Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Home-school vs. Public School ~Tori
This week we are going to broach the subject of schooling. Now this can tend to be a very controversial topic between moms, so just remember to keep it nice. Our opinions may not be yours, nor each others. But we are all here to lend our personal wisdom on this view.
Now I started homeschooling Lucas when we was 3. It may seem a little young to some people, but we worked on numbers 0-10, the alphabet, shapes, colors, etc. We just started with the small stuff. He did have some pronunciation troubles and as I tried working with him on it he didn't seem to want to respond. As we patiently trudged on he became more and more frustrated. We noticed he started acting out more especially when we couldn't understand all of what he was saying. We would ask him to repeat, sound out, etc., but he would get too frustrated to try. He mainly pointed at stuff for the longest time. Then I was told about a preschool class that met once a week and was a speech class. I checked into it, met with the speech therapist, checked out the classroom, etc. We loved the therapist, Lucas responded so well to the classroom environment because where he wasn't around many kids his age before, he loved having others around him that he could identify with closer. Then he started correcting himself on his own, growing in class (and at home), and he just all in all loved it. Where he refused to talk to anyone new before sometimes he will just say the most random crazy things now. He is so much more friendly and outgoing.
After much discussion between me and hubby, we decided to go ahead and keep him in public preschool, he really wanted to stay and make more friends. This is the second year he has been in public school and this year he gets to start kindergarten. He is more than excited to be starting a new adventure. I am biting my fingernails struggling to let go. :)
Now don't get me wrong public school was not my intention. I'm constantly worrying about it because I'm not right there. What if he falls at recess and scrapes his leg? What if his coat isn't zipped and it's windy out? But these are things he is going to have to do without me sooner or later. While I would rather them be later I can't ignore the happiness on his face when he is on his way to school. Hearing all the details about his day as he enjoys his after school snack. The running up to me and getting a big hug and kiss because he missed me, and we talk to each other about our day. So my main problem with public school is that it's just hard to let go. I want to hold on. He's growing up, and I'm not ready. I don't want the distance. But I also went to public school and I met some of the best friends that I have to this day. I had to just suck it up and realize that while each child is different, for him, this is what made him happy. He has made friends, his socialization is so much better, and while he is still a bit shy and reserved he does interact so much better.
Now I do worry about him away from me in public school especially in today's dangerous day and age. But to be honest I made it through public school, and you just have to do your research on the school. Shootings are the main worry on my mind what with everything happening, bullying is a huge concern, but I know that I can't shield him from life. Those are risks you take in a grocery store, or at a park. Bullying happens at every stage of life so it's something that can't be escaped no matter what. But I can talk to him about these things and teach him how to handle it, and not let it get the best of him.
I prefer to home school him, I'm a stay at home mom so I certainly have the time. But then he doesn't get to interact with other kids his age as much as he would like. He doesn't get to do group projects with his peers, he doesn't make the connections with the same kids on a daily basis. Later on if he wants me to home school him I will be all up for it and ready to go. But for right now I do believe that public school has been the best thing for him. He has gotten so many opportunities. That doesn't mean that we don't go on the occasional field trip as a family, that doesn't mean I don't teach him things at home, we do both so he gets the best of both worlds. He loves it. I plan on attending every single field trip, being a part of all his school functions, and still spending the same amount of time with him I can.
Every child is different, and public or home school choices are for your family to decide. It really comes down to the child. Children all learn differently, they respond differently to various settings, but either way schooling is very important.
Whether you are choosing public or home school just be active in your child's schooling above all else. Talk about the day whether you were there or not because it's very important to know they can talk to you. This creates such a lasting effect that will carry on years down the road. If you don't ask about the small stuff and listen intently then they aren't going to talk to you about the big stuff. And always remember no matter what you choose, you are your child's first teacher.