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Thursday, August 3, 2017

What are the Disadvantages of Independent Homeschooling

This is not to discourage my reader from going independent and our family don't represent all independent homeschoolers in our city more so the country. I have been asked this question 3 times already this year and saw it this morning in Homeschoolers of The Philippines Facebook group. Here is what I know:
  1. If I need proof of academic learning in the form of a numerical or alphabetical grade then I don't have any. 
  2. If I need to declare a grade level, it can be confusing. We don't  have grade levels. Example, my 3rd daughter turned 13 in the first quarter of the year. She is doing grade 7 math, occasionally reads science books, is currently learning about Napoleon Bonaparte, is listening to me read The Count of Monte Cristo, crochets in the afternoons, is having a very hard time with her grade 4 Filipino workbook, takes care of 2 hens and a rooster and swims everyday, what grade level is she?
  3. We often fore go student discounts in establishments/activities that offer discounts because we don't have a school ID.
  4. When our eldest child said she wanted to go to university, we had to navigate through the requirements. Not a bad thing but very challenging for those who, like me, don't live in Metro Manila because provincial DepEd offices from what I have experienced 4 years ago are not used to handling uncommon cases. And now for my second child there's the whole senior high school thing. 
  5. I noticed with my children that when they are interested in an activity/ topic / academic subject they are super into it and spend a lot of time on it. They become pretty good at it but they remain poor in academic subjects that they are not interested in. And I think this is also because:
    • there are no good materials available or 
    • we could not find a good teacher/ tutor, or 
    • there are no clubs/ tutor service/ activity related to the subject as is the case with Filipino which I cannot teach because I am neither good at it nor am I interested in it. 
  6. There are educational activities or pursuits that we put resources on: time, money, etc that friends, family and our own upbringing consider folly and this is the pitfall of almost all mothers I know, guilt. And guilt can bite! Throw in self doubt and blame and there's the perfect recipe to freeze. 
  7. It did not save us money in the long run. My husband and I have not been in the habit of paying school fees that when our eldest entered college, the tuition fee was a regal shocker and it gobbled up what little we were able to set aside from not paying school fees in one go! Yes, we were able to save a bit in the beginning and we also did not spend money we did not have on school fees but there are lesson fees and field trips and the list can go sky high.
Freedom is not all rosy and independence can sometimes mean feeling all alone even when surrounded by all that is familiar. Thanks to the Facebook groups I am in where like minded people culminate.

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