Monday, July 30

My Reasons for Homeschooling

When my eldest child turned four years old, we enrolled her to the nearby Montessori school. I have read their school profile, names of their graduates and where they transferred after their pre-school education and of course, the teachers' academic background. The school is really following the Montessori method of learning as set by their foundress Dr. Maria Montessori. Parents may not know it but some Montessori school just used the name to attract more students but they don't really have the Montessori method of teaching. In my kids school they strictly adhere to the method of highly individualized instruction to assure each and every student the best education every parent wants for their child. My child stayed there until the fourth grade. We transferred them to a big school (means large population) because we (hubby especially) think there's no challenge anymore in their previous school because they have only seven students in each class. At present, my two kids are really enjoying their new school with their new friends. One thing good from their former school, they were taught lessons that were so advanced for their grade level so my kids feel they're ahead of all of them (yabang pa). Since my two girls are all so used to the regular school, we let them stay on.
When my only son Pio started going to pre-school at 3 years old, he was enrolled to another Montessori school (with minimal tuition rate) but I found out that the school is not at far with the school of my two girls with their learning and teaching methods. We were thinking then that he's gonna play anyway so why do we have to spend 4o grand just for a two-hour daily play time. So I thought my son is just playing and learning the ABC's, numbers, shapes, colors, nursery rhymes (which I also taught him way back). One time, when I asked him how's school he responded that his teacher is a nagger (he used a tagalog term for it). I was shocked where he got that word. Then when I started to say something, he would tell me, "Mama, zip your mouth". I've noticed also he's becoming naughty, more naughty. Before another school year starts, I've heard from my sister that Bro. Bo Sanchez is managing the Catholic Filipino Academy for home schoolers. I attended some seminars, orientation and Bro. Bo's talk. My hubby and I decided to just homeschool my only son. There I met parents who are currently enrolled in the school. They were all enjoying teaching their kids in their own home. So why was I convinced to do so.
First, I get to teach him his lessons. We were provided lesson plans and eight textbooks. From there I can explain things more if he doesn't understand a certain topic (which regular school teachers won't do for one kid) and explore some more. There's no pressure to finish a task. We study at his own pace. If he understood the lesson, we go to the next. If he doesn't, we go back. The principle is to teach, then give him test. Then re-teach, re-test again if the score is not satisfactory. We give the test, we give the grade.
Second, we have more family bonding time. We also don't have to get up early. My two girls would wake up at 5:30 or 6:oo a.m., only to wait another 30 minutes while the school bus picks more riders. Then in school, they wait again for another 30 minutes. So they spend 10 hours of their waking time away from us (about 2 hours of waiting). One thing more, we want to strengthen family bonds, how can we do that if we don't get to see them often.
Third, my son would not be labeled as stupid, slow-learner, row 4 kid or something as what some teachers are doing. No parent would want to hear those words labeled to their kids.
Fourth, I wanted to avoid bullies. I have encountered so many people bullied in their younger days and they still carry the hurt/ resentments and it really affects their relationship with other people.
Fifth, to minimize negative influences and temptations in school. Some kids would bring the latest cellphones, ipods, gameboy, etc. to show off to their peers. Others would show each other how much they have in their pockets. One kid I know was sent to the principal's office because of stealing. He reasoned out that older boys in school forced him to do so or else he'll get hurt. Some would get the younger ones baon. Worse, in some boys' school, some bullies taught the pre-schoolers to call their peers some names (like a man's private part). In a certain instance, the school bus assistant touched the boys genitals. What could we do, if that happened to our kid in their school.
Lastly, for financial consideration. At the Catholic Filipino Academy we would pay the tuition rate of P16, 200.00 (more or less $350) which includes the lesson plans and the textbooks. Whatever extra money we have, we buy more books especially the ones they like. We don't have to spend on uniforms, school bus, school supplies, school's fund-raising activities, etc.
We also have the monthly parents/kids activity for their socialization. They also have art classes every Friday. Some parents teach their kids different sports like basketball, soccer, baseball etc. While some moms enrolled their kids to ballet, voice lessons or figure skating.
As I progress becoming a homeschool parent and really experienced some great changes in my son's attitude and learning abilities, I am now convinced more than ever that we made the right choice. Not only that, I am homeschooling all my kids next school year (as some mothers I met have been doing for the past 6-8 years).


julie said...

Have a post too about homeschooling.

Thanks for telling me about CFA.

Annamanila said...

I heard this first from Teacher Julie. Passed on the information to my nieces who are thinking of home educating their kids too.

Which gives me an idea: maybe I can teach my grandkids at home when I retire? Wow, escited na ako, kahit wala pa akong apo. :)

rowena said...

Hi Julie, you're welcome. I am now encouraging my friends to homeschool their kids. My mom even told me to do the same to all my kids.

Hi Annamanila, o di ba me naka-line up ng activity after retirement... It's really exciting to teach esp. your own kids or would be-grandchild. Your kids would be happy to know that.

Gina said...

You know what ? This would have been a dream come true for me kung meron lang akong anak =P... Dream ko talagang maging teacher since I was little. This would have been the perfect opportunity to make it come true. That might still happen, mind you.

This sounds like a very smart thing to do. And if you are capable of it, why not, di ba? And as your child learns, you get to learn as well (in many ways pa).

You go Teacher! =)

rowena said...

Hi Gina, you're right, I get to learn so many things now that I'm homeschooling my son. I hope you'll be able to teach as well (to fulfill your dream).

auee said...

Homeschooling in Pinas? This is news to me. That's great. Just don't forget that socialisation with kids his age is also important.

All the best with your "teaching" job then

rowena said...

Hi Auee, as I've attended lots of seminars on homeschooling I get to know also that it's been existing in the Philippines for a quite some time already. Some homeschoolers are enrolled abroad while doing their lessons here. Others have tie-ups with local schools. And now, the Catholic Filipino Academy being managed by an all-Filipino team from the academe sector. I've also met mothers who homeschooled all her kids from grade school to high school and they all come out ok in college. We also make sure our kids can socialize with their peers as well (they have weekly activity with other homeschoolers). Thanks for the concern. :-)

SASSY MOM said...

I have a friend who does this. I love the idea. I love tutoring my kids but I don't think I can carry it all throughout. I'm proud of you!

Thanks for sharing!

jing reyes said...

Hi... really surprised to find out there are lots of home schooled kids in the Philippines now. The monthly socialization concept even covers the EQ part.

I think I would have enjoyed home schooling. I've got to say though that having to deal with the different people in school (the bullies, the nerds, the weirdos, the sosyaleras, etc.) everyday has kinda prepared me to deal with the different people I met in the work place... you meet the same kind of people actually.

lady cess said...

nagpost ako ng comment dito dati pa. hindi yata pumasok, kala ko lang. ang haba=haba pa naman non :D i just want to say we're seriously considering this. bahala na. still unsure.

rowena said...

Hi Salen, thanks. There are times that homeschooling can put some stress to the parent, I guess I just have to stretch my patience with my kid. I always tell myself that this is my son, he needs to learn and learn much more (even teach him lessons beyond his grade level). I even gave up the job at the city hall so I can have more time teaching them.

Hi Jing, thanks for the visit. Yeah, you're right that the same kind of people you meet in school are the ones they'll meet in the real world. I'm gonna prepare them for that, in time. Thanks again.

rowena said...

Hi Cess, I didn't see the long comment. Comments are not moderated anymore. Don't know what's happening. It happened also to teacher julie's comment before. Anyway, you still have 10 months to think about it. If you're free, come with me in our August activity. :-)

lady cess said...

^ really? sige nga! pls tell me about it. you have my email add diba? sit-in ako kung pwede.

rowena said...

Hi Cess, I'll email you the next activity sked this month. Excited nako to meet you.

KK said...

Hi Rowena,
Kudos to you for homeschooling your son. I think that each child has to be treated as an individual. I hope that everything works out for you. $315 for the materials is a great deal.

rowena said...

Hi Tina, thanks. That amount also covers the tuition fee. And my son is really enjoying it. One time I asked him if he wants to go back to regular school, he can just tell me. He answered, "No, I'll be fine here at home".

Sally said...

Cheers to you, Rowena!

About Montessori...yah, madaming mapag-panggap dito sa Pinas. Just because they have the Montessori toys/gadgets/materials or because they have limited number of students, Montessori na name nila. Very misleading. It would be great to follow the whole philosophy of Maria Montessori and practice it even at home, para consistent ang training ng mga bata. Pwede nga sya sa homeschooling :-).

About socialization... it should NEVER be an issue. It's a very sad thing that ANTI-SOCIAL ATTITUDES are seen in the workplace where professionals are. Di ba sila yung mga degree holders, mga tapos na mag-aral, educated, ika nga? Clearly, there is something not right in the educational system if the graduates are still acting immaturely after all the years of studying.

The FAMILY is the best place to practice POSITIVE SOCIAL BEHAVIOR. And that is what our children need not the daily hi's and hello's to 20 to 50 other kids that doesn't really mean that much. They need something that will prepare them to the so-called real world because homeschooling is about REAL LIFE.

And when we say the word 'homeschooling', HOME is the main thing. Because there is more to homeschooling than academics. It is a way of life.

And yes, your son is right. He will definitely be just fine with you at home. :-)

God bless!


rowena said...

Hi Sally, thanks a lot for visiting my site. You said it all, hay salamat meron mga mommies who feel the same way, that the best way/place to teach the kids (both academics and social behavior) is at home....