Tag Archive | comments

Another kind of educational mainstream

It’s been enormously heart warming to recently receive a flurry of compliments about my book ‘A Home Education Notebook’, after it became a best seller in its section on Amazon. I am so uplifted and moved most particularly to know, through your kind comments, that the book is achieving what I intended in reassuring and supporting home educating parents everywhere.

A peep into the Home Ed Notebook

I always felt that while we parents are busy encouraging, facilitating and supporting the education of our children, we need exactly the same support to keep going with it. Moral support more than anything; to step off that mainline track, to stick to our convictions that school isn’t necessarily the best for our child, to withstand the doubts, fears and often unpleasant negativity coming from others, often even family, and hold true to our course.

No mean feat! That’s why I want to support you all – it’s truly an amazing and courageous thing you do.

But I also want to broadcast the fact that HOME EDUCATING WORKS.

As home education or home schooling becomes more well known (there’s an article about the difference here), and perhaps more understood as more and more home educating families are becoming visible, I sense that a new kind of profile and respect for it is growing. And maybe one day we’ll have a new kind of mainstream. Or is that wishful thinking? The Internet is certainly changing the face of education.

But whether that’s wishful thinking or not, there is now no denying that home educating works because of all the young people who are proving it. Young people are now graduating from their home school years, making their independent contribution to the wider mainstream world in a multitude of ways despite not being educated in a school. We have that generational proof now.

This blog and my books have been my contribution to changing that profile of it, along with supporting all those coming new to home educating. Around it you’ll find posts that deal with all the common concerns, like the socialisation issue for example, the family doubters, common worries etc. But I appreciate it’s time consuming to trawl through here which is why I placed them all in the notebook, making them easier to find.

And this post is not only to say a grateful thanks to all who’ve supported me, some over many years, and who’ve sent such lovely compliments and bought the book. But also to reiterate again: HOME EDUCATION WORKS. It’s doable, it DOES develop intelligent, social, educated, conscientious, hardworking and employable adults, and most of all is an enjoyable approach to those years that are often less so in school and the education of young people. Their broad, inclusive, independently thinking minds are making a wonderful contribution to society as they find their way in the adult world, providing the living proof.

So be reassured! And don’t let others’ fears and negativity dissuade you of that proof.

(The book is published by Bird’s Nest Books and available directly from them or from Amazon)

The case of the disappearing comments!

I love receiving your comments. THANK YOU!

They’re extremely valuable and often more thought provoking than my original post! And I appreciate all who give time to share their thoughts here.

So I’m very SORRY if you’re one of the people who’ve spent time doing that and then had your comment wiped. It wasn’t me! I didn’t even know it was happening until another reader alerted me through Twitter.

It seems to be a WordPress glitch. I’ve had quite a few recently. If anyone else has had the same do let me know – or have any tips about overcoming it that would also be helpful.

All these platforms are a wonderful way of expanding ideas – when they’re working that is. Frustrating when you’ve been tapping away then it all disappears, whatever forum you’re on.

I usually share the posts via Facebook so you can leave a comment there and let me know you’ve had yours wiped. I rarely take any off myself – think only had one occasion to do that, for they’re all valuable even the ones that disagree. Or email me (see the Who Am I? page) Or tweet @RMOUNTEY7 But please don’t give up!

It’s great to get a discussion going – everyone learns from it. (Hope you’re doing loads of that with the kids – it’s a valuable learning approach for them too. Discussion broadens minds, ideas, horizons, mental agility, education…)

I’m surprised that people sometimes ask if they can SHARE this stuff around; of course – that’s what it’s here for! Pass it on all you can.

Meanwhile, thank you for bearing with me. All contributions always welcome, it’s stimulating to be able to share ideas and hear yours. Hopefully normal service will return soon so keep your comments coming. If someone could try on this post and it doesn’t appear then please let me know if you can through other platforms – I’d be most grateful.

And thanks again for reading!

More on codswallop…

That post on educational codswallop certainly caused a stir! book cover - Copy (2)

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!

Back to work…screwing up courage

My little break away with Chelsea went far too quick – isn’t it always the way with holidays and loved ones. We tramped the city, visited the Fringe events (her production amazed me – so proud) and hugged a lot.

Too soon it’s time to say goodbye and the missing begins again. I imagine you’re with your little ones twenty four seven so you don’t get the missing yet, but although I swap the pavements back for the lush green and bursts of blossom I also love it doesn’t make up for the missing.

And the prospect of work is not made easier by returning to a caustic comment, on the blog before last, accusing me of arrogance. That hurts.

I try my hardest to offer a balanced perspective here. Why is it arrogant to say it how it is? I don’t think people realise what courage it takes for writers to put their work out there and how easily it’s broken!

I swap the cityscape for this view from my bedroom window on my return

I swap the cityscape for this view from my bedroom window on my return

Anyway, smoothing ruffled feathers I have other things to look forward to; new books to come out next month (more soon on that) and an event to think about where I’ll get to meet some of you which is always so inspiring.

And breaks in between will mean roaming out among the greenery and bloomery to sample the season’s delights.

It’s what helps my heart survive!