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Sunday, March 08, 2009

Schooling

Here I go again.
It's after midnight on Sunday and here I am sitting Blogging because I can't sleep and I don't really want to study motivation in Psych. (how is that for a laugh).
Anyway, I have always thought that my older son is a "gifted" child. He could talk before he was a year old, had a massive vocab by the age of two, and can recognize all the letters in the alphabet, and numbers to 10 by three. I am not saying that he is some genius or something, but I have just noticed that he has a love of learning and that it is quite visible.
Now. I have also thought that because of his caring, sensitive soul that I have talked about before, that perhaps he would do best in a different kind of learning environment. Not saying homeschooling entirely, but at least having an advocate there for him to see and learn from. I have also thought that he would need something more than I received.
When he was one, I thought, yes I will homeschool.
Then I met my business partner who happens to be a teacher, she told me that I alone couldnt possibly meet all the needs that he would require and that it was good for him to learn from other people in a enriching environment. So I thought, hmmmmm........
We opened a preschool together and I placed him in Parented Preschool. He thrived. He learned more from my business partner then I had ever thought to have taught him. I just thought that some concepts were above him and never gave him the opportunity to learn. I was sold. Preschool was the best!
Then we had a new teacher, and she didnt treat him the same because I was the boss. (or I perceived it that way.) And so after the R was born I pulled him.
I put him in regular preschool for year 3. Mostly because my business partner had told me all the benefits and I thought, why not? something for just him 2 days a week might be nice.
It has not been as great as I would have hoped. I feel like he is lost in the crowd. That he is not even close to his potential.
So now to the thoughts for next year.
After I saw Alfie Kohn speak I was re energized for School Reform and thought that Keenan will go to public school and I will fight, as I do for parents and birth.....and then I saw that people like John Holt had been fighting for school reform since the 1960's and that made me feel a bit disheartened again.
I seem to go to one side and then the other every year. And as Kindergarden approaches I get more and more and more freaked out. I mean seriously, I was IN education. I SAW who the next generation of teacher are. I saw them at the bar, in the dorms etc. I was friends with a LOT of them....and that is why I left that major.
I know that there are good teachers out there. I have family that have worked with the system all the way up to management. But I dont really want to start a losing battle, this is my kids future we are talking here. His whole life.
I am terrified that he will be destroyed by the public system, but I am also scared that I wont be able to facilitate his learning to the level that it needs to be.

1 comments:

Deb said...

I am like you. I spent a couple years in education before getting totally disheartened and transferring out of it. I remember being so idealistic when I graduated high school and started university. I was going to be an amazing teacher and I was going to change the system.

Ultimately I concluded that the system was too messed up for me to try to change and there weren't enough people that wanted to change it.

I kind of miss that idealism I had though.


I don't think that your children can end up screwed up by the system when you are so aware of the possibility. I think, regardless of what choice you make for their schooling, you'll be keeping your eyes open and be aware of what he needs.

There are good teachers in the public system. If he gets one, he could thrive. You'll be in contact with the teacher and hopefully receive feedback about how he's doing and what he needs.

If you put him into school and it isn't working, there is nothing to stop you from pulling him out to home school.

If you home school and it isn't working, he can be enrolled in public school.

I don't envy you. I'm glad my son is younger then yours and I have more time to make these decisions.

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