Homeschoolers united!

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Soffía
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Re: Homeschoolers united!

Postby Soffía » Thu Jun 02, 2016 8:00 pm

I was homeschooled as a child, straight through until university. The amusing thing is that I was completely uninterested in language learning. Although I wish I'd been interested earlier, I'm very glad that my parents didn't force me into it; it would only have put me off.

Now I'm making up for lost time!
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Re: Homeschoolers united!

Postby IronMike » Mon Jun 06, 2016 10:08 am

Soffía wrote:I was homeschooled as a child, straight through until university. The amusing thing is that I was completely uninterested in language learning. Although I wish I'd been interested earlier, I'm very glad that my parents didn't force me into it; it would only have put me off.

Now I'm making up for lost time!


This is wonderful Soffia. Dying to hear what you thought of homeschooling, both while doing it and now that you're an adult. We've got two who are "graduated homeschoolers" and two still in school. Did you like homeschooling? Why did your parents choose to HS you? Would you consider HSing your kids when/if you have them?
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Soffía
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Re: Homeschoolers united!

Postby Soffía » Mon Jun 06, 2016 7:42 pm

IronMike wrote:This is wonderful Soffia. Dying to hear what you thought of homeschooling, both while doing it and now that you're an adult. We've got two who are "graduated homeschoolers" and two still in school. Did you like homeschooling? Why did your parents choose to HS you? Would you consider HSing your kids when/if you have them?


I thought it was fantastic! It was obviously my parents' choice at first, but once I was a bit older (eight, nine...?) they asked me every year, when we sent our curriculum to the school district, whether I wanted to continue with it or not. When I was ten I tried school for a week, at my request - they were, they tell me now, afraid that I would choose to go to school permanently, but they did a great job of letting me explore the possibility for myself. As it happened I realised how much I enjoyed the freedom to pursue my own interests at my own pace, rather than being forced to conform to others' schedules. My parents, having been inspired by the writers of John Holt, were basically 'unschoolers,' and came to view themselves more as facilitators for my learning than directly as educators. But I know in the early years they took it one year at a time. We started in 1988 so there were not many homeschoolers around then!

If I end up having children I definitely hope I would be in a position to homeschool them. Though if they ended up wanting to go to school, I would take that on board.
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Re: Homeschoolers united!

Postby sfuqua » Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:27 pm

My wife and I are both public school teachers here in California, so we are very familiar with many of the reasons someone might want to homeschool here in the US. One of my students this year tried it for a week (I teach 11 year olds), and she was very excited about moving at her own pace. She came back after only a month, more for social reasons than a difficulty with homeschooling.
I ran into an ex-student last Friday, who has been homeschooled the past four years and he couldn't be happier. He stopped by to talk to old teachers.

I'm not familiar with all the programs for homeschooled kids, but it seems that one could get an excellent education from many of them. I've daydreamed about setting up a little school to serve as "tutor" for a small group of kids who would mostly work at home. I'm a teacher, and I daydream about teaching without all of the compromises required by US public schools.

My wife and I have discussed homeschooling for our daughter, if we feel things are not going the right direction with her education, one of us will quit our job and we will homeschool her.

So, yes, sometimes public school teachers dream about homeschooling.
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Re: Homeschoolers united!

Postby Ani » Mon Jun 06, 2016 9:10 pm

IronMike wrote:Since the wife has been the primary teacher for our kids, I'll tell you about what she/we did language-wise. Back around 2005-ish, we got German Rosetta Stone and the kids and mom went through that. Like, through all of it, to include the writing part. My wife has had experience with German before so it was quick and easy for her, and the kids took to it pretty easily. What really pushed them beyond RS was when we found out that their favorite online game (at the time), Runescape, had a "German" world, where everything in it was in German. My wife let the kids play Runescape for one hour per school day as long as they were in the German world.

This worked well as she and the kids ended up going to Germany and Switzerland to visit relatives about 12 months later (while I got to "enjoy" Iraq). The kids used their German there and got exposed to the language, which was great as they were 11, 10, 7 and 3 at the time. When I got back from Iraq, they had been back from Europe for a couple of months. I was enjoying some time off at home, relaxing on the couch, overhearing a conversation btwn my boys (the 11- and 10-yr olds) on the difference between axe and hatchet auf Deutsch! I was floored.

Fast forward to 2009-ish and we are on our way to Russia. Again Russian Rosetta Stone, but also Pimsleur, which mom and the kids preferred. Did a few months of that prior to arriving in Moscow, which helped the kids out a bit. We decided to not homeschool them there, instead enrolling them in the international school. Not enough Russian instruction for my taste (2-3 times per week, that is it). Our youngest at the time (6 to 9-yrs old) soaked up the most, to the point she could watch Russian cartoons and understand them. Our second oldest wasn't too bad at it when he'd go out with his friends to coffee shops. Our oldest did Spanish his last year, which ended up being the right move


This is fascinating. How I would love to offer that type of experience to my kids. It seems like your having had really good experiences with RS. I was thinking about trying it here despite the negative opinions on this board. It seems to work well with kids in that age range Where they can use the computer independently but aren't able to do other formal work alone. I'd like my kids to have more language hours but I can't teach in front of them any more time during the day then are already doing. Next year I have a 3rd grader and a kindergartner plus my two who are younger.

For better or worse I have decided to let my 8 year old watch Buffy in French with me and use it as hours of school. We have always done a "TV shows during a school day must be in French" rule but I explicitly teaching from Buffy -- making up some flash cards for him to translate from English to French and giving him words and phrases to pick out of the show. It's not the most appropriate in the world but he is extremely excited about it.
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Re: Homeschoolers united!

Postby snowflake » Tue Jun 07, 2016 1:12 am

If you're collecting stories, all 3 of mine were homeschooled. The youngest will be 24 yo this month. The eldest and youngest studied dead languages. The youngest went on to get a BA in dead languages. The middle child studied Spanish which didn't go too far. She used Pimsleur. She now as an adult has started learning German on her own. Toward that, I've steered her toward FSI and DLI materials, including GLOSS. She has a friend that lives in Germany who is helping to guide her.
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Re: Homeschoolers united!

Postby iamnotjolie_ » Tue Jun 07, 2016 3:51 am

Wow this is so cool. I was homeschooled too, and my mother did encourage me to learn Korean while in high school as an alternative to Spanish. Glad to see other homeschooling parents introducing their kids to multilingualism. :)
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Re: Homeschoolers united!

Postby IronMike » Tue Jun 07, 2016 8:29 am

sfuqua wrote:My wife and I are both public school teachers here in California, so we are very familiar with many of the reasons someone might want to homeschool here in the US. One of my students this year tried it for a week (I teach 11 year olds), and she was very excited about moving at her own pace. She came back after only a month, more for social reasons than a difficulty with homeschooling.
I ran into an ex-student last Friday, who has been homeschooled the past four years and he couldn't be happier. He stopped by to talk to old teachers.

So, yes, sometimes public school teachers dream about homeschooling.


sfuqua, I would say that one thing you could do that would certainly help the homeschool community is to offer yourself up as a certified teacher for the purposes of reviewing kids' learning. Many parents want to see how they're doing with their kids, and certified teachers in many instances can act as proxy for nationally-normed tests.

In Virginia where we last HS'd, each family had a few options at year's end to remain "legal" to HS. The one which we picked was testing our kids against a normed test (TEAC-II or smthg like that). We had a certified teacher give the test to each of our kids.

It looks like California doesn't require that of HSing parents, but there still might be parents who would like your help. You could check with HS groups in your area. HSLDA.org is a good source of contact info for those groups.
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IronMike
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Re: Homeschoolers united!

Postby IronMike » Tue Jun 07, 2016 8:31 am

This is great so many homeschooled kids-now-adults are in this board. I wouldn't have thought there'd be so many, but I guess I shouldn't be surprised. We are definitely teaching our kids to be independent learners, which makes sense for language geeks!
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Re: Homeschoolers united!

Postby Elenia » Tue Jun 07, 2016 5:18 pm

I've never been homeschooled, and I'm far too childless to be a homeschooler myself, but I came across the site Multilingual Living and thought it would be of interest. It is not about homeschooling specifically, but the site creator homeschools and a lot of the content is about homeschooling. It is more about raising multilingual children than anything else.
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