her interests thoroughly.

My daughter is a kinesthetic learner. She likes to be physically active in the learning experience. I recall a time when I was reading a book to her. She would not sit still. I was getting frustrated in thinking she was not paying attention. She was able to recite word for word just what I had read. Once I understood her learning style, I was able to apply those principles to other subjects.

For many years, I worried that my lack of college education could be hindering my child’s education.  At times, I would talk to other parents that homeschooled. They advised me that what they learned in college had nothing to do with how or what they taught their children. Kohn (2003) concludes “to be well-educated, then, is to have the desire as well as the means to make sure that learning never ends.” ¶28 I too came to that conclusion after some years of homeschooling.  

Some issues seemed non-existent while homeschooling. One of those issues was cheating. At least in my approach to homeschooling, cheating was a very limited possibility. Years later, though, when my daughter did attend school, cheating came up. She had let someone look at her paper.  The teacher gave her and the other student a zero. That was a tough lesson for her. 

Homeschooling was very rewarding.  I remember when my daughter had her “aha, I get it” moment with reading. For about six months, she read from the early morning hours until bed time. We spent hours at the library. Someone once told me that if you teach your child to love reading, everything else will follow. I have no doubt about that being true.

Homeschooling was as flexible as I needed it to be.  I chose the days and hours we studied. I chose, with input from my daughter, the subjects that she learned.  My daughter struggled with math. I was able to take extra time so that she could grasp a new concept. Since she loved to read, I would use reading as a reward.

Homeschool is not without controversies. It seems like the biggest debate is about socialization. What exactly does that mean? Socialize is defined as:  “1. mix socially with others, 2. makes (someone) behave in a way that is acceptable to society.” (Soans & Stevenson 2010)  By being a part of my whole life, my daughter has been to the doctor office, store, post office and park with me. At these places, and others, she was able to “mix socially with others” and “behave in a way that is acceptable” with people of all ages and races.   

While living in Alaska, my daughter was enrolled in a correspondence course. That meant, she was actually enrolled in a public school system. The school system reimbursed me for many of my expenses related to educating my daughter.  The controversy stems from the fact that you had to turn in sample work, grades, and students took the standardized tests. Is that homeschooling? The answer depends on who is asked.  For me, it was a fantastic opportunity, especially with only one income in the home. I used the allotments to purchase educational materials I would have otherwise not been able to afford. The standardized tests were a good opportunity for my daughter to learn how to take tests. With sample work, I also had to send in grades. At home, I did not grade, so what did I send in as her grades?  I gave her all A’s. What else should I give her? I was giving her these A’s based on the idea that Kohn (2002) suggests, “continued use of grades rest on nothing more than tradition”¶35.  We covered a concept as long as needed for my daughter to grasp it, hence the A’s.

Schooling at home may not be an option for everyone.  There are very real challenges and obstacles.  Not only have I taught my daughter, she has taught me. The continuum of teaching and learning is not only for my daughter, but for me as well.  We lived and breathed learning. Sometimes it was through actual book work. Many times, learning was through the life experiences.

 

References

Kohn, A.(2002).The dangerous myth of grade inflation.The Chronicle of Higher

 Education.49 (11),B7. Retrieved from http://www.alfiekohn.org/teaching/gi.htm

Kohn, A.(2003).What does it mean to be well-educated?Principal Leadership. Retrieved from

            http://www.alfiekohn.org/teaching/welleducated.htm

Soanes, C. & Stevenson, A (n.d.). In The Concise Oxford English dictionary , Twelfth edition .

Oxford University Press, 2008. Oxford Reference Online . Oxford University Press.  Liberty University.  Retrieved 17 April 2010 from http://www.oxfordreference.com/views/ENTRY.html?subview=Main&entry=t23.e53496

 

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • MonicaRobinson profile imageAUTHOR

      MonicaRobinson 

      8 years ago

      Thank you Denise! I will read your hub.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 

      8 years ago from North Carolina

      Excellent write. I voted it up. I so agree with you about teaching a child to love reading. (I have a hub called 'Back to the Library' that covers some of that).

      What a challenge and sacrifice and LABOR OF LOVE. Kudos to you.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)