Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Kids are kids, no matter where they go to school

So, I didn't realize that by choosing to homeschool our children we would become the poster family for homeschoolers everywhere. That every single action my children take, good or bad, can be traced directly to our choices in their schooling. Confused? I am too.

Case(s) in point.

My oldest son is acting like a seven year old boy. He is squirelly and hyper and likes to run around making a lot of noise at the park. I'm talking to another mom and she says, "Look how happy he is to be around other boys his age. He must really be missing that interaction." As if there is a dearth of children at our house and he sits alone in a corner. Give me a break. She then went on to explain how his social skill must suffer because of his homeschooling. Really? Because it is somehow natural for children to be surrounded by children of the same age? Because God must have made a mistake putting us in families, where we learn to interact with all different ages of people?

My daughter is being silly at one of our extra-curricular activities (why we call it homeschooling is beyond me - we're never home, maybe we should call it "real world schooling"). The intructor remarks that homeschooled children can't focus and are used to acting however they want. Funny, I was under the impression that most five year old little girls are silly and like to spin around like a princess. But maybe that's just every child I've ever known. Surely they can't be representative of normal behavior.

I guess what gets me irritated is that children whose parents have chosen traditional schooling never have to defend their decision. If their child acts up or has some personality quirk it is never blamed on the schooling. But if my child talks too loud or generally acts childishly it must be because of his schooling.

Children are children. They act like children. Let's all remember that we are each doing the best job we can raising our kids as we believe God would will us. And the next time you catch yourself attributing a child's behavior to homeschooling, ask yourself this - if a public school child did the same thing, would you assume it was because of his schooling? And don't be prejudiced against homeschoolers.


Janet said...

My sister, Tricia, is kind spirited, humble, strong, independent, compassionate, has a strong work ethic, works amazingly well in a group, is well read and holds a BS degree. Must be all that homeschooling my mom did! Poor girl! ;)

Great post!

Tamara said...

Thanks, Janet. Tricia is quite the amazing woman. And woo hoo on her new lungs. I am praying!

Melanie Welch said...

I'm always amazed that people feel the need to give advice or their opinion on things we do without being asked! Good for you for homeschooling! I couldn't ever do it and I have tons of respect for moms that can!! BTW, my 7 year old that goes to school acts like a complete fool sometimes too! All my kids do at sometime or another!

vicvic said...

That second paragraph really made me laugh. I'd like to think I'd say something really smart in reply, but knowing me, I'd think of it after we were long gone! I'd love to know how you responded to that!

All the homeschool-finger-pointing really makes me want to say - "As if! As if public school kids are problem free! Hello!"

Anonymous said...

Sometimes I'd just like to copy and paste your blogs into mine! You always put it so well. I too get so frustrated at having to defend our decision to home school when other parents send their kids off to school and no one questions it. You never hear anyone ask, "So what made you decide to send your child to public school?" Society really gets to me sometimes...