Thursday, September 2, 2010

Homeschool or Public School? A book review.

Over the last 4-5 years I have wondered if I had the stuff to be a homeschooling mother. Most of the time my honest answer with myself is a resounding "no" but that doesn't make me stop toying with the idea. I miss my kids when they're gone at school. Homework is a frustratingly repetitive activity and I know it's only going to get worse. I can't for the life of me figure out why the kids have to do homework when they've just spent 6 hours at school working. Most of the homework is just busy work anyway.

My intrigue about homeschooling was peaked a bit more after I read a book about a mom who took one of her children out of public school for a single year and home schooled her for that year. Her daughter was in 5th grade when she interrupted her public education, and her daughter was extremely frustrated with homework. She was a free-spirited child who loved nature and dreaming...probably like most kids until they get beat down by homework.

I read Love in a Time of Homeschooling: A Mother and Daughter's Uncommon Year when the publisher sent it to me to review. So full disclosure: I got the book for free. But I really found the book fascinating, and can really see the benefits and drawbacks of both public education and homeschooling. The thing I found most comforting about this book is that this parent recognized what one of her children needed to be able to go on with her education. She needed a year of exploring her own interests in depth and in her own way. She also recognized that her other two children were perfectly happy and thriving in public school.

So that is what I really got out of this book. I know, for now, my kids are thriving and content where they are, but I now know that if that changes, I have options and I won't be afraid to use them.

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