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Categories: Léo’s Insights 2018-2019 Academic Year, Quitting Series
This week we continue to “evaluate” a stereotypical letter from loving (grand)parents to new home educators. To put this into perspective, this young family is not only the eldest in the (grand)parents’ family but also the first to make the decision to home educate. Although it may be difficult to see, both parties share a Christian worldview.
Since this is the third part in a continuous series, I highly recommend that if you have not yet viewed the first two parts of this series, that you do so before proceeding.
GP – Second, your dedication to the task.
“Mom” has explained that only one hour a day of one on one time is required to teach all that the child needs to learn. We have been told that starting after harvest and ending before seeding is your goal. To us that looks like you plan to teach one hour a day for five months.
The school year is 10 months and they teach six hours a day. It is hard to see how you can possibly teach them all they need to learn in this scenario.
LG – Needless to say, these folks have never questioned just how much wasted time there is in school, nor have they asked just how much is learned and retained in those ten months. They likely have never considered that school fulfills two objectives, neither of which is truly focused on the child’s individual learning needs.
First of all, it is a daycare system before an institution for learning. Second, having the children captive for six hours a day over ten months manipulates the majority of a child’s waking hours for “constructive indoctrination.”
I realize that most people would never believe this, but if “Mom” did dedicate the amount of time she planned, “Boy” would likely have a skill level beyond “grade twelve” by sixteen. Never mind how much more would be learned from his parents while living on a farm.
School scheduling is never questioned. It is the way anybody alive today understands it as it has been the status quo for over a hundred years. You cannot blame the (grand)parents for using this as a standard, even if it makes no sense. It’s the only thing they know and so to them it is truth.
GP – In the public school system grade one students should be reading by Christmas time, a little less than halfway through the school year.
LG – Big standard assumption actually based on an urban legend! Many students are not ready and therefore not reading by this time.
Furthermore, to force children to read when they are not ready is abusive. Students bullied into reading when not ready creates untold damage to them. When we allow children to cue us as to their readiness, reading ceases being a problem, often becoming an overnight sensation instead.
GP – “Boy” could not read at Christmas, and when I asked him last week he still couldn’t read good enough to read to me on FaceTime.
LG – Was this indicative of a reading deficiency or of “stage fright.” Seriously, when did “Mom” ever have the child read to her on FaceTime? Also bear in mind that no one enjoys being on display until they have reached at least some level of mastery.
“Boy” would likely have been seen as “deficient” across the table as he likely knew he was on trial. Therefore, this is more a measure of “Grandmother’s” bias than of “Boy’s” reading skills.
GP – This is troubling to me. “Mom,” your comment that it would take a really long time for him to read to me wasn’t very supportive of him either. Between the two of you, do you give “Boy” one hour of uninterrupted, undistracted time, five days a week?
LG – At the risk of beating this one to death, “Grandmother” is clearly using a standard of measure that she could never define. Her opinion, although founded on a number of unquestioned school-based criteria, is presented with “authority.” Also, her understanding can only be based on her limited knowledge of what actually goes on in her daughter’s house.
The first part of this letter addressed the (grand)parent’s concerns respecting the legitimacy of home education.
This week we addressed the (grand)parent’s concerns about expectations.
Next week, we will conclude this series by looking at the (grand)parent’s measure of success.
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