Saturday, June 20, 2015

A Shot in the Arm: A Reader Comments

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As a very open homeschooling parent and atheist I am so lucky to get some of the nicest comments and to meet some of the coolest, neatest people on the planet. I have met several readers who are now friends in real life. Having this blog has really enriched my life.

Today I got a comment on an older post on this blog, a post called More Reasons to the News that really has me beaming. I want to thank Claudia for taking the time to tell her story. I'm thrilled to hear how the homeschooling lifestyle had a significant hand in the improvement of the lives of her children! I hope Claudia doesn't mind that I share her comment here; I didn't know how to contact her:
Hi Karen, I just found your blog, it is interesting and informative. I homeschooled my son from grade 6 through high school. He was having difficulty with anxiety and panic problems, seeing a pediatric psychologist and trying to learn new coping strategies. The thought of himself going to middle school was causing him so much angst, that I made the decision to was one of the best things I did. He achieved, really achieved academically. When in 10th and 11th grade, he was able to take college courses at our local community college. His English professor told everyone in the class that he never gave an 'A' grade because is would mean you were proficient and would be able write for a living. He was distrustful of my son's homeschooling. Guess who got the first and only 'A' given by the professor? A tenth grade homeschooler! He tested out of required mathematics and got an 'A' in chemistry. He now, at the age of 19, owns a company that was awarded a civic contract for building revitalization housing. He is also a full-time college student who is on the President's List at the community college. I could go on and on about him.

My daughter was homeschooled from grades 2-until the very end of 4th grade when I needed to send her back to school because my health deteriorated and I was unable to give homeschooling the attention is required, she needed to take standardized PSSA testing with the rest of the students. The school principal did not want her to take the PSSA tests, sure that she would drag down the schools score. In the end, the principal delayed the her admittance as much as she could. In the end, my daughter had to take the science portion of the tests. She knocked their socks off. They were stunned by this homeschool girl, who had never taken those kinds of tests, out scoring their over-tested pupils. During the 5th grade, she continued her stellar performance and was recommend to test for the Johns-Hopkins Center for Talented Youth. This past year, 6th grade, she was on the 'Distinctive Honors' honor roll in middle school and elected as student of the month this past March.

She still longs to be homeschooled and my youngest girl, who is going into 3rd grade also wants to be homeschooled. My health is improving some and we are giving it a trial run this summer.

There were times during the homeschool year that the kids didn't feel able to focus. We would by able to work around that by deferring the class to the next day or going on a field trip to someplace interesting, like a cave, the zoo, a historical site such as Gettysburg or a children's museum. Within a day or two, they would be ready to hit the books again. Flexibility enable me to meet the need of the child, rather than the needs of the school.

Thank you for your valuable site.


Claudia, thank you for making me feel that my blog has value. But more importantly, thank you for letting me share your story, a story that offers such hope and sincere help to prospective and current homeschooling parents. I hope to hear from you again when your health improves and you and your daughter are able to embark on her voyage of self-learning.

Choosing to homeschool your children is the riskiest of ventures, a risk that is often misunderstood, laughed at, unsupported. Yet again and again we see tremendously successful experiences in the lives of the children that we are raising. 

Today I applaud all children and parents who have taken the risk and who are doing everything in their power to make the homeschool lifestyle a healthy one, a lifestyle that encourages learning, personal growth, and individualism. 

Social media has both helped and harmed the homeschool movement but I choose to continue to be a homeschool supporter... especially since I can honestly see the advantages of living the lifestyle.

 Other Posts You May Enjoy
More Reasons to Homeschool...In the News
Homeschooling and Socialization, Socialization and Homeschooling
Dually-Enrolled: Homeschooling High School

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