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Why Homeschooling Mothers Are Superior

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Why Homeschooling Mothers Are Superior

By Linda Dobson

“A lot of people wonder how Chinese homeschooling parents raise such stereotypically successful kids. They wonder what these parents do to produce so many math whizzes and music prodigies [and now, Miss Americas], what it’s like inside the family, and whether they could do it too. Well, I can tell them, because I’ve done it.” I can tell you why homeschooling mothers are superior as a response to “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior.”

See also “Anyone Can Live the Learning Lifestyle”

Homeschooling mothers work hard to create an environment so their children never lose the innate joy of learning with which they are born. The quickest way to extinguish love of learning for its own sake is to break a subject down into tiny parts and then drill and kill to make sure the parts are remembered for a test. This isn’t learning; it’s programming.

Homeschooling mothers value and respect their children for who they are at this moment in time, not because of grades provided by strangers or because they win contests and trophies. I’m not talking about false self-esteem here. What I refer to is a child allowed to grow free of the “degrading grading experience” so s/he pursues knowledge in the way that most benefits her/him, just as adults do. Homeschooling mothers treat a child as a complete human being here and now, not as something incomplete and in need of fixing, filling or, worse, flaunting.

Homeschooling FunMore Reasons Why Homeschooling Mothers Are Superior

Homeschooling mothers realize that school is a false environment never again repeated in life. Rather than expose their children to this fake atmosphere, which sets them up to undergo yet another adaptation to be comfortable in the real world, homeschooling mothers allow their children to grow and learn in the real world every day.

Homeschooling mothers are aware of their children’s passions. Human beings put more attention into – and therefore actually learn – when they are engaged in activity they enjoy. Let it be drums, a harp, a digeredoo!

Homeschooling mothers recognize there are many aspects to a child, that children are much more than walking intellects. Social opportunities with people they like and can learn from nurture them socially, emotionally, psychologically, and spiritually, as well as mentally. Let there be sleepovers – and dance classes and 4-H meetings and all manner of (desired) extra-curricular activities that address a growing child’s need for experience beyond the intellectual.

Homeschooling Mothers Are Superior Because They Don’t Need to Be

Homeschooling mothers do not receive and take pride in ego strokes falsely created by correlating a child’s academic achievement with “successful parenting.” Life is far too short to spend it insulting children, calling them garbage, fat, or lazy, as an integral aspect of “successful parenting,” regardless of whether or not the insulted feels there was an impact on self-esteem.

Chinese parents apparently try to destroy their children’s individuality, discouraging them from pursuing their true passions, ignoring their choices, and providing criticism in a debilitating environment. By contrast, homeschooling mothers believe that the best way to raise their children is by living with them in the real world, “letting them see what they’re capable of, and arming them with skills, work habits and inner confidence that no one can ever take away.”

Even if, ultimately, both the Chinese mother and homeschooling mother’s children turn out equally “successful” (and whose definition of this word do we use?), which approach makes for the most satisfying, enjoyable journey?

Homeschooling mothers, do not let the nonsense that passes for news (or literature) allow you to question your choice to take your family journey in shared love, wonder, kindness, respect and, most importantly, trust.

LindaSig homeschooling

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15 Responses to “Why Homeschooling Mothers Are Superior”

  1. Discovering Montesso says:

    This is the first time since browsing through blogs that I ever left a comment that I disagreed with the author. I am not chinese. I am a mother. I find that using the word superior to describe a group of people is very offensive and a negative set back to the struggles that have been made in our countrys' history . I have learned a lot of new things through reading this blog. I know you have a lot of readers. Please don't send this message, it just isn't right. We as people should celebrate our differences and understand that the best way our nation can grow is through peace not separation or a sense of superiority. In the spirit of Dr. Martin uther ing Jr. Day lets not respond to ignorance by fueling the fire. I thank you for sharing because I love to know what I am up against when I am teaching my children at home and what they may face when they walk outside.

  2. katieb says:

    Awesome! So incredibly well said—-this is the best rebuttal to Amy Chua's horrifying definition of 'successful parenting' I have read!!

  3. Sarah says:

    Great rebuttal to the Amy Chua essay. Let's just hope that vile piece was more about selling books than a reflection of the average Chinese mom.

    DM – the use of the word "superior" here is in response to the "Chinese mothers" story that was all over the news last week. I think Linda puts the notion that superiority is something to strive to rest in the last part of this blog entry when she poses questions like who defines success. I would venture to say her mindset is very much in line with your response here.

  4. Greetings!

    Thank you DM, Katie, and Sarah, for writing! DM, Sarah is 100% correct in her reading that she shared (thanks, Sarah).

    After multiple readers shared that they knew people who were thinking that maybe Tiger Mom was on to something, I knew those of us who believe in a kinder, gentler way to raise and educate children needed to get an alternative out there for those people to consider.

    I hope they opt for homeschooling instead of tiger, for the sake of all the children.

    All best,

    Linda

  5. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by raechelleec and Parent at the Helm, Parent at the Helm. Parent at the Helm said: Why Homeschooling Mothers Are Superior: http://parentatthehelm.com/?p=3758 […]

  6. Discovering Montesso says:

    Thank you for responding to the comment I made yesterday. I am happy to find out that I misinterpret the message you were making. I enjoy reading your blog postings. Thank you for sharing.

  7. Thanks so much for the response, DM, and for reading Parent at the Helm…I'm so very glad you like it!

    All best,

    Linda

  8. Cristina says:

    Very well said Linda! I think if nothing else, Ms. Chua's article served as a catalyst for me to figure out why I do things the way I do. What I discovered is that I'm comfortable with who I am and how my kids are developing. I don't need the world's approval to know that.

    Peace and Laughter!

  9. "Very well said" back at you, Cristina! My homeschool advocacy was/is not about gaining approval; it's about inviting as many families as possible to experience the joy of going about life in a family-centered lifestyle. Who would want such a lifestyle with a tiger mom at the center of it???

    Thanks so much for writing!

    Linda

  10. Tamara Brown says:

    Worth investigating!

    Slightly horrified aptly describes my response after reading the excerpt from Mrs. Chua's book, but reading further articles (whose links are found directly underneath the original articles) including reader responses and Mrs. Chua's own responses, I think there are certain nuggets we would all do well to consider further.

    There are flaws in both the Western AND Eastern parenting approach, Mrs. Chua even admits that her book is like a "Coming of age" book and how she retreated to some extent from the traditional Eastern parenting approach after her youngest daughter rebelled at age 13. The Western homeschooling community obviously agrees that there are flaws with the Western parenting approach, or we wouldn't be so adamant about homeschooling vs. public schooling. We all want the best for our children. I think even most parents that utilize public schools really just want the best for their children, but they just don't know their options.

    There are recognizable truths about flaws in the current Western parenting approach; there are far too many unruly, disrespectful, floundering youngsters in our society today, who will not reach their potential, due in most part to lack of good guidance from their parents and teachers.

    Westerners typically have swallowed the "high self-esteem" approach, and babied their childrens' feelings to their own detriment. I've probably been guilty if it myself, and can only hope that I continue to improve my parenting skills as I continue to learn through life as a considerate, thinking, humble adult.

  11. Wade says:

    I think there could be a shift in this message in that focus should be on home schooling and traditional schooling. My wife & I home school our kids and in my opinion, home schooling is a far superior option for my kids than sending them to school.

  12. brooke says:

    I got your "superior" part … but, even as a homeschooling mom, I take issue with "drill and kill" … I think a few of us are pretty okay that our paramedics and doctors drilled those meds and dosages and symptoms … pretty okay with that. It has its place, as does many other things. I just can't fall on one side of the fence on things like this. And as for grading … well, it's really no different than saying, "That was a great job folding the laundry" vs "Ahm, that is NOT folded laundry." It's not degrading to correct, nor is it degrading to find out how you did on a job … be that job your math or your cookies.

  13. Debbie H. says:

    Hey Linda, my daughter called me up a few week's ago upset at what she was hearing on our local NPR station. It was an interview with Chua. My daughter didn't have time to call in and wanted me to call in and set her straight! LOL

    And today, I ran into the following excellent blog post by psychologist Peter Gray. These two experiences made me wonder if you've chimed in on this so I did a search and I was right, here you are doing so. Nice commentary.

    And here's Peter Gray's take on it:
    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/freedom-learn

  14. Hi, Debbie!

    Good for your daughter – I'm sorry you didn't make the call. <g> I've got Peter's latest bookmarked for later…I'm sure it's as good as his other posts!

    While I have your attention, I'm waiting for your humorous response…or anything else!! (I only ask because I lov ya'. <G>)

  15. […] Why Homeschooling Mothers Are Superior A lot of people wonder how Chinese homeschooling parents raise such stereotypically successful kids. I can tell you why homeschooling mothers are superior as a response to “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior.” […]

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