"Although I speak from my own experience, I feel that no one has the right to impose his or her beliefs on another person. I will not propose to you that my way is best. The decision is up to you. If you find some point which may be suitable for you, then you can carry out experiments for yourself. If you find that it is off no use, then you can discard it." Dalai Lama...

Friday, 18 January 2008

Avatar building and opportunities missed.

Today we found Avatars and Milly has gone crazy over them she has about 5 on her blog and of course I had to have one too!!
By the time she had finished she was copying over codes and setting them on her blog like an old hand.Over the last few days she has been spelling a lot whether on paper or on line and she is continuing to want to do it herself.It seems as though confidence has arrived and is here to stay fingers crossed!!We have pottered over the last couple of days ,read quite a bit,listened to story Cd's and hopped on and off the computer finding out about various things(usually animals) but nothing has lasted for long.

Emily went out with a couple of other home ed families for a walk to one of the local lakes on Wednesday and had a great time, it is possible it will be made into a local get together on alternate weeks.I wasn't able to go this week as I was a little under the weather but hope to go next time, so a big thank you to the two lovely families who helped out by taking her.

Thursday is normally food coop and recorder but this week our boiler broke so we had to wait in for the engineer.We had the usual question to Emily of "are you off school" which is to be expected I suppose and Emily very confidently said I'm home educated he then looked quite confused and looked at me I said Emily doesn't go to school she learns at home he still looked confused and eventually asked who taught her I explained that we worked in a very different way to the school system and did not have structured lessons, he then asked if she was learning more than at school and I said that in my opinion she was learning much more than at school and that seemed to be enough for him and we went back to talking about the boiler.It was obvious he did not really know what it is we do and he wasn't about to get into a debate about the pro's and con's but I was thinking how lucky we had been and as yet I have not had one person who has had anything bad to say to my face about home ed, some don't quite understand the autonomous approach, some have said that they think it is a good thing because of the state of the education system.

The teachers I have come into contact with can't seem to get their heads around what we are doing and have mentioned the opportunity's she will miss out on by not going to school, now do they mean the bullying, the pressure to perform, the pressure to conform, the pressure to attain high grades, the pressure of mountains of homework,
the bad teaching practices,the sarcasm/bullying done by some teachers in the way they speak to children,the constraints of the national curriculum,the inability to dress how they choose,the inability to go to the toilet when they choose amongst others , no I suppose they mean the lesson content, trips out, the sporting activities and the extra curricular activities that are opened up to children within school.The funny thing was that one of them had just finished telling a tale about the amount of her time spent dodging books and having to stop pupils throwing desks(secondary school)so any learning taking place in that class would of been minimal despite her commitment and staying up till 12.30 to plan the lesson.....

It is obvious that by not going to school Emily will miss out on a lot of things,in some cases they are the things that can ruin a child's life. We can ensure that there are plenty of opportunities opened up for Emily and life does not need to be lived at 100 miles an hour there is time to do things later on if she chooses.By not going to school she will gain above all else a childhood, a time to potter, to laugh to play with no pressure and that can never be re-lived.

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