Prompt for today is: Things you've learned that school won't teach you.
Wow, where to start?! How much time do you have?
I feel like school taught me nothing! Well, yes, I learned my ABC's and 1,2,3's, but now that I'm homeschooling my kids, I'm learning so much more! And sadly, learning how little I retained from a public school education.
I was definitely a "cram-for-the-test-and-then-dump" type of student. I didn't care at the time if I learned anything because I could see no reason for most of it. One reason why I'm giving my kids a different type of education; so they can follow their passions in life and learn what they need to as they do the things they enjoy. Keeping that love of learning that all young kids start out with. Oh, right, this wasn't about why I homeschool (though it could be)...
Lets get back to the topic-
Some things I've learned that school doesn't teach:Understanding and appreciating your own strengths and weaknesses- If you just can't "get" something you feel ashamed and like something is wrong with you. Teachers talk with concern to your parents and maybe suggest "special" classes, and of course the other kids make fun of you.
If you excel in something, you're often ignored because the teacher is so busy trying to catch up the rest of the class.
Everyone has strengths and weaknesses in different areas and that's wonderful!
Everyone is different and learns at their own unique pace in their own way. So, how can one-size-fits-all education, especially in large class sizes ever work?
Love of learning for the sake of learning- I started out with this, as all kids do, but it was sucked out of me more and more each year as any "learning" represented school, which represented work and boredom. I would even groan when my parents tried to teach me something; I remember a few times saying, "Mom, I'm not in school!" As if that fact meant I should not be learning anything!
Importance of/ Love of nature- perhaps it's attempted, but unless I'm actually out in nature (real nature, not a lawn and playground) I could never fully appreciate it.
True history- My kids and I research many different views when we study any historical event. I have been shocked and am actually angry at being lied to about so many things! Such as the true story of Thanksgiving, the amazing cultures (there are 100's) and peaceful governing throughout 1,000's of years of Native American's living here before us (why is that just skipped over?
I just finished reading an ancient history book over this school year with my elementary school son; the Native Americans maybe had a paragraph when every other culture had multiple chapters! Then American history starts when Columbus landed, thinking he was in India, and we celebrate that?! The "first" idiot to arrive?! Yay us! He wasn't actually first, either) and so many more historical accounts that have been glorified by whoever decided to write it down.
Self Respect/ Self love
Confidence- I suppose it could for some, but for most it seems that school focuses on your weaknesses rather than your strengths.
Equality/ Acceptance- schools are segregated into same age, same skill level, and focused on making everyone average in every subject, not to mention the peer pressures to conform to what is cool. Rather, they could be embracing different ages and stages. Letting them work together, to learn from and appreciate each others differences and what each can bring to a situation. Some schools are starting to do this with the buddy system. It's a start!
Family and the importance of your roll in it- school all day, after school events, jobs, homework, friends all weekend... it's so common now for each family member to go his own separate way most of the time. No wonder there's so much divorce. People don't know how to be together anymore.
What you are passionate about- I don't know about you, but I went through school trying to do just good enough for a passing grade so I wouldn't get in trouble, but once I had graduated, I had NO CLUE what I wanted to do with my life.
I would love if there were more R.O.P. classes or some kind of apprenticeship program during high school years where you could try out different jobs and skills to find out if it's something you have a knack for and any desire to make a career out of.
Respect/Good behavior/Morals- Even if teachers try to enforce it, you learn more from your peers than from any mature influences.
Respect and appreciation for other cultures- Unless you meet and talk to people in or from other countries you're just learning things about them and they seem strange and distant. But there are so many ways you can connect with people from around the world now, learn how we're really so similar, and to appreciate the customs each has.
Community- The importance of helping your neighbors, getting involved with your community, and helping where you can, because you can, not because you are getting paid or you have to be there. Though volunteering is starting to become a high school requirement! Wonderful!
Importance of the Arts- Music, dance, art of any kind is being phased out of schools. I definitely don't think it any less important than the other subjects!
Innovation/ Creativity/ Self-motivation/ Initiative- these may be encouraged in very small ways, once in a while, but I always found that assignments were usually strictly done one way and if you varied to far, even if you came to the correct conclusion, you were in trouble for not following directions, coloring in the lines, or what have you.
I'm really not trying to bash schools here. They just need tons of help and lots and lots of change! Standardized testing, filling in little bubbles, kids just being statistics, large classes with overworked, under-paid teachers, this is not the way to become great people. Maybe great corporate employees, but not loving, innovative, or creative people.
Does this post qualify as a rant, which I couldn't bring myself to do yesterday?
Well, I couldn't stay away from the homeschool topic as those are all the same reasons I do it!
Do you think I'm crazy for homeschooling? Not convinced that our school's aren't doing just peachy? Need to see the stats? This is for you:
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