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Lefebvre

Homeschooling

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and the merits and demerits thereof.

 

I am generally opposed to homeschooling. I'm not unsympathetic to homeschooling; it's extremely popular the farther to the right you go in Catholicism and as a sedevacantist I didn't know a single person who vouched for public schools. And the impetus to protect and strengthen your child's religious identity by shielding them from anything higher than elementary school is understandable; especially considering that middle and high schools aren't exactly bastions of purity. But they do have one thing going for them, above all, which I think is important...

 

They're real.

 

Sheltering children doesn't work. In my school couples make out in the hallways, talk about drinking in class -- and sometimes drink in class, once in a blue moon -- and pass around videos of girls twerking in the parking lot and guys competing to see who can smoke the most weed. It's not a sterile environment and it's not really supposed to be. It's how teenagers act around each other, it's how we socialise and build relationships. Most importantly, it's a microcosm, however imperfect, of the real world. Humanity and human society at large are just as pockmarked and living an isolated faith without the benefit of interaction with sinful behaviour doesn't strengthen faith, it weakens it. I remember a story my grandmother once told me, a friend of hers who had been Catholic homeschooled her entire life knocked on her door in tears.

 

"Margaret, whatever's the matter?"

 

Sobbing, Margret replies "Alice, the Popes had children!"

 

What I would want for my child as a teen is this: they know what a blowjob is, and if offered one they would gracefully decline. Ditto for getting fingered; and mods don't censor this because it's integral to the point I'm trying to make here. I think that if someone's spiritual education is so mild it can't reasonably be expected to stand up to the rigours of school, intermixing with your peers, and the sexuality that of course comes along with those two things than somebody is dropping the ball. Not only does no socialisation create a reclusive child, it screws them over when the truly staggering variety of worldly temptations comes up to bat, and they don't know how to handle them. And of course, Jesus being literally your only friend and he can't play video games to save his life has it's very own drawbacks. A balance of socialisation and friends and an acquaintance with reality as your peers are living it can, and should, be balanced with a strong education in one's faith both at home and at your house of worship, at religious education classes and devotional services. A choice for good is not truly valid unless you know the other side well enough to reject them; not because you're supposed to but because you want to.

 

Moving on to the other big reason religious people homeschool besides not wanting their children to know what weed smells like (disgusting, in case you're wondering)... the curriculum itself.

 

Hooboy, this'll be fun.

 

Now I'll insert the caveat here that part of homeschooling's recent (broadly so) resurgence has absolutely nothing to do with the primarily-religious motives I've discussed so far and will be discussing later in this post. Homeschooling is increasingly popular amongst the highly-educated, amongst liberals, and amongst people who are simply sick of the crappy public schools that infest the country. These are also valid, no-one familiar with public education *pointed look at Zabby* will attest that it doesn't have it's problems and sometimes quite a few of them. But that's not who I'm talking about here, and it's not what I am convinced is the raison d'etre of the contemporary homeschooling movement. We could magically fix and fund every public school in the nation to the point where Sweden compared to us is Equatorial Guinea when compared to Sweden; and there would still be Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Sikhs, Muslims, etc etc etc homeschooling their children because they're rightly wary of pledging the treasures of their faith to secular schools. 

 

But the problem is that there's education, and then there's religious education. The two should not mix. Ever. Here's a preliminary list of subjects which should not be influenced by religion when they're taught in schools:

  • History
  • Math
  • Science
  • Literature

AKA the core subjects. There's a reason that the popular stereotype of homeschooled kids as ignorant and stupid exists, and that's because... well, they kind of are. Not because they're stupid intrinsically, but because they're ignorant of what is taught in public schools, because different standards are taught from. It's apples and washing machines. I've read Catholic homeschooling materials and books for history. They're not objective, they're barely historical. They're hagiographies. I have nothing against hagiographies, especially for Catholic figures, but let's not pass them off as straight truth. Let's take a rather extreme example of Christian homeschooling... what the Duggars use. The Institute in Basic Life Principles runs the Advanced Training Institute International, which defines itself as "a home education program that provides curriculum and training to support parents in raising their children to love the Lord Jesus Christ, reason wisely based on the principles of Scripture, have world-changing purpose in life, and give Biblical answers to the needs of our day." Doesn't sound that bad, yes? Scripture is nice, as is loving Jesus, as are Biblical answers to the needs of our day. What could possibly go wrong? 

 

Oh.. wait...

 

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Has the sheer screaming insanity of that fully entered your brain and nestled therein? Has the utter babbling madness, the hysterically shrieking lunacy of teaching science, law, and medicine based completely off the teaching of the Bible so destroyed any semblance of rational thought that you can no longer type? Thank a merciful God that Jim Bob Duggar was never elected to the U.S. House of Representatives because I'm fairly sure the mere concept of representative democracy would baffle his children. This is an extreme example of homeschooling disparity, but lesser ones can be easily found in any discussion amongst Christians of evolution. Those who oppose evolution are generally alien to public schools, because no public school in it's right mind would teach something other than evolution as fact. 

 

Perhaps it is true that private schools and homeschooling as opposed to public schools are separated more by mutually-competing dogmas than anything else. The former often has religion, the latter, secularism. Which isn't to say that public schools are not sometimes petty and ideologically driven in how they present the facts. I know that as a Catholic I was often frustrated by depictions of the Church, whether I was in Astronomy or World History, as backwards, oppressive, and in opposition to progress as a general rule. But whereas a decent extracurricular education could sort that out, the inherent bias against secular knowledge and her sources which religious homeschooling all-too-often imparts can be much more harmful and much more difficult to correct. Ultimately I see homeschooling as a misguided attempt at curing the ills of our society, and their effect on our children, by instilling naivete, social isolation, and a sheltered and often outright incorrect worldview in it's place.

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I have a bit of a different experience with homeschooling. My parents are Christian fundamentalists, but I was not homeschooled because of ideology. Until about my teenage years, I was horribly ill from complications I have had since birth. Yet, I still was taught growing up that evolution was evil. I was taught from all those obscene Bob Jones University textbooks. All that ideological close-mindedness and it did not one iota of good. I still ended up as an atheist for six years, and now a left-wing, Catholic Communist. My point is that some are living in a dream world if they think they can predetermine their kids' beliefs by homeschooling them

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I recognize all of these points, but would respond with another: certain benefits of homeschooling can even at times outweigh any social and educational disadvantages. My wife and her family, all homeschooled, are uniquely amazing people. They have special outlooks on life and everything in it, they're all some of the most pleasant people to be around, they're fun and interesting, all in ways I've never once seen in any other family. They were raised on fundamentalist curricula but somehow have turned out to be some of the most open-minded, welcoming, and non-judgmental Christians I know, all the while adhering relatively closely to the beliefs they were brought up with, though frequently willing to explore and to challenge them. And while obviously it would be silly to say their homeschooling is the cause of it all, I would stake quit a lot on my belief that it very much fostered these things.

 

And yes, there are visible effects of their homeschool education. We laugh and joke about things they never learned at times. But none of it seems to matter in the least bit in the real world, whereas all the rest of this does very much. A perfect K-12 education is, as far as I am concerned, worth far less than the benefits that children can receive from good, godly parents willing to give up time to teach and raise their children. And socially, my wife and her three siblings pretty well span the entire spectrum from "perfect salesman" charisma and charm to "shy introvert," so that diversity is an interesting result.

 

Of course, this is all anecdotal, so take it or leave it, but my experience with my wife and in-laws has been a huge factor in how I myself think of homeschooling. And obviously for many families none of this will be true. But in principle I think it can be wonderful.

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Guest JAG
And yes, there are visible effects of their homeschool education. We laugh and joke about things they never learned at times. But none of it seems to matter in the least bit in the real world, whereas all the rest of this does very much. A perfect K-12 education is, as far as I am concerned, worth far less than the benefits that children can receive from good, godly parents willing to give up time to teach and raise their children

 

 

I think that's one of the most important points brought up.

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To me, the implication is the converse.

When I meet someone who is homeschooled, I don't make any conclusions from this, exactly because the effects of homeschooling can vary wildly. You can't say anything from this fact.

However, when I meet someone with a "conspiracy theorist" vibe, I do think "this person was probably homeschooled."

So in other words,

Homeschooled does not imply certain weird tendencies,

But

Certain weird tendencies implies homeschooled.

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My parents actually chose to homeschool me so I would focus more on my education rather than being popular, socialization, etc...

And honestly, I thank them for this. My education had nothing to do with them sheltering me. They let me step out and see the world for what it is. I see good and bad in society, just like you.

Honestly homeschooling is a lot different today. The only difference between me and you at this time is I am not inside a classroom and don't see a teacher/other students face to face.

I send tests and etc. to real teachers. Real teachers came up with my school books. I have a few electives in school I've taken that are not religiously based and I have enough of a religious identity to recognize them.

I personally do not see the issue with it, as long as the child is okay with it. There has been several times in my life my mom has asked if I wanted to go to a public school.

I said no. So it's my choice now. I chose to be homeschooled my entire life.

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So I am, as a general rule, opposed to homeschooling. I am, of course, biased because I have been in the UK private education system since I was 2 and a half, so take that into consideration. 

 

- there is something that is very much a reflection of the real world in a 'traditional' educational environment. You are going to have to rub shoulders with people you don't like, and who don't share your worldview, and who might not be who you choose to engage with. You are going to have to learn things you don't find interesting, from teachers who might bore you to tears, and you're going to have to suck it up. That's darn good preparation for the real world, right there. You do learn important social skills in public schools. You learn social norms. You learn how to learn around people who do it differently to you, which is super important for going on to university. You learn to accept that there are authority figures who you don't necessarily like, and who don't necessarily like you, whom you have to work with to move forward. 

 

- it is significantly concerning to me that people are able to teach their kids without even necessarily having obtained any qualifications whatsoever. We wouldn't employ teachers at schools who do not have qualifications; why is that any different from homeschooling? 

 

- I would note that maybe private schooling in the UK is different to the US; here, it is one of the most rigorous educations you can receive.

 

Does this all mean that I think homeschooled kids are socially illiterate recluses? Of course not. The self-discipline homeschooling has the potential to teach is, I'm sure, extremely valuable. But, that self-discipline can be cultivated in a traditional educational environment alongside the benefits normal schooling provides. 

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So I am, as a general rule, opposed to homeschooling. I am, of course, biased because I have been in the UK private education system since I was 2 and a half, so take that into consideration. 

 

- there is something that is very much a reflection of the real world in a 'traditional' educational environment. You are going to have to rub shoulders with people you don't like, and who don't share your worldview, and who might not be who you choose to engage with. You are going to have to learn things you don't find interesting, from teachers who might bore you to tears, and you're going to have to suck it up. That's darn good preparation for the real world, right there. You do learn important social skills in public schools. You learn social norms. You learn how to learn around people who do it differently to you, which is super important for going on to university. You learn to accept that there are authority figures who you don't necessarily like, and who don't necessarily like you, whom you have to work with to move forward. 

 

- it is significantly concerning to me that people are able to teach their kids without even necessarily having obtained any qualifications whatsoever. We wouldn't employ teachers at schools who do not have qualifications; why is that any different from homeschooling? 

 

- I would note that maybe private schooling in the UK is different to the US; here, it is one of the most rigorous educations you can receive.

 

Does this all mean that I think homeschooled kids are socially illiterate recluses? Of course not. The self-discipline homeschooling has the potential to teach is, I'm sure, extremely valuable. But, that self-discipline can be cultivated in a traditional educational environment alongside the benefits normal schooling provides. 

See in the USA, Homeschooling has different options.

For instance, we purchase my curriculum. It sends us LESSON PLANS, TESTS, QUIZZES, AND SCHOOL BOOKS WRITTEN BY QUALIFIED PEOPLE. The only subject I learned without a proper book is my grandfather teaching me cursive writing.

There is ONLINE SCHOOLS, which are public school options, where the child learns from a real teacher online.

Also for me, I send all TESTS AND QUIZZES to a real live teacher in Virginia. They check it. I have teachers who are pickier than others, and I thank those teachers because although they are hard I have gotten 5x better at English since I have been learning from their system.

As said also, mine is a private school system and it IS more rigourous than what a lot of public schoolers do (ex: They skip proofs in geometry, I actually had to do them. I do 30 problems they do 10. etc.)

I have seen socialization through other opportunities, which I had good and bad experiences with.

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until i went on this forum, i didn't know homeschooling was even possible, and so many people did it.

i thought like 99% went to normal schools.

i have never been so wrong

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Okay I feel I should make a long post, considering I seem to be the honorary homeschooled person here.

 

America has lots of options now. It is no longer homeschooling as "mom just gives you random problems to work with." There is books you can purchase. Curriculum. Some homeschooling curriculum cost as much as a thousand dollars. not lying here.

NOW. I use an online/offline curriculum. By this means they send my mother lesson plans and answer keys for HOMEWORK, and I get sent the actual school books. I do the homework and have it checked. I also get sent books for school. By books I mean book report books. For English I get 4-6 a year. The past couple years I have taken World lit and American lit, and had 4 books from it also.

Naturally I've become a fast reader. XD

I use Seton Homeschool Study, in case people are wondering.

We pay for the private sector, and the school does not follow Common Core. It is more rigorous.

Now, for school, lets see what I have had...

Math: My math has nothing to do with religion whatsoever. Do I wish I had more help with Geometry? Yes of course. I got straight A's in algebra, and a B in Geometry. Senior year I am taking accounting and Algebra 2. Neither will be religiously made either.

Science: My science was a decent blend of religious and non-religious study. It taught me the theories of evolution, I forget what the other one was specifically called but it was a form of evolution CAUSED by mutation. My very first science was not religious at all. It taught me everything scientifically, had me do a few experiments for my own knowledge. etc. In highschool, my science has mentioned religion but still does not 100% teach religion enough to say OH MEH GOSH THIS IS SO RELIGIOUS no it taught creationism with the other theories and that was about it for religion in my biology to  be frank.

History: Now this is the one subject I will not deny has a religious aspect in it. But my History teacher had a prologue which stated very clear: "Each historian has a different idea of what is HISTORY" While there is many topics they agree on, there is some that have questionable aspect. She said from day 1 this History book is taught with the idea that "The most important historical event is Christ" I had a very thorough history teaching though. I have had American History, World History, and History of the Americas in general now. Next year I will have American Government and be taking economics as an elective. With these facts stated, I also note I can answer many historical questions my parents cannot answer off the top of their head, so I would say nothing hurt me yes?

Literature: If the book had a religious motive behind it, it was brought out. If the book/story had NO religious motive, religion was not mentioned. Now to be frank, I was not really given books which did not have some kind of religious aspect very much, but I have read books on my own time which did not have an 100% religious aspect, so it certainly has not hurt me either. I have read A LOT of CLASSICS. They give me tons of classics, to the point I grow tired of it, but I certainly have developed a certain taste because of my learning. They are a very LITERATURE HEAVY school system. I have to do a test and a report on every single book I read. It has been worth it. I have an A in every English and Literature class I have taken/had to have. I have read classics no one but an elder would know of as well. XD Heck, I read the original Pinocchio (it's nothing like the movie btw).

now my school also REQUIRES 2 years of a FOREIGN LANGUAGE, and my foreign language DOES NOT mention religion either. I am currently taking Spanish

I took GEOGRAPHY as an elective, and it was from NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC. Every statement within the book was stated as if religion was a myth and only science was correct. And I did not take 'offense' to the book or such, I felt they looked at it objectively and did not ATTACK religion therefore it was fine. It was interesting to learn of different cultures, and some different religions as well.

I have a RELIGION class every year, which is Christian. My first years I had to learn the catechism (My catechism is not yours I promise, it is the Baltimore Catechism, which was used in times like...1933 :D ) I had to read the Bible front and back this year with a Bible study. Next year I'll be learning to use morals to face the world out there, I don't see an issue with it. Plus I am not FORCED to take it if I did not want to.

I took a HEALTH elective, which was a bit more like home economics and nutrition sort of thing. It was non-religious as well. I struggled with the tests because they were very "word for word from the book" and had things you would not expect to find on the test. Overall kind of a poorly made course, would not recommend someone else to take that course at this time.

World Literature was an HONORS class. I got an A. I honestly find this to be the love of my whole report card to a college. Especially considering the hard work it took to do it. My teacher was very, very harsh. If I missed a small aspect it was like missing the entire thing. I thank that teacher though, because I hate not doing well and her criticism pushed me to make her eat crow XD and I DID. SO HA. XD

 

Now with homeschooling, there is negatives I cannot deny.

Tutors- If I want a tutor, I most certainly have to pay for it. I usually end up looking in encyclopedias or on youtube if I cannot figure something out, which in a way is its own kind of tutor and teacher.

Motivation - A sad thing with homeschooling is some people who do it are NOT as motivated as I am. So they slack off or such. I am highly motivated so I get things done, and do them properly. It takes a bit more heart.

Socialization: There is a perk and not perk to this. The perk is I am not focused on socializing while in school, so education became more important and when I got to college the studies come first and people second. However, there is struggles with socialization because although I have had friends in person, there is a stereotype. I stay at home and do nothing - no. I struggle talking to people - I am actually very outgoing and love people. I can't handle people I don't like - I used to have more problems with it, but I don't think a public school would have prevented it. I have a perfectionism issue and I kind of want the world to fit into my standard box, and it don't. I am far better than I was, especially since stepping out into the world and seeing people more. Homeschoolers have the choice to meet people or ignore them and I chose to confront them head on. It took a lot of growth to deal with it and I appreciate being able to do it.

 

 

I hope maybe this gives a better aspect into it. A lot of the issues with homeschooling, come from the homeschoolers themselves, not the actual system.

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I also want to mention AS TO HISTORY

There is many, MANY events in History that were related to religion.

My mother has even spoken in public school, she did not learn about the crusades, the Church of England issues, and etc.

I did. I also learned how American Protestants would pour blood on Irish Catholic voting in a time the immigrants were viewed as a negative, etc.

There is many things in History, that are valuable, that I have learned about because RELIGION WAS MENTIONED IN MY HISTORY BOOK. My mom did not learn a lot of it until she studied history ON HER OWN.

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However, when I meet someone with a "conspiracy theorist" vibe, I do think "this person was probably homeschooled."

So in other words,

Homeschooled does not imply certain weird tendencies,

But

Certain weird tendencies implies homeschooled.

 

Sadly, I can actually agree with this to some extent.

 

Personally, I've been through private Christian schools, homeschooled (mostly) through the public school system, and I did sports at a public high school (which was hell). I'm more for homeschooling if it's through the public school system and has real qualified teachers (and you actually get to interact with the other kids in your class online, y'know). *shrug* And I do agree with the OP (what little of the post I actually read before my eyes glazed over) that there should be a balance between getting the education and getting the socialization kids need.

 

I've never actually had anyone stereotype me as a homeschooler though, besides my fellow public school teammates refusing to swear in front of me (which I'm still baffled about) and some random stranger on Myspace chat telling me I was 'sheltered' when I was 14 and had just figured out the internet. xD

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So in other words,

Homeschooled does not imply certain weird tendencies,

But

Certain weird tendencies implies homeschooled.

 

 

 

This is so true(In most cases).

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As someone who  was homeschooled I can see both sides.  Was I sheltered? to a degree, yes. But you have to take into account that I was not primarily a 90's homeschooler, I was a 2000's homeschooler. I never wore a denim jumper after 1999  I cut my hair. XD I wasn't forbidden from listening to rock and roll. I had a walkman, and later an MP3 player. I had TV. I had internet access. I watched Disney movies (but Harry Potter was forbidden). I read Beverly Cleary and C.S. Lewis.

I knew that there was bad in the world, I knew that there was good in the world.  I could tell you the capital of every state in the nation, as well as sing the latest pop song. I had friends who were public schooled, so I was aware of what was going on in schools and I really didn't want any part of it.

I also had an abusive father who walked out when I was middle school aged, which set me back not only emotionally, but mentally. I was distraught and had ADD symptoms. My reading level had always been about 3 grades higher than my peers, while my math level was about 2 grades lower. I was also behind socially and had trouble connecting with people.  With homeschooling, my mom was able to customize my cirriculum to my own needs and get me to where I needed to be to succeed in life.


As an adult with potentially life threatening food allergies, I'm a fan of homeschooling. I can keep the allergens at bay, while being comfortable. It's embarrassing having to tell a teacher that your classmates snack could kill you. I know some people scream EPI PEN, but you have to go to the ER every time you use it. Which is even MORE hassle. And embarrassment. I wouldn't put that on a child, just because someone in class is eating a nutella sandwich.

Any wayyyyyy.

I know it's not for everyone, but I like homeschooling. It worked for me and where I was at. It's flexible and easy to customize.  There are support groups available. Plus, you can do your math in your pajamas.

I personally wouldn't put someone in public school because public school keeps getting more and more strange

 Five year olds being taught about sex from teachers and not parents. Weird school lunches that look like snacks/lunachables. Parents having to buy an immense amount of school supplies for the teachers to distribute throughout the year.  Common core's math and history.

If I had a kid, I'd send them to private or Christian school. Yeah, it's more expensive, but I think it'd be worth it. A good education trumps one of dubious origin.

...crap. I'm in the debate section again.  -runs away and hides-

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As someone who  was homeschooled I can see both sides.  Was I sheltered? to a degree, yes. But you have to take into account that I was not primarily a 90's homeschooler, I was a 2000's homeschooler. I never wore a denim jumper after 1999  I cut my hair. XD I wasn't forbidden from listening to rock and roll. I had a walkman, and later an MP3 player. I had TV. I had internet access. I watched Disney movies (but Harry Potter was forbidden). I read Beverly Cleary and C.S. Lewis.

I knew that there was bad in the world, I knew that there was good in the world.  I could tell you the capital of every state in the nation, as well as sing the latest pop song. I had friends who were public schooled, so I was aware of what was going on in schools and I really didn't want any part of it.

I also had an abusive father who walked out when I was middle school aged, which set me back not only emotionally, but mentally. I was distraught and had ADD symptoms. My reading level had always been about 3 grades higher than my peers, while my math level was about 2 grades lower. I was also behind socially and had trouble connecting with people.  With homeschooling, my mom was able to customize my cirriculum to my own needs and get me to where I needed to be to succeed in life.

As an adult with potentially life threatening food allergies, I'm a fan of homeschooling. I can keep the allergens at bay, while being comfortable. It's embarrassing having to tell a teacher that your classmates snack could kill you. I know some people scream EPI PEN, but you have to go to the ER every time you use it. Which is even MORE hassle. And embarrassment. I wouldn't put that on a child, just because someone in class is eating a nutella sandwich.

Any wayyyyyy.

I know it's not for everyone, but I like homeschooling. It worked for me and where I was at. It's flexible and easy to customize.  There are support groups available. Plus, you can do your math in your pajamas.

I personally wouldn't put someone in public school because public school keeps getting more and more strange

 Five year olds being taught about sex from teachers and not parents. Weird school lunches that look like snacks/lunachables. Parents having to buy an immense amount of school supplies for the teachers to distribute throughout the year.  Common core's math and history.

If I had a kid, I'd send them to private or Christian school. Yeah, it's more expensive, but I think it'd be worth it. A good education trumps one of dubious origin.

...crap. I'm in the debate section again.  -runs away and hides-

God Bless Becky.

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I've been home schooled all my life. I don't think I've worn a denim jumper ever. I listen to all kinds of music. I watch a wide variety of stuff. Even Harry Potter. I love to read. Pretty well anything I can get my hands on. 

I think home schooling is good, if done correctly.

 

The public schools I've seen, pretty well everyone in them are heathens, and are immature. I'm not saying that all public schools are like the ones I've seen, and everyone in them aren't the same, but I would not go for them.

Edited by Allons-y99

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