Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Why I am glad I learn at home.

I have been home educated since I was age 4. My Mom thought 4 was too young for me to have to go to school, so she wanted to teach me for a few years at home, but we liked it so much we stayed with it. I am eight years old now and would be in in P5 if I went to regular school.

I like home education because:

I don't have to get up quite so early. I can eat, drink or go to the toilet whenever I want to. I don't have to wait for a bus, wait in lines, or wait for other people to finish what they are doing, so I have more time to play and do things I like to do, like karate, swimming, Boys Brigade,  Sunday School, riding bikes and fixing them.

I get to choose some of the things I want to learn about. I want to be a palaeontologist when I grow up so I really like learning about  dinosaurs, fossils, prehistoric plants and insects. I also enjoy learning about regular insects and bugs. I like plants too. I have a collection of carnivorous plants, cacti, and a few prehistoric plants. We get to do science experiments too, and go fun places. I get to choose most of the books for my reading too, so I get to read books I like instead of boring ones.

I like that we can change what we were planning to do as well. Sometimes we read about something really interesting in a book or magazine and I want to know more. We can stop what we were doing and look up more stuff online. I like to do school on the internet too. Things like Jumpstart and Mathblaster  are nice for a change from books, and I really looking cool things up online like genetic mutations with a bird I read about.

We make a lot of our own books too. I have one I made called "We're Going On a Ghost Hunt" when I was little, a dinosaur book, a space book and a story called "It Wasn't Me" with our dog. My brother has his own ABC with Morse code and the NATO alphabet and a Zombie Rat book. I am making a zombie grammar book now. I don't like grammar very much but zombies makes it a little bit more fun. We tell make up stories every night too.

I love doing science experiments. We have a really good microscope, a telescope and lots of science kits. My favourite science toy is my Chemistry set. I like when we make a tiny explosion in the test tube. We really terrible stink bombs once too. I like growing crystals, and making fake fossils with plaster. I have a small collection of real fossils too.

Fridays are my favourite day because Friday is board games day. We have all sorts of educational board games and we have even made a few of our own. We Mariopoly Jr., Skylopoly ( Skylanders Monopoly), and Guess Who Dinosaur version. We make up our own rules for other games too, so we can play pass the bomb naming different types of dinosaurs, using different kinds of words or anything we like. We made our Chinese Checkers set much better too. Now it has dragons and marbles instead of pegs. We bought books to show us how to play many of the games like chess, backgammon and go.

 Being home educated means we can go places on school days too when things are not so crowded. I love to go the museums, the sea side, on nature walks and places like the farm park. W-5 is my favourite educational place to go, but I also like Grey Point Fort, The Somme Museum, The Ulster Museum, Botanic Gardens, The Ulster Folk and Transport Museum,  The Downpatrick Railway Museum, Exploris and pretty much any place we go for  a day out.

Another good thing about being home educated means I get to spend more time with my family. I like to do things my Mom and Dad. Sometimes my Dad teaches me guitar and helps me fix or make things. My Mom does lots of things with me, like art, games, experiments etc.. Sometimes my brother is annoying but lots of times I like to do things with him too. I can even help my Mom teach him some things. Sometimes I help my Mom write reviews too. We get a lot of free books because we write reviews for them and sometimes my Mom gives me money to spend online when I help her write other reviews.

 I like Mondays too because I have swimming and karate.

I'm also glad I don't have to go to the school near where I live. Lots of kids who go there never even learn to read well - even when they are grown up.   A lot of the kids where I live are nice but there are some very bad ones. They have tried to drown two children, throw bricks and bottles and steal things a lot. They have hit me with stones when I try to ride my bike and hurt me very bad once so I had to go to hospital. They like to hurt animals too and I know they hurt children at school too. They go in a group and beat people with golf clubs. Their Mom says it is OK because she likes them to steal things - maybe so she won't have to buy much and she doesn't like them to play near their own house. She locks the door so they can not get in.  Lots of the boys drink beer  and coloured drinks that  I wanted when I was a baby because I liked the colours but Mom says are not for children too.  I am glad I don't have to go to school with them. I wouldn't like to have to fight every day, especially if there are always a whole lot of boys to fight at once and they have bricks and rocks. I really wouldn't like to have to wait for a bus where they know you are waiting and could come with golf clubs. It would be very cold waiting for busses in the winter too.

I really want a good job when I grow up so I want to learn a lot. I wouldn't like to go to a school where people can hardly read. I like to read to learn about all sorts of things. I will need to get good test results to go to university and be a palaeontologist. I need a good school so I can learn a lot.

Some people worry that home educated kids are not socialised.  I looked up socialized. It means that you are  able to  mix with other people and "behave in a way that is acceptable to your society".  I wish there was someone nice my own age where I live but I get to mix with lots of people. I go to Boys Brigade, Sunday School and Karate. I play with other children at the caravan. I used to go to youth group but the boys that try to hit me with golf clubs go there and the grown ups there don't watch. I think I am better socialised than many of the children here. I don't break laws, steal, get drunk or hurt people who don't hurt me. Most home educated kids do not do things like that. If children are supposed to go to school to be socialised - then why are kids who go to school worse than the ones who don't? I can learn more at home, and I can be better socialised too.


  1. Hello Billy,
    I really like your blog because it's interesting to see how you feel about homeschool.

    Those boys with the golf clubs sound horrible! I'm glad you don't have to go to school with them.

    I am thinking about homeschooling my son who is 8. He has autism, which means he finds school difficult and he has trouble learning and making friends. I was thinking that maybe he would be happier at home learning about things he enjoys, so I've been reading blogs about homeschooling to see if it is the right decision.

    I think if I do homeschool, I will get my son to make a blog like the one you have made. I think he would enjoy that. At the moment he has a blog about a character he invented called King Long Arms and he writes stories about him and makes videos.

    Anyway, thanks for a really good blog and I learned something new about brontosaurus today, so thanks.

  2. Thank you very much for your comments. I had a friend with autism before but he moved away. I think you should let your son try home education if he wants to. I have lots of fun learning at home. I am learning about animal communication now - but I still read about palaeontology and collect fossils too. My next blog will be about my parrot Hal. We are trying to teach him to talk - but not just repeat phrases, we are teaching him to understand human language like Alex the African Grey. It will take a long time, but he understands a few phrases and says a few words and we've only had him 3 weeks. I think your son might really like to pursue his own interests too. of course you still have to do the boring stuff, but he might learn more when studying something he likes.

    If he does start a blog - please send me his webpage. I would love to talk to him online.