JW's and Homeschooling

by superman 21 Replies latest jw friends

  • superman

    In the mid-to-late 90's I remember the new trend was that a lot of the people that were JW's started pulling their kids out of regular public school and started homeschooling them. The absolute worst were the kids who had been homeschooled from kindergarten all the way until they graduated. Those poor kids were the most weird, unsocial, naive,sheltered, unadjusted, and uneducated kids I'd ever met. At least the ones who had spent some time in normal school got to have a partially normal childhood (about as normal as you can have growing up as a JW). Anyway, looking back most of the homeschooled kids that I knew of actually ended up taking longer to graduate then they would have had they stayed in public school, and most of them ended up screwed up anyway. My question to all of you (my fellow apostate friends) do you have any funny, weird, or interesting stories of kids you knew who were homeschooled? Or did any of you end up getting stuck having to be homeschooled?

  • flipper

    My ex-wife a JW still tried keeping our teenage kids in home schooling after our divorce , although I wanted the kids in public school , but because they were JW's she didn't want them being influenced by " worldly " kids. My son ended up doing well, because he worked at a supermarket and got out of the witnesses and went to college. My older daughter was a self starter and did well , but my youngest daughter would not do her school work and was lazy in applying herself . My son has better social skills than the 2 girls because they weren't allowed out in the real world much. So, the home schooling was a mixed bag of results. I feel it does not give witness kids enough outside skills dealing in the real world

  • sass_my_frass

    I have to agree (although you've sure opened a can of worms here!)

  • AK - Jeff
    AK - Jeff

    I beg to differ on the timing of this matter.

    I saw most of the kids in our congregation in the 70's forward subjected to at least some home schooling. Many parents chose to put the kids thru public school until HS, then pulled them out and gave them canned-courses to finish HS. There seemed to be a high level of disorganization in this to me. Many of them took a very long time to complete some relatively simple classes. The parents weren't very involved as far as I could tell with most of them. The kids were usually expected to pioneer at the same time. Often this seemed to coincide with Daddy being appointed elder, or moving up the ladder to Presider or something. [Interesting coincidence, huh?]

    It doesn't seem to have much impact on slowing down 'normal' human tendency, however. In one case of two home schooled teen-agers from different families - he and she were caught on a couch in one of their homes, in a less than proper manner, shall we say? The daddy of the girl was the PO, and the entire matter was swept under the rug in a hurry. No one was publicly reproved or disfellowshipped. Daddy kept his position.

    On a side note: It is not just Jw's - not by a long shot - who do this. I have come across several people who have home-schooled the kids. Though they all seem to be relatively secretive or vague about the reasons for so doing when asked - they all seem to be afraid of the 'world', just like Jdubs were. I know of one adult who was schooled at home - and she is less than well adjusted IMO. My general perception is that likely the parents are somewhat 'culted' in their religions. Now out of the cult - I see the symptoms from a lot of the 'super religious', especially the apocalyptic ones.


  • Tired of the Hypocrisy
    Tired of the Hypocrisy
    you've sure opened a can of worms here

    I have been homeschooling my son since halfway thru kindergarten and he is a sophomore in High School now. (I have taken him to a few meetings over the years but religion was never an issue in school for him.) He was originally in public school, however his mom got really sick and was hospitalized for almost a month. I had to work and my mom came to live with us and care for the kids so I could work. Well, one of his teachers was a real bitch and was overly critical of our situation. So, I took him home and taught him myself the rest of the year. It went so well that I enrolled him in an excellent and highly accreditted Charter Homeschool. Well, the school teacher and principal from the public school called the cops and told them we had NOT enrolled him, so two cops came with the truancy officer to harrass us and try to force us to enroll him that minute. Seems that if a child lives in the school district and is not enrolled in the school, they lose funds...LOL Also, if he needed lunch or access to scholl facilities, they would have to grant them free of charge with no comp from the Fed..... I just showed them his work progress and the paperwork from his school and they left.

    My son is very well adjusted, he has friends inside the washtowel and in the world. He plays guitar, spends time on the internet, and is doing very well. Despite my homeschooling him, he seems like he will be just fine, he is ecouraged by me to question anything and everything and prove things to himself and not rely on anyone's take on something to form an opinion. I can say this, homeschooling may not be the source of trouble with the kids mentioned above. More than likely it is exposure to the washtowel society and their brand of micromanaging the thoughts and ideas of its members.

  • MissingLink

    The parents have to be very committed to do the education right. Usually it's more of a situation of hiding from evil worldly kids and doing "home pioneering" where the kids spend more time in the field misery than on their studies.

    The kids are definitly socially retarded and afraid of the world even more so than "normal" JWs.

  • WTWizard

    The truth is, home schooling, done right, can be superior to what your tax dollars provide. Teachers are required to present the material in disjointed percepts, use the look-see method to teach people to read, and use the least efficient methods possible to teach children. And it shows with our pxxx poor results with illiteracy and people being unable to do simple math problems. Home teachers are not required to refrain from integrating percepts, though they do still have to go through the same material.

    There is a huge catch. If done improperly, children will come out messed up. And there are a billion and one ways to botch home schooling. The most common mistake the witlesses will make when home schooling is to avoid teaching worldly teachings that clash with Watchtower material. They often use the Asleep! magazines as sources for science projects, and rely on them for history (I would not trust any source that definitely says that Jerusalem was destroyed in 607 BC when the majority of sources pin it at 587 or 586. You will get bad information, and the children will not be able to learn the correct information when the source is bad.

    That is not the only serious mistake often made by witless home teachers. All too often, they fail to integrate their children with the world. Field trips include trips to the A$$embly Hell, Beth Hell, out in field circus, and to another congregation. They do not learn to play with other children in a setting where it is possible. They edit out many sources, notably textbooks with language that they object to.

    Additionally, all home schooling parents have to be wary of bias. It is too easy to upgrade test scores so your child will have an advantage, or downgrade them to punish them for unrelated behavior problems. Funding is often limited, and home teachers often lack playground equipment, phys ed equipment, science lab equipment, and the other enhancements commonly found in regular schools. When I was in school, we averaged about one movie a week, sometimes two or more, that went along with the subject that we were supposed to learn. We had shop where there were power tools, home economics where we could learn to sew, biology and chemistry labs, physics props, and various A/V aids. We had record players that were often used in conjunction with lessons. The records were part of the lesson.

    To properly home school a child, one must have a decent working knowledge on most general knowledge areas that are commonly taught (history, math, English grammar, and science). They also need the resources to properly teach a child (that is going to include science toys for physics, chemistry items, a good biology lab with equipment that can cost big bucks, and whatever geometry tools are needed). History and English literature can be taught online, including videos. Math is relatively easy to find items to use to help students. Of course, one also needs about 6-8 hours a day to teach and quiz your child, and then correct (objectively) the quizzes and tests. The commitment for meaningful field trips (not field circus) and providing play time, music, art, music, and phys ed is also a must.

    If one has all the commitment and is willing to invest the time, money, and energy in home schooling a child, they should by all means go for it. A good parent would make a superior teacher to today's disjointed educational system, and not order prescriptions for Ritalin for sloppy penmanship. Parents can integrate what they teach the child into concepts and puzzle pieces. However, if one is doing this to fit some nefarious agenda like the Watchtower Society, it is extremely harmful and counterproductive. Also, most witlesses are not endowed with time or money (they are supposed to be out in field circus, and any extra money for props is to go into the Worldwide Pedophile Defense Fund). So, I do not recommend witlesses to home school their children to avoid worldly association.

  • dinah

    When I worked at McDonald's we hired a boy who was home schooled. His mom was some fundamentalist freak of a person. Anyway, when he first came to work he was a little socially backward. After he had been with us for a couple of months, his personality blossomed. He was the most loving kid I have ever worked with, a real hugger. He was very dependable also.

    His reading and math skills were good, but he needed some experience dealing with people. He got that from us. He was 16 years old at the time. Now he'd be about 24. He's doing well, last I heard.

  • momzcrazy

    My husband was homeschooled thru high school. Basically that meant he worked fulltime all day, while his parents did the same. Then after work he worked on his schoolwork. He actually did well and turned down a scholarship to a local voc school.

    I homeschooled our daughter thru the 2 nd grade. It was wonderful as we traveled with their father while he was on tour and they saw many parts of America. But I realized I didn't have it in me to provide the education they needed. My eldest scored high on her pre admissions, but had trouble dealing with the social structure.

    In our last hall there was a couple who homeschooled their daughters. The mom breastfed the daughter until she was 7, and was doing the same with the second daughter when we left. Their diet was also very strict and mom brought their own food everywhere they went. The oldest had fallen and hurt her knees, mom didn't want her to have xrays so she wasn't exposed to "radiation". The oldest was shy and awkward. But mom's parents were two of the original members of the cong, so people didn't say much.

    In Utah I knew another boy that was baptized at nine, and pioneering at 10. Way too grownup acting for a kid. His little sister was named Sunshine.


  • Deidra

    I just can't see where home-schooling produces well adjusted social human beings. Growing up as a JW who attended public school, I had hard enough time adjusting to the real world. I know public schools can be inferior to private schools. However, I think your child's education depends on the amount of effort that parents and children put into it, no matter what school they attend. The goal is for them to attend college, right? Move up in the world? Then how will they adjust to college life if they have no social skills?

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