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Homeschoolers Commentary Page
 
 
Click here to read Home Education Magazine editorial by one of its founders, Helen Hegener. Home Education Magazine is one of the oldest and definitely the best of the Home Education periodicals -
and here for an article on "reconstructionism" as a theocratic belief system which strongly influences the "Christian Right" in homeschooling.
Also a lovely article by Peter Kilborn on one family's little "unschool."

We have just received the following thoughtful commentary from a homeschooling family - Kathleen and James, who live in Canada:

Hello...just found this site, and I must say as an advocate of "living as learning"...I hope more people all over the world will start realizing what we are doing to children! I have had all my children "go to school", and it is only recently that I came to my senses and the catalyst for us was a teacher remarking that she didn't have time to teach our child! What then was her role in school...?...what she really was saying was I don't have time for your child, and to find out how she thinks, and how to encourage or give her the tools she needs to explore her interests. That is exactly why schools don't work, because they already have their curriculum set out by the "curriculum makers", and the teacher is merely the messenger. How could she possibly accommodate my child..one of 25 children, all different, all with different interests?

I am also appalled (but not surprised) that many neighbours, friends, in our own community have no idea what learning is actually all about! Not many people in our daily lives know that A) it is legal to Homeschool B) it is a viable option. Many people envision it as a "school environment"...with a person standing before the children and "teaching" - still the school, but enforced - forced upon children at home? It is very hard to enlighten people that this is not necessary for learning!

As a family we are overjoyed in the discovery of one another...a by-product of simply connecting more as a family! We have also learned that we must trust ourselves and our children that all learning is as natural as breathing and sleeping! Need I say more?

Sincerely James and Kathleen

.........................

And here's another wonderful letter from Kathleen:

Hello Mary, from Kathleen. Well here it is another morning ... sunny here today, and I was up quite early making notes on more "books" we will be buying. .. Geography colouring book, Galileo's Daughter, and more!(We already have a houseful of books ... so a few more are always welcome).
We do quite well with all of our resources, but we find the best learning takes place when a) we just listen to our kids talk, really listen b) anything we want them to learn can happen quite fast and spontaneously by being in tune with them and taking the opportunity to show how anything and everything relates..the circle! Holy run-on
sentence!
Last year (while they were still in school..Sept.-Dec.00') one of our daughters' was interested in Gypsies ... and so we just went with the idea, and got everything we could find (audio, video, books, etc) and practically "lived" the gypsy experience! We got into our huge dress-up wardrobe and spent a whole day (out of school) to dance and sing in the backyard, and then at night lit a fire in the fireplace and lit candles and danced some more!
So ... I can now see that I have always "homeschooled" my children ... rather allowed them the enrichment of self-directed learning, freedom and respect of their own ideas! (I now wish I had never sent any of my kids to school at all...because I see so clearly how absolutely ridiculous it is). Question: Do Mother cats send their kittens off to "Cat School"? How about we take all world leaders and put them in an elementary school and treat them the way we treat children? No Talking! Put up your hand to go to the washroom! Then proceed to say things like
 
........1. potatoes 2. thread 3. spider webs
.................4. tractors 5. clay 6. casserole 7. typewriter
8. geography 9. lego 10. doctor
 
... and keep doing this until you've listed about 20 or more things or just whatever pops into your head ... because you are the "teacher". Then say "Any questions?" (bet no one will have any because, being adults they wouldn't want to look stupid would they?) Then say, "O.K., there will be a test on this, on Friday ... class dismissed!"
I hope you will find a sense of humour in this, but I think I've made my point. Write back and let me know what you think of this.
 Regards, Kathleen
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Here's a picture I got from his homeschooling mom Deb of her wonderful son
Alex last week:
 
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Write me! ...maryskole@aol.com