When I was contemplating homeschooling my children, I scoured every book, magazine, newspaper, email loop, and even directly questioned homeschoolers. However, one question remained unanswered. I am here to answer it. Yes. Homeschool does have its negative aspects.
I guess they (the homeschooling community) failed to answer this question because as underdogs in the battle over education, you really do not want to “show your hand”. However, I personally have some pet peeves about homeschooling and homeschoolers. Over the last few years, some things have really gotten under my skin. Until now, like other homeschoolers, I have kept my lip buttoned, but today, I feel like spilling the beans. Here are some things that I as a homeschooler wish I could say aloud.
Pet Peeves of homeschooling #5: The militant homeschooling mom
What I want to say is: I get it already. In the past, homeschoolers were persecuted even jailed for homeschooling. Still today, well-meaning (in most cases) family and “friends” will occasionally report someone for “failure to educate” their child. These charged rarely stickÃ¢Â?Â¦ especially to the innocent. While I understand the need to stand as one united front, try relaxing a bit. Not every conversation has to be political. If that’s what turns you onÃ¢Â?Â¦ fine. Enjoy it. But don’t expect me to.
Pet Peeves of homeschooling # 4: The defensive homeschooler
What I want to say is: Please don’t ask me what I am using to teach my child and then get mad when you don’t agree with it. My child and I are not here to validate your methods and approach. Most especially, don’t ask me about my kids success and then roll your eyes when I brag a bit and make comment like, “well, we don’t test or measure progress in that way”Ã¢Â?Â¦ You asked!
Pet Peeves of homeschooling # 3: The nosy stranger
What I want to say is: First of all, you don’t know my kid. Don’t walk over to them in the first place and ask why they are not in school. It is really none of your business. That is why my daughter simply answers, “I don’t go to school”, and walks away. Secondly, please don’t ask me to explain myself! Once again, it is none of your business, which is why I answer, “Because the schools around here suck”. Finally, please don’t try to give a list of good schools and tell me that I am doing the public school system a disservice by homeschooling my own. My child did not matter when she was in the school, why should anyone care now.
Pet Peeves of homeschooling #2: The ever-expanding waistline.
What I want to say is: Hey kid, just because the fridge is right next to you when you are homeschooling, does not mean you have to practically live in it. Finish your work, go outside and play! It is OK though. I replaced all the ho-ho’s with apples, the chips with carrots, and the soft drinks with bottled water. Enjoy! (I caution you all homeschoolers to do the same.)
And The Number 1 Pet Peeves of Homeschooling is: The grown up little kid.
What I want to say is: Sweetie, let me explain something to you. This country may be a Democracy, but this house, it is a dictatorship. Your father and I, we are the Supreme Rulers. Get used to it. While it is OK to be inquisitive, you really have no business budding into our personal conversations. You should also avoid challenging every request and order. Trust me. Just do what I said!
*Special bonus (strangers grown up little kid): And let’s not forget the little home schooled kid who sits next to you at the park and holds a conversation like they are an adult. What I really want to say is: Listen kid, I think you are really cute, and smart, and all that, but I came out here so my kids could hang out with other kids, and stop talking to me. Please go and play.
To sum it up, while I love homeschooling, some things just get on my nerves. While I can ignore my pet peeves most of the time, and often work through them gracefully, sometimes you just have to say what is on your mind.
Now I’ve had a bit of fun at my own and other homeschoolers expense, but homeschooling can really be a great thing if you relax and enjoy the process. Sometimes you have to ignore rude questions. Sometimes you have to pretend you did not hear what you know you just heard. Sometimes you have to be quietly clever. Sometimes you have to be gentle, but firm. And sometimes, you just have to smile and nod.
Now you’ve read what is on my mind when it comes to homeschooling. What’s on yours?