That post on educational codswallop certainly caused a stir!
I so very much appreciate people taking time to comment and leave their stories. Even those different to my own. And there were certainly some interesting and varied perspectives on this particular post, so thank you all again.
The more and varied the stories posted here, the more confidence it will perhaps give to people who may want to make choices different to those around them – no easy thing to do. So your comments will be helping others too.
Everything is so big and corporate now and education is becoming the same. It’s forgetting that children are not there for big business purposes, although I feel they’re being used as such. It’s forgetting that education is about the development of humanity, not obedient little clones – although I see how these might serve political agendas. It is forgetting that for the development of humanity we need alternative ideas from those we have already, we need creative ideas, thinkers who see beyond what is now mainstream, in order for the planet and its people to survive and thrive and regenerate.
Species who cannot do that cannot survive. Those that cannot adapt become extinct. And it is those people who can think outside what is already mainstream who generate the ideas required for adaptation and growth, development and change. Nothing progresses if it stays the same. We need alternative solutions to mainstream sometimes. We need creatives and alternative thinkers.
So the more stories about those doing things alternative to mainstream the better it is.
I used to balk at the use of the word ‘alternative’ when writing about home education. Because attitudes to home educators were very narrow, bunching all together under the label ‘alternatives’, like the Hippies, or seventies ‘Goodlifers’ were, without understanding, using another kind of mainstream us-and-them attitude towards anyone doing anything differently.
But there is no one category for home schoolers. It certainly isn’t ‘alternative’ in the way the word is commonly used; very few of us are that alternative you’d notice a difference between us and school-using parents. We are the same in wanting the best for our kids, for them to be happy in their development and education. We just choose to do it in a more DIY way than the commonly recognised one – and are brave enough to go for it even though it’s different.
So the more stories we put out there about the way it happens the better it will be for everyone and for the perpetuation of our species. For after all that’s what education is partly about isn’t it?
So feel free to comment – and share your differences. And thank you!
Ross, sorry I’ve been ‘absent’, no excuses. Been catching up and cannot believe that someone would accuse you – You, of all people!! – of being arrogant! As my good friend always tells me, what people say is a mark of who they are, how you react is a mark of who you are; your measured response proves that you are a lady.
As you know, both my boys started out in private education, but all that did was prove that you cannot buy ‘education’ *lol* We took the younger one, Liam, out in the middle of Year 2, and Gordon opted to give home schooling a go at the end of Year 4. We started quite structured as I wasn’t confident enough to try anything else. That didn’t last and we ended up fully autonomous for a while then found what worked best for them and me – a mixture of both. We thoroughly enjoyed our home ed years, filled with countless days out and activities, with other home ed families and, also, on our own.
Gordon did 2 years at Kingston Maurward agricultural college, studying practical animal care, with no GCSEs at all. Yet, in a class of 20+ students who’d gone to school, he scored the highest in Maths and English. Jobs in animal care were practically non-existent though. With the help of the local youth advisory service – available to any child, regardless of how they’re schooled – he explored his options, and decided on horticulture. He completed a Prince’s Trust course, and is in his 2nd year of a 2-year stint as an apprentice with the local parks department.
Liam decided he wanted to work with horses – started off volunteering one day a week at the stables where he has lessons. And now works there full-time.
As I’m sure every parent, home-ed and otherwise, has discovered, learning never stops. The amount they have learned, that they’re still learning, is phenomenal. They inspire me to try new things all the time.
Sorry for the long comment. Though, by my standards, this is short! 🙂
Joy, don’t apologise for your super comment. It’s not only encouraged and warmed my heart but will be inspiring for all others who visit here too. THANK YOU. x