“Parenting is not one size fits all and neither is education.”
Recently, my husband and I discussed the idea of school for our little guy and we’re a little indecisive about our decision. For us, having our little guy attend school is far bigger than just doing the “norm”. It’s more about what’s truly best for his development. Surprisingly, I’ve come across readings about a lot of people (Celebs especially) who have home-schooled their children and they in fact are super smart and lacking in no way (opposed to the notion that is often formulated). And with everything that seems to be taking place in the world today (especially NYC), I’ve been contemplating on whether it’s such a good idea to even expose my little guy to such an environment. Granted, things can happen anywhere. By all means, my decision is not entirely based on fears that my little guy won’t be safe (because there are options of private schools, prestigious schools, etc.). However, I do understand that having a one on one learning experience is so much more effective than being a part of a 22 average student class size in the pre-K (alone!) according to the NYC Department of Ed’s 2016-17 Updated Class Size Report and this is just in Brooklyn. So many kids are comprehensive on different levels and with 1 single teacher (and maybe a Teacher’s assistant), you are forced to teach on one solid level/pace in hopes that all kids can grasp the concept. Once again, I am not judging or even condemning the education system. Simply put, I am ensuring that I set up my little guy for success in a different way. Besides, it’s not like your kids aren’t learning an actual curriculum when they’re being home-schooled. Do I have any home-schooling Mamas who can attest to this?
Plus, I believe that the biggest misconception about home-schooling or having your child at home is that they will become anti-social and won’t interact with other kids enough. Not true! There are plenty of outside programs, classes, activities, etc. that allow your child to interact and play with other kids. Kids don’t need 24/7 play time with other kids to grasp social skills. Most of what a child learns (from my experience currently, anyway) is soaked in from their home and lifestyle. Whatever the parents teach their children is what the child clings on to and imitates. I’m sure that this has a lot to do with the child identifying with their parent and understanding that these are the people I should follow. Hey, I’m not a psychologist, but based on my toddler’s behavior and “imitating phase”, I can only assume this. Anyway, back to homeschooling—so, we’re definitely considering our options because of the simple fact that we want our little guy to have a great learning experience (one on one) and the other factors such as violence in schools, bullying, changes in the way sexual orientation is being presented (and handled) in schools, etc. Things are changing. The world is changing. And the way your child sees and experiences things are changing. Sometimes, having a particular conversation or having specific moments with your child just may not be enough for when they are taught something else out there in the real world.
Don’t get me wrong, I definitely don’t have any issues with things that may fall outside of my own views, values, or even understanding. I’m definitely not a closed person (at all!). My simple concern is just ensuring that the best atmosphere is created for my little guy as much as possible. And I do understand that this requires that I work a little bit harder to provide the lifestyle that I hope to for him. And that’s OK! That’s my job. I’m just realizing that in Life, there are a ton of options available and that we don’t always have to choose the safest or most popular routes. Sometimes, we can go down a least traveled path or create a new one. Either way, it doesn’t make us better or smarter than those who chose not to. It just makes us different. So, while we have not fully made a final decision on this entire situation, we definitely aren’t opposed to doing things differently.
Is there anyone who can relate?
Thus far, my little guy hasn’t had to go to daycare, which was one of the things that I’m often pressured on. Most people ask the question why or the comment of “he needs to be around more kids” “that’s why he’s not talking”, etc., which has made it’s way through the mouths of those who believe that a child HAS TO go to daycare in order to learn. Granted, again, I have no issues with Mamas who do send their child(ren) to daycare by choice or based on the mere fact that you’re doing it by yourself. My hat goes off to you, Mamas! This personal choice is just because I thoroughly enjoy seeing my little guy grow up and learn new things every step of the way. Fortunately, I am blessed to not have to do it alone and to be able to work-from-home so that I am present daily. It’s a rare commodity, but I’ve realized just how important it is to be there. Yes, it’s tough sometimes! Yes, it still requires a lot of joggling between work, blogging, and raising a child. And yes you do get overwhelmed and tired too (even when you have someone there doing it with you!). But you have to keep going anyway. Unfortunately, I think that a lot of people think stay-at-home Mamas have the easiest job in the world because they stay at home! How revolutionary, right? While I’m not entirely a stay-at-home Mama, I do understand that it’s not an easy job as everyone thinks! Raising a child is a job in and of itself. 24/7. Not a 9-5. Not a job that you can clock out from and be done by the end of the day. This is constant, all the time, EVERY DAY! This is why having any judgement in parenting is dumbfounding.
Again, traveling down a least traveled path or creating a new one doesn’t make us better or smarter than those who chose not to. It just makes us different.
Human nature demands that we don’t learn new patterns. It’s all about comfort-ability. But when it comes to parenting and doing what’s best for your child, it requires a ton of flexibility, and sometimes even a lot of fight to do things differently. So much different, that it even is unfamiliar to you. More importantly, the route you choose should be one that makes you and your child happy. So, if that means facing the criticism, being judged, or even looking crazy, go right ahead! Do it anyway! As a parent, it is our jobs to innately know what’s best. Trust your gut. Trust your instinct. It’s working.
Can you relate?
What are your thoughts on Home-schooling vs. Public education?
Have you had any first hand experience?
Be sure to let me know in the comments below.
Don’t forget to check out how I care my little guy’s Natural Curls: Click here.