Homeschooling Thread...

Trinity_August 16, 2004

I've seen posts here and in the "suggestions" forum from others who would like to talk about homeschooling, but since the folder devoted to it was removed, nothing has really gotten going.

I too would like to chat/share strategies, thoughts, and even "whines" ; ) with other mothers and fathers who are likeminded as we Gardenweb/THS members are, and was hoping we could get together a casual, but active, thread for it.

Think we can do it?

Or is the fact that "The School Forum" is a paid only and very low traffic forum, and it's hard to let everyone interested that we're "here," too much to overcome?

If so... Any suggestions for other forums? I see a lot that are focussed on specific things like curricula, etc., but... I'm looking for more of a "how was your day" thing.

***crossing my fingers in hopes that more than 3 people will even come across this thread in here, lol***

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This forum is SO quiet. I am interested in homeschooling-- it would be great to get a good thread going.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2004 at 10:47PM
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Yes it is... strange for this time of year...

Maybe if we put it in our "signature" of every post we make in other forums?

    Bookmark   August 19, 2004 at 1:32PM
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This is my first time visiting this forum. My daughter is not yet old enough to attend school but homeschooling is something I am interested in and would like to see more discussion about.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2004 at 10:26PM
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I homeschool my two older ones now. It is scary at first, but the resources available are incredible. I was a public school teacher, so fortunately I already had boxes of lesson plans and ideas. Many say to me, "but you were a teacher, you can do it." Basically the main thing teaching taught me is that I will never send my kids to public school. Private school isn't an option for us financially, so homeschool was the logical choice. Plus it's fun - really fun! Yes sometimes we have whining and tears, but I got that from kids when I taught, and I just don't play the game. You do it, or you don't get.... (fill in the blank with their favorite activity.)

I am by no means an organized person, but the great part is, you can turn many everyday events into lessons. It doesn't take 6 hours a day (average public school day). Sometimes it takes 3, but usually never more than that for formal studies. I make sure my kids learn basic skills for their grade levels and the rest just falls into place based on their interests.

The strange thing is that we parents have no problem teaching our kids up until the age of three. Then all of a sudden we don't think we are smart enough? Not true! I don't know too much about history, but I can read anything out of a book then teach it. Math and science are challenging yes, but you can always find another homeschooling parent to "trade" kids with. My neighbor teaches my kids art and I will soon be giving her kids piano lessons.

I say go for it, even if you are hesitant. You can always enroll them in school if you don't like.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2004 at 1:09AM
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Hi, My name is Carlota and this is my first year homeschooling. I have 2 daughters 7 & 12. We are doing 2nd and 7th grade here. I'm signing up with a charter school my friend uses and am very excited. I'll be happy to participate in this forum. I actually came looking for it.

My question is, how do you all afford all the materials and books necessary to homeschool? Wow, its expensive if you want to follow state recommended books.

We just started today with my girls. My husband and I are doing this together sharing our strengths with our children. We did math assessment with our older daughter today which is giving us direction on which skills she needs to work on. She was GATE last year, but due to her health she missed much of the year. I am having her work on 8th grade math skills and she's pretty strong. I think we will be doing pre-algebra this year.

My younger one, just proved to us that we are correct in thinking that she needs a more agressive math program. She picks up the concepts quickly and scored near perfectly on the 2nd grade assessement tests that we gave her. We started teaching her multiplication this summer and I think we will continue along those lines.

We also started spelling, science and more today. Its gone well so far. My older daughter won't quit. I've decided to give them their weeks assignments and let them choose their pace. With my older one, I think she will be asking for more by mid-week. With my younger one we will see what happens.

My younger daughter cracked me up earlier when she said, "When is recess?" I told her, when you need a break.

I'm feeling very positive about this situation! But, of course its only day one. However, we have always done supplemental learning at home and so this is just one step further.

So, today was a good day. :) I'll report back in later!

Good to see other homeschooling parents out there that want to form an online group!

Rosy Regards,

PS. I hated the 8:00 have to be at school situation. Wow, will this ever be wonderful!

    Bookmark   September 7, 2004 at 6:18PM
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Hi Carlota,

This is my third year and I am surprised how little time it really takes. There are so many websites and downloads that you could almost get buy without purchasing too much for your little one anyway. I have seen complete lesson plans posted on the web. Do a search for lesson plans.

My oldest, 9, is a fantastic reader, but what I found out was that he doesn't enjoy fictional chapter books. I have learned to adjust my curriculum according to his interests.
He loves any kind of social studies and science and will read books on that for hours. I finally decided we will read classic literature outloud together for a few more years at least. With him, I concentrate on basic grammar, writing and math.

It's amazing how much they learn just buy helping around the house. We are building an addition and my kids help me measure things. Buy planting things (and I am impressed with your rose collection!) they have learned the basic anatomy of a plant. My five year old knows that a plant needs roots to grow (they like to plant trimmed tree limbs for fun and know perfectly well that they won't make it!LOL!) Do you really need an formal lesson plan on that? I don't think it's necessary.

Anyway, think about when your greatest learning took place. For me it was when I graduated college and went out into the real world. Well, as a homeschooler, you can create that real world for them now!

Have fun!


    Bookmark   September 9, 2004 at 2:09PM
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Hi Gina!
My kids know quite a bit about horticulture. :) They can root cuttings if roses, understand hybridizing, cultivars and more. LOL, I've been teaching them that for years. If you think my rose collection is impressive, you should see some of the other rose forumers collection lists!! When we move we are going to start growing species roses.'s my favorite. We are going to create world region gardens! So, one for the tropical areas, one for northern European garden etc! And... we are going to try to create a building or structure for each garden that fits that region.

My kids both love math, so we are moving along with that and reading. I'm lucky I think because they both really love to learn. My older one has more self disipline, but she is older.

We are also starting off the year by learning the parts of the horse. Beginning with the basic anatomy and then moving on in to muscular and bones. Its going to be very hands on, we have our own living samples! :)

I am looking forward to this. And if you have any recommended websites, just let me know!

Thank you!

    Bookmark   September 9, 2004 at 5:12PM
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Sorry for the delay, Carlota. We are in the middle of construction and I had framers here all week.

I think your world regions gardens idea is great! I would love to get more creative with our gardening, but it is just so hot here. Can you post pictures once you get going?

We don't have horses, although we have the property for them. My husband doesn't really want them. He likes them, but not enough to have them. I personally love them, but with the heat here, I would never ride in the summer. UGH!

I have not had a chance to research any websites yet. I will probably be swamped from now until January. I am acting as General Contractor for our own project. I am having a blast, but I am exhausted. I am trying to incorporate this with homeschooling too. The kids love it.

I may not visit this forum everyday, but I will try to check it a few times a week.

Take care.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2004 at 11:43PM
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Hi Gina,
My hands have been hurting, long story...I'll tell you later. Ok, I'm working with minimal supplies until our books come in and am feeling slightly frustrated. The CD's I got for my daughters are crashing their computers so my 7th grader hasn't been able to study here spanish or her world history.

Our books are supplied by the state because we are working through a state charter school and signed up too late. Its going to take a while to get all her books. I don't have the teacher additions yet either, AAAaaackkk!!

Could you please share with me any older grade web resources for spanish, world history etc? I would appreciate any assistance for the time being. I'll go buy the books if I have to, I don't mind.

Thank you for your support Gina, in exchange I will try to find you a horse to use for PE and life science. :) There are many horses out there who need a good home, many of them good horses. Start with one for the childrens sake. My kids have bonded deeply with our horses and have learned many lessons from them. Plus, riding and exercising a horse is exercise. As for the heat, there's nothing so wonderful as water play with horses or riding at dawn. I'm going to give you a link to petfinder, like you need encouragement. But, you know what? Many adoption agencies charge money for horses, you'd be suprised at how many wonderful horses are neglected and unwanted because the owners lost interest. I have three free horses I pay for in other costs. But, if you have the room, and don't have to pay for board, you definately need a horse. :) I'm a big enabler, watch out!! Do you have roses yet? Would you like for me to share with you how to make cuttings and teach your children? Rose cuttings make great mothers day gifts for grandparents! :)

Ok, enough enabling for now... Enjoy Petfinder (I'm terrible at enabling.) Next time, I will add a link to our Charter school that we are working through. Its a state charter school, and because of that, we are recieving state supplied books and supplies however we can supplement and create our own curriculum. I really like this school so far.

Once we move, and we start creating the gardens I will share pictures. I can also share pictures of our horses, our roses, our pond and more. :) Tell me what you would like to see?


Here is a link that might be useful: Petfinder

    Bookmark   September 27, 2004 at 1:58AM
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Carlotta, if you want to email me with the specs of the computers I can try to let you know what the problem is.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2004 at 8:35PM
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Hi Roselvr!
Thank you for your rosy support. We ended up re-installing the operating systems for both of our childrens computers and the crashing ended. That's the problem with PC computers sometimes. The smallest confict can cause major issues.
All the CD's are working now and we have gotten the girls a few more to back up what we had!
Rosy Regards

    Bookmark   October 15, 2004 at 7:18PM
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is anyone still out there?

I am homeschooling 2 of my kids, the others survived or are in the public schools.

I went to school and completed in 1996 an education degree and one in human ecology.

I use the computer alot and since they are still only 4 and 6 we play alot! But I think learning can be play. Such as trying to dance like they do in different cultures or cook using only organic ingreds, etc.

We have some farm animals and a family garden center/landscaping business- My 4 yo understands how to grow a seed to a plant and the methods required as a gardener.

I dont use any structured lesson plans as I want to just encourage them in the direction they go and sneak the math, english, etc in with out it being separate from their interests.

That the main reason I dont like compartmentalized public schools. The kids change classrooms and slam a book close only to open another one and change gears for another are they ever to relate and grow to intergrate their learnings?!

E mail me if anyone wnats to keep this thread alive, and I'll try and remember to check back too.


    Bookmark   December 13, 2004 at 5:40PM
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I am kind of against homeschooling due to the lack of social-interaction. When I was going through college, I knew several people who had been home-schooled and although they were all very intelligent, all of them also lacked "normal" social behavior (if there is such a thing). I consistently noticed that they had a more difficult time interacting with everybody else, even if it was just in subtle ways. I am sure that this isn't the case with everybody who has been homeschooled, but I would just like to emphasize that if you are going to home-school your children, be sure that they are involved in SOME sort of extra-curricular activities that get them to interact with other kids their age. That is an important part of growing up... in fact, I am prone to think that it is even more important than what facts we know. There are lots of public activities and clubs/etc that you can have your kids join. Like I said, I am sure not all home-schooled children have that problem, but from my small experience most of them seemed a little "different." I am sure that just getting involved in other activies with children would have a great impact on that sort of thing.

Here is a link that might be useful: Education Resources

    Bookmark   December 8, 2005 at 2:12AM
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degreedude, lack of socialization among hoeschoolers is one of the big myths being spread. Most homeschooled kids have better socialization skills than kids who attend regular schools.

Here is a link that might be useful: Socialization: Homeschoolers Are in the Real World

    Bookmark   December 8, 2005 at 9:18AM
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Sharon_sd, Thanks for the reply. Do you happen to have any resources that backup the fact that it is a myth? I have been considering homeschooling my own children and would LOVE to have some resources. You provided one, but that one is pretty biased. If you know of any unbiased studies please share :). Like I said in my post, I am definitely no expert, I just noticed that all of the people who I met in college who said they were home-schooled all seemed a little "off" socially.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2005 at 2:50PM
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degreedude--I homeschooled my daughter at various times throughtout elementary and middle school. She is now a Freshman in public high school. My daughter is "off" socially in the fact that she has high self esteem and doesn't feel the need to be in the "normal" crowd that goofs off and makes bad grades, dresses in black to "express themselves", or do drugs (yet). In fact, at this point, she has the highest grades in her honors classes. I took her out of school during middle school when her attitude was at the worst it could have been and she was hanging out with the wrong "normal" crowd. She stayed out for a year during which time she volunteered at numerous places and was around people who were decent and it helped get her back on track. Fact is, when these kids are in school, they don't always have a choice who they can "socialize" (I hate that word) with. They are put in classes with kids that they are pretty much stuck with all year. Whether they like them or not, they are going to "socialize" with the ones that talk to them. Maybe the people you think were "off" socially just didn't feel the need to be part of the crowd. I don't know what is wrong with that. There are plenty of people that I don't want to be around and I get labeled "unsociable". I am not unsociable. I am just picky with who I spend my time with.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2005 at 8:13AM
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degreedude: The link I posted above has a number of studies cited.

Here is another link to the Education Resources Information Center with a 10 year old article citing a number of studies:

and one more with links to a number of articles on the subject

Here is a link that might be useful: Homeschooling & socialization

    Bookmark   December 19, 2005 at 8:31AM
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Here is some info that you may be interested in: The National Home Educators Institute, or Click on research and you'll pull up some of the most extensive studies done on homeschoolers. As for socialization, what type of socialization are we interested in? Much of what occurs in a typical highschool is not positive socialization. I went to public school, private school and was taught at home during different parts of my childhood. As adults, my siblings and I have each had experiences where someone has commented because of misconceptions about homeschooling, "I would have never guessed you were homeschooled!" As children, adults enjoyed being around us because we were comfortable conversing woth them as well. I know of people who were educated in the public schools who were not quite socially adept. Perhaps it is more than how we are educated that determines how we interact with others. I am now the mother of two young children, who I plan on homeschooling, because I learned firsthand that there is a better way.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2005 at 9:03PM
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So glad I ran across homeschooling. My daughter is 21, married, healthy (physically as well as emotionally) and she was homeschooled from 7th grade through high school, was valedictorian among her piers (we were attached to a homeschool group through a public school where she attended 2 days per week for labs) and graduated a year early. She now has a business market/admin degree and is a Sr. Mortgage Consultant at a firm in Del Mar, CA. I also have an 18 year old who was homeschooled, but was doing so well in 4th grade I was able to move him to 6th grade studies where he graduated a year earlier and my 16 year old son is graduating this year, a year earlier as well. I have helped three children become outstanding adults (and young adults)and homeschooling has provided us with the ability to do so. My children were involved in many, many, activities, from church activites, to feeding the homeless, to theater, dance, sports, etc. They had excellent friends whom we were able to help them choose because of the types of activities we chose to do that also involved other families whom had the same values, etc. that we held. I never had to go through the "I don't want to be seen with my parents thing, because we were always doing things with each other, with families whose children were all ages, and so my children were able to be with adults as well as children from ages 0 and up. They never had an opportunity to learn that it was uncool to be with your parents. Our relationships are awesome. John Stossel was on "The View" this morning talking about vouchers again. I wish someone could convince the states that we should have the choice to take our tax dollars and use them to benefit our children in the way we know best. I know I spent thousands and thousands of dollars on curriculum, choosing to purchase my own instead of using the biased state's books, plus I still had to pay taxes to our local schools...for what?? That bummed me and I couldn't even get any tax break. What's up with that? Anyway, if I had to do it over again, I would start with kindergarten instead of waiting until my daughter was in 7th grade. She was fine in grade school socially, but I could see the damage coming and decided to take the bull by the horns. After that year with her, I yanked my boys out in 2nd and 3rd grade and was on my way with all three. I AM SO GLAD I DID! I have awesome children!

    Bookmark   January 13, 2006 at 12:06AM
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My only child is 10-1/2 mos. old.. I wish I could print the previous post to have my husband read when my little boy is old enough to start school... I've always wanted to homeschool my children. I wish there weren't so many naive people out there trying to convince everyone that homeschoolers are not well adjusted socially.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2006 at 10:11PM
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Hi! I have two children--a 3yos and 14mdd. I am very excited to be able to spend my time with my children home and watching them learn. If you feel that homeschooling is something that would benefit your family, now is the time to begin educating your husband about homeschooling, before your children are old enough to go to school. As I said before, NHERI has a lot of info on socialization,ect. Another great resource is a book called "A Thomas Jefferson Education" by Oliver Demille, who is the president of George Wythe College. You can get it at
This book has been a wonderful tool to help people understand leadership-type education. Homeschooling is the fastest growing educational group in the US with an estimated 2.7 million children being educated at home, and more joining every year. Anyway, hope this helps--and ggod luck! Nicole

    Bookmark   March 29, 2006 at 8:59PM
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I pulled my son from public school this week...i'm nervous as most are when they finally make the jump...but I can do this...we're getting a slow start but I'm sure we'll find our niche soon...

    Bookmark   April 1, 2006 at 12:12AM
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Good luck! It is truly freeing to take responsibility for our children's education. A great website is:
They have information and a homeschooling forum. dannic

    Bookmark   April 3, 2006 at 1:13PM
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Finally!! People talking about homeschooling. I homeschool all 4 of my children. Last year they gave me a run for my can't make me do it, I don't like math, she's sitting too close to me. I told them, stop or spend a year in public school. None of them have ever been in public school.........homeschooled from the start. Anyway, they kept it up. I marched them down to the public school, enrolled them, told the principal they were being enrolled in school as punishment. Never did I realize how much punishment it would be! All 4 kids are on the principal's honor roll, all grades above 95 on their report cards. But the ideas and attitudes they are subjected to are horrid to say the least.
My 8 year old daughter said she has never seen such rude kids in all her life. Kids who tell the teachers to shut up, tell the guidance counselor how fat she is. My first grade daughter had a little boy in her class ask her if she had a boyfriend. She told him she was 6 and wasn't allowed a boyfriend, but he could be her friend. He commenced to telling her that he was now her boyfriend and they needed to have to sex, because that's what boyfriends and girlfriends do. For pity sake, this child is 6! Finally my little Mary gave him her phone number and told him to call her daddy and discuss it with him. hehehehe
Whenever I walk into the school, the principal asks me "what do you want now?". I went to the school because a boy in my 11 year old sons class punched him in the back as he was walking into class. 5 punches later my son put him across 2 desks. They suspended my son and did nothing to the other child. Principal told me that my son had no right to touch him because he's a minority child and the school could get sued!!! That my son needs to realize how to get along in the real world and that people are going to bully him his whole life so just get use to it. I won't tell you the things I told her and his parents becuause this isn't the place for that, but it was handled.
The education is horrible, the kids are worse, the teachers show no respect for the kids, so they show none to the teachers. It's a circus. As for socialization, my children get plenty of the right, family friends, youth groups, ect. Not the kind that teaches them that it's ok to not have any morals or respect.

And you wonder why I homeschool. They won't ever push me to the point that I will ever have to send them back.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2006 at 1:14AM
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I am so thrilled to find this forum! I am at the other end of the spectrum, I have homeschooled my 6 kids and they are well on their way. Social interaction issue, valid point considering that schools group children according to age and therefore do a terrible job of presenting opportunities for mentoring. Who better than grandma, a neighbour or a farmer or store clerk to give our kids a good cross section of ages, ethnicity and experiences. I used a structured curriculum with some, unit study with others and the what do you want to learn about with still others. Some were "book learners" some were tinkerers, some just plain drove me nuts! The most important thing I beleive is that whomever is doing the homeschooling, (I had friends whose children were taught by grandparents), realizes the scope of the commitment. Secondly, the supporting parent, typically Dad but not always, needs to understand just how demanding 24/7 with the kids and always being "on" is for Mom. If possible get household help till the kids are old enough to learn how to do things for themselves. Mine were all given the gift of laundry when they turned 11, we all planned menus together. Be wary of too much time away from home in well intentioned homeschooling groups, you will be hard pressed to homeschool if you aren't home! Remember that we are not just jamming information at these precious gifts, but training them to be the kind of leaders this country will need tomorrow, whether in politics or plumbing, character is a must! I apologize for jumping in here with what may be useless points for some but I know what it took, I know what I did right (I sure know what I did wrong) and the sacrifice is huge. Go forward but go informed. Read Boyers' books, "Yes there all ours" check out curriculum fairs, assess homeschooling associations very carefully. Findout about your local laws (I am Canadian, Ontario is diferent from Alberta for example) and if you think your child may want a University education check it out now. It may take you 10 years to get him/her accepted!

    Bookmark   April 30, 2006 at 7:15PM
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Hi all.
New to this forum.
I'm curious about homeschooling. Was hoping you could answer a few questions.
On average, how many hours per day do you dedicate to teaching each child? i.e. how long is a school day?
Also, do you assign homework?


    Bookmark   June 1, 2006 at 8:53AM
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Jasper, it's all homework.

I don't home school, but my daughter does. Her kids do formal lessons 4 half days a week, from September to early June. This is supplemented by special activities such as co-op science, public speaking, sports, field trips, etc. They also read a lot, by their own choice. My 7 year old grandson's current favourite is "An Island Story" - the 506 page history of Great Britain, which he takes to bed with him.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2006 at 2:39PM
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As I reread my previous post, I CAN'T BELIEVE I spelled peers, piers. Sorry, just my brain working faster than my hands. I really am an exsaleeaant speller. LOL

    Bookmark   June 18, 2006 at 7:09PM
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