The truth of the matter is, before any child is sent off to school, daycare, head-start or any of these locations outside of the home, they are homeschooled:
Until you put your child in a “head start” program or kindergarten, what had you been doing with them? Many parents of young children will say they are “thinking about” homeschooling, but their child is “only three” so they “haven’t started yet.”
What have they been doing all that time? Haven’t they trained them to walk, to eat, to say “Thank You,” to brush their teeth, to tie their shoes, to chew with their mouths closed, to go potty by themselves, to sleep through the night, to say “Yes, Ma’am” and “Yes, Sir;” to count to ten, to say their ABCs, to pray, to sing, to play pat-a-cake, to finger-paint, to eat Goldfish, to clean up after themselves, etc.?
The author goes on to ask the obvious question:
Where do we get the idea that when a child turns five (or four these days…), now they need formal schooling? What do they do in pre-school and kindergarten? They spend a couple of hours away from home, finger-painting and eating Goldfish. They could have done that at home… and learned to empty the dishwasher, sweep the floor, share with their siblings, take care of a puppy, and pray “Now I lay me down to sleep” before their nap.
And the answer is, we’ve always done things this way, and therefore we must do them this way. But this thought is mistaken.
You see, much of what takes place in modern schooling is built around factory workers—work until the bell, take a break, new station, work until the bell. However, much of what goes on today is much more flexible, requiring much more flexibility.
And if you think about it, this public school fad is only something that’s relatively young. People have been homeschooled for much longer than the modern era. Granted, we believe we’ve made significant advances today, but I would argue that this isn’t from truly original thought, for as a whole people are not Renaissance men and women, they are highly specialized and used to doing something just a little bit different than the person that came before them.
What are your thoughts on homeschooling?