Thursday 12 April 2012

Reason to HE Number 6

All different ages learning in harmony!
Yesterday, when at the mansion, Ipswich's Victorian Museum, I got into several discussions about school.  One began when we were all talking about the Animation Stations while waiting for the children to finish.  One lady started saying to myself and another lady: 'isn't it terrible these days how school doesn't seem to teach children enough?  They all seem to have this stupid idea (then she came up with a lovely analogy) that a garden of flowers would all flourish at the same time; some children may flourish in September while others in November, why can't they see that?'  All I could think is, what a clever lady!

The other lady then said exams just weren't her thing at school, when she was younger she just couldn't do them.  I explained that when I was younger the stress of an exam would have such an effect on my reading that I would literally become unable to read, even words like and and the!  How I even managed to get what I did is beyond me.  Should these pressures really be put on such young heads?  Are SATs really for the sake of the child or fun statistics for those who sit in their offices to play with?

How right these ladies are and that is another reason to home educate!  Reason Number 6:  My children will never be compared to another sharing the same birth year or another birth year for that matter!

That lady was so right when she said it's wrong to expect one child to achieve the same as another at exactly the same time.  I also pointed out to her that it doesn't help that everyone learns in different styles so the ones who are being taught in a way that doesn't suit them best won't reach their full potential.

I also think the lady who said how tests and exams are harder for some people when they're younger is so right too.  They seem to reflect nothing of a persons IQ, they simply tell of how well the teacher has taught in my opinion.  Then there are different types of intelligence to consider, children should not be made to feel useless just because they think in a different way.  I think it should be celebrated that all our brains work so differently as there are so many different jobs in this world: all are important.  Where would we be without artists and musicians?  Where would we be without carpenters and dress makers?  We can't all be doctors, scientists, accountants and architects, it just wouldn't be as wonderful!   We would all miss the road sweeper and where would we bit without the cleaners in the hospital?

The worst bit about tests is the child is then labelled, it can feel like a failure when it is the system who has failed them, especially in the primary school years.  Yes, I still don't think we should blame the teachers, it is most certainly the system.  I mean how can you teach 30 children all in the same way and succeed with each one?  Mission impossible.

I think schools should stop focusing on age quite so much and should have lessons built on style and ability.  I would have thought of a group of mixed age students at a similar stage, who enjoying in a similar way would thrive more that in the environment most children find themselves in everyday they attend school.  I also think that there would be less of the age hierarchy too. 

I understand they want tests to see what they need to teach them, but these days I feel they are not using the tests and exams for anything more than statistics to help the schools status!  That is why this is my reason to HE Number 6, because I'm really thankful that my children will never be compared to another sharing the same birth year or another birth year for that matter, still counts!

I do understand that exams can be important in some peoples lives: if someone wants to be a teacher, doctor, vet, accountant, etc.  exams are inevitable.  I just think instead of taking a whole heap at once they children should just take the ones they will need for their life journey; what is the point in taking an exam if it will never be used?  A lot of stress for no reason at all in my opinion.


  1. Here here. Beautifully written. I wish I could write as well. I may write one on my thoughts about school. It would be a cleansing exercise as much as anything.

    1. Thank you MamaSmu!

      I think it is quite good therapy getting it all written down. I'd be interested in reading it! x

  2. Here Here! I have two sets of twins. One set fraternal boy/girl who are like chalk and cheese and identical twin girls who are also equally different as they are alike. It couldn't be more clear to me how types of intelligence and ways in which we learn and the rates at which we develop are very much individual even with the considerations of nature and nurture.

    1. Thanks Angela! Your twins certainly highlight this post well, thank you for your comment :)