Growing Without Schooling

Page 1


46 As I write (7/26), John Holt is in a hosp ita l in Bangor, Maine . In April, he caught a cold which turned into bronchitis and made him feel as if there was fluid in his lungs. By late June he had lost a lot of energy and appe tite; extensive tests showed new cancer in his lung, liver, and back, as well as unusually high blood pressure. John refused radiation or chemotherapy. In July he went to visit his good friends Peggy and John Hughes in Deer Isle, Maine, where a family practitioner tapped his ribs and said "You have fluid in your lungs." As soon as some of the fluid was drained, John felt better and his blood pressure lowered. He was admit­ ted to the Eastern Maine Medical Cen­ ter in Bangor for continued draining and a procedure using tetracycline to patch up the lung. Now, eleven days later, he is regaining strength a lit­ tle more rapidly each day, and he hopes soon to leave th e hospital and stay with George and Mabel Dennison in Temple, ME for a while. A number of close friends and staff have been able to spend time with him in the hospital, and although John has had to restrict visiting, he does enjoy getting cards (best to use the office address) . Mary and Mark Van Doren, with their children Anna and Helen, took John's place at the "Homesteaders Good Life Get-Together" in New York. The homeschooling workshop was six hours long, and Mary says that although she had wond ered how on earth to fill all that time, it did not turn out to be a problem' Every­ thing went we ll, and they even got a possible invitation to be on a panel at a homeschooling conference. On June 24, John went to Washing­ ton, DC to take part in a US Depart­ ment of Education meeting on home­ schooling . He was impressed by the amount of good will on the part of federal, state, and local officia ls present, though many had strong inclinations to control and regulate home education. While visiting friends in Illi­ nois, John dropped in to see Dr. Robert Mend elsohn, author of CONFES­ SIONS OF A MEDICAL HER ETIC and HOW TO RAISE A HEALTHY CHILD IN SPITE OF YOUR DOCTOR . John had a delightful time and found Dr. Mendelsohn to be a wonderfully warm man . Much important legal news in this issue - two state supreme court victories (Minnesota and North Caro­ lina) and the complete text of three new homeschooling laws: Washington, Florida, and Tennessee. --- Donna Richoux ALL·NEW 1986 DIRECTORY

As we said in GWS #45, we have decided to toss out our last complete

Directory and to print an all-new . up­ dated Directory in GWS #48, made up only of those who lell us in 1985 that they want to be l~sted . We'r e do­ ing this in order to eliminate all those nar~s in th e current Directory which are of people who have moved without telling us or who are no long­ er interested in homeschooling. So if you wish to be in the "1986 Directory," send your entry using the form on page 23, or use a postcard or 3x5 card (one family per card). The only people who do not need to tell us again are those who have already sent an entry or change during 1985 (most of these appeared in the summary in GWS #45 . ) As of the end of July, We have received a couple of hundred entry forms and hope t o receive many more . A surprising development - many, per­ haps a third, of the forms are from people who have never been in' the Directory at all' Remember, we are switching to printing only birth years for child­ ren, not ages. This is your last reminder. We need as many responses as possible by the end of September . Thanks . HOW MANY HOMESCHOOLERS?

quests to ed uc a te creir ch.i ldren 3t home and all wer~ approved. he says. ... Genna:-i says that ... ir. . arg., district s Su::11 as Clark County - wit,· 90, 000 ~ tudcnts - the hss d - 58 pUDils is not financi<.lLy ~ign ifi­ car.t ... Toronto Globe & Mail, 7/4/85: ... The Ministry of Eriucation estimates that n pproximaLely 200 children are taught at home by [heir parents [ in OntariO]. However, the ONTARIO HOMESCHOOLERS ASSOCIATION puts the figure much higher, with a conservative est imate of about 500 children. The 3ssociation has 100 mem­ ber families, and claim5 to know of "t-oout 200 other families where the children are taught at home . .. A note from Pat Putnam of HOME­ SCHOOLERS OF LANE COUNTY: whole movement has ex­ in O~ego n. In our district, where there are about 450 students in grades 1- 12 in t he public school, there are at least 10 families home­ schooling, wi th 25 , kids. We were the only family fo~r years ago ... •• • I~£


The Detroit News, 6/24/85: .. . Parent-run schools still enroll only a fraction of Michigan's 1.9 million pupils, but their ranks have swelled in the last 18 months, according to new estimates by the state Department of Education. The state now has at least 1,200 home schools - more than four times as many as in November 1983, when the department first s'urveyed the phenom­ enon and found 273 home schools . More­ over, officials suspect that at least one-third to half of the alternative classrooms operate in defiance of state law requi~ing attendance at a certified school . ... The new state report, based on an informal telephone survey of the state's 57 intermediate dis­ tricts, also reveals that most local officials don't prosecute parents who teach children at home. Only about a dozen court cases were pending ... Racine, WI Journal Times, 6/30: ... Carl Carmichael of the state Department of Public Instruction said about 600 families operated home sc hools in Wisconsin in 1984. There were 94 the previous year. He attribu­ ted the huge increase to a 1984 change in state law that took away the state's and school districts' leverage in monitoring home schools . ..


On July 19, the Minn.:sota Supreme Co u~t ruled in favor of two homeschooling families, the Newstroms and the Budkes (GWS #36). In State v . Newstrom, the supreme court declared that the current requirement that pri­ vate schoo l teachers have "q1...alifica­ tions that are ess e ntially equivalpnt to the ~inimum s=andards for public school teachers of the same grades or subjects" is unconstitutionally vague. "Where a sratute imposes crimin­ al penalties, a higher standard of certainty of meaning is required," the c.ourt sa id. '" Essent ia lly equi va-­ lent' is at best an ambiguous term. It has no common law meaning nor i;; it a term of a rt with an established meaning. If the legislature had ir.tended that the qualifications of a nonpublic school teacher be the same as the minimum standards for a public school teacher, it would have said so. It did not. Instea d. lhe legisla­ ture chose a term which implies a judgement without indicating who is to make the judgement c r what cI'iter ­ ia are to be used ... That tne ~ta tute lacks even minimal guidelices is evi­ denced bv the fact that the trial courts in Minnesota have arriVed at directly conflicting ~nterp retations of the statute. " The court specifically rejected arguments supplied by the Rutherford Institute, an "amici curiae" [or Jean

Jacksonville Times Union, 6/18: ... Rep. Tommy Hazouri, D-Jackson­ ville ... estimated there are 1,300 to 1,500 home schools identified by the Florida Dept . of Education, and at least twice that number that educa­ tion officials don't know about ... Las Vegas Review-Journal, 7/16: ... Dr. Victor Gennari, pupil per­ sonnel director for the Clark County school district ... says his office received hundreds of inquiries about the first book [dis trict homeschool­ ing guidelines] and 150 were printed. 58 families actually submitted re­

INSIDE - Court (NC, other): 2 --- AR law: 3 --- Extremists: 4 --- College admis­ sions: 4 --- Pool test scores: 4 --- Test results: 5 --- Co llege at 13: 5 --- Lines / Study: 5 --- Williams/new job: 6 --- Few pre­ schoolers: 6 --- Alternative work: 6 --­ 3-Fami Iy: 6 - -- Barker/apprentice: 7 --- Audu­ bon trips: 7 --- Teen : 8 --- McCutchen: 8 --­ Peace: 9 --- Competent: 9 --- Garage sale: 9 --- Just plays: 9 --- Back to school: 10 --­ Back home: 11 --- Art camp: 11 --- Nursery school: 11 --- Richman / questior.s: 12 --­ Grades: 13 --- Part-time: 13 --- Prison: 13 --- New laws: WA, FL, TN: 13-15 --- Discip­ line: 16 --- Clean: 16 --- Queries: 16 --­ Reading: 17 --- Texts: 17 --- Tests: 18 --­ Math: 19 --- Writing: 19 --- Calvert: 20 --­ Geography: 20 --- Language : 20 --- Music: 20-21 --- Books: 21 --- Pen Pals: 22


2 Newstrom, which recommended enforce­ ment of only those teacher require­ ments which are justified by a compel­ ling state interest. The court said that the reasoning in the US Supreme Court case Wisconsin v. Yoder (invo l­ ving the Amish) a,d not app ly here, and it reaffirmed, as have many high courts, the importance of education in contemporary society. In a one-page ruling in favor of the Budkes, the court referred to the reasons it set forth in State v. New­ strom. ---Sharon Hillestad of the MINNE­ SOTA HOME SCHOOL NETWORK reports that homeschoolers have a lready drawn up a bill and are preparing for the next session of the legislature. - DR

...AND IN NORTH CAROLINA We got a copy of the ruling in

Larr Delconte v. North Carolina from

the lerk of the N.C. Supreme Court.

It is quite lengthy, and rather than

reprinting it in GWS, we quote this

accurate summary that appeared in The

School Lawyer, 6/3/85: ­


... The North Carolina Court of Appeals had found Larry Delconte and his wife in violation of the state compulsory attendance law for instruc­ ting their children in a room of their house. The court of appeals then reversed a trial judge's ruling that the state's interest in educa­ ting children should yield to Del­ conte's religious convictions. The court of appeals was not impressed that Delconte received no state funds for his home schooling arrangement, although lack of state funding was one of the criteria for acceptability of private education in North Carolina. The state supreme court has reversed again, this time in Delcon­ te's favor. The court based its May 7 opinion on state law, not the federal constitutional question. Citing the trial court's record, the supreme court noted that the Del­ conte's home instruction met all express standards for qualification of a nonpublic school under state law, including attendance records and a regular schedule. The law also required a qualified nonpublic school to be either accredited, an active member of the North Carolina Associa­ tion of Independent Schools, or with­ out state financial support. "All parties agree," the court observed, "that (the Delcontes') home instruction received no state funds. This is all that is required to comply ... " The appeals court had erred when it subordinated that no­ funding requirement to the definition of a non-public "school" as an insti­ tution, the supreme court ruled. "We do not agree (with the court of appeals) that the legislature intended simply by use of the word 'school,' because of some intrinsic meaning invariably attached to the word, to preclude home instruction," the supreme court wrote . It noted that one of the cases cited below, from West Virginia, required parents wishing to educate their children at home to submit to official monitor­ ing, but that the homeschooling could continue (State v. Riddle, 285 SE2d 359). Other jurisdictions had fol­ lowed suit, the court noted, citing rulings from California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Ohio, Oregon, and Vir­ ginia. Especially germane was the Illinois Supreme Court's ruling in

People v. Levisen, 90 NE2d 213, 1950, the court thought. Its review of the history of com­ pulsory attendance legislation in North Carolina left the court with "nothing . . . to support a conclusion that the word 'school,' when used by the legislature in statutes bearing on compulsory attendance, evidences ~ legislative purpose to refer to a par­ ticular kind of instructional set­ ting." In fact, the most recent legis­ lation showed an apparent purpose "to loosen, rather than tighten, the stan­ dards of nonpublic education in North Carolina." Although it did not rule on them, the state supreme court found it clear that "serious constitutional questions would arise" if it banned home instruction . Citing Wisconsin v. Yoder, 406 US 205, 1972, the state COUrt observed that the "US Supreme Court seems to consider the right of parents to guide both the religious futur e and the education of their children to be fundamental so as not to be interfered with in the absence of a compelling state interest." "But it is not clear whether the Court would consider the right to engage in home instruction to be fundamental," the state court added, observing that the US Supreme Court had declined to overturn a ruling, also involving North Carolina, that the compulsory attendance law took precedence over another parent's religiously motiva­ ted homeschooling plan (Duro v. Dis trict Attorne 712 F2d 96). [CWS 38) The Nort Carolina Attorney Gen­ eral's office does not plan to appeal the ruling to the US Supreme Court, due to its being based on state law. The case was No . 9PA84 ...

, h


EDUCATION newsletter wrote, following

the decision:

... We are grateful for the Del­ contes' pioneering spir it, which they have displayed during their costly four-year ordeal. We are also ind ebt­ ed to the NORTH CAROLINA ASSOCIATION OF CHRISTIAN SCHOOLS which spent about $45,000 in defending the Delcontes. ... While we are all celebrating this victory, we must be more watch­ ful than ever to protect our free­ doms . Already the media, public educa­ tionists, and some legislators are saying, "Now that it's legal, we need to regulate it." The truth is that we a lready have very well-written and defined laws governing private schools, including home schools. Our job of educating the people of North Caroli na, especially our legislators, has just begun ...

OTHER COURT NEWS The June Lea rni ng Edge reprinted this letter to Pat Montgomery of CLON ­ LARA SCHOOL from an attorney involved with a Chicago homeschooling/cust ody ·dispute case: ... 1 am pleased to report that a settlement agreement has been reached with the state's attorney which will allow (the client) to begin home­ schooling her children using the Clon­ lara curriculum at the end of the cur­ rent school semester. Under the order, as long as th e children are enrolled with Clonlara, there will not be any problems. Following the hearing, (t he judge) asked me to express his appre­

ciation to you for coming to Chicago to talk about your program, and for sending him the reports on your inter­ views with the children. He seemed most impressed, and specifically asked that if you have any further information about your program or your school, that you send it along to him. It is very likely that we would not have been able to reach this agreement without your participation and very persuasive testimony ... From the July Colorado Home­

schooling Network Newsletter:

... In May we reported that the state had temporarily approved CHRIST­ IAN LIBERTY ACADEMY and that all cases (GWS #45) should be dropped . Karen Anderson called to report t hat one family, the Dugans, continues to face legal action. Although neve r legally summoned, they found out about a hearing scheduled for May 31. Their lawyer, David Hjelmselt of Ft. Co llins, advised them not to appear and as of now, the Dugans have left the state. The Dugans are willing to say that they are using Christian Liberty Academy to educate their children, but not to ask permiss i on to do so because of their rights under the First and Fourteenth Amend­ ments to the U.S. Constitution .. . The July newsletter of the CON­ NECTICUT HOMESCHOOLERS reports that the American Civil Liberties Union may take up the case .of the Cronin family, currently involved in two law­ suits brought against them by the city of Meriden. The ACLU, if it takes the case, will try to bring a suit before the Superior Court to help affirm the right of parents to educate their children at home. From the School Lawyer, 6/3: ... Parents in Virginia who were unable to persuade lower courts of their right to school their children at home ... are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to hear (the case) . Richard and Margaret Snider want the justices to order the Virginia Supreme Court to review a lower state court's decision that they violated the Virginia compulsory attendance law by keeping their children at home for education. The Sniders consider themselves "traditional Catholics," opposed to "secular humanism," but the trial court found that their objections to the Henrico County pub­ lic schools were not "theologically based." The state law contains a religious exemption. The Sniders argue that the state law unconstitutionally restricts their freedom of religion by allowing local school officials to decide whether a parent's reason for kee pi ng a child home for schooling is sincere­ ly religious. They also see a denial of equal protection in the fact that "parents in the same situation (of objecting to public education) could be granted or denied the (religious) exemption based merely on a diffe r ­ ence of school boards and superinten­ dents ... " The jurisdictional statement is #84-1724, Snider v. Commonwealth of Virginia ... In May, Gary and Cheryl Leeper and five other families filed a class


action suit against the Arlington, Texas school district and all other districts in the state, asking for a declaratory judgement that home schools satisfy the definition of pri­ vate schools in Texas. For more infor­ mation, contact attorneys J. Shelby Sharpe, 2501 Parkview Dr, Suite 600, Fort Worth TX 76102 (817-335 -4417) or Morris Harrell, 4200 Republic Bank Tower, Dallas TX 75201 (214-742­ 1021). - DR

ARKANSAS REVISES NEW LAW After much negative publicity and pressure from the Arkansas Educa­ tion Association, a new bill was passed in June toughening the home­ schooling requirements that had been approved in March (GWS #45). The sali­ ent points of the new law: - Parents must ~ive the local superintendent written notice of their intent to homeschool, including a curriculum, schedule, a nd qualifica­ tions . - The age for beginning annual testing was lowered from 9 to 7, although testing at that age shall be for the purpose of obtaining "educa­ tional base-line data" only. - Tests shall be administered by the Department of Education or its designee . Parents may be present at tes ting . - The cost of testing shall be reimbursed by the state (the earlier law called for the parents to bear the cost). - Any student (8 or older) whose test results are unsatisfactory shall be enrolled in a public, private, or parochial school unless, prior to the beginning of the next school yea r, such student retakes the same test and achieves a satisfactory score. - "Unsatisfactory" is defined to mean more than 8 months below expect­ ed grade level . - Any home schooled student required to return to school because of unsatisfactory scores must contin­ ue attendance in school until ach~eves satisfactor test results . xcept~ons can e rna e w ere ~mprove­ ment on test scores indicates that continued home education would not be adverse to the child's interest." (?) - Any child identified as need­ ing special education may not be home­ schooled unless the parent/teacher holds a valid teaching certificate . Even tougher restrictions were defeated in the legisl ature, measures that would have forbidden homeschool­ ing past age 14, required parents to pass the teacher examination, or required one parent to have a college degree. Homeschooler Agnes Ross (Rt 1 Box 784, Pine Bluff AR 71603), who kept us informed of the legal battle, says she fully expects new home school­ ing bills in the next legislative session. ---It is my impression, based on a few phone calls and the lack of news­ letters or even much mail from Arkan­ sas, that many homeschoolers chose to remain underground during this whole process, not daring to contact their legislators or in any other way draw attention t o themselves, for fear of getting into trouble. This goes for Tennessee also, which has had similar circumstances and a somewhat negative new homeschooling law . I suppose such reluctance is understandable. But it also seems to me that when home school­ ers have taken the risk to speak up and organize, as they did in Arizona, Georgia, Washington, and Wisconsin, they have turned potentially negative



situations into positive ones. Per­ haps now that both sta t es at least officially recogniz e homeschooling, however hedged with restrictions, some parents will be more willing to step forward and perhaps even succeed in removing some of those restric­ tions . - DR

LE GI SLATI VE/ STATE NEWS For addresses of state and local organizations, see GWS #42 or our "Homeschooling Resource List," $1. ALABAMA: On May 15, homeschool­ ers testif~ed in favor of House Bill 1034, which would allow parents to teach their children at home with the sole requirement of yearly progress tests. If the child does not achieve at least an average score, s/he would be required to return to school for one year . Alabama is one of the few remaining states with no legal means for homeschooling . On June 7, 200-250 people showed up at a Decatur rally in support of homeschoolers Ed and Sharon Pangelin­ an, who were sentenced to two days a week in jail beginning in April (see GWS #44 & 45). The "Sharon & Ed Fami­ ly Fund" (Rt 1 Box 265, Hillsboro AL 35643) is selling for $50 a 600-page legal packet containing several dozen relevant U.S. and state court rul­ ings, as a way of raising money for the Pangelinans . ARIZONA: A minor provision was added to the state homeschooling law, allowing a child enrolled in a corres­ pondence school or satellite school to take the standardized test usuall y administered by that school instead of the usual test prescribed by the state . Local school boards cannot charge for the costs incurred in administering the test to home school­ ers . CALIFORNIA: Beth DeRoos learned from the off~ce of her State Assembly­ man about Assembly Bill 1531, a "clean-up" measure revising last year's new law requiring all new pri­ vate school employees to be finger­ printed (GWS #44,45). It would, among other things, specifica lly efiemRt from the law those schools in w ~c a parent teaches only his or her own children . A hearing was sched­ uled for July. COLORADO: According to the Colo­ rado Homeschooling Network Newsler=­ ter, several homes c h oo l~ng parents met with Dr. Calvin Frazier, the Colo­ rado Commissioner of Education, and several other offiCials, on June 25. Nancy Kipp writes, "We found Dr. Frazier and the members of the Depart­ ment to have a very positive and sup­ portive attitude toward hom e school­ ing ... The Commissioner's office encourage the approval of the CHRIST­ IAN LIBERTY ACADEMY curriculum to keep several home schooling families out of court. For this action, the Department has come under criticism by some local school boards. The Department is also open to expanding the list of state-approved curricula, including the HEWITT-MOORE curricu­ lum .. . "Another indication of the Department's support for homeschool­ ing is in their statements. regarding testing, not as a means to disqualify parents from homeschooling, but rath­ er to provide feedback for the parent and student to insure that they are indeed reaching their educational goals ... The Commissioner was sur­ prised to learn some homeschoolers fear testing because they think they might lose the opportunity to home­

school on the basis of poor test results ... Roy Brubaker [Assis tant Commissioner ] sta ted , 'We want you to kno ~ that we think a child belongs to the parents, and the~ should make the decisions r egardi ng is or her educa­ tion.' ... Dr. Frazier then appointed those homeschooling perents attending the mee:ing as the newly formed Advis ­ ory Committee ... " ILLINOIS: Mary Friedl writes, "Some people here in the Chicago area have formed an Ad Hoc Committee WOT~­ ing on homeschooling legislative issues. I'm on it, Max Rosenquist who works with HEWITT FOUNDATION, Mike McHugh from CHRISTIAN LIBERTY ACADEMY, and Ken Sesson, president of ILLINOIS CHRISTIAN HOME EDUCATORS ... We've offered to meet with the Illi­ nois State School Board's and region­ al superintendents' Ad Hoc Committee on homeschooling. So far we haven't received a reply ... This year there were no homeschooling bills. Some new reforms might affect us in a round­ about way ( truancy bill, immunization bill, etc . ) ... " MARYLAND: In GWS #43 and #44 we reported that the State Board of Edu­ cation had tentatively required a pri­ vate school to have 7 or more stu­ dents of unrelated parentage, but it postponed any decision. Now the Mary­ land Home Education Newsletter says the board has now redef~ned a school to mean a place with two or more children not of the same parentage. NEVADA: Miriam Mangione writes, "In thi s past legislative session, we in Clark County were the most vocal in the legislation for home educa­ tion. Other counties did not really offer much support, seemingly satis­ fied with the regulations passed by the State Board of Education. Well, although the regulations have remained the same, the interpretation of them here has changed. Specifical­ ly, th e test required to show proof of progress is given to the parent to administer to the child and the ~­ ent determines the proof of progress' The results do not have to be submit­ ted; the parent fills out a form, giv­ ing grade level, year, and test name, stating progress was attained and requesting exemption for the follow­ ing year. Thar's it for re-exemption. "The exemption procedure for the first time is pretty much the same as it was ... But, since we've been get­ ting curriculums approved for a year now, we can help parents on that ... "In th e northern part of the state, things are not going quite as well, unfortunately ... One child did not show progress in one area and is expected to take remedial classes in the school - I don't know what the parents are intending to do. The tests are given by the school dis­ trict with all the other children who are in school ... " OREGON: We reported in GWS #44 that rne-FARENTS EDUCATION ASSOCIA­ TION submitted a bill that would remove the two requirements that par­ ents get permission from the local superintendent to teach their child­ ren, and that the children be tested. However, the House Education Commit-


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tee then added a section requiring that pare nts aotify the local super­ intendent, a n it restored the test­ ing ~equir ement , although it would allow parents t o choose from an approved li s t of tests and to have the test administered by a "qualified neutral person." If the results do not s how " sa tisf ac tor y educa tional progress, t o be defined by adm inistra­ tive rule," the child must return for the remainder of the school year. Pat Putnam of HOMESCHOOLERS OF LANE COUNTY wrote, "The committee knew that the original bill would not pass the full House or Senate, so some compromises had to be made. We worked for inclusion of an optional portfolio instead of testing, but they did not include that. We also wanted to delay testing, or require it less often, say every three years ... The House Ed. Committee was very clear in its intent to make it easier and more fair for home school­ ers, and put that in their records, so we hope that the Dept. of Ed. will heed that intent. "My 17-year-old son, David, and I testified before the Senate Commit­ tee ... David's testimony was especial­ ly effective and well received, since he could tell of his own experience ­ he is graduating from SETON HOME STUDY HIGH SCHOOL, and has been invited to apply for ROTC scholar­ ships on the basis of his PSAT scores (99th percentile/mat;h, 97th overall)." On July 10, Candace Syman-Degler told us that the bill had passed both houses and had been sent to the governor. PENNSYLVANIA: From a letter by Susan Richman: " The May 29th Legisla­ tive Breakfast with Raymond Moore was a success . Good turnout of legisla­ tors, as well as parents and POLITE children. I think the legislators must have been especially impressed by the children - probably most of them had never met a home schooled child before, and here was a whole batch, poised and friendly and NOR­ MAL. One legislator was heard to say to another as he left the meeting, 'Wow' That was the first time I've ever been to a meeting about educa­ tion where no one was saying GIVE MORE MONEY" Another representative, known for being a teacher union cham­ pion, delayed going to another educa­ tion meeting because he found this to 'be much more interesting'! Most par­ ents had a chance to talk informally with their legislators after the breakfast . . . "We're trying for LOTS of good publicity this whole month - as many articles in newspapers as possible, describing specific homeschooling fam­ ilies across the state. Trying to get our own story told first, rather than having to rebut a negative picture ... We're urging families to write lots of Thank-yous to legislators who came to the breakfast. We have a phone tree now to contact everyone in the state, and that is a great help . " TEXAS: Kirk McCord wrote in the Texas~ Educators Newsletter that none of the bills affecting home­ schoolers passed this session. "Rep. John Smithee (Amarillo), the pro­ homeschool sponsor of HB 673, intro­ duced an amendment to HB 317, exemp­ ting homeschoolers [from criminal penalties for violating the compul­ sory schooling law]. A heated debate on the subject of education ensued for the next several hours, during which time many attempts were made to impose various restrictions on the home education exemption, including registration, certification of par­

ents , and mandatory te s ting. Miracu­ l ous ly, a ll of those a ttempts failed (some times by on ly a couple of votes') ... [HB 317 ] was overwhelming­ ly defeated ... The two bills which were favorable to homeschoolers, HB 431 and HB 673, never made it out of the Public Education Committee. In fact, public hearing on these two bills were never held . . . " A family was advised by their state senator that Dr. James Clark of the Texas Education Agency (201 E 11th St, Austin TX 78701 ) could give them the guidelines under which the state of Texas will allow homescho o l­ ing. WISCONSIN: Homeschoolers are con­ cerned about Assembly Bill 58, which would permit a law enforcement offi­ cer to take into custody a child who is absent from school without a valid excuse. Under current law, children who are absent from school cannot be taken into custody unless there is evidence that they are habitually truant. - DR UNEASY ABOU T EXTREMISTS

From Indiana: . .. As to events on the home­ school front here, the Christian ex­ tremists are getting into this with a vengeance locally, seeing homeschool­ ing as a way to force confrontation with the bureaucrats in order to air their ideology. That's really scary . .. . 1 attended a meeting of about 40 of these folks, although I did not stay to the end . The rhetoric was hinging on sedi tion and was flying the banner of homeschooling. Scared the heck out of me' I am on good enough footing w~th the local superintendent that I do not feel my situation would be com­ promised, but I think those who come after me will have a difficult time if these radicals succeed . .. It's a little weird to hear the same dia­ tribes from these people that I used to hear from Abby Hoffman and Bobby Seale in the old days; the stuff about rights being taken away and the government is against the people and we must not fall for the brainwashing that tells us this is a democracy . They said that a democracy is an i nferior kind of government because the majority is always wrong. They perceive Reagan as a radical liberal, which gives you some idea of where they are coming from. . . . 1 believe these people should be able to do what they want with their kids, but I don't like it that they may jeopardize what I want to do with my kid. Actually, they are fight­ ing a battle that does not exist, since most homeschoolers in Indiana have had little difficulty. What they want is the platform for a fight . These people believe they will be fighting from bunkers, literally, for their right to practice their reli­ gion . A lot of the "sermon" sounded like quotes from the MOVE organiza­ tion . But theJ are calling themselves homeschoolers. ARGH' . .. A COLLEGE ADMISSIONS OFFICER Chris Pedersen wrote in the May COLORADO HOME SCHOOLING NETWORK news­ letter:

.. . The speaker for the April homeschooling meeting was John Bal­ lard, an admissions officer from Colo­ rado State University . He spoke of

the requir eme nts which our child ren, as homeschoolers, will need t o apply for admission to CSU. CSU is used to dealing with st udents th at come from schools which they consider in an "ex­ ceptions" category. These schools of ten have no grades or ranking of s tudents. Homeschoolers would a lso be included in the "excepti ons" group ... The three main requirements stu­ dents will need are: - SAT or ACT test scores (CSU will take just the highest score out of several attempts at taking the tests) - a letter of recommendation from an objective person - someone like an employer if the student is working in a job related to the field that the student is interested in. A manager at Burger King who writes only general things like, "John is a hard worker" would not offer much help to admissions officers in making a decision. - a potential to succeed. Mr. Ballard said he could usually tell about the potential in the individual in an interview, which may be requested. He did seem interested in having an outside, accredited source verify students' work when a homeschooling student assembles a portfolio of work . .. The university is interested in the ability to handle academic work, not just following strong inter­ ests . Other things CSU would be inter­ ested in are GED test scores and how a student meets adversity . CLEP cred­ its are also accepted. John Ballard seemed confident that our home schooled kids will have a good and equal chance to get the college education they want .. . Judy Gelner, the newsletter editor, added: . . . 1 was surprised at the skepti­ cism which our members expressed before this meeting . They felt that all "education officials" would be equally negative in their advice to homeschoolers. What became apparent to us during the meeting was tha t peo­ ple who see every day what kind of students the public schools are turn­ ing out do not have any preconc e ived notions that sending a child to school will guarantee that his life will turn out for the better. In building friends who can help home­ schoolers, groups would be well­ advised to let college officials know of their existence . Mr. Ballard also stressed several times that he was grateful for the chance to learn about this new phenomenon called home­ schooling, so that they know how to help homeschoolers of potential gain admission to their college .. . CO MPILING TEST SCORES

A good idea from the wiOming Home Educators Network News etter. If homeschoolers are testing their child­ ren anyway, they might as well pool the data: ... During the legislative debate on the homeschooling bill this year [GWS #44], it was evident that some compilation of standardized ach i eve­ ment test scores from testing of home educated children would be valua ble evidence in any future legislative action. This value would be at least twofold: first, as evidence of the viability of home education as an institution, and second, as evidence


that parents do [voluntarily] use standardized achievement testing and thus do not need the state to mandate testing. W.H.E.N. would like to assist home educators in such a compilation. A suggested mechanism is: . 1. Parents administer (or soli­ cit administ ration of) some standard­ ized test annually in the spring. It would be good, though not necessary, for us all t o use the same test ­ like IOWA or Stanford. 2 . The individual test results are kept with the parents for their own purposes. 3. The test data (though not stu­ dent names) are sent to WHEN for com­ pilation . 4. The compiled test data - no individual names - are used to sup­ port or negate home educators' conten­ tions about the viability of home edu­ cation as an institution . . . . The higher the percentage of participation, the more reliable the results. The following would be helpful for submitting data: 1. Student birthdate. 2 . Years educated in school out ­ side the home. 3. Name and level of the test. 4. Raw scores, percentile scores, and grade equivalencies on all parts of the test taken. We're mostly interested in compiling read­ ing, math, and language scores, but we could do science and social studies also ... HOMESCHOOLERS TEST HIGH The MANITOBA ASSOCIATION FOR SCHOOLING AT HOME newsletter reports: ... At our get together last November in Ile des Chenes, we dis­ cussed the issues with our guest, Roland McCurdy, Education Administra­ tive Consultant, Mani·toba Department of Education. Roland McCurdy is the homeschooling person with the Depart­ ment . Much of the discussion centered on the use of the Canadian Tests of Basic Skills as a means of evaluating home schooled children. Mr. McCurdy reported that, in ~eneral, the home­ schooled childrene tested last June tested above the~r grade l evel ... The ma~n purpose of the test ~s d~agnos­ tic - to help the parents in their teaching. The Department and school divisions are ready to assist home­ schooling families, should the tests reveal problems ... FINISHES COLLEGE AT 13 In GWS #26, we wrote about an ll-year-old homeschooler who entered Oxford University . In July, several newspapers ran this Associated Press update: ... A 13-year-old girl was award­ ed a mathematics degree at Oxford Uni­ versity yesterday after two years of study. Before that, she had never even gone to school. Ruth Lawrence was one of two math students who received special commendation from the examiners when exam results were posted at the 800-year-old university in central England. Ruth finished college in two years instead of the normal three, but she cannot pick up her degree until next year because the universi­ ty has a three-year residency require-


ment. She said she would be staying in Oxford for at l east another three years to do research toward a doctor­ ate. In an interview with the British Broadcasting Corp., Ruth said: "I don't think I am a genius. I think it's got out of a lot of hard work. It's not sort of born in you. I think you just have to work hard and have good teachers." Before college, her father, Harry Lawrence, a computer consul­ tant, taught Ruth at home. Her tutOY at Oxford, Mary Lunn, told the BBC that Ruth was now a better mathematician than she is ... SUPPORTIVE STUDY From an article, "States Should Help, Not Hinder, Parents' Home­ Schooling Efforts," by Patrica M. Lines, published in Education Week, 5/15/85. Ms. Lines is director of the Law and Education Center at the Educa­ tion Commission of the States in Den­ ver, and is author of a recent ECS report, " Compul sory Education Laws and Their Impact on Public and Pri­ vate Education": ... The more puzzling question is : Why do some states oppose the homeschooling movement ? Home instruc­ tion has a long and respectable his­ tory. John Stuart Mill received his early education from his father. In isolated places in early America, homeschooling was the only choice. In a few places in Alaska, Montana, and other sparse ly populated areas, this is still true. More important, homeschooling seems to work. A single outstanding example was the admission to Harvard University last year of a young man who had been taught entirely at home. And from the broader pattern of avail­ able evidence one must conclude that, on average, children educated at home do well academically. Alaska and Ari­ zona, two states that test home­ schooled children, report that they perform at above-average levels as measured by nationally standardiz ed tests. One study of children in a home tutorial network in Los Angeles showed that the children in the net­ work sco red higher on standardized test s than did the children in Los Angeles public schools. The "concern" about homeschooling, therefore, should be tempered by the knowledge that more children are failing academ­ ically in public schools than at home. . .. There is great irony in this: It is now more common in this country to use compulsory education laws against parents who are making a good faith attempt to educate children than to use them against truancy in the classic sense . That is, there is much more enforcement involving home-educated children than children who aren't being educated at all. Most of the estimated 50,000 children being taught at home are in states that accept home instruction as a legitimate activity ... A small number - perhaps 5,000 - are in states where home instruction is eith­ er illegal or so strictly re'gulated that their parents cannot meet the state's requirements. A few states require, for example, that a parent be a certified teacher, even though there is no evidence that a noncerti­ fied person cannot do as good a job as a home instructor. The numbers of truant children, in contrast, may be in the millions.



Language arts? English? Social studies?

Mathematics? Science? Visual arts?

IDEAS FOR TEACHING GIFTED STUDENTS is a series of 7 books containing challenging and excit­ ing teaching units and project descriptions. $29.85 each. (Specify elementary or secondary social studies.) Poetry?

PATHWAYS TO POETRY: "Kaleidoscope" (Gr. 4-6). "Mosaics" (Gr. 7-9), "Visions" (Gr. 10-12) improves understanding and appreciation of poetry with self­ instructional , self-checking, and self-scoring modules. $15.95 each. Short stories?

FANTASIES - ten 45-minute ca5selte tapes - a total of 25 short stories by '!laster storytellers (Hawtt>orne, London , Poe, Conrad, Saki , and others) recorded by professional actors. Copies of the scripts, a Teacher's Guide, and a Lesson Plan for the first story on each tape guide meaningful discussion of the stories. $15.95 per tape; $75.00 for the SAVER'S SPECIAL (any five tapes with related print materia!s); $139.50 for THE BIG TEN.



REACHING FOR THE STARS: A Minicourse for Gifted Education lets you concentrate on a specific aspect I)f giftedness in each of 10 books and involves you with your child/youth in related activities. Char­ acteristics, Needs, Underachievers, Handicapped Gifted, Disadvantaged Gifted, Intelligence, Creativ­ ity, Enrichment, Programs, Counseling. $19.85 per book; $159.85 for the set. EVERY child has special gifts in one or more areas!

DIAMONDS IN THE DUST guides you to discover and develop whatever, special abilities your child or youth has for his or her own well-being . Packed with activities to encourage creativity and nurture intellec­ tual growth. $24.50. SPECIAL DISCOUNT FOR HOME SCHOOLERS: Take 20% off any price listed! Use this coupon (or copy of it) and mail to publisher with your, money order, Visa or Mastercard information.


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o YES, I want some of your materials at your SPECIAL DISCOUNT FOR HOME SCHOOLERS. o I'm not ready to order but would appreciate receiving your FREE CATALOG . SHIP TO: _________________________________ (Please print)

(Street address. P.O , Box N umber, Rural Route)



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Admittedly, the statistics on these students are rough ... Full time truants ... may account for around 9% of the school-age population. Thus, there may be 5 million full-time truants in the nation ... A MOTHER MOVES ON

From Janet Williams (PA): ... The PENNSYLVANIA UNSCHOOLERS NETWORK died a natural death over a year ago. Partly because of where the "homeschooling movement" seems to be going - but mostly because of changes in our family and in myself. Over the past five years, home­ schooling has become a "given" in our lives. I do it like the la~ndry, but it is no longer a focal point. It is no longer the ruling passion . .. Maybe I'm not a person who can sustain things for too long. Or maybe I'm just someone who gets IMMERSED in things for a period, then, dripping, moves on to something else. ... Seeing some of the changes in the country over the past year has convinced me that homeschooling isn't enough ... So I began to focus more energy on bringing our lives in con­ cert with our values - or rather bringing MY life in concert with my values. I began working for the nuclear freeze - a limited group but a begin­ ning. I spoke in public for the first time last August at a Hiroshima/Naga­ saki Memorial. I told Bob I had seri­ ous problems with paying military taxes and we had to find a way to make some changes. I even thought of complete disassociation from home­ schoolers, feeling I was moving in such radical directions. But in Peo­ ple Pay for Peace (about military-tax resistance) I read about a demonstra­ tion one year on April 15 in Michigan and children were there from Clonlara School - and I felt soothed ... John, when you wrote about "The Day After" (GWS #36), I felt re­ assured . When you wrote about reestab­ lishing priorities for your time and energy (GWS #43), I CHEERED because that's how I've felt but was ashamed to say it. Oldest child, responsible, good mother, devoted wife, and now I am saying - "Hey, I love you all but it is my time." And I'm beginning to fly. Last July, Bob quit his job and we lived on savings. By the end of August we agreed that whoever found a job first would work. My children - those darlings who have reaped the fruits of my years at home, those people I . thought to raise open-miQded, unprejudiced, unsexist, etc., etc. - HOWLED at the thought of my getting gainful employment. "What could I do?" they wanted to know' By luck and a good friend, I found a job. Both Bob and I work now and so far we've juggled because my time is independently scheduled. I'm a correspondent for the Gett¥sburg ~imes and am just thrilled wLth Lt. -----All those years of writing and never once thought of it as a "market­ able skill." But you helped. When I saw my letters - the parts that I thought were special - printed in GWS (and in Gifted Children's Newslet­ ter), that was the first LnklLng that r-fiad real potential. I have been wri­ ting ever since - growing and stretch­ ing and learning so very much. Mostly I learned how much I did

too much around here. My kids are

becoming more competent and really

.needed. I was offered the chance to

work full-time in June for four weeks. Matt (13) and Amy (11) have agreed to be housekeepers and are learning how to do the laundry, the last thing left that has been solely my domain. As one of my regular assign­ ments, I have two school board meet­ ings to cover - ours and a neighbor­ ing one. The other superintendent I respect a great deal - and miracle of miracles, he likes me. We talk about IDEAS and EDUCATIONAL THEORY and he "hosted" my attendance at a teacher 's inservice meeting (my article enclosed) . He is an educator, though. .. . Gradually I am saying things to him in the hope that he will become more flexible. . .. One day I'd like to do a story or research on how mothers' lives have changed since they began homescho oling. I have learned, in the past six years, solely as a result of that first "NO" and the embrace of homeschooling, to: - drive a car - speak in public - separate from a painful family situation - tell people they cannot abuse me - final l y face the typewriter without gritted teeth - draw (I was always "no good" at art - words were my instruments) - disagree with authority figures - recognize arguments that are illogical - like my body (dance, yoga, exercises) - trust my perceptions (I was always soooo ready to believe that had misunderstood) - tell within the first five minutes on the phone if my chemistry will mesh with a new person. The biggest thing I learned was to believe in myself. That's what got me the job I adore. The woman with no college - just a high school diploma (who also hap­ pened to be a reading addict) - who raised five children who are polite, curious, and smart - the woman with no business background, no typing or shorthand - is a reporter. The other thing I learned, final­ ly after all these years, is to trust my children. I don't even do the bare minim~m of schoolwork any more ­ don't have time to police it. We talk, and write, and read, and share. Tha t 's enough ... If I do any news articles that are pertinent, I will copy. I'm cur­ rently working on a piece about Kate and Rebecca Charles, both 6, who make jewelry using professional tools and a propane torch .. . FEW "PRE-SCHOOLERS" ANY MORE

From Charlette Mikulka (NJ): ... My most significant concern is my growing realization that for many children, they are lucky if they are home during their "pre-school" years, let alone school years. I am expecting my first child in October and am amazed at how many people assume that within a few months of having my child I'll be back at "work." Interestingly, a friend re­ cently asked, "Are you returning to work or are you going to take it easy?" Not long ago women who re­ turned to work while their children were under age 5 were the exception; now it seems they are in the major­ ity ... I know of a number of women who became first-time parents when in

their thirties and returned to work because they had become accustomed to a higher standard of living. They've convinced themselves that leaving their six-month or one-year-old is of minor consequence. . .. What kind of foundation of trust, security and self-esteem can those children have who spend such large portions of their day apart from their source of security and then come home to tired parents who have given their prime-time energies to other endeavors? I would like to see in GWS more discussion of this issue and especially what families have been doing to prevent economics from coming between them and their children ... ALTERNATIVE WORK RESOURCES

Deirdre Cox (IL) sent us some articles on Cora lee Kern who runs the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR COTTAGE INDUSTRIES (PO Box 14460, Chicago IL 60614; 312-472-8116). Deirdre wrote: ... The national organization offers some nice things, like group insurance and a newsletter ... Cora lee Kern is also interested in children starting their own business and was interested to hear that a number of homeschooling families actively encourage their children to start businesses. I guess there is some legal problems because it's consid­ ered exploitive . I got the impression she'd like more contact with families who do this sort of thing, to build up ammunition to ch~nge existing laws ... [DR: 1 Also, in the back of the book OF CRADLES AND CAREERS, a lovely book by LA LECHE LEAGUE that we may add to our catalog, I found this list of organizations that support "alter­ native work options," such as job sharing and working at home. Each requires a self - addressed stamped envelope for further information: NEW WAYS TO WORK, 149 9th St, San Francisco CA 84103; 415-5 52 -1000. ASSOCIATION OF PART TIME PROFES­ SIONALS, PO Box 3419, Alexandria VA 22302. FOCUS ON ALTERNATIVE WORK PATTERNS, 509 10th Ave E, Seattle WA 98102; 206-329-7918. 3-FAMIL Y COMMUNITY

A letter from California: . .. We have a community of three families, with a total of nin e child­ ren, ages 10 on down. We are in rural California, near a small town, but well secluded in the woods, so there is much freedom to run and play and make noise during the day. My husband holds down a (relatively) high-paying technical-writing job in the city four days a week to keep the mortgage paid, the other two families work locally. Only two of the families have actual school age kids ... It is a wonderful climate for all of them' I personally follow the philosophy of few formal lessons and a great deal of freedom and self­ determination. My 7-year-old daugh ter reads quite well. Several years ago, we obtained two dozen boxes of free and SO¢ books from a city school dis­ trict giveaway. She has essentially taught herself to read on "Di c k and Janes," which she likes' She also likes "Frog and Toad" and many other


books, too. At first, I would sit with her and help her when she wanted to read to me. But then, after the birth of my third child, when I didn't have a lot of time, I would notice her reading to herself. Then, one day, she read to me and 10 and be­ hold' She had jumped a level all by herself. It was so heartening to see that . I need constant reinforcement about my conviction that spont aneity is best, since I tend to get into doubt and worry (even though I don't intend to change my ways'), and hav­ ing a good reader for an oldest child helps. She is also a very good art­ ist, loves putting on plays and wri­ ting (with me doing the spelling), and she can recite lots of stories and poetry, as we have an extensive collection of children's tapes with good literature and poetry on them. A word ~bout the tapes: we cop­ ied most of them from a library audio­ visual center when we lived in the city. Our finances do not permit buy­ ing them all new - we have enough to own our land and to live on without many frills . But I happen to love children ' s literature and art as my own interest, as well as children's rmprovisational theater, so that's where some of my energy has gone ­ into making those tapes. During lone­ ly winters when she didn't see friends often, before the community came together, she listened to them for hours. I worried about that, too, naturally . My 4-year-old son is the natural­ ist of the family. He is soon going to know and recognize more edible wild plants than I do. For him, liv­ ing on a rural homestead is a little boy's HEAVEN of tools and meaningful everyday work of chopping wood, saw­ ing, hammering, using picks, shovels, mattocks, mauls, screwdrivers, needle­ nose pliers - you name it. He's just beginning to reach the age where he's showing a bit of caution and responsi­ bility around these tools .. . He has an enormous capacity for energetic work/play, and can actually really be a help on occasion. He follows my hus­ band around like a shadow on week­ ends, doing the splitting, plumbing, wiring, fencing, garden digging as best he can alongside . Inside, he and his older sister both love to help me cook. He regards art in a totally dif­ ferent way than she did . She just drew. He doesn't like the fact he can't make it look right, so he doe s n't try . The one thing he likes to draw is a "gas cloud" - he makes me get out the astronomy book and find a picture of a nebula as a mod­ el, then he scribbles lots of colors and lets himself have fun. But give him paste and scissors and he goes wild. The baby is a 17-month toddler, just beginning to talk ... Her big sis­ ter watches her some while I package dried seaweed with one of the other mothers on a part-time basis - a few hours a week, which is good for both of them. The other family's 10-year­ old girl is watching their baby, too, and all the kids are rn-tne play­ yard, making elaborate dirt cakes, pretend gardens, wildlife montages, plant exhibits, or what-have-you. For me, the seaweed packaging is a break from mothering, and part of a fun cot­ tage industry as well. Unfortunately, it looks as if this whole wonderful set-up might dis­ solve in a few months, due to politi­ cal pressure. It isn't legal for us all to be living here together, due to zoning ... It's particularly frus-


trating to have this happen, because our school board climate is f uvor­ able ... At least we'll be able to home school alone, but having the oth­ er children around is wonderful . Besides the children, there are the parents, who have among them a wide range of skills and interests, including being very knowledgeable about plants and gardening, herbs and herbal remedies, livestock care (one family brought on a goat who had kids recently), a ll aspects of building and general do-it-yourself skills, computer programming (my husband has a computer at hrnne as well as at work), writing, arts and crafts, thea­ ter, mathematics, natural and physi­ cal science, music, especially violin - we have an ex-violin teacher in one of the fathers. . .. One of the families li': es quite differently than we do. They have a very low income, are presently living in a school bus (with four children) and have a strict dietary and health worldview . But there is a lot in common between our two fami­ lies, too. My older girl has begun practically to live over at their house, absorbing-tne different style. She spent four nights in a row with them recently, the first s he's ever spent away from us. (She is prone to scary dreams . ) Knowing we were a safe flashlight-walk away helped. I think it's a very good thing for her to encounter this differentness if she is drawn to it. It's like a safe form of travelling for her ... BARKERS OFFER APPRENTICESHIPS

From Penny Barker (Rt 3, Millers­ burg OH 44654): ... In May, a friend put Kandy Light (CWS #39 & #45) into contact with me. When Kandy wrote, suggesting that our two families might get to­ gether, I was a wee bit skeptical for two reasons. One, I know that home­ schooling families can have as little in common with one another as anyone else and two, I was apprehensive because of the Lights being Seventh Day Adventists ... As I stated in my response to Kandy's first letter, I believe in institutionalized spirit­ ual life no more than I bel~eve in institutionalized education . With these things brought out and accepted, we arranged a visit. Despite our religious differences, found that my family had much in com­ mon with the Light family . The Lights have six children between 3 and 18 and we have five between 7 and 17. Their oldest, Rick, is keenly inter­ ested in biolog~ and piano just as our oldest is, and both Rick and our Britt left school after third grade. None of the other children have ever been to school . All of the 11 child­ ren were reserved when first meeting one another, but later warmed right up . Britt's observation to me after she had been with various of the Light teens several times was "they're the easiest kids to be around - you don't feel that you need to be clever or humorous about every­ thing and you can enjoy the simple things that come up when we're togeth­ er like a nest of baby birds, the shocks of an electric fence, or a tree of wild mulberries." By con­ trast, Britt feels that around schooled teens everything has to be light and humorous and borders on always being silly together. I guess what we were impressed Wit h , and had wondered if we would ever find in

children o ther than Ol'r own, was a kind of se n s ible ntticude toward lif ~ . Bec a use of this we inv i ted the four t e enaged Lights to join us as "appr2ntice s " fo r our s ummer program. [ DR: The Barke rs run "The Countr y School" in which children spend a week on their farm . J Usually we only take teenagers who have , been with the program since they were 6 t o 10 ye a rs old as that is the only way they are tuned into the values and lifestyle we represent to the 6- to l2-year-old visitors we have . . . The Lights, hav­ ing had no television nor school, fit right in and have proven a real asset to us thi s summer. Their th orough work habits are incredible and have reall y helped us with o ur work l oad. Their seri ous attitude toward lif e i s a wonderful example to the scho n l e d teens who are also apprenticing wi t h us (five each week), Qnd their integ­ rity, sound character, and sense cf wonder make them a joy to have around. It has been such a good - situa­ tion for all concerned that we have been wond e ring if this isn't some­ thing that we might do with other homeschooled/unschooled teenagers . Usually the schooled teens who join us in this "apprentice" capacity pay a fee ($lOO/week) and spend from one to three weeks with us in the summer joining in on the work of the farm­ stead, much of which i s done with 3-5 visiting children joining each app r en­ tice and family member as they do their work. It is not ~ camp counsel­ or role. In fact we insist that this image not be the one represented as we do not see this as a "camp" experi­ ence for th e children but a joining in on the lifestyle of a family farm­ stead. The biggest problem would see m to me to be transportation here and home again, the cost of which would need to be assumed by the teenagers visit­ ing us. We want ~o have only those people, between ages 13 and 16, who have be€Tl Ollt of school since they were younger o r who hav e n e ver been to school . We would like to cor­ respond with any young pe ople who think they might be interested in this kind of experience. We would charge no fee and provide room and board for the time with us. We have a small brochure describing our apprentice program which we would be happy to send to teenagers who are interested in joining us. This i s all a bit of an experi­ ment but after the good fortune Britt has encountered from people reaching out and giving her opportunities, I am inclined to do what I can for oth­ er young people. I think one o'f the nicest aspects of joining our appren­ tice program is that it puts young people in contact with one another with common work as the central pur­ pose and a lot of socializing with other people one's age in a wholesome sett ing ... AUDUBON EXPEDITIONS

From Libby Dean, 859 Holmdel Rd, Holmdel NJ 07733: ... This year I read HOW CHILDREN LEARN as part of a "Perspectives in Environmental Education" course I am taking. I've been a student with the School Books, Chrtstlan Onented, K,12


Buy 1 or all 5 subjects. No enrollment,


7251 Bass Hwy. St. Cloud, FL 32789

8 NATIONAL AUDUBON SOCIETY EXPEDITION INSTITUTE for two years ... We are three or four groups of 20 or so students, one intern, and two guides tr a velling in modified schoolbuses laden with a roof rack full of backpacks. For the school year, September through May, we travel in this way; sleeping outdoors every night; backpacking/hiking/canoe­ ing/skiing in the backcountry for a fifth of the year; visiting resource people and places in the various fields of study we cover. For exam­ ple, to learn about geology, a book is a reference while the rocks and terrain of the Appalachian Mountains, Rainbow Bridge area or coastal New­ foundland are our classrooms . There is a large emphasis on non-spoonfed education. We l ea rn by seeing, try­ ing, touching, watching, doing, being there at the very source of our inter­ ests. As you pointed out in your books a child/person learns best when fascinated and interested in some­ thing in a direct way. We on the Expedition design our own itinerary for this reason. Education here is also intercurricular; in one day's hike we witness and discuss both the geology and the natural history of the area while we also fulfill physi­ cal education and outdoor skills. That same evening can be an observational astronomy seminar (complete with tele­ scope) or a group sing of songs that pertain historically to the same area. ... 1 embarked on this year-long travelling college program full of both excitement and trepidation. By the middle of the year I was feeling a renewed sense of "I want to," "I can," and "I am" about learning . I felt great that I had chosen the Expedition and knew I was responsible for my new positive outlook on the future . I chose to return. It often strikes me funny that these concepts are so new and monumen­ tal to me . For years, especially in the 60's when I was born, people have been trying to point out the pitfalls of unpersonalized, traditional educa ­ tion. Reforms in the field of educa­ tion have existed for as long as edu­ cation as an institution has. But to me these ideas are refreshingly new, for I was never offered these con­ trasts and concepts and am discover­ ing them for myself. It is exciting beyond words to me. I feel like the whole field of education and learning has burst open and scattered its seeds before me like a milkweed ... [DR: The AUDUBON EXPEDITION INSTITUTE (Northeast Audubon Ctr, Sharon CT 06069; 203-364-0522) offers travel programs for ages ll-14 high school, college, and . teachers. j

TEEN READY FO R NEW LIFE From Linda Mills (TX): June 27: ... Tammy (now 16) worked in an office a half-day for eight months and hated every minute of it. She started to learn Spanish but quit. She plays the piano - maybe 15 minutes a day - and writes letters to pen pals. Reads a little, not much . .. Tammy will be our first gradu­ ate, next May. She feels it isn't honest, a diploma without the stan­ aara-curriculum. So I bought books ­ algebra, Spanish, world history. She'd do a couple of lessons, say "This is dumb" (Amen') and quit. She's thinking about getting another job in September. I've tried to inter­ est her in business college or even

co rrespondence courses but she isn't interested. I ' ll admit I'm glad she's home for a while - she helps with the younger kids, and runs my errands now that she can d rive. My dad says I've prepared her for nothing and he's worried ... Do you hear from many people who hit a slump after 3~ years? .. August 16: ... I've been re­ reading fREEDOM AND BEYOND (which didn't understand the first time around) and I want to tell you it has helped. I think the main problem is that the older kids (16 and 14) are simply ready to go on to something else' It's unfortunate that they're bound by our compulsory school atten­ rlance law until age 17. Tammy has found another job, working afternoons in a grocery store. She mayor may not like it, but it is a new experi­ ence ... November 9: Tammy has been work­ ing for three months now and the job is much more suitable for her. She's happy and has proven to be a very dependable worker . I think she is beginning to feel that all kinds of choices are open to her. Should she stay with and progress in this com­ pany? Take some college courses? Does she want to bother with the SAT? She'll graduate in May, and the choices - and responsibility - are hers. She is saving for a car . A friend of Tammy's is studying psychology in college, and in order to be able to converse, Tammy brought home a stack of library books and makes notes, outlines, etc .. . March 28: Tammy will be totally free from the compulsory attendance law in about a week. She has found a room-mate - a young woman about her age, with a baby - and will begin working full time right after her 17th birthday. They're sharing a lit­ tle two-bedroom house downtown, about half a mile from us and within walk­ ing distance of her job . We're still adjusting - she still comes home at least once a day - but she's happy and I'm feeling very proud of her ...

BUSY FAM ILY IN KE NTUCKY From Ruth McCutchen (KY): ... We continue with our relaxed approach to homeschooling ... One day a week we all take music lessons from the same instructor. He is a jewel . .. Deborah (16) is learning viola and though she hasn't been playing more than a year and has only had six months of weekly lessons, Mr. Sloane feels she could tryout for a local community orchestra. Rebekah (14) takes flute and piano ... Abigail (11) takes clarinet and is nuts about it. After one lesson, Mr. Sloane told her that she was doing more than a small group he had recently begun teaching at school ... I am learning the violin and have rediscovered the joys of the piano. 1 too~ lessons for eight years as a child but have never played much as an adult . I try to play every day and really miss it when the schedule won't permit. I'm thrilled with my progress on the violin; the girls and I are playing quartets together and having a marvelous time. Anyone who believes that children must be motiva­ ted and encouraged to develop disci­ pline and good study habits, hasn't been around kids who are learning because they want to. I have never suggested to any of the girls that

they should practice and yet they rarely miss a day, even if th e day has been so full that they have to play late in the evening. I'm not sur­ prised by their dedication; after all, no one tells me to practice eit her. Also on the music front: Deborah and Rebekah now sing in the church choir with me, and Abigail will join in a year or so. Free music programs we've attended in the past month include: the Southern Baptist Theo­ logical Seminary choir and orchestra performance of Handel' s "Israel in Egypt," a piano recital by th e head of the piano department at the univer­ sity school of music, the Lou i svil le Orchestra, the Louisville Youth Orch­ estra, and the Rust College Acapella Choir. Deborah's latest volunteer jobs have been at the zoo: one in t he Meta­ zoo, an indoor exhibit with small ani­ mals, reptiles and microscopes, the other in the commissary where the diets are prepared. The remainder of her time is filled with gardening, babysitting, preparing for the CED, and reading. She still m~intains a strong intere s t in maps and geo­ graphy, space and astronomy, a nd is very good at fixing things' Rebekah remains a literary vol­ cano in a constant state of eruption; she's written and illustrated at least two fairy tales with strong­ minded heroines, and heroes who appre­ ciate same . She's also writte n numer­ ous other little tidbits whic h always delight and amuse me. Besides the wri­ ting, reading, and drawing, crossword puzzles have become a regular activi­ ty (largely thanks to my moth er 's influence) . Rebeka says the crossword puzzles have really stimulated her to use maps and her dictionary even more than before. She hasn't figured out a way to earn money, as babysitting doesn't interest her, nor does sell­ ing things. I've commented that we may just have to get her published as she definitely has the reclusive per­ sonality of an Agatha Christie and would take well to that sort of thing . . . Abigail stays very busy and usu­ ally finds that the day doesn't con­ tain enough hours in which to do all she has planned. Besides practicing her clarinet, she reads, keeps a diary faithfully (something I never had the discipline or sustained inter­ est to do), writes to a pen pal and her dad, rides her bike, does her chores, works for my mother, helps a great deal with the needs of 80-year­ old cousin Floren: fixing food, help­ ing her get her braces off, talking with her, and helping her get where she wants to go . Abi has also begun to babysit with a little girl, 3, who lives two doors away. She really likes being able to earn money out­ side of her allowance. She j oined a scout troop but decided after a cou­ ple of months that it just isn't her kind of troop. We learned of another troop which puts more emphasis on ser­ vice, camping, singing, etc . , so Abi may join them in the fall. Some of us have begun to discuss an all-home­ schoolers Scout troop which wou ld cer­ tainly be a change from the norm of one home schooled child in a group of girls who think she's a bit strange ... The girls divid e the daily chores by using a roster of rotating jobs such as: Cat Privilege, which includes feeding, watering, keeping litter pans unobjectionable; Kitchen Duty, which means helping with meals (mainly supper) and doing mo s t of the dishes; newspaper and mail c a rrying;



and taking out the garbage for pickup twice a week. We all pitch in with laundry (no small production with a wringer washer that doesn ' t wring') and general housework and fixing things as they break. But we have found that having certain assigned jobs keeps the household running more smoothly, distributes the work load more evenly and reduces friction. I have been having irregular math with each girl, as we decided that our lifestyle wasn't providing enough exposure to all the types of math covered on the GED . Deborah says she isn ' t interested in just passing the GED - she wants to WOW them . We have a good GED prep book, by Contem­ porary Press, that instructs step-by­ step in all the types of math needed to pass the test. Deb has been going through it on her own . Homeschooling friends in Tennessee recommended it t o us . The KENTUCKY HOMESCHOOLERS pic­ nic was our largest yet, with close to a hundred attending. We had a great afternoon seeing old friends, meeting prospective homeschoolers, discussing the business of our group, etc . KHS has approximately 60 member families which is probably less than a third of the home schooling families in the state ... KID S FOR PEAC E

Eric Larson, a 10-year-old home­ schooler, wrote in the Minnesota Home­ school Network Newsletter: . . . Because of my concern for peace in the world, I started a club called KIDS FOR PEACE . It has over 35 members, which isn't bad since I just started in it November. I have already put out one newsletter, and by the time you read this, I will have put out a second . I know several members of WOMEN AGAINST MILITARY MADNESS . .. They even put an article about KIDS FOR PEACE in their news­ letter. I also got on television. In the Twin Cities, you can call up some local computers and leave a message. I left a message about KFP on one of them . A man named Phil Johnson, who produces a show called "People, Places & Things," read my message and wrote to me. Twelve members of KIDS FOR PEACE (includi ng myself) taped the show on January 26. It aired February 10 . The main purpose of the club is to write t o government officials , urging them to participate in actions that would promote peace. Ages now range from 8 to 14, but any age is accepted. If you would like to become a member, just write to: KIDS FOR PEACE, PO Box 4153, St Paul MN 55104. There is no membership fee, but dona­ ti ons are welcome. Members will receive (1) an introductory letter (2) a picture of the official KFP sym­ bol (3) a business card (4) a bi­ monthly newsletter . . . COMPETENT CHILDRE N

Dorothy Combs (MI) writes: ... During the NCACS conference in Ann Arbor, I told Amanda (7) she could use the 35mm camera to take pic­ tures . I quietly showed her where to change the settings, and she said, "Mom, I'll figure it out by myself." Since we do not usually use a flash, you have to get all the settings per­ fect, or the pictures are blurred, or


too dark or light . Her pic tures were great' When we got home. she followed Dad around, taking pictures of the construction of the house. 1hfiY all were great' Before reading 0 n's books, I would never have given her the 35mm camera to figure out on her own.

Nor would she and Heidi (11) be down in the basement right now, by themselves, build i ng doll furniture with a hand saw and a hot melt glue gun, out of scraps of wood . THey are also building a 3x2x2' bird cage with two compartments, ou t of thin strips of wood, for their two parakeets . . .. Heidi and Amanda's penpals are Rachel and Sarah Barton, vio lin­ ist and cellist from Chicago [ See GWS #45). The penpal experience has been wonderful. The girls have so many com­ mon interests, even though Sarah and Rachel live in a large city and Heidi and Amanda live far from anyone, in the country . .. Our mailbox is a long distance from the house, and the whole family shares in the excitement when one of the girls comes back rid­ ing her bike and waving a letter from their penpal friends in the air. The girls are doing a lot of bak­ ing now on their own . Our oven on the electric stove does not work, so th e girls do all their baking in the wood range, and they hav e tc keep wood in and watch the dampers to keep an even heat ... CHILDREN'S GARAG E SALE From Susan Shilcock (PA):

... After our family's garage sale last spring, ou r daughter Emily (7) said, "It seerr,s like the people who came were mostly interested in the adult things for sale and the children didn't have much of a chance. Are you allowed to just invite children to a garage sale?" We didn't see why not, so one Sunday af ternoon in May our three girls, Emily, Amanda (9), and Julia (4) host­ ed a "Children's Garage Sale." They rented six teen table spaces to friends and acquain tances at $2 each and then used about half that money for advertising in local newspapers a nd creating flyers. We don't live in a neighborhood to which people can easi ly walk, but we had over 100 peo­ ple at the sale, and some traveled over an hour to participate. With planning and a good ~etwork of frie nds, even a relatively isolated fami ly can ",ake thi s work . Here are th e guidelines our chi ldre~ decided on: - Onl) children selling - Adults are of course w~lcome to help, but it is designed to be run by and for chi ldren. - Suggested ages are 5-12. - No selling of war toys or guns. - No selling of junk foods or candy. Homemade tre a ts are OK. - Suggestions of things to sell were: homemade items, used toys, trinkets that would be good for i nventing, miniature things . Most of the children who partici­ pated were be·tween 5 and 8 .. . Child­ ren set their own prices and then fig­ ured out the correct change, some­ times with adult help . . . The older chi ldren (9-12) were more likely to be aware of the relation between expenses and profits, while the young­ er ones were interested in the immedi­ ate transactions going on . Two best-selling items were "fruit on a stick" and healthy plants . Children also sold other home­

nade foods, crafts , and games, as well 05 nld t o ys and books. (One fami ly donated all the unsold items t o needy refugees.) It was a nice opportunity for kids to see that their own work . suc h as growing plants, crocheting doll c lothes, or inventing games o r greeting cards, could earn them some money. A child 's profit varied, b~t the range was betw r~ ~ $6 and $25, and we stressed process over product. The preparatior was as exciting as th e s,le itself, if not more so, although, as Amanda says, " You have to prepare yourself to do a lot of preparation." Our children made "exhibitor badges " for each child '"ho signed up. These nat only helped eve ry one learn names, they also helped the "public" identify the sell-­ ers ' A well-advertised sale, guaran­ teeing that the children won 't spend a lot of time waiting for customers, can provide a chance to do ~ea l ~ork involving money and strangers, and children enjoy this. We held our sale from 1 4 PM, but 1-3 would have been long enough, especially since in our case many of the children were quite young .. . We were luc ky enough to ha ve ou td oor play space availab le for younger sib­ lings and those a t the tables, who would often take a break from selling to shop or play . . . I rec o ~mend that each family personally invite at least 3-5 ot her families; this way, everyone will be sure to have custrnn­ ers. It is also helpful if a child ha s seen or parti ,- ipated in an adult garage sale. How much help should the adults give? As Amanda says, "Leave that up to the children~" ... SH E O NLY WANTS TO PLAY A mother wrote:

... We took our Jaughter (9) out of school one year ago and are very sure homeschooling L3 for us . But ~ can never feel sure of our direc­ tion ... I've read your books-8nO the Moores' books and everything in be­ tween, and agree with a lot of what you say about learning. I'd like some input on our daughter's willingness to do nothing but pretend a nd play with her friends all day . I've tried to determine what she's interested in, but it seems she's mainly inter­ ested in pretending with her friends, doll, or stuffed animals. She shows no interest in the adult world, that I can see . I bake our bread and gar­ den and sew and am learning piano and read and make grape vine wreaths to sell, and s he's not interested in any of it. My husband fixes our ~ar and builds boats and is adding onto our house, but my daughter would rather go off with a neighbor girl Rnd paint her fingernails! She's very intelligent, reads beyond her grade level, seems emotion­ ally stable and happy. She went to preschool two years public school kindergarten, and l~ years of Waldorf

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school before we took her out . She taught herself to read, and does enjoy reading. We live in suburbia, but have tried to bring in as much "life" as possible, with rabbits, ducks, chick­ ens, gardens, and fruit trees. We've tried to make our yard as interesting as possible to children. We've tried to do some low­ pressure "school" but she's not inter­ ested in that either (except being read to). She just seems to live to play with her friends after they get 0ut a f school. ... 1 do like to respond to my children, nelp them if they want help, talk with them, pay attention to them, be with them - but I'm real­ ly bad at-Coming up with wonderful "activities" to have them do. My husband isn't comfortable with completely child-led learning of the three R's, though I am. And I get frustrated sometimes reading in GWS about all the children who are doing things, with all those wonderful interests ... Any help will be appre­ ci.ated. We also have a 5~-year-old girl

and a l~-year-old boy ...

[DR:] I wrote in reply: ... Your letter sounds like oth­ ers we have gotten. I am not at all surprised to see that your daughter has only been out of school for a year - from the situation you describe, that's about what I'd expect. Somehow, only two or three years of school is enough to deaden a lot of a child's initiative and interest. I expect if you keep your other children out of school, you'll see a big difference between the one who went to school and those who never did. Fortunately, the testimony of a lot of homeschoolers shows that this effect is reversible, especially if you lay-off and don't repeat the pressures of school that caused this situation in the first place. It will quite likely take as long for the effects of school to wear off as the number of years that she was in it. In your case, I should think it should be particularly easy to relax and let her be because you say she is happy and also enjoys reading. I don't care if all she reads is comic books; as long as she enjoys reading she will get better at it, will eventually read a great variety of things, will learn a tremendous amount, and will be exposed to sub­ jects that may trigger a deeper involvement. The other thing I want to say is that there really is nothing wrong with wanting to play so much. Play is the major business of childhood, and even those children who love being involved in their parents' activities do not really draw a distinction in their minds between work and play. It may hurt your feelings that your child is not interested in all the interesting things you do. And it's true that in GWS we do keep stressing the importance of allowing your child­ ren to become involved in real activi­ ties, mostly because so many parents, unlike you, would never dream of allowing their children to partici­ pate. But you can't force it on her. Let her know she ' s welcome, invite her to do things with you now and again, but don't make her feel wrong for not choosing those things just now. There's still plenty of time for her to grow up. My hunch is that

until she has satisfied this need of hers to play a nd play and play, she is not going to be able to move on . And the need may be so strong because of being in school those key years. Go back and look at some of those GWS stories again, and instead of wasting your time thinking, "Those children are all doing wonderful things and mine isn't, what a fail­ ure," see if you can figure out how those activities started, how the child got interested. The usual pat­ tern is that children who never went to school (or, sometimes, chi ldren who went but rebelled) have always been full of questions and interests. The ones who went to school learned that it didn't matter what they were interested in , and only slowly re­ gained their curiosity. Meanwhile, I'm glad for y?ur sakes, let alone your children s, that you are doing so many lively and creative things. Although you may not see the results immediately, believe me that you are setting an example of learning, inventing, caring, working that will mean a great deal to all of them. I don't know how much it will take to convince your husband that letting the children be is best. See if he'll read some of John's books, if he hasn't already, such as HOW CHILDREN FAIL. That gives a good pic­ ture of exactly what the processes are at school that deaden a child's curiosity and natural learning abili­ ty, and if he understands this then he may well see that it could take a few years for a child to overcome what has been done to her. It doesn't matter how nice and well-meaning those school people were, they taught her that her questions and concerns didn't matter. Well, then, it's ~p to you to reestablish that her interests and concerns do matter - even if right now those interests are paint­ ing her fingernails ... The mother replied: ... What you said about the dead­ ening effects of school, I had heard before but somehow had forgotten. And your thoughts about the importance of play and of teaching my children that their interests and concerns are rmportant were just what I needed to hear right now. I 'm excited about homeschooling again, after mon th s of trying to do "school at home" which just will not work for us' And best of all, I can relax and work on the most important task of loving my children ... RETURN TO SCHOOl. ..

From Karen Demmin (IL): ... Our son Rama (now l2~) deci­ ded to go to sc hool last fall . We started him in 6th grade instead of 7th so he'd be able to get used to the "school game" without having to worry about ~cademics and changing classrooms and 5-6 different teach­ ers. He adjusted very well. The first three months were the hard ones: get­ ting used to the homework load, which makes me fume every time I think about it. The kids are there seven hours and get two more hours of home­ work. They do have-a-5tudy period but the teacher reads to them 1urAng it' Ah, but we all are aware 0 t ese kinds of situations in public schools, the kinds of situations which have mov ed us to be home school­

ers and public school children liber­ ators' -----Rama has of course picked up some social habits that we ca l l "school trips." The first one most folks would notice is the "Poke-at­ you (verbally or physically) just-to­ get-a-rise-out-of-you" or "be cause ­ there's-nothing-to-do" or "to- look­ cool" game. Luckily Rama will let go of the game if we point it out to him. But sometimes, especially after SChool, he's stuck in the rhy t hm of school razzle-dazzle and has a harder time settling down. Usually he has to go for a walk in the woods to get cen­ tered again. Academically he's making A's and B's and has a very different attitude about the information he's be i ng exposed to. For one, he think s it's interesting, and he connects i t to other things in and around hi s life. Except for the repetitious junk, he doesn't mind the work and ret ai ns a lot more than I remember retaining. I believe his interest is high beca use he chose to be there, he isn' t being forced against his will. Our daughter Amma (9~) is think­ ing about going to school, to o , but wants to wait and go in 6th gr ade so she can have Rama's teacher f or her first one, because the teache r is very nice, kind, and friendly. We'll see . Right now Amma does her "book work" at the pre-school where I work with 3-year-olds each day from 6:30 AM to 12:30 PM. She also gets to help out in any class she likes with child­ ren ages 2 to 5. After work we have the r e st of the afternoon for projects, trips, hobbies, etc. Amma's in Girl Scouts and church choir and though s he's not in school, knows all the cheers for junior high that her school friends have taught her. She has a best friend, also a homeschool er, who is 10, and the two are such a joy to be around because they are eager to help, talk, laugh, share, etc . , etc . - and I mean with adults, not just with each other. Most of the school­ children around here clam up when an adult walks in the room and have a hard time communicating ... And from Beedy Parker (ME): ... You ask how we fared, with our daughter Nelly going back to school. She is now 13 and finished 7th grade this spring. It was a mixed experience, as you can imagine. She did very well academically ­ as she had four years ago, before we took her out . She put a lot of pres­ sure on herself; she needed to know exactly what was expected of her, both academically by each teacher (about seven of them) and socially by the children. We had a lot of storms while she worked on her homework (she 'd come home and be mad at me because I was the closest thing - and I guess kids must feel that mothers are responsible for all pain) but that cleared up as time went by and she felt she was succeeding. She changed almost all her class­ es halfway through the year, being shifted to "Gifted and Talented" for math and science, which scrambled her schedule. New teachers, and new storms. By the fourth term she had settled down again, but was eagerly looking foward to the end of school, and having time to do all her own projects again (taking care of ani­ mals, spinning, sewing, reading, tak­ ing care of kids) which she had hard­ ly any time for during the year .



Socially, she struggled, but I was very proud of her persistence, and I think she is quite tolerant and understanding of her peers, philosoph­ ical about silliness, and generally kind and thoughtful. She was quite frightened of the "fast group" in her class and still avoids them, but has successfully cultivated a group of moderately conservative girls. She is aery careful to be " correct" in her ress and behavior, in what she writes in class and what her project topics are. She hates being pointed out for doing well or doing something unusual, though I think this will change as she gains confidence. Her older sisters are quite non-conform­ ing and she admires them but is cau­ tious, partly because of their exam­ ple and warnings. For all her social struggling (in the shifting winds of 7th grade affiliations and social machina­ tions), I think she feels quite suc­ cessful this year, and will go back next year, even though she really doesn't like it much. Band has been terrific, and some of her teachers are good and quite fond of her. She thought she couldn't manage public school and had to try, and now finds she can. She knows that she can home­ school whenever she chooses and I have told her that we would get her into a private school if she needed that. I'm afraid she feels that home­ schooling is too "public" here, a block away from the regular school, in a smallish town. ... The homeschooling let us have a wonderful time with her, and let her do many things that she would nev­ er have had the time or freedom to do while in school. But in her case, she never escaped the social pressure, or, rather, it caught her again. Per­ haps if she had never gone to 1st or 2nd grade, it would be different ...

...AND RETURN TO HOME Sam Brotherton wrote in Arizona Families for Home Education, 6785: ... Our initial eyperience with homeschooling was wonderful in the beginning and then became very stress­ ful. Shannon was 9 at the time and we knew we had to take her out of school because she was closing down her thinking factory. For reasons too numerous to mention, she had given up her option to use her brain .. . We involved Shannon in a variety of activities, mainly artistically oriented, to help restore her self­ esteem. Working on saving her spirit meant more to us than academics in the beginning. After all, she was "doing well" in school, wasn't she? When it did come time for academics, I had a very difficult time deciding on the proper way of teaching. It was much easier for my husband, Rich. He is a firm believer that when a child is ready to learn, it will just happen . He doesn't believe in force­ feeding and education. He cringes at the thought of all the wasted busy­ work and filling in the blanks and memory work he was given in school just for sake of taking a test for the teacher to find out how smart he was, and then forgetting the memory work after the test because it had no real meaning to him in the first place. I agreed with his philosophy, but I had trouble letting go of what school is supposed to be. I think I had a fear that somewhere along the line, Shannon might miss a large hunk


of her education and I would be com­ pletely responsible. What a burden to carry' We had many great learning exper­ iences, but my fear of not teaching exactly like she would be taught in school or not keeping up with her peers had me on a constant see-saw. Naturally, Shannon was aware of this and she felt if I didn't know what she was supposed to be doing, how could she know what was right? We were both in a very stressfull situa­ tion, and we were drifting apart rath­ er than being closer together. We mutually decided it would be best for both of us if she went back to school . I felt like a failure. How­ ever, I would rather be a failure than be in the funny farm from the stress I was under. We gained a lot from that experi­ ence and I realized that all of the stress was caused from my own atti­ tude. Other people were very success­ ful because they were able to handle a struct ured curriculum or they were able to relax about being unstruc­ tured. I had been caught right in the middle and didn't know which way to go. Shannon returned to school for a year and half and enjoyed it very much until last fall when she started junior high. When we took her out in October, she said she never wants to go back. She's not on the same wave length as most of the kids in junior high and she hopes she never will be' We've had a very successfu l year, and we are totally comfortable this time with homeschooling. We've gone to the unstructured side of the fence, and Shannon is much more mature and very self-disciplined in her own education. She chooses what subjects she wants to work on each day, sometimes a variety, sometimes maybe only one subject a ll day. There are times that she will sit for many hours just playing around wit h num­ bers, understa nding their relation­ ship to each other and getting a solid understanding of what math is all about. On days that she feels she didn't do enough work or maybe did nothing at all, she says, "Tomorr ow I'm going to work harder to make up for not doing much today." She is set­ ting her own standards and making her own rules and the beautiful part of it is that it's all quality learning because she's doing it for herself ­ not for a grade or to try to please a teacher ...


down, saying h e couldn't draw. (He has wonderfully creative drawings, paintings, collages, and pottery that he does at hom e .) I told him that sure he could, why didn't he show me some? I also a sked if that's what the kids told him. He proceeded to draw his first-ev e r square house with pointed roof a nd silhouette of chairs in it. I wanted to cry ... and this is what we sent him to "Creative Arts" camp for! He ended up adding some of his own touches to the picture, so at least he hadn't been completely indoc­ trinated. We have tried to keep away from coloring books, and teaching art . We just keep lots of art sup­ plies around. When he wasn't into wri­ ting his letters, I just always en­ couraged him to draw, figuring the important thing is developing the fine motor coordination. Lucius liked his teachers and made friends with some of the enter­ tainers. He'd come home everyday with some Indian beads that he'd found in the driveway. That's his new love, since a teenage friend took him arrow­ head hunting and showed him how to identify Indian tools from other rocks (he has his better specimens mounted) . ... 1 tried my best to pack inter­ esting lunches that he'd enjoy . The kids made fun of almost everything he took. They just weren't used to home­ made whole wheat bread or anything other than white bread and baloney or peanut butter and jelly. He did eat whole wheat crackers and cheese, in spite of the "What are they?" By the last day I decided to try peanut but­ ter and jam on his whole wheat bread. That came home intact - he ate his peaches and brownie . I was amazed at the peer pressure and the effect it had on him. I, personally, couldn't put up with coming up with something nourishing that fit into other peo­ ple's standards on a daily basis. So, this is what "peer pressure" is, and what it does. I'm glad it was only a week! ...

THE EFFECT OF NURSERY SCHOOL Gayla Groom-Slatton (OR) wrote: April 11 ... I've recently had an eye-opening experience with Cord. A couple of months ago, I found myself needing to go back to work for a few weeks . I felt that a short exposure to preschool (he's 2~) might even be beneficial to him, as he'd been act­ ing a bit bored and seemed eager to meet other kids. I found a preschool that seemed pretty good - unstruc­


... 1 have never considered send­ ing Lucius (7) to school. However, when I heard about a "Creative Arts Day Camp" in Murfreesboro (40 miles away) I joined in with a group of oth ­ er home schoolers and car-pooled our children for a week. First I'll say, Lucius loved it, says he had fun, and would go again tomorrow if he could. He was in the 7-12 age group. With his shoulder length hair, the child­ ren wouldn't believe he was a boy. They'd follow him into the bathroom and watch him urinate and come out saying, "Yeah, he really is a boy." He got so when everyone else was busy he'd sneak to the bathroom and lock the door for privacy. He enjoyed the many are projects and got to watch magicians, dancers, and singers~ a whole lot of doing. Then on the fourth day he came home, and in the evening slumped

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12 tured, low-key, bright and cheerful . It was also located near my job, so I would be able to visit Cord at lunch­ time occasionally . The first week or so was hard, of course, with Cord missing mom and dad, but I expected that. After a while, he seemed to be having a real­ ly good time. He' d come home with stories of how they'd planted seeds or made musical instruments out of pie plates. He'd talk on and on about "my friend Thomas ." Everybody at the day care seemed to really like Cord, a nd he made lots of friends, adult and kids. But I noticed that when I'd pop in to see him, he was often playing alone. And he was always very eager to go to lunch with me, ready to grab his coat and get out of there. If I had told him that morning that I'd pick him up at 11:00, he'd pester the day care workers to tell him the time and get very upset if I was late. When our lunch time would draw to a close, he'd usually start crying and saying he didn't want to go back, he didn't like it, he wanted to go home. Yet he seemed to have fun there. It occurred to me that maybe his pre­ school was like my jobs had always been to me: if I could force myself to drag myself out of bed and go to work in the morning, the work day would be all right. Maybe I would even enjoy it. But every day at 5:01 I'd start dreading the next day . Although there was nothing all that terrible about the job, neither was there anything all that great. My sub­ conscious was trying to clue me in that I was spending a lot of time do­ ing something that really wasn't in my best interests. I believe that Cord was feeling something similar. The toys and story hours were okay once he got to the preschool, but that wasn't really how he wanted to spend his time. After my temporary weeks of work were through, my husband and I deci­ ded to keep Cord in preschool a couple of days a week because he real­ ly did seem to enjoy being around oth­ er kids and also so that I could get some work done at home and have a bit of much-needed time to myself. It seemed like a good solution, but I've seen tiny, telling signs that it ' s n ot. When I ask him what he does at day care, he says "nothing . " He doesn't want to draw pictures with me because he says he "can't." If he can't accomplish a task in one try, he gives up. This is so different from the Cord of a couple of months ago' He seems very upset because a couple of kids at his preschool hav e pushed him down; something in the experience has caused him to brood about it. He likes to play teacher with me, with the teacher being the only one able to talk or convey infor­ mation: " Now you listen; I'm the teacher ... Now you're the teacher; you show me." He has also developed a great deviousness, usually opting for conflict rather than cooperation. It took a while for all this to sink into my preoccupied brain, but when it finally did, there was no doubt in my mind that preschool was still school and had no part in our lives . So today is his last day at pre­ school. I asked him last night wheth­ er he wanted to keep going to pre­ school, and the answer was an unequiv­ ocable "No." Don't you think you'd be bored at home with me all the time? (I don't even have a car available) "No. I miss you all the time at play­ group." How would I get any work

done? "You work, and then we ' ll play together." Won't you miss your friends? An emphatic ":-IO!" For the $17 . 50 a day the pre­ school charges, Cord and I have a lot of options for exciting projects. Things he and I enjoy doing, and want to do. As for mobility, we'll just have to get creative. Taxis still exist, as does the possibility of hitching a ride downtown with dad in the morning and bussing it to various spots about town . I noticed that when he was going to preschool 2 days a week, our three days alone together were difficult for both of us . I guess neither of us was sure what to expect from the other. At preschool, for instance, he was told to "butt on his lips" when someone was reading him a book, where­ as I encourage him to comment and interact. He must have been receiving mounds of similar conflicting signals. . .. Cord and I took a train up to Seattle a few weeks back . I thought, great, he's such a fanatic about train books, he'll love this. His opinion? "Thi s isn't any fun'" But on the way he could see Mt. St. Helens, and we talked about it a long whi le ("Mommy, it's having an explosion''') and now he ' s fascinated with volca­ noes, so you never can tell. ~ ... Since Cord is no long­ er in preschool at all, he is back to his old self, and our days are enjoy­ able once more. A couple of great forms of entertainment for him: mov­ ies borrowed from the library, shown on a garage-sale projector (an added plus: he gets to help me figure out how to fix the thing whenever it breaks down, which is often). Also, he loves to play with adult games . Backgammon is his favorite, a magnet­ ic travel version, with every spare die in the house. He also love s Scrab­ ble, makes up bizarre words and cackles at my pronunciations. Monopo­ ly is another favorite; sorting all that money, going to jail, figuring out how to repack the thing when he's finished. We had some "teach yourself French " tapes going on the car cas­ sette player last week, and I was very surprised to see the interest with which Cord listened to them. He repeated after the guy on the tapes really well and enjoyed himself immensely. Every once in a while, he'll pop out with "Bonj our, mommy." He's been speaking a rhyming language lately ( " you kitty snitty, you hunky old monkey"), just having fun ...

THE IMPORTANCE OF QUESTIONS By Susan Richman in Western PA Homeschoolers, Winter ' 85: ... This evening, reading a back issue of Instructor Mayazine, 10/68, I came across an artic e called, "Do Teachers Talk Too Much?" (from my attic hoard of old school books). Wil­ liam Floyd reports o n his research into classroo~ teachers' questioning styles, and also students' opportuni­ ties to raise their own questions. On average, in the 40 primary grade classrooms observed (recommended as best by their principals), he found that the teachers asked 96% of the questions, and the s tudents only 4%. And this mere 4% was of course divid­ ed among whole classrooms of child­ ren, meaning that most never asked any questions at all. "In one hour long session the teacher made 283 queries and the

children none at all . .. On the aver­ age for every question asked by a pupil, a teacher asked 27 questions." This lopsided chance to question is bad enough, but the nature of the pupils ' questions is probably most disturbing . Floyd writes, "Not sur­ prisingly, an examination of ques­ tions asked by pupils revealed a mini­ mum of real interest or serious thought. Most were of a checking nature ( "What did you say?"), or were r equests for permission to speak. Practically all were uttered with hardly any thought or deliberation ... Generally, children in these class­ rooms were given neither opportunity nor time to question. There was lit­ tle waiting before - or after - the teacher started talking for children to think about the material and ask about it." . .. Reading this made me think of the many and varied questions Jesse (7) and Jacob (4) ask in a day, and the many chances we all have for lei­ surely discussion and sharing - and how lucky I feel! In just the past several days I've begun to jot down some of their questions. Here's a sam­ pling: - How do frogs get air when they're h ibernating in the mud under a pond? - Why are poodlei often chosen for circus dogs? - What letters make the sound !law"?

- Guess what? Do you know what the notes in an F chord are? - Where does cinnamon come from? - What is this fort a picture of? (Fort McHenry? f thought so') - What are apostrophes for? - Why did people used to like beaver furs so much? - Was the new territory that the English won from the French during the French and Indian War, was it con­ sidered one of the colonies that broke away from England in the Revolu­ tion? - How big a city is Chicago? - Why don't the little countries all around Israel just make peace with Israel? - Why did they make Washington D.C. a city all by itself, not part of any state? - Why doesn't wolverine fur freeze? - Why do they have this lexan shield above the dinosaurs in the museum? Often these questions come up at meandering, quiet times of the day ­ if Jesse is hanging about the kitchen as I fix a meal, while we're on a long car ride, or after Jesse has been balancing on his head in a stuffed chair. Odd moments, unplanned moments. They usually spur a whole little discussion, a l ways making me see the issue in question a new way, making me realize that as a "sophisti­ cated" adult I'd never thought the problem through before, never even knew there was a question there. Often we turn to reference books or maps about the house to further explore an issue. The question about Chicago got us using an almanac for the first time, and we ended up com­ paring Chicago to Pittsburgh to the state of Alaska, comparing popula­ tions in two different censuses, as well as surface area. I think it's very safe to say that these questions would never have been asked by Jesse at a school . There would have been no time, no "permission," no expectation and wel­ coming of questioning. No one to lis-



ten and ponder and t oss the questions around with . It often isn 't so neces­ sary to answer their questions, as it is value their questions, show inter­ est-rn-their emerging ideas. Because they've raised a question, it shows they've already been doing serious thought about the issue, already may have some hunches or theories of their own, and so I of t en ask what they've thought so far . They aren 't seeking informa ti on from an "expert," so much as wanting a co ll eague to dis­ cuss their path of th oug ht. You might want to think back to your own schooling days, and see how many oppor tun ities you had to raise questions and share them with a responsive adult . If your children are now in school, you might want to do an unobtrusive "question count " in your child's classroom and see if Floyd's 196B findings are still valid today (I 'd be willi ng to wager the y are) . You might wan t to tr y to write down some of your child's questions for a day or two - you 'll probably be surprised to find just how many oppor­ tunities our home-taught children have to comfor t ably inquire and won­ der about all of the world . And should we count the times when our children pose questions as official "in structional time ," part of our "5 hours per day, lBO days per year"? You bet we should . It is, after all, probably one of the most powerful learning tools we are giving our children - the confidence to raise our own questions . .. WH Y NOT GRADE ADULTS?

Emily Schi ll er (IL) writes: . . . This compulsion to GRADE, to EVALUATE kids . I fantasize: what if I ran about GRADING o ther adults? What if kids GRADED adu lts on the ir car­ eers, their housekeepi ng, their t eac h­ ing t echniques, their lawns, their parenting, their checkbooks? Adults do not take criticism well. Why do we expect our children to? Whenever the local kids get report cards, my kid~ ask for th em. So we make up ou r own. Th is time I asked that they include PEA CE and a nd we all argued whet her it's more impor ­ tant to learn math or peace. They grade themselves and sometimes each other, but it is their choice . I would rather not do this at all . But perhaps they have things to learn from this ... PART·TIME SCHOOL

From Shirley Gardner (AZ): . .. 1 kept my son Joel (now 14) out of school for 2~ years. We used a very unstructured curricu lu m, with a little of this and a littl e of that . I had a ma th tutor (a student [rom the local junior college) come for an hour a week and work with him, but most of his time was spent on what­ ever he wanted to do . He spent some time with coin collecting, stamp col ­ lecting, did some building on his tree house, worked on some sewing projects (a belt pouch for hi s sling­ shot rocks), collected and studied things under his microscope, worked on our computer, did some cooking, dog training, and lots of reading. He had played the tuba for a few months before I pulled him out of school, but I found that tubas we r e too expen­ sive to buy and impossible to rent, so he had to give it up.


This January I wor ked out a deal with th e school so he cou ld attend a half day and t ake band, shop, and sci ­ ence. The results have been reall y interesting . He was able t o play th e tuba so well, after not touching one for 2~ years , that they moved him from beginning band t o co ncert band, and th e n afte r five months, they gave him a music scholarship to a camp in California. He came ou t average and above average on h is test i ng and made top grades in all hi s clas ses . His teachers commented on how much they have enjoyed hav i ng h im i n class. The best comme nt by one of his teachers: "H e ' s his own person . " Joel's com­ ment: "We ll, school's OK - but I sure wou ldn't wan t to waste a whole day th ere ."

I have a pleasant, happy, inter­ ested-in-eve rything, exci ted-about­ learning, ve r y social son, and I think homesc hooling is wo rth every bit of time and effort it takes! I wish I had known soon e r so my six older chi ldren would no t have suf­ fe red so much dur ing t hei r school years . However, most of them will teach their own at home, so there ' s always hope' ... COLLEGE OR PR ISON?

From a piece by Edga r Frienberg: ... 1 know of one poor Eskimo boy confined in Dorchester penitentiary here in Maritimes who thinks he is in college and is quite happy about it. He isn't crazy, but he speaks too lit­ tle Eng lish t o have understood what his perfunctory tri a l was about and kno ws onl y that as a result of a solemn ceremo ny he was se lected to be se nt away to an exceptionally luxuri­ ous boarding school for young men of his age; the place is always warm and the food is good and plentiful, and they a r e supposed t o be teaching him how to earn a li ving . . . NEW LAWS: WASHI NGTON STATE. ..

BE IT EN ACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHIN GTON: Section 1 . .. (1) All parents in this s t ate of any child B years of age and under l B years of age shall cause such c hild to at t e nd the public school of the district in which the child resides for the ful l time when such school may be in sess ion unless: (a) The child is a ttending an approve d private sc hool for the same time or is enrolled in a n extension program as provided in RCW 2BA . 02 . 201(4) ; (b) The child is rec~iving home-based instruction as provided in subsec tion ( 4) of this sec tion; or (c) The sc hool distric t super­ intendent of th e di s trict in which the chi l d resides s ha ll have excused such chi ld from atte nd ance because the chi ld is phy sica ll y or mentally unable t o attend school .. . (d) The child is 15 years of age or olde r and: (i) The school dist rict super­ intende nt determi nes that such child has a l ready a ttain ed a reasonable pro­ ficiency in the bra nch es required by law ... (2) A parent for the purpose of this chap ter means a paren t, guardi­ an, or person having l ega l custod y of a child . (3) An approved private school fo r the purpose s of th is chapter s hall be one approv ed under regu l a­ tions es tablished by the state board

of education pursuant to RCW 28A . 04 .1 20 as now o r her eafte r ame nded . (4) For th e purposes of this cha pt er, instruc t io n shall be home­ ba s ed if it consists of planned a nd supervis ed instructional a nd related educa ti o nal activities, including a curriculum and instruction in the basic skills of occupational educa­ tion, science , mathematics, language, social s tudies , hist o r y, health, read­ ing, writing, spelling, and the devel­ opment of an appreciation of art and music, pr ovided for a number of hours equivalent to the total annual pro­ gram hour s per grade level estab­ lished for approved private schools under RCW 28A . 02.201 and 28A.02 . 240 and if such ac tivities are : (a) Provided by a parent who is i nstructing his or her child only and a r e supe r vised by a certificated per­ son. A cer tificated person for pur­ poses of this chapter shall be a per­ son certified under Chapter 28A.70 RCW. Fo r purposes of this section, "supervi sed by a certificated person" means: The planning by the certifica­ ted person and the parent of objec­ ti ves co nsistent with this subsec­ tion; a minimum each month of an aver­ age of one contact hour per week with the child being supervised by t he cer­ tificat ed person; and evalua t ion of such child's progress by the certifi­ cated person. The number of children supervised by the certificated person shall not exceed thirt y for purposes of this subsec tion; or (b) Provided by a parent who is instructing his or her child onl y and who has either earned forty-five col­ lege level quarter credit hour s or its equivalent in semester hours or has completed a course in home-based instruction at a postsecondary insti­ tution o r a vocational-technical institute; o r (c) Provided by a parent who is deemed sufficiently qualified to pro­ vide home-b ase d instruction by t he superintendent of the local school district in which the child resides . (5) The legislature recognizes that home-based instruction is less structured and more experiential than the instruction normally provided in a classroom setting . Therefore, the provisions of subsection (4) of t h is section relating t o the nature and quantity of instructional and related educational activities shall be liber­ ally construed . NEW SECTION . Section 2 ... Each parent whose ch~ld ~s receiving home-based instruction under RCW 2BA.27.010 ( 4 ) shall have the duty to: ( 1 ) File annually a signed declaration of intent that he or she is planning to cause his or her child to rece ive home-based instruction . The s t ateme nt shall include the name and age of the child, s hall specify whether a certificated person will be supervising the instruction, and shall be written in a format pre­ scribed by the superintendent of pub­ lic instruction. Each pare nt shall file the sta t emen t by September 15 of the sc hool year o r within two weeks of the beginning of any public school quarter, trimester, or semester with the superintendent of the public school district within which the par­ e nt resides; OUR TOWN , EXPLO RERS, MOUNT AINEE R ING


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(2) Ensure that test scores or annual academic progress assessments and immunization records, together with any other records that are kept relating to the instructional and edu­ cational activities provided, are for­ warded to any other public or private school to which the child transfers. At the time of a transfer to a public school, the superintendent of the local school district in which the child enrolls may require a standard­ ized achievement test to be adminis­ tered and shall have the authority to determine the appropriate grade and course level placement of the child after consultation with parents and review of the child's records; and (3) Ensure that a standardized achievement test approved by the state board of education is adminis­ tered annually to the child by a qual­ ified individual or that an annual assessment of the student's academic progress is written by a certificated person who is currently working in the field of education . The standard­ ized test administered or the annual academic progress assessment written shall be made a part of the child's permanent records. If, as a result of the annual test or assessment, it is determined that the child is not mak­ ing reasonable progress consistent with his or her age or stage of devel­ opment, the parent shall make a good faith effort to remedy any deficiency . Failure of a parent to comply

with the duties in this section shall

be deemed a failure of such parent's

child to attend school without valid

justification under RCW 28A.27.020.

Parents who do comply with the duties

set forth in this section shall be

presumed to be providing home-based

instruction as set forth in RCW

28A . 27.010 (4) .

NEW SECTION. Section 3 ... The state hereby recognizes that parents who are causing their children to receive home-based instruction shall be subject only to those minimum state laws and regulations which are necessary to insure that a sufficient basic educational opportunity is pro­ vided to the children receiving such instruction . Therefore, all decisions relating to philosophy or doctrine, selection of books, teaching mater­ ials and curriculum, and methods, timing, and place in the provision or evaluation of home-based instruction shall be the responsibility of the parent except for matters specifical­ ly referred to in this chapter . Section 4 .. . The legislature hereby recogn~zes that private schools should be subject only to those minimum state controls neces­ sary to insure the health and safety of all the students in the state and to insure a sufficient basic educa­ tion to meet usual graduation require­ ments. The state, any agency or offi­ cial thereof, shall not restrict or dictate any specific educational or other programs for private schools except as hereinafter in this section provided. ... (3) All classroom teachers shall hold appropriate Washington state certification except as follows: (a) Teachers for religious cour­ ses or courses for which no counter­ part exists in public schools shall not be required to obtain a state cer­ tificate to teach those courses. (b) In exceptional cases, people of unusual competence but without cer­ tification may teach students so long as a certified person exercises gener­ al supervision . Annual written state­

ments shall be submitted to the office of the superintendent of pub­ lic instruction reporting and explain­ ing such circumstances. (4) An approved private school may operate an extension program for parents, guardians, or persons having legal custody of a child to teach children in their custody. The exten­ sion program shall require at a mini­ mum that: (a) The parent, guardian, or cus­ todian be under the supervision of an employee of the approved private school who is certified under chapter 28A . 70 RCW; (b) The planning by the certi­ fied person and the parent, guardian, or person having legal custody include objectives consistent with this subsection and subsections (1), (2), (5), (6), and (7) of thi s sec­ tion; (c) The certified person spend a minimum average each month of one con­ tact hour per week with each student under his or her supervision who is enrolled in the approved private school extension program; (d) Each student's progress be evaluated by the certified person; and (e) The certified employee shall

not supervise more than thirty stu­

dents enrolled in the approved pri­

vate school's extension program.

(5) Appropriate measures shall

be taken to safeguard all permanent

records against loss or damage .

(6) The physical facilities of

the school or district shall be

adequate to meet the program offered

by the school or district: PROVIDED,

That each school building shall meet

reasonable health and fire safety

requirements. A residential dwelling

of the parent, guardian, or custodian

shall be deemed to be an adequate·

physical facility when a parent,

guardian, or person having legal cus­

tody is instructing his or her child

under subsection (4) of this section.

Section 5 ... (1) For purposes of

this section, the following defini­

tions shall apply:

... (d) "Part time student" shall mean and include: Any student enrolled in a course of instruction in a private school and taking cour­ ses at and/or receiving ancillary ser­ vices offered by any publiC school not available in such private sChool; or any student who is not enrolled in a private school and is receiving home-based instruction under RCW 28A.27.010 which instruction includes taking courses at or receiving ancil­ lary services from the local school district or both .. . (2) The board of directors of any school district is authorized and, in the same manner as for other public school students, shall permit the enrollment of and provide ancil­ lary services for part time students . ... (4) Each school funding authority shall recognize the costs occasioned to each school district by enrollment of and ancillary services provided for part time students auth­ orized by subsection (2) of this sec­ tion, and shall include said costs in funding the activities of said school districts .. .

... FLOR IDA. .. BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF FLORIDA: Section 1 . Subsection (34) is added to section 228.041, F.S., 1984 Supplement to read: 228 . 041 Definitions . . .


Sequentially progressive instruction

of a student in his or her home by

his or her parent or guardian in

order to satisfy the requirements of

s.232.01, F.S. A home education pro­

gram is not a parochial, a religious,

denominational, or private school as

specified in s.232.02, F.S.

Section 2. Section 232.02, Flori­ da Statutes, is amended to read: 232.02 Regular school atten­ dance. - Regular attendance is the actual attendance of a pupil during the school day as defined by law and regulations of the state board . Regu­ lar attendance within the intent of s.232.01 may be achieved by atten­

dance in:

(1) A public school supported by public funds; or (2) A parochial, a religiOUS, or denominational school; or (3) A private school supported in whole or in part by tuition charges or by endowments or gifts; or (4) A home education program as defined in s.228.041, F.S., and which is in compliance with s.229.808, pro­ vided that at least one of the follow­ ing conditions are met: (a) The instructor holds a valid

regular Florida certificate to teach

the subjects or grades in which

instruction is given and complies

with any other requirements pre­

scribed by law or rules of the state

board, or

(b) Any instructor not holding a

valid regular Florida certificate to


1. Shall notify the superinten­ dent of schools of t~e county in which the parent resides of his intent to establish and maintain a home education program. The notice shall be in writing, Signed by the parent, and shall include the names, addresses, and birthdays of all child­ ren who shall be enrolled as students in the parent-directed home education program. The notice shall be filed in the superintendent's office within 30 days of the establishment of the parent-directed home education pro­ gram. A written notice of termination of the parent-directed home education program shall be filed in the super­ intendent's office within 30 days of said termination. 2. A parent shall maintain a portfolio of records and materials. The portfolio shall consist of a log, made contemporaneously with the instruction, which deSignates by title the reading materials used, and samples of any writings, worksheets, workbooks, and creative materials used or developed by the student. The portfolio shall be preserved by the parent for 2 years and shall be made available for inspection by the super­ intendent, or his agent, upon 15 days' written notice. 3. The pupil shall demonstrate educational progress at a level com­ mensurate with his or her ability as documented in an annual educational evaluation. A copy of the evaluation shall be filed annually with the dis­ trict school board office in the coun­ ty in which the pupil resides. The annual educational evalua­ tion shall consist of one of the fol­ lowing: a. A teacher selected by the par­ ent shall evaluate the child's educa­ tional progress upon review of the portfolio and discussion with the child. Such teacher shall hold a valid regular Florida certificate to teach academic subjects at the elemen­ tary or secondary level. The teacher shall submit a written evaluation to



the school superintendent; or b. The pupil sha ll take any nationally-normed student achievement test used by the district and adminis­ tered by a certified teacher. Such test results shall be reported to the school superintendent ; or . c . The pupil shall take a state student assessment test. Such tests results shall be reported to the school superintendent; or d. The pupil will be evaluated by an individual holding a valid, active license pursuant to the pro­ visions of chapter 490 . 003(3) or 490.003(7), F.S . Such results shall be reported to the school superinten­ dent; or e. The pupil shall be evaluated with any other valid measurement tool as mutually agreed upon by the school superintendent of the district in which the pupil resides and the pupil's parent or guardian. Such results s hal l be reported to the superintendent. Section 3 . The school superin ten­ dent shall review and accept the results of the annual educational evaluation of the pupil in a home edu­ cation program. If the pupil does not demonstrate educationa l progress at a level commensurate wit h his or her ability, the superintendent shall notify the parent, in writing, that such progress has not been achieved . The parent shall have one year from the date of receipt of the written notification to provide remedial instruction to the child . At the end of the one-year probationary period, the child shall be reevaluated as specified in s .230. 02(4)(b)3, F.S. Con tinuation in a home-education pro ­ gram shall be contingent upon the pupil demonstrating educational pro­ gress commensurate with his or her ability at the end of the pr obation­ a ry period. Section 4. This act shall take effect July 1, 1985 . .. .AND TENNESSEE

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF TENNESSEE: SECTION 1. Tennessee Code Annota­ ted, Sect~on 49-6-3001, is amended by deleting the subsection (c) in its entirety and substituting th e follow­ ing: (c)(1) Every parent, guardian o r other person residing within the State of Tennessee, having control or charge of any child or chi l dren be ­ tween the ages of seven and sixteen years, both inclusive" shall cause such child or children to attend pub­ lic or non-public school, and in event of failure to do so, shall be subject to the penalties hereinafter provided. (2) For the purposes of this part public school and non -publi c school shall be defined as follows: (A) "Public school" means any school operated by a local education agency or by the state with public funds. (B) "Non-public school" means a church related school, a private school, or a home school. A "church related school" is a school as defined in TCA 49-50-801, or affilia­ ted with Accelerated Christian Educa­ tion, Inc. A "private school " is a school accredited by, or a member of, an organization or association approved by the State Board of Educa­ tion as an organization accrediting or s~tting academic requirements in schools, or which has been approved by the state, or is in the futu~~


approved by the Commissioner of Educa­ tion i n accordance wi th rules promul­ gated by th e State Boa rd of Educa­ tion. A "home school" is a schoo l defined in TCA 49-6-3050. (3) A parent or guardian with any good subs t an ti al reason as deter­ mined by suc h pa r ent o r ot her person havi ng l egal custody of a c hild a nd agreed to by the respective local board of educa tion, may wi thdraw his child from a public sc hoo l provided wit hin 30 days th e paren t or per~ o n having l ega l custody of the child places the child in a public school designated by such local board of edu­ cation, or in a non-public school, as herein defined. SECTION 2. TCA 49-6-3005(c), is amended by deleting the wo rds "day school" and substituting the words "non-public sc ho ol" . SECTION 3. TCA 49-6 -30 is amend­ ed by adding a new section thereto, as follows: Section 49-6- 3050 . (a) A "home school " is a school conduc ted by par­ ent(s) or legal guardian(s) for their own child ren. In the case of special needs courses, such as laboratory sci­ ences, vocational ed ucation, special education, etc., premises approved by the loca l superi nt endent of education may be used . Public schoo l facilities may be used by hom e schoo l partici­ pants with the approval of the local superi nt endent, but thi s permissive autho rity shall not be construed to confer any right upon such partici­ pants to use public schoo l facili­ ties . If approved, such use shall be in accordance with rules es tablished by the l oca l board of education. Home sc hoo ls which teach grades kindergarten through 8 whose parents are associated with ,an o rganization that conducts church related schools as defined by TCA 49-50- 801, which are supervised by suc h o rganization through its superintendent of the department of education, and which administer standardized ac hievement tests at the same time suc h test s are given i n their regular day schools, shall be exe mpt from the provisions of this sec ti on. (b) A pare nt-t eache r conducting a home schoo l must comply with the following requirements: (1) Notice t o the local superin­ tendent by August 1 st befo re the com­ menceme nt of each sc hoo l year of his or her intent to conduct a "home school" a nd, for the pu rpose of re­ porting onl y , submit the name, num­ ber, age, and grade level of children involved , the location of the school, the curriculum to be offe red, and the proposed hours of instruct ion and the qualifica t io ns of th e parent-teacher relative to (b)(4) or ( b )( 7). Informa­ tion con tain ed in such reports may be used only for record keeping and oth­ er purposes for which simi lar informa­ tion on pub lic school students may be used in acco rdance wi th guidelines, rules, a nd regulations of the Stat e Board of Ed ucation. (2) Maintenance of at tendance records, subjec t to inspec tion by the local superintendent, and submission of these records to the su perintend­ ent a t the end of each schoo l year . (3) Instruction for at le as t four hours per day for the same num­ ber of instruc tion al days as are re­ quired by state l aw for public schools . (4) Possess i on of a high school diploma or GED by the pa r en t-te ac h e r conducting clas ses in grades K-8. (5)(A) Administration by the Com­ missione r of Educ a ti on, or his desig­ nee, or by a professional testing ser­

vice which is approved by the local ed ucat i on age ncy, to home school stu­ dent s of th e same s t ate boa rd approved secure standardized te s ts requi re d of pub l ic sc hool students in grades 2, 3, 6, ar.d 8 . (B) Administ rat io n by the Commis­ sioner of Educa tion, or his designe e , t o th e home schoo l studprtts the same 10 th grade test adminis t ered by t he State Board of Ed uc ation [ t o) public · school students. (C) ( i) Tests administered by the Comm issi oner of Education, or his designee, shall be at the same time tests a re administered to public school students, and s hall be adminis­ t e red i n th e public school which the home school student would o therwise be attending, o r at whatever location s tudents at suc h school are tested. Tests administered by the Commission­ e r of Education, or h i s designee, s ha ll be administered without charge. The parent-teacher may be present when the home school student is test­ ed in grades 2, 3, and 6. Both par­ ent- t eac her and home school s tudent s hall be und er the supervision of the t es t administrator. ( ii ) Tests administered by a pro­ fessional testing service shall be administered within 30 days of the date of the statewide test. Tests administered by a professional test­ ing service shall be administered at the expense of the parent-teacher. ( iii) All test results from eith­ e r administrations by the Commission­ er of Education, or his designee, or by a professional t es ting service shall be pr ovide d to the parent-teach­ er, the superintendent, and the State Board of Education. ( 6)(A ) Consultation between the superintendent and parent-teacher if the home school student falls 3-6 months behind his appropriate grade l eve l, based on the test required in (5) • .

( B) If a home school student falls 6-9 months behind his appropri­ a t e grade level in his reading, lang­ uage arts, ma thematics or science te s t scores based on the tests required in (5), the pare nt shall con­ sult with a t eac her certified by the State Board of Sducation and having a ce rtificate or endorsement in the grade level or course or subject mat­ t er in which consultation is sought. The parent and teacher shall design a remedial cou rse to help the child ob tain his appr o priate grade level. The parent shall report the remedial course for the child t o the local supe rintend ent . (C) If a home school student falls more than o ne year behind' his approp riate grade level in his compre­ hensi ve test score for two consecu­ tive tests based on the tests re­ quired in (5) and if the child is not learning disabled in the opinion of a teacher certified to teach at the

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child's grdde level, the local super­ intendent of schools may require the parents to enroll the child in a pub­ li c, private or church related sch ool, in accordance with TCA 49-6­ 30, and the parents shall have all rights provided by law to respond to thi s requirement. If a test indicated that a home

school student is one year or more

behind his appropriate grade level,

the same test s h all be administered

td~he child not more than one year

later, notwithstanding the required

testing schedule in subdivision


(7) Possession of at least a bac­ calaureate degree, awarded by a col­ lege or university accredited by an accrediting agency or association recognized by the state Board of Edu­ cation, by a parent-teacher conduct­ ing classes in grades 9-12; provided, however, that a parent-teacher may request an exemption from this re­ quirement from the State Department of Education on a year -t o-year basis. (8) Notification in writing to the local superintendent by a parent­ teacher conducting classes in grades 9-12 as to whether a college prepara­ t ory or general cou rse of education will be taught to the hom e school stu­ dent, and a description of the courses to be taught in each year . (A) If a college preparatory

cour se is t o be given, it must

include those areas of study required

for admission into public four-year

colleges operated by the State of


(B) If a general course is to be

given, it must include those courses

or areas of study required by the

State Board of Education for gradu­

ation from public high schools .

(9) Proof shall be submitted t o

th e local superintendent that the

hom e schoo l student has been vaccina­

ted as required by TCA 49-6-5001, and

h as received any other health

serv ices or examinations as may be

required by law generally for child­

ren in Tennessee.

(10) Submission by the home school student entering public schools to the evaluation test pr o­ vided for in TCA 49-50-801, if the local system requires such test, or the tests required by the State Board of Education for transfer students. (11) In the event of the illness of a paren t- teacher, or h is or h er inadequacy to teach a specific sub­ ject, a tutor, having th e same quali­ fications whi ch would be required of a parent-teacher teaching that grade level o r course, may be emp lo yed by the parent-teacher. (c) A local educa t ion agency which has responsibility under this section on account of the conduct of home schools within its jurisdiction shall receive a state grant for accounting and record k eeping expen ­ ses. The amount of this grant shall be set annually by the Commissioner of Education in an amount not to exceed $100 per home school student ...

DISCIPLINE: NOUN , NOT VEF3B From Norm Lee (NY): ... 1 don't like to hear the term "discipline" u sed by te ac hers and par­ ents because it seems always to mean "punish" - a verb. And it is applied to someone else - somebody smaller, weaker, without defenses. I'd ban the t erm's use and substi tut e " self ­ discipline" (the only kind there is ­ all the rest is punitive) . And "self­

discipline" is a n oun - something that is more likery-to change the situation to one of kindness and patience and understanding. When our boys we re small, their mother and I did not "discip line " them. We were horrified when we saw parents slapping the hand s of curi­ ous, investigative chi ldr en (all are), yelling "No, no'" at them, and thus punishing their exploratory, inquisitive behavior . Any breakable, precious objects we put up ou t of their reach for a couple of years, got roll-end paper from printing shops to tape along one long wall, and supplied th em wi th 64 shades of crayons. Got th em their own typewri­ ter for $5 at an auction (which they dismantled to see how it was put together) and we thorough l y enjoyed their growing - up years. An old up­ right piano, no longer playable in the conventional sense , we acq uir ed fo r th e moving of it . We removed the b roken keyboard and front woodwork to expose the beautiful string work and soundboard, and called it a "hammer ­ harp ." The boys performed "concerts" by strumming, plucking, & st r iking the strings with a variety of o b­ jects, from wooden mallets and kitch­ en spoons to t o n gue depressers and cardboard. (We still enjoy playing the tapes of these performances ­ they get more precious every yea r. ) There was n eve r a hass l e abo ut bedtime in our house, becau se deci­ sions were not dictated ( "because we said so"). Indeed, it was understood that interference in their lives (pow­ er/control/domination) was not justi­ fiable unless in the interest of health or safety . (This is ages 4 and 5.) Thus, as parents, we had the last word regarding diet, staying within play-yard limits, and so forth. Gnce that decision was reached, we learned that most "discipline " was pure bully­ ism . And bullying ca n only teach a migh t- makes-right, exp l oitive, war­ ring social attitude . The boys learned to respect and care for musical ins trument s , equip­ ment and tools, by l ea rning to us e them. They we re never hurt beyond an occasiona l "hit the wrong nail," even though they were opera ting chainsaws, tractors and backhoes by age 12. They learned to do many things, and do them responsibly, by participating in family activities . We boiled down maple syrup, picked berries and made ice cream wi th them, cooked meals, repaired the car and motorcycle, did wilderness camping, wrote a chess book for 5-6 year olds, followed the orchestral scores at concert rehear­ sals, did experiments in the vegeta­ ble garden. It was hard to imagi ne why anyone would want their children "out of the house and in school ." We sent them o nly wh en we were forced to - to the regret of all of us. (Thi s was i n the 60's, when homeschooling was synonymous with truancy here . ) Bedtime was negotiated every six months or so, with no hassle. The c hildr e n recognized the need for rest, and discussed it reasonably and fairly . The agreed-to time for bed did not require enforce me nt, si nce it wasn't imposed. The clock, not the parents, a nnounced tne-tTme. The boys had negotiated in the proviso that they would hav e their choice of Beethoven symphon ies to hear on the hi-fi after jumping under the covers. It was astonishing to us to visit a home and witness the routine mealtime fights, TV struggles, and bedtime battles . The parents in thes e homes, almost without exception, tru­ ly believed that our sons would "grow

up wild and undisciplined." Yet the boys themselves were appalled a nd con­ cerned at such bedlam and infantile behavior on the part of both parents and children , and wondered wh y they did not enjoy each o th er, as we did ... These sons are now 19 and 20 years old, and it is a pleasure to know them. None of the dire predic­ tions about them has come t o pass ... From my own experience, I co n­ clude that punishment encourages more punishment and violence. It will con­ tinue getting worse unti l parents and teachers examine their own "needs" to dominate and control. Those unna tural needs are only there because they themselves were punished ...

THE NEED TO CLEAN UP From Ruth Matilsky (NJ): .. . 1 can 't create in a messy environment ... I can 't do wel l when I'm stepping on pecan shells on the living room floor, and five loads of was h are spread o ut on the floor in the recreation room ... Or I decide t o bake muffins wit h th e kids and eve r y utensil I need is dirty . The problem h as been that when I make it my job t o clean each day, I have no energy left for the ot her things I want to do that ca n't be done unless I clea n. So . I took a closet wi th low shelves in the kitchen and rearranged it so that two bowls, spoo n s, cups and snacks are easily reachable by both chi ldr en. Before each meal they get their own utensils. This star ted when I got tired of nagging everyone to set the table . I ' decided that fam­ ily meals are wond erful , and we should all have table-setting skills, but I don't want to see myself as chiefly responsible for coordi nation. This is breaking tr adi tion - to rea l­ ize that th ere is nothing holy about havin g a "s et" table . Anyway, I put the food on the table - I'm still the chief cook - and Terry and the kids get their eating utensils and things th ey want to drink out of the r ef rig­ erator . After meals a nd snacks the kids are responsible for helping clea r the tabl e in general and for washing their bowls. Terry is still the chief dishwasher . Sara is getting into the habit, but Jake h as to be reminded, and truthfully, his dishwas hing skills have to be refined . But I am much happier with this system . ... 1 am getting everyone involved in about one hour of clea n­ ing in the morning befo r e we all get involved in individual activities. Thi s has just begun, but I am amazed at h ow much better I feel during the day when I can devote my ene rg y to creative things a nd the house is rela­ tively neat ...

QUERIES Here are some questions that we hope some of you will respond to. We wi ll forward all answers to those wh o asked the questions, and we plan to print the most interes ting replies: . .. If I should sc hool my child­ ren at home, what will become of my friendships with other mothers whose children are the ages of mine? Right now, while we all h ave pre-schoolers, it's easy to get together (a friend for me, and friends for my kiddos). I can see that socializing could become awkward once my friends' children begin t o go one by one to school (a



friend for me, but no friends for my children). Also, right now my oldest is involved in things like story time at the library and a local weekly playgroup ... If I begin homeschooling my oldst, does this mean my youngest will be unable to enjoy thes~ things? Or do I take my oldest along to activ­ ities designed for a younger child? · .. 1 have to be honest and say that I hate the thought of being iso­ lated from other mothers because I choose to teach my children at home. And I'm afraid that when it comes to leaving small children at home on their own, I just couldn't do it in good conscience. - N.M . . .. 1 would like to get my 6­ year-old an electronic typewriter for his own use, and soon for the use of 3-year-old brother as well . Do you have any suggestions as to the least expensive, but still good quality, typewriters available? - E.H .

· .. An issue I haven't seen addressed well in GWS is that of children and household chores. I need some help with it ... I have tried to keep myself in a position of non­ interference as far as the children's academic interests are concerned, but I am afraid that if I did the same with chores that the house would fall apart and so would I. At present, we have family meetings to decide who does what, but when it comes to actually doing the work, we have much dissonance, and I end up assigning another job for work not done on time. It's causing strained relation­ ships and I am at a loss. The child­ ren are 8, 6, 4, and 2. I expect most work from the two oldest. Any insights? - B.W. · .. 00 you know of any children's workbooks that are non-sexist, non­ competitive, and more ethnic? I can't find any anywhere. - M.S.

· .. Anyone know where I can get child-sized work gloves and latex gloves? Anyone want to start making them? I'll buy some . - M.H. [DR: 1 I can't find the letter, but someone asked what would be the best encyclopedia to buy. If any of you have recently done some compari­ son shopping for encyclopedias, we'd be very interested in hearing about which one you picked and why. Perhaps we could even arrange to sell a good encyclopedia through our catalog. EXCITED ABOUT COOKBOOK...

More from Sam Brotherton's article in Arizona Families for Home Education: · . . Suddenly, we've noticed that Tiffany (7) has a new interest in reading . A few weeks ago, she read four different comic strips from the Sunday paper. She struggled ana need­ ed help with most of the words, but she really put forth an effort on her own. Then we noticed that everywhere we went she was trying to read signs. We took a trip to the library and got some beginning readers ... We returned for more books and she picked out a very special Care Bear book that was much too difficult for her to read, so I would read it to her. A few nights ago she wanted to read to her older sister, Shannon, and she picked the Care Bear book instead of the beginning readers. Shannon came to me and said, "You won't believe the


words Tiffany is r eadi ng by herself'" .. . Words like: arithmetic, classroom, tomorrow, and teleVision, with very little effort. Tiffany was so proud of herself and was thrilled after learning what commas, periods, ques­ tion marks, and italicized words meant . I kept teasing her by telling her that she's going to be smarter than all the rest of us now because she can read a nd learn anything she wants to know all by herself . I explained to her what th e encyclope­ dia is and how much I enjoyed looking through the encyclopedia when I was young. She asked how you find things and I exp lained how everyt hing is alphabetized and you get the ·'A" book for words that begin with A. She was really excited because she could relate to that. I pointed to our book shelf and told her that's why I read so much, because I learn new things from everything I read. Her eyes were nearly on fire with excitement. Final­ ly she was beginning to understand what books are all about. She's always loved books but she only knew them as story books - not for informa­ tion to fill her thirsty mind' I told her if there is anything I need to learn in a n y of our books, I just look it up. A bit confused, she asked, "How?" She picked a book from the shelf that happened to be a cookbook, LAUREL'S KITCHEN. I explained what the Table of Contents was and she thought that was super . She nearly exploded with excitement when I exp la ined the Index. She said, "If you add a W to that, you have Windex' " Then she giggled . I told her if you want to cook something and you don't know how to make it, you look it up in the index to find the recipe . I always just assumed she knew that, but not know­ ing how to read, she never rc~lly related to it. She was so excited she started hugging and kissing me. We decided to look up Falafel, one of our family favorites. First she had to figure out how to spell it, at least the first three letters . After seeing that the beginning word and ending word on the first page began with A, she knew Falafel wouldn't be found there, so she continued until she found the F section and t hen she screamed with excitement when she found the word "Fal afel ." A word we had just pulled out of thin air, she was actually able to look up in a book and find' Between more hugs and kisses, I told her we still don't have the recipe, all we found was the word. That didn't lessen her excite­ ment one bit. She started turning pages looking for the recipe. I asked her how she's going to find it, and she said, "I'm going to look on every page'" (All 508 pages??) I told her there is a special way to find it and showed her the number writte n next to the word "Falafel . " She thought for a moment and then screamed again. She said, "I'll bet that number means what page it's on'" Suddenly, numbers took on a different meaning to her. You would have thought someone had given her a trip to Disneyland and a ton of chocolate from the excitement that radiated from her little body when she turned to page 263 and found FALAFEL written aross the top of the page. From there, she looked up beans, rice, wheat, cereal, and bread . Then she asked if we could make bread tomorrow (more learning'). She saw bagel listed in the bread recipes and was certain s he would find a recipe for "Bagel soup" (?). She was some­

what disappointed when she coul~n ' t find it. Bagel soup sounded very good to her. I finally had to force her to put the book down, it was midnight and she has many exciting days in her fu ture to look up information in books. I promised her she could con­ tinue in the morning . I honestly cannot ~ut into words the thrill of exciterr.ent we both experienced in watching a whol e new world open up to her in a few short hours, when she learned that books not only contain wonderful stories, but also a wealth of information right at her fingertips for her own searching, simply because she learned to read . Something tells me she's going to be a bit more patient with me th e next time she finds me read­ i ng. The nearest I can relate to ollr experience is that of Annie Sullivan and Helen Keller as they both experi­ enced the world unfolding for Helen Keller. If Tiffany had remained in pub­ lic school, without a doubt, she would have been extremely reluctant to read (s he felt she was "dumb"), therefore I'm sure she would have been put in the "slow" reading group, would have been earmarked a "slow learner," or "poor reader," simply because her body wasn't ready to read the same time o thers were . .. ...AND FIELD GU IDES

From Connecticu t: ... When our son John (now 6) was only two or three months old, he would occaSionally begin to cry at night and we wouldn't be ab l e to calm him down with feeding or rocking or any of the usual things. The one thing that would stop his crying was to be held to look over our shoulder at the black nu~bers on a calendar' I guess you could say it was positive reinforcement to us right from the start. By the time John was 16 months old, he was bringing us magazines and pointing to the letters and hollering until we tcld him what the letters were. One day t o his utter delight he discovered when he turned the maga­ zine upside down the M would turn into a W. ~e was fascinated by gas station signs and logos of a 'y sort . He would spot exit signs everywhere and woulci shout "Exit' Exit! Exit!" until we responded. One of the most wonderful things about all of this was seei ng his delight in discovering letters everywhere . Strips of wood on the porch ceiling were T's and L's.

Home School Manual By


Ted Wade and six others

a very useful book for parents who are considering teaching their children at home:' United Press International, " ..• the best and most complete manual we have found on home schooling." - The Teaching nome. "Home school parents who order this book will not be disappointed:' - The ClASS IUVJt:W. Christian Liberty Academy. A few of the 22 chapters: Pa rents and education. Keeping peace with school authorities. Helping chll dren learn. Teach­ Ing several childre n. [arty education . Teac hing reading. Teac hing math . Social deve lopm ent. Also, six appe ndix sections Including lists of organlza· tions. publishers and laws. Index. J18 pages . hardcover. 1984. Availab le through m any home school suppliers or by sending ~14 ..50 pl us $1..50 shipping (and tax In Kansas) to:

GAZELLE PUBLICATIONS 318 N. Lincoln. Liberal, KS 67901


An eagle with raised wings on a truck was a Y. We just kept rea ding him stor­ ies ... I think I could quote certain pages of Dr. Seuss' THE CAT IN THE HAT in my sleep' ... Sometimes I would trace my fingers under the sentences in a book. From time to time John would ask us what a word was ... He seemed to be keying himself to cer­ tain letters at the beginning and the end of a word because he could mis­ take another word with similar spell­ ing to a word he knew from a logo. At the same time we were sharing what we knew about nature with John. We were feeding the birds and he would see us getting excited about certain birds and looking them up in the identification books, and he was very interested. We would show him a bird we had seen and read about it. Suddenly we had a little boy who would spend literally two or thre e hours a day poring over the bird book. We realized he was memorizing all the names of the birds and cer­ tain facts he loved about them. He would ask us certain questions over and over ... He seemed to love to hear that the answer was always the same ... I want to stress, this was an Audubon field guide for birds - an adult book, which was in pieces by the time John was done with it . We had grandparents visit one day who were shocked we would let him read ("play with") an adult book. I felt John would see eventually how to be careful of a book, but now he was READY and NEEDING to KNOW this book. John was very excited when he discovered we also had identification books on bugs, flowers, trees, and mushrooms on our bookshelf. One of his favorite things to do was to lie on the bed with us and pick out a picture of an insect and look up all the information about it: habitat, range, food, breeding habits. There were times when we felt we couldn't bear to hear the same ques­ tions one more time, but fortunately every day ends and there is a night's sleep in between . Though whenever John falls asleep, it is only out of purest necessity, surrounded by all his current interests, caught in mid-thought. We were astonished how much John was assimilating in reading these books. When we were watching a nature show one evening, we saw a bird we thought was a quail. John said, "That is a Gambel's quail." Sure enough, upon looking in the field guide, we discovered it was a Gambel's quail. He will also teach me what a water bug is called when we scoop them ou t of our local pond. All things he has seen in his insect identificati on books. For a time, the consuming inter­ est in nature books subsided. John was given a box of old books. There were three Charlie Brown books and suddenly there was a new passion. I think of the key things about th e Pea­ nuts comics were the short sentences in balloons. We would read them to John and he would look at the pic­ tures often. We realized he was pick­ ing out words he knew and memorizing whole pages he loved. He then carried that knowledge onto the new pages, like a detective, always looking for the familiar words he knew. We were amazed at how many words he re cog­ nized from the field guides. One day in the book store I found a book on kittens with two or three sentences on each page. John sat and read the whole book to me, missing only a couple of words. I

said to him, "You can READ' You are reading so well . Isn't it exciting?" His response was, "I can?" When I said yes, he smiled and said with real wonder in his voice, "I can read'" I was buying John his own Pea­ nuts books and getting them at the library every week . At this same time, we were begin­ ning to read John Holt's books which helped us tremendously. It put into words for us the pattern we were see­ ing. We saw TEACHING did not work if John did not initiate the questions. Even answers to questions lose him if they are long-winded and have that teaching tone. The most important realization was knowing we should not correct him as he was valiantly strug­ gling to read a sentence . The proof of him correcting himself is there all the time for us to see. If he asks us how to pronounce a word we will tell him, o therwise he will try to sound it out himself, something we have done for him occasionally. ... He will look at the first few letters of a word and pronounce them in a way that is similar to a word he does know. If it ' s just too much he will mumble the rest of the wo rd and go from there. I think the really exciting result of not pressuring him or making him learn all the "rul es of pronunciation" before he reads, is that he is very confident in his abil­ ities, and has begun to try to read in any book he is interested in ... He is not afraid t o ask us the defini­ tion of words ... If he makes a mis­ take with something he will repeat now what we have said to him at times, "Well, it was a good try." Until just recently John was not interested in drawing at all . I think he would have been labeled in nUEsery school as having great problems' He wanted to write stories using the Charlie Brown characters, so he would dictate them to me and I would also draw the pictures ... His firs t pic­ tures were unintelligible scribbles . But he saw something in them because when we asked him to tell us about them he would specifically point to certain things and describe what they were. He developed his own species of spider, the Gripstone spiders, who ride around in cars, blimps, air­ planes, and home boats ... These are very easy to draw as he has invented how they look. He now draws every day , and seems to be studying how to make cars look more like cars, etc. He has started to want to label things in his drawings and will as k us how to spell wo rds. The beginning of wri ting' ... WATERED-DOWN TEXTBOOKS

Susan Richman wrote in Western PA Homeschoolers: . .. In one of the 2nd grade basal readers we were randomly flipping through, I saw an illustration of a red steam shovel with an overalled man next to it, done in the rather pallid style of basal reader illustra­ tions of the 1950's. There was a vague resemblance here to our old favorite story. Virginia Lee Burton's MIKE MULLIGAN. We looked closer and found that, indeed, this was Mike Mul­ liga n, only it was strangery altered, edited, re-drawn, watered-down, strained and pureed. What was left was a pablum version of the robust, rollicky original. Our boys were shocked, as was I, to find all the lilt and poetrx carefully removed and made "sensible' and "direct" and

EASY. All "hard" words like "Mrs. McGillicudy" and "town constable" were struck, replaced by "a lady" and "some people." Mary Ann and Mike Mulligan no longer "finished the first corner, neat and square," they merely "cut around the first side of the cellar." There were not just single word substitutions, which would have been bad enough, but whole­ sale reworkings of entire passages, added explanations, and paragraph eradications . My boys and I pored over the two stories, real one and adaptation, noting every discrepancy ... They saw right off that this basal reader ren­ dition had stripped all that they loved best about MIKE MULLIGAN. I told them how the committees who put these types of books together felt the original was too complicated and hard for young children to read, that they didn't realize that if a child grows up hearing and loving these words, that they aren't hard at all to read in print because the child expects to find them. Jesse cu lminated our days and days of discussion by reading aloud to Jacob and me the entire real book of MIKE MULLIGAN. He had never-read such a long or hard book before ... Jesse felt proud and amazed to read this book through, needing only very occasional help (usua ll y not on any "hard" words, either). He--rFi"en went on to Burton's CHOO CHOO, and her Cal­ decott award winner, THE LITTLE HOUSE ... From an article about textbooks in Time, 12/3/84, reprinted in the Queoec-Homeschooling Advisory News: ... Readability formulas ... hatched lists of specific words and sentences deemed inappropriate ... Textbook expert Harriet Bernstein of the Council of Chief State School Officers points out that the word "because" does not appear in most American schoolbooks before the eighth grade. "And," she adds, "you can imagine what that does to the text."

What these rules do to a text is create horrors like Modern Curricul um Press's "Tap, tap, tap .. . " story for first graders, an adaptation of the classic fairy tale "The Shoemaker and the Elves," in which th e wor ds !lei ves, II


shoemaker," a nd "shoes"


not appear . "Tap, tap, tap. See me work. make good things. See the red ones. See the blue ones . See the yellow ones. No, no, no. I do not want red ones. I do not want blue ones. I want green ones." ... INSTEAD OF READING TESTS

From BECOMING A NATION OF READ­ ERS, the recent study, commissioned by the National Institute of Educa­ tion, which criticizes many current prac tices in school for teaching read­ ing (see GWS #45): ... Some standardized reading tests are marketed on the basis that they provide diagnostic information about a child's particular strengths and weaknesses. A survey has indica ­ ted that, in practice, teachers don't find this information very useful [L . Salmon- Cox, Phi Delta Kappan 62:631­ 634]. They report that dail y observa­ tion of children reading, answering questions, and completing seatwork provides them with more detailed and GROWING HITHOUT SCHOOLING #46


trustworthy information . ... A more valid assessment of basic reading proficiency than that provided by standardized tests could be obtained by ascer ta ini ng whet he r students can and wi ll do the follow ­ ing: read aloud unfamiliar bot grade­ appropriate material with acceptable fluency; write satisfactory summaries of unfamiliar selections from grade­ appropriate social studies and sci­ ence textbooks; explain the plots and motivations of the characters in un­ familiar, grade-appropriate fiction; read extensively from books, maga­ zines, and newspapers during leisure time . A simple, practical suggestion is for teachers to tape record the oral reading of each child three times a year. and keep the tapes on file for diagnosis and reporting t o parents ... TEST SOURCE RESTRICTS SALES

For some time, we've been recom­ mending the BUREAU OF EDUCATIONAL MEASUREMENTS (1200 Commercial , Emporia KS 66801) as a source of stan­ dardized tests for homeschoolers . How­ ever, a reader recently wrote: ... 1 attempted to order seve r al tests for my children to practice on . Unfortunately, I was sent back my check and the following enclosures : WHO MAY ORDER TESTS The Bureau of Educational Mea ­ surements restricts the sale of t ests in accordance with the standards established by the American Psycholog­ ical Association (APA). The APA publi­ cation, STANDARDS FOR EDUCATIONAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL TESTS, describes the responsibilities of test users and the qualifications of users in terms of appropriate training and knowledge of testing. The Bureau of Educational Measurement reserves the right to accept or reject orders for materials when the standards are not met. Educational Institutions/Teach­ ers Orders from accredite d sc hoo l s or-colleges should be submitted on an official purchase order or on offi­ cial school stationery and signed by an administrative official of the institution . Orders from teachers should be on official school station­ ery and countersigned by an adminis ­ trative official of the institution . Graduate Students - Orders from graduate students must be counter­ signed by an instructor or professor who will assume respo n sibility for the proper use of the tests. Individuals and Noneducational Institut~ons - Test orders by ~nd~vid­ ual users or individuals representing business and government agencies must submit a statement of purchase eligi­ bility with their order. Upon approv­ al, the statement of purchase eligi­ bility will be kept on file by the Bureau of Educational Measurement [to facilitate future test requests]. [ DR:] Questions on the "Purchas­ er's Qualific a tion Statement" include: - Professi onal duties involving use of psychological tests. - Membership in professional organizations: APA, AACD, AERA, other (specify ) . - Courses that qualify you to administer and utilize standardized tests. - Highest degree/major. Pretty forbidding stuff. If you want to obtain tests from these folks, it looks as if, at a min-


imum, you need statione ry with the name of your " sc hoo l" printed at the top, and to s ign yourself as an "administrator." I doubt th e Bureau has any way of checking whether your schoo l is accre dited. Or, you might co nta c t some of the "Helpful Private Schools" or "Pro­ fesso r s and Other Allies" that we list in GWS and ask th em to hel p. Of course, if you hav e a co rdial rela­ tionship with your lo ca l public schoo l, someone there could order tests for you . We wou ld like to hear how read­ ers have s ucceed ed in getting tests, from this supplie r or a ny other. LETIERS ON MATH

Sa ll y Shumaker (OR) writes: ... Echo (6~) was sent flash cards as a present last year (addi­ tion facts up to 9+10 ) . She was fas­ cina ted a nd, on her own, learned to add 3+4 by starting at 4 and on her finge rs counting 5-6-7 . She used the flas h cards f e r a few weeks and then put them away . Every week Or two I'd ask if s he wanted to use her flash cards - no interest for, say, four months. When she did again, she could go al l the way to 9+10. Ove r the next few weeks s he got to the point where t he a nswe rs were automatic, with no counti ng on her fing e rs. As I've never asked, I don't know if she mem­ orized the a nswers Or just adds the numbers up fast. From this pOint, she made up her own "story problems" in life . For examp le, "Your mother had nine child­ ren, and you have three, so she had six mO re children than yo u." Every­ thing is turned into a number riddle: at 10 AM, I say "I'll be home at 2:00. " Echo: "Oh, in four hours?" On and on. Echo and friend Gabe (7) both wen t through a spell of going to sleep at night saying, "Mom, you know what 6+7 is?" "What is it, Echo?" "13." And so on until they fell asleep . Ano ther discovery Echo made herself (I clearly remember when my teacher t o ld me the same) was, "You know what 7+8 is? It's 15, because 7+7 is 14 and 8+8 is 16, and 15 is in between. " Of course, the children have lots of uninterrupted time alone, to mull things over . As a chi ld I remem­ ber wa nting so badly, as many child­ ren do , time alone just to think - I still do' ... From Sue Radosti (IL): ... 1 was very interested in the review of " Elementary Algebra" in GWS #44, not so much for myself, but because I ' ve seen how co nfusing it can be when it's poorly taught and would l ike to see a good algebra teacher at work. I l oved algebra in school and drove my t ea cher crazy by coming up wit h weird, but workable, ways to solve pis equations. Like so many teachers, he didn't have much appreciation for diversity and got to the po int where he'd deduct . points off my tests if I didn't stick to the standard procedure . Killjoy . My husba nd has a l ways expressed total bewilderment over the mixing of numbers and letters t o get more num­ bers and let t ers, so we ' ve had a few spur-of-the -moment "lessons" in the fine art, which, to my delight, cleared up some o f the confusion for him. He once made up a problem for me

t o play with, invol ving the relat Lve ages of a man a no hi s c hildre n, but he wanted to kno~ if I could solve it without kn(wi ng ~ of their ages. I said, "Sure, " a nClSpe nt ct few minutes finagling thing s around until 1·0 reduced i t t o th e Simplest possible e quation. I think it surprised Van that I then co n side red ~ the prob lem " so l ve d." And I think that was the first time he underst ood that algebra isn't just a matter of finding " ans­ wers" but a means of expr essi ng re1.3­ ti onships. How cou ld anyone have taught him algebra for a year and fail t o convey that basi c concept? I do n't know - but come t o think of it, I don't r emem ber ~ algebra teacher ever menti oning i t either; I just hap­ pened to be one of the lucky few who i ntuited it from the beginning . By th e way, when we did plug num­ bers into Van's equation, we discov­ ered that the age relationships were abs urd, wi th the father only 7 years older than his kids' .. . And from Susan Richman ( PA): . . . Jesse (7) has a new math job - he's my official treasurer for WESTERN PA HOMESCHOOLERS' He loves handling a ll this real money, is learning l o ts abour-nDw banks work, how c hecks a nd deposit slips are filled out, u~ing a calculator to check long additions . He is a real he lp to me, as the red ta ?~ ~f han­ dling incon,ing money has never been a favorite job o f mine . . . TYPIN G AN D WRITING

From Alison McKee (WI): . . . Our son, C~ristopher (6~), has owned a typewriter since he was 2 . .. He has not Jsed it much because it was stored in its case . I put it on the table by our living rOom couch and encouraged him to write without worrying about speliing. He wrote, much to our ama zement, very detailed stories. After a while he lost inter­ est in typing . One day, a few week s later, I was writing notes about the kids in journals I keep on them ( I believe I got the idea from GWS ages ago). Chris~opher remembered a journal he sta rted and hand-wrote a three sen­ tence entry. I must state that he is "allergic" to pencil and paper . After he wrote the entry, he read it and decided he wrote the sentences in the wrong order. Grammatically speaking he was right . I explained that he was editing his own work and he was



through the use of

Records, Cassettes, Books, Music, Accessories, and the Suzuki method. Standard student repertoire on records and cassettes


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thrilled. He recopied his work with the correction . A few weeks later, Christopher checked a picture book (JACKO) out of the library. He asked if he could dic­ tate a story to me using JACKO. He dictated a story I felt was amazing . (I'm trying to get beyond my mind-set of public school standards but it is hard after teaching so long.) Later he wanted to edit his work . His edit­ ing . was quite professional and the final product grand . I typed his fin­ al work and he bound it. .. . We, as parents, just need to be aware of the many ways children explore their writing abilities. Some­ times children will type, sometimes write, sometimes dictate, and some­ times copy others' work. Christoph­ er's present task is copying notes from a nature book he is reading ...

grade child .. . I have a friend in another town who homeschools her two children and now, in the third year, all the schools wanted from her was a curricu­ lum and a year-end test (in her own home' ) . If we could get to that point we'd love it. Real freedom' However, what I have learned from her is that as school boards change, so do their demands . . .


From Lynn McCulloch (CA):

... Many times in GWS I have read about the disapproval of parents or relatives, in regard to homeschool­ ing. I enjoy regular correspondence with my 86-year-old grandmother and it has been fun telling her about some of our activities . I want to share something that she wrote to me From New York: recently: " ... More power to you in . . . 1 was encouraged by GWS a home teaching' You have so much imagi­ while back to get my old manual type­ nation and ingenuity and patience, writer back from my grandmother . The and I expect ~~u're learning a lot girls love it. At first it was just along the way . pound, pound, pound and get the keys ... 1 had written to her about stuck. Now they both know the alpha­ the "globe game" that Tule (8) and bet, upper and lower case. Marissa Cedar (8) and I play each morning (4) writes her name on it. Both girls after breakfast. Tule and Cedar each are always asking their father or me

choose a small piece of paper from a to spell the names of things they see glass jar that sits on our kitchen from the car, or names of people we

table . On each piece is written the know. Even Arianna (2) knows S-T-O-P

name of a country and on the back is is "stop" (of course, seeing the red

the name of the continent it is on. sign helps) . . .

Taking turns, they each locate their country on the globe, which is always on our kitchen table . Then we look it up in our NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC ATLAS, CALVERT EXPERIENCES finding major rivers, the capital, From Agnes Ross in Arkansas: the flag, and (something Tule is especially curious about) the liter­ ... Robby (6) got his first acy rate and life expectancy. We usu­ papers back from Calvert last week. ally get into discussions about some I had my doubts about our need for aspect of the country and often go to their Advisory Teaching service, but our bookshelves to find more informa­ tion (National Geographic magazines Robby was so delighted with compli­ ments from-Someone other than me or are good tor this). his dad that we may have made a wise My grandmother gave us a large investment. He finds Calvert awfully book called GREAT RIVERS OF THE easy, but he enjoys knowing every­ WORLD, put out by the National Geogra­ thing before it's presented by the phic Society. It's a beautiful book manual .. . with lots of pictures, maps, and a simple text . One day Tule chose Bang­ ladesh as her country and we looked Another reader writes: up the Ganges River in this book . Another day we looked up the Volga ... You once asked readers if River. We've all been enjoying our they had any experiences with Calvert learning adventures - so nice to have School ... We've been getting the cour­ Grandmother's support' ... ses but not the teacher service. I let Jesse (6~) work at his own pace. He reads most of his assignments him­ FORE IG N LAN GUAGE BY LISTENING self so all he really wants is my sup­ port and to have me there if he has a Marilyn Salinas (TX) writes: problem . Mostly I use the work as a guide - such as what he would be .. . 1 noticed in GWS #43 you put expected to learn by the end of a cer­ in something about learning foreign tain grade. But we don't push (at languages by listening. My husband is least we try not to) the learning Mexican and I am white. My children aspect . If he wants to do a workbook (5 and 4) are learning to speak Span­ he does it, if not he doesn't . He ish simply by listening to my hus­ also skips around a lot . He is inter­ band's conjunto and Puerto Rican ested in science - much above his music. My husband also plays in a con­ grade level - so we don't bother with junto band (he is a drummer) . Child­ Calvert Science . . . ren are more than welcome at a Mexi­ In short, we use their curricu­ can Balle (Spanish dance) and my two lum where it suits us, and their sug­ have a blast when I take them where gested schedule (which is still not he plays' as rigid as the public schools) for .. . My husband has been playing the purpose of submitting a schedule all different types of music for and a curriculum to the school. They about 25 years professionally, and he seem satisfied with the textbooks and has just r e cently decided to go back the schedule, so far .. . to playing Spanish music. So we have I'm sure as Jesse gets older we all these cassette tapes of Spanish will drop the Calvert and use our own bands . .. You can get records and curriculum and books. But I guess it tapes on the Spanish side of town and just makes me feel more secure that I the Spanish record shops . The stores know, and have in my hands, what the will even let you listen to the schools would require of a lower­ records first to see if you like

them. We buy a lot of 45's for the kids to play on their record player. . . . Spanish music is a diverse as ~ music and just as valid. Through EKe music you will get a feel of the cul­ ture, the feelings, emotions and passions that motivate Spanish peo­ ple. This is a solid beginning to learning the language for children and adults alike . I'm learning right along with the kids. . . . My mother- and father-in-law converse with each other in Spanish all the time and my kids are always listening and absorbing. My husband's grandmother never learned English ­ never felt she needed to' My kids have Spanish middle names for her to call them by. .. . 1 wanted to mention what pro­ gress my little boy has made just recently . He has been playing his gui­ tar and singing along while my hus­ band plays his drums to the Spanish records . . . He has all of a sudden started singing along with our records and tapes, complete phrases of Spanish words. The other day in the car he sang about ten words in a row and spot-sang the rest of the song ... One thing I should say is that this is music that adults and real Mexican people listen-ro-on the radio and at dances. Th~y are not tapes you get for "learning Spanish at home" type of music. Turn to any Spanish radio station and you will hear the words he is learning .. . From a pamphlet called "Do It Early - Foreign Language Learning for the Very Young Child", by Therese Pirz of CHOU CHOU PRESS (PO Box l52-B, Shoreham NY 11786; pamphlet available for 75¢ + self-addressed 6x9-inch envelope) : . . . My two little ones . . . are in their beds listening to one of their favorite bedtime stories on tape .. . The tape that is playing is called "Boucle d'Or" (Goldilocks), one of their favorite stories. Raymond (5) and Joseph (3) insist on listening to a French or Spanish tape every night while drift­ ing off to sleep. This contact with the spoken word is an extension of the French or Spanish conversation (depending on the month) that we carryon during the day, be it during o ur play time, reading time, or just plain together time . . . . My husband does not speak any foreign languages, but he is an indis­ pensable part of our language pro­ gram: the children teach him words and expressions in the foreign lang­ uages. It is with his support and enthusiasm, furthermore, that we are going to Canada this summer to try out our French . ..

MO M'S M USIC TIME More from Susan Richman (PA): ... A note on my piano playing. It was getting very hard to ever play during the day with Molly (2), as she would invariably clamber over, push a chair up to the piano bench, and crawl up on my lap . "MY turn play piano'" she'd say, yanking my hands from the keyboard, and beginning her own delighted improvisation . I could rarely get through half a piece, and it was almost impossible to have a connected time to figure out anything new (I'm very slow with new pieces) . I've found a good solution ­ I now get up by 6:30 in the morning,



and play before Molly gets up for the day . Luckily her sleep is not dis­ turbed by my early playing, and I can often get in a good concentrated 45 minutes or so before breakfast. Amaz­ ing how much I have improved with more time se t aside for playing . Haven't missed a day since I made the commitment to early rising . .. STARTED PIANO AT 8 From Nancy Wallace (NY):

.. . Often, I used to wonder what would have happened if Ishmael (13) had started taking piano lessons at 3 or 4, instead of 8 . Would he be a whole lot better than he is now? And so did I neglect him - even to the point of making a career in music impossible for him, as some people used to suggest? On the contrary ­ I'm now very convinced that not start­ ing him with formal music instruction until later was a good thing, because I have finally come to realize that he must have had ot her "work" to do before he got around to the piano, and so the piano would have only been a distraction. Perhaps I've never told you this, but a lth ough we've had a piano in the house since Ishmael was 2, he never went near it until he was 8 - despite the fact that he often heard other people play it. From the time he was 2, he always seemed to be totally preoccu­ pied with structure . He ' d spend hours building with blocks - not concerned at all with colors or symmetry, as Vita was - but fascinated with shapes - shapes of block buildings - and met hods of construction . And, al­ though he never seemed to notice scen­ ery, as such, he was always on the lookout for interesting buildings and other structures . Quite early on he developed a horror for flat roofs, and I ' ll never forget the way he cried in sheer agony when it looked as if we were going t o have to enter a house with a flat roof. Gable roofs were another thing e n tirely, though, and so he loved the Goshen house from the moment he saw it. Later, Ishmael's preoccupation turned more towards mechanics - he was always asking about how car and airplane engines worked and he spent months trying to build an airplane that would really fly - ignoring the fact that he ' d never be able to repro­ duce a real airplane engine, but instead working like crazy to design the wings and body with the proper shape for maximum flight capability . Boy, those were difficult times for us, but we took Ishmael seriously enough to bring him books on aeronau­ tics and to make sure that he had all the building materials he needed . Now I suppose most people on hearing this would be surprised that he seems well on his way to becoming a musician (and writer) and not a space engineer or an architect. But in fact, although he still has a total fascination with structure, it is now focussed into his music and, in a more internalized way, into his writing as well. When he composes, practically his first thought is, "How will I structure this piece?" When he starts to playa piece, it's the structure that he looks for first in order to begin to make sense of it. And even when he listens to music, it's almost always the struc­ ture that he comments on first . And it's not just the overall structure that he picks up, but the harmonic and rhythmic structure as well.


So, it seems pretty clear to me now that he had a lot of "work" to do before he ever went to the piano, and yet, although it was away from the instrument, it was definitely work on music. And thinking of it in this way, I feel confident that I didn ' t neglect him musically, because-ne-was working on music all along . And it shows - no one would guess now that he'd only been playing the piano for five years . .. NEW BOOKS & ITEMS AVAILABLE HERE

ELLEN'S LION by Crockett Johnson ($4.95 + pos t ) . Whether you recognize Crockett Johnson's name or not, you'll know him instantly by his dis­ tinctive cartoon style - he illustra­ ted HAROLD AND THE PURPLE CRAYON and many other children's books, as well as creating the Collier's magazine strip and the famous character "Barnaby . "

The twelve short-story episodes in this book are like cartoons t hem­ selves - econo mical, charming little pictures of a young child busi l y crea­ ting the living world of her imagina­ tion, in, out, under, and around the limited one we know as "real." The doctor/princess/fireman/beautifu l­ fairy-eating - muffins-and - jam (known to us as Ellen, a person of about 4 or 5 years), has had many exciting adventures in the playroom with her faithful stuffed lion - which might account for his weary attitude and prosaic outlook . He ' s a true friend and obviously doesn't mean to be a wet blanket, but he does have an annoying habit of insisting on being just a floppy old toy animal, with an imagination to match. The arguments they get into (whether it's the lion himself talk­ ing or Ellen doing it for his is a disputed point) are very funny a nd revealing . My favorite is their dis­ cussion about t he scary things that follow you in the dark when you get up for a drink of water. Ellen wants the lion to watch out for them behind . When the lion suggests t hat there aren't any such things, Ellen is indignant and makes a telling point: "Oh, no? Then how can they scare me? " "I know all about them," said Ellen. "After all, I made the m up in my head, didn't P" "Ah," said the lion . "I said there were no such things." "But of course there are," Ellen said. "I just told you I made them up myself." "Yes," the lion said . "But "So I sh.ou l d -know, shou l dn't I?" said Ellen .. . "Stop arguing with me and keep your eyes open." "They're buttons," said the lion, bouncing on Ellen ' s shoulder as she walked across the bedroom. "My eyes never close." "Good," said Ellen .. . Like all good "children's" liter­ ature, ELLEN'S LION has a dimension of truth to it that makes it appeal­ ing in its own right. In an affec t ion­ ate, unspoken way, it makes you feel that you know something about'people and the nature of reality that you didn ' t realize you knew . The gentle humor is wry rather than rollicking; like WINNIE THE POOH, it gets funnier the more you reread it - definitely a book to grow up with. J . P . didn ' t always know what to make of it, and in fact, tended to side with the lion, but he did say emphatically

that he llked it very much and thought it well worth t he ~ : ;ce - not a light best owal oE praise c onsider­ ing hi s opini o n of the value of mo ney. --- Kathy Mingl (IL) A CHILD'S CHRISTMAS IN WALES, by Dylan Thomas ($6.95 + post). Thls lovely description of a ehild's Christmas day, from first waking to going to sleep at night, has rightly become a modern classic. This edi­ tion, like all books published by David Godine, is beautifully printed and bound, a book by a company (one of the few ) that still loves and trea­ sures books. The illustrations, in pale water colors, seem to me just right, their colors suggesting the soft white light of the Northern win­ ter, and their outlines blurred enough to give the book the needed dreamlike or remembered quality. See ­ ing them, we feel clearly the white ­ ness of the snow, the crisp coldness of the air, the little houses of the town packed closely together on the steep slopes leading down to the sea, the cozy and even stuffy warmth of the inside of the houses. Over all this is a great air of peace, content­ ment, and safety, against which back­ ground we hear the story of this ordi­ nary but magical day told in the almost-singing voice of the poet him­ self . A wonderful book to read aloud to children during the Christmas season. --- John Holt EL FLAUTISTA DE JAMELIN by Han­ nah Hutchlnson ($2.95 + post). This version of "The Pied Piper of Hame ­ lin" is the fourth in our series of famous stories told very simply in Spanish for children (others are LOS TRES OSOS, CAPERUCITA ROSA, and LOS CUATROS CANTANTES DE GUADALAJARA). As in the others, there is so much repetition in the text, and the live­ ly illustrations e~plain so much, that most children will be able to figure out for themselves what most of the words mean. In case they should get stuck, there is a Spanish­ English glossary of all t he words in the book . Our readers have enjoyed very much the first three books in this series, and I'm sure they'll enjoy this one just as much . - JH SLEEP-SHADES ($7 + post) . Th is little devlce has added as much to my general enjoyment of life as the Hear­ ing Protectors we introduced in GWS #39. Those cut down on noise; these eye shades cut out light. When I feel sleepy, I like to take a short nap; often just a few minutes of sleep will be all I need, and will lea've me much refreshed and full of energy. But I find it much harder to get to sleep or stay asleep if there is light shining in my eyes, and this little device solves that problem, since even in broad daylight it ex­ cludes virtually all light . An elas­ tic strap, fitting over the back of the head, keeps it in place with a gentle pressure, which might take

Over 200 pages of solid Informallon. $1.95 Blue Bird Publishing i428 We,l Brood Sireet - 202

CokJrnbus. OH 43222


22 some people a short while to get used to; I find this slight soft pressure pleasant and indeed conducive to sleep. Combined with the Hearing Pro­ tectors it is a great aid to catnap­ pers, may their tribe increase. Sleep-Shades are also very good just for giving your eyes a short rest, even if you don't intend to sleep. A number of books on vision, including Huxley's famous THE ART OF SEEING, say that is very good for the eyes, particularly when you are doing a lot of close work, to give them every now and then a chance to look at darkness for a minute or two, and these Sleep-Shades, WhlCh fit very easily in a purse or pocket, will give you something very close to total darkness. Over the years, t oo, I have found that children are often quite fascinated with thes e shades (as they are with the Hearing Protectors), and often like to put them on to get an idea, for a moment or two, what it might be like not to be able to see . Because they leave no holes for peek­ ing, they are an ideal blindfold. You may have to shorten the headband a little (a paper clip will do it) so that it will fit children. Many child­ ren might even like to have a pair of their own. Some other companies make simi­

lar eye shades, but these are the

most comfortable I have worn. A boon

to tired eyes or tired people. - JH


Postage charge: 1, 2, or 3 items except records: $1.20. 4 or more, 40¢ per item. Postage for records: $1 for 1, add 50¢ for each additionar:--Overseas surface mail: 1, 2, or 3 items, $1.20; 4 or more, 50¢ per 1tem. Mass . residents, add 5% sales tax. Make check (US bank) or money order for books, reprints, records, tapes, instruments, and art materials payable to HOLT ASSOCIATES, INC. Payment for subscriptions, ads, T-shirts, the YOUNG CHILDREN supplement, index, and back issues of GWS should be made out separately to GROWING WITHOUT SCHOOLING. For a copy of our latest catalog, send

us a self-addressed stamped envelope.

We will pay $2 in credit for used copies (in good condition) of John Holt's WHAT DO I DO MONDAY? On request, we will photocopy and mail the GWS review of any item in our catalog. Send 50¢ plus a S.A.S.E. for one; add 25¢ for each additional.

Romeo MI 48065: Amy (12) horses, animals, lit­ erature; Becky (9) animals, climbing, dolls; Benjamin (6) dinosaurs, bikes, rocks --- Mon­ tara VAN FLEET (6) 2955 Ki1kare Rd, Sunol CA 94586; Cabbage-Patch, dancing, nature --- Mar­ guerite HEWITT (6) 906-C Harkness Ln, Redondo Bch CA 90278; Cabbage-Patch, singing, gymnas­ tics --- Doug REINDL (9) 24022 Plant St, Mis­ sion Viejo CA 92691; baseball, basketball, kar­ ate --- BAKER, 2401 S Queen St, York PA 17402: Vanessa (5) drawing, dolls, music; Stuart (3) vehicles, animals, songs --- GREEN, 70 E Palm St, Altadena CA 91001; Kevin (12) basketball, baseball; Elizabeth (8) gymnastics, Barbie, skating; Adrienne (5) gymnastics, dolls, bowl­ ing --- BROOKS, 6866 Adaside SE, Ada MI 49301: Melissa (13) piano, art, beach; Amanda (11) piano, stickers, stamps; Holly (14) hiking, animals, astronautics --- ROSSEN, PO Box 105, Plano IL 60545: Steve (8) science, sports, coins; Kevin (6) sports, transformers, video --- LANE, HCR 545, Anchor Pt AK 99556: Kimber­ ly (13) animals, crafts, reading; Melissa (9) horses, reading, dolls --- Dan PAKENHAM (6) South Head Rd, He1ensvi11e RD 1, New Zealand; fishing, chess , swil1111ing SPARKMAN, 115­ 9960 Bonaventure Dr SE, Calgary, Alberta Cana­ da T2S 4L4: Tammy-Lynn (10) math, anima1s~c­ cer; Ross (8) Science, collecting, dinosaurs; Patti-Ann (7) French, soccer, swimming; Jackie Sue (5) horses, swimming, play-dough; Cathy­ Lou (3) sandbox, swimming --- BLANCHE, 1 Cir­ cle Dr, Irvington NY 10533 : Louis (6) music, computers, reading; Vivi (4) coloring, dolls, music --- EVERGREEN, Rt 1 Box 352, Alderson WV 24910: Rosa (7) dancing, flowers, cooking; Andy (8) nature, animals, skiing --- Jamie PAGE-GRAZIANO (6) 1700 Wood1ynne, Linwood NJ 08221 transformers, tennis, baseball --­ BROSNAN, 137 The Crescent, Babylon Village NY 11702: Anne/77 reading, stamps, biking; Gaea/ 79 flowers, swinging, swimming --- HAZI, Rt 1 Box 139-B, Santa Maria CA 93454; Rosanne (8) drawing, nature, gymnastics; Melody (4) flow­ ers, gymnastics, dancing



For more 1istin s of people willing to

speak about homeschoo 1ng and related sub­

jects, see GWS #43-45. Or, send a long se1f­

addressed stamped envelope for a free copy of

all "Speaker Bureau" listings.

To arran~e for speakers, contact them directly. We s ould make clear that being on this list does not constitute a recommenda­ tion. Please write us about any exper1ences, good or bad, you have with the speakers. To be listed, send us your name, address, phone, a brief self-description, and any other important information (distance you're willing to travel, fixed fee if any, special programs).


MARSHALL SERWITZ Serw1tz Academy, 3373 Middlefield Rd, Palo Alto CA 94306; 415-673-7629 WHEN YOU WRITE US ... Our goal is to provide parents with a Please - (1) Put separate items of busi­ method that will let parents assist their ness on separate sheets vf ' paper. (2) Put your children in the natural process of child devel­ name and address at the top of each letter. opment and education. The key to our process (3) If you ask questions, enclose a se1f­ rests with the parent understanding the normal addressed stamped envelope. (4) Tell us if pattern of emerging skills of their children, it's OK to publish your letter, and whether to and what we can do, as parents, to stimulate use your name with the story. the emergence of these skills. The talk that we are most frequently asked to give is SERWITZ ACADEMY INVITES YOU TO UNLOCK YOUR CHILD'S FULL LEARNING POTENTIAL. PEN PALS WANTED Our seminars are free as long as people Children Wanting Pen Pals should send us are not chargeti for admission. We do not usual­ name, age, address, and 1-3 words on interests ly travel more than 50 miles from San Francis­ - AHLMAN, 11 Anderson Ct, Newton KS 67114: Amy co. We are willing to do free presentations (11) reading, stickers, Cabbage-Patch; Beth for fund-raising purposes ... (9) ballet, reading, Cabbage-Patch; Mark (7) soccer, stamp collecting; Joanna (5) dolls, books, writing --- Trevor JUST (4) 2930 Lex­ WANT ADS ford Av, San Jose CA 95124; baseball, books, music --- Bart HOLCOMB (10) RR 1, Winsted CT Rates for ads: $5 per 1i ne (up to 47 spaces). 06098; reading, guitar, outdoors --- Serena Please tell these folks you saw the ad in GWS. KNIFFIN (9) 12 Court St, Geneseo NY 14454; ballet, reading, swimming --- Tiffany VARGO FOR.LANG.TAPES THE LEARNABLES - Span. Ger. Fr. (8) 241-A Monks Rd, Saxonburg PA 16056; art, Eng. & Russian taught by aud10-picture system. gymnastics, soccer --- JOHNSON, 72100 Lassier, From GWS #31 "... promotes the fastest 1earn­

ing ... most enjoyable." Also excel. Eng. read­ ing prog available. From International Linguis­ tics, 401 W89th St, Kansas City MO 64114 Day Care Home News1etter*business info*sharing* connecting*One year (6 issues)-$10, samp1e-$1 CARING FOR CHILDREN, Box1302Ash1andOR97520-0044 Homeschoo1ing Neighbors Wanted, area of beauti­ ful springs, cheap land near univ. town. Prefer 4-8 year olds. Sandy,PO Box 281,Archer FL 32618 SCIENCE Equipment Labs at reasonable cost, grades K-8. Easy to understand, hands-on manual of experiments inc1uded.Send for free brochure. Norris SCIENCE Labs and Kits, 4561 Sacks Dr., Dept.46G, Las Vegas, NV 89122 702-458-6427 IMPORTANT NOTICE - Members of the NATIONAL COALITION FOR ALTERNATIVE COMMUNITY SCHOOLS are assisting thousands of homeschoo1ers across the US. Several of these schools offer boarding facilities. We have come together to form the CONSORTIUM OF INNOVATIVE BOARDING SCHOOLS. We have openings for homeschoo1ed children of all ages. Scholarship help is avai1ab1e.A11 schools are nondiscriminatory & participant-controlled. For more information write CONSORTIUM, RD 1 Box 378, Glenmoore PA 19343 or call 215-458-5138. HOW TO BE YOUR CHILD'S BEST TEACHER ­ use TEACHING GUIDES written in everyday language with expandable lessons. Matching CURRICULUM GUIDES show the school that you know what to provide. More information $1. LEARNING AT HOME, Box 270-G45, Honaunau, HI 96726 HOMESTEADERS NEWS - How To Live Simply & Sanely In A Troubled World. "Sherrie & Norm are dOing extremely important work" - John Holt. Send $10 (6 iss.)or $2 sample to B517-25 Naples NY 14512 LIVING HERITAGE ACADEMY: K-12 Teach your child at home. Diagnostically prescribed, self con­ tained, self instructional, continuous progress curriculum, high achievement results, permanent records kept, diploma issued, low tuition rates LIVING HERITAGE ACADEMY-GWS P.O. Box 1438, Lewisville, Texas 75067 INFORMED HOMEBIRTH. Books, tapes, childbirth educator certification, midwifery skills work­ shops, Magical Years Conference on (Waldorf) early childhood. IH, Box3675, AnnArbor MI 48106 Dover coloring books & full color cut/assemble models at 10% below retail - over 40 titles to teach about nature, history, architecture ... Why not make learning fun? FREE BROCHURE The Timberdood1e E1610 Spencer LkRd, She1tonWA98584 SONGS, TAPES, and RECORDS that delight and nurture young children, ages 3-9. Send S.A.S.E. DEL SONGS, 714 Locust Ave, Ch'vi11e VA 22901. CREATIVE LEARNING/Professional magazine for homeschoo1ers. Practical ideas/helpful how­ to's/pertinent information for whole family. One year $7 .00, sample $1.00. CLM, BOX 957, Wrightstown, NJ 08652. HELP! We at Scotland Yard are stumped. Holmes adViSes "any homeschoo1er over 11 can solve this, Lestrade. They're known for cleverness!" We are mo st eager to hand over THE CASE OF THE MYSTERIOUS STRO LLER to budding sleuths .... Info on THE Sherlock HOME(s)TAUGHT DETECTIVE GAME write s.L.L. AssOt pO BOx 212 NEW HOPE pA 18938 RESPONSIBLE FOLKS wanted to live rent free on 400 scenic acres in Missouri Ozarks in exchange for caretaking chores. Nice place to hike, swim, home school. The Hobarts (314) 674-3296 ADDITIONS TO RESOURCES

Certified teachers willing to help home­ schoo1ers: Barry KAHN, 35 tol lege St, Portland ME 04103; 207 -797-8866 --- Karin JERNB ERG­ BRIGGS, Phone 216-262-4070, Wooster OH; K-8, counse ling --- Sandy DOERFEL, PO Box 271331, Escondido CA 92027 (formerly PAl Other Allies: Joe JERNBERG-BRIGGS (see GROWING WITHOUT SCHOOLING #46


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -- - --



23 TEACHERS); school psychologist, reading specialist. These people have experience with the following subjects and are willing to corres­ pond with others - Adoption: Lury IGNIZIO, 19504 Hiawatha Rd, Odessa FL 33556 --- Down's Syndrome: Janet BENNETT (Kathryn / 62) 2~ Harbor Dr, Maineville OH 45039 (formerly NJ) --- Learning Disabilities: Sharon GRAHAM, 22500 Rlfle Range Rd, Covelo CA 95428 ADDITIONS TO DIRECTORY

Here are the additions and changes to the Directory we have received since the last issue. GWS #42 has the complete 1985 Direc­ tory. GWS #45 has a summary of additions up to that time. --Our Directory is not a list of all sub­ scribers, but only of tnose who ask to be list­ ed, so that other GWS readers, or other lnter­ ested people, may get in touch with them. If you would like to be included, please send us the information. From now on we will print only birth­ years of children, not ages. If we maare-a-mis­ ~when converting your child's age to birthyear, please let us know. Please tell us if you would rather have your phone number and town listed instead of a mai ling address. --If a name in a GWS story is followed by an abbreviation in parentheses, that person is in the Directory (check here, in #45 and in #42). We are happy to forward mail to-rKose whose addresses are not in the Directory (mark the outside of the envelope with name/descrip­ tion~, and page number). When you send an address change for a subscription, please remind us if you are in the Directory, so we can change it here, too. AK - Nancy STICH, VALLEY HOME SCHOOL Box 5370-A, Wasilla 99687 AR - Rebecca FULMER, Rt 1 Box 220, Oko­ lona 7rg62 --- Julie O'DAY (Meghann / 79, Katie/ 81) c/o Fred McAllister, Rt 3 Box 149, Fair­ fi e 1d Bay 72088 AZ - Paisan & Joyce BOONLORN (Jennifer/ 78, Jalme/81) 10824 N 42nd Pl, Phoenix 85028 --- Jim & Elizabeth GOOD (Rebecca/71, Emily/­ 72, Daniel/74, Stephen/77, Peter/78, Susanne/ 83, Kathryn/84) 2109 E Quince, Mesa 85203 (change) --- Jim & Lynn SAINT (Benjamin/80, Crelann/84) 3615 WSolano Dr, Phoenix 85019 --- Bill & Celeste STEEN (John/75, Luke/79, Fe1iz/84) HCR Box 324, Elgin 85611-9706 CA, South (Zips to 94000) - Michael & Pamela BOSWELL (Sharesa/76, Jordan / 78, Marinda /80, Canaan/83) 36411 Rd 196, Woodlake 93286 --- Lynda & Jim GREEN, 70 E Palm St, Altadena 91001 --- Christine JENSEN, 5635 Calle Vista Alegre, Yorba Linda 92686 --- Joy & David LIEZEN (Matthew/77, 01ivia/80, Nicholas/84) 1576 Duran St, Salinas 93906 --- Kevin & Rebec­ ca SLADE (Colin/81, Austin/84) 3733 Warner St, San Diego 92106 --- Mary & Bruce STEWART, 3155 Mt Vernon, Riverside 92507 (change) --- Jon TABOR (Lara/79) 1710 Lotus Ln, El Cajon 92021 CA, North (Zips 94000 & up) - Janet & Brent BLAcK (Laure1 / 83) 5 Kilmer Ct, Mill Val­ ley 94941 --- Chris & Patti CHURCH (Al1i/77) PO Box 18, Montara 94037 --- Paul & Nancy COOKE (Emily/80, Timothy/84) 1805 Mesa Way, Santa Rosa 95407 --- Jan CRAWFORD (Nea1 / 82) 841 Stendha1 Ln, Cupertino 95014 --- Wendy & Glenn EARLY (Andrew/82) Apt 13, 1698 Ontario Dr, Sunnyvale 94807 --- Cliff & Suzanne GER­ WICK (Wendy/76, Jack/79) 5618 Bettencourt Dr, Clayton 94517 --- He idi GIO, 3613 Greenleaf Dr, Santa Ros a 95401 (ch ange) - - - Randy & Lynne KNOWLES (Anthony/77, Jenny/ 79, Jorma / 84) 16876 Old Downieville Hwy, Nevada City CA 95959 (change) --- Jacqueline MAGNELL (James/ 72) 5393 Elsinore Way, Fair Oaks 95628 (change) --- Kathleen O'BRIEN (Sarah / 82) 7062 Chiala Ln, San Jose 95129 --- Mary Anne & Jim SCHMIDT (Elaine / 76, Melissa / 78, Annie / 81, Julie/84) 16598 Draper Mine Rd, Sonora 95370 CO - COLORADO HOME SCHOOLING NETWORK, 7490 ~pache, Sedalia 80135 (change) --­ Charles & L.B. EVERSOLE (Ashley/73, Laura / 75) 5900 Oxford Rd, Longmont 80501 --- Kim & Mary GROUP,~R


ORR (Nathan/79, Bethany/81, Noah/83) 4750 Chap­ arral Rd, Colorado Springs 80917 --- Fred & Karen ZIEGLER (Grant/70, Angel/74) 3155 Wood­ land Hills Dr, Colorado Springs 80918 (change) DE - Edward & Julie Anne ALLEYNE (Themba /83) 2~3 N Jefferson St, Wilmington 19802 FL - FLORIDA ASSOCIATION FOR SCHOOLING AT HO~(FLASH), 1000 Devils Dip, Tallahassee 32301 --- Roger & Bonnie GORDON (Joshua/78, Sarah/80) 228 Ila St, Stuart 33497 --- Mike & Amy GRIGGS (Mike/77, Jake/83) 355 S Highland Av, Green Cove Spgs 32043 --- Jane & Tom KAPP (Tina/75, Jenny/79, Beth/82) FOUNTAINHEAD SCHOOL, 1371 Jeffords, Clearwater 33516 HI - Cassandra RODGERS (Carubie/80. Fran­ cis/81r-45-269 Kahanahou Cir, Kaneohe 96744 10 - Steve & Kathy COLE (Jackie/78, Rob­ ert/80r-pO Box 52, Stanley 83278 --- Gerald & Afton ONDRICEK (Crystal / 80, Lynda/68) Rt 3 Box 232, Idaho Falls 83401 IL - Deirdre COX, HOME SWEET SCHOOL, 1919 w-Relrose, Chicago 60657 --- Larry & Ter-. ry DOWDEN (Michael/7B) RR 4 Box 444, Blooming­ ton 61701 --- Darcy & Jim FOSTER (Joella/73, Ryan/75, Jaime/77) 1910 17th St, Rock Island 61201 --- Kris & Stan HALLBERG (David/73, Kar­ in/77) 644 Comstock Av, Elmhurst 60126 --- Ken & Carol MUZZY (Jake/77, Katie/80, Da1e/78) 208 WFranklin, Wheaton 60187 IN - Tom & Marian BEVER (Mark/78, David/ 81) 26~ Westfield Blvd, Indianapolis 46208 --- Ab & Valerie BROWN, ELKHART CO. PARENT EDUCATORS (Randy/68, Ben/75, Angela/78, Nicholas/ 82) 23703 River Manor Blvd, Elkhart 46516 KS - Ken & Jeanne KASTEN (Kenneth/80, Rosemary/82) 1440 Park Place, Wichita 67203 (change) KY - Bill & Diane CAMPBELL (Christopher/ 78) 12~Goodrich Av, Lexington 40503 --- David & Barbara FRENCH (Luke/81, Rachel/83) Rt 3 Box 35, Vine Grove 40175 --- Roxanne & Steve HUTT (Wade/76, MayBeth/78) DAYSTAR HOMEBASED SCHOOL, Rt 1 Box 304, Gravel Switch 40328 --Jeanne MONTGOMERY, KENTUCKY HOME SCHOOLERS, 10208 Bluff Spgs Trace, Louisville 40223 ME - Paul GRIESBACH & Pauline SABO (Seam­ us/78,~aggie/81, Leon/84) 57 Main St, Lisbon Falls 04252 --- Steve HALL & Patti PITCHER (Becca/81, Laura/84) PO Box 190, Strong 04983 (change) --- Tim & Ellen KETCHAM, MAINE HOME STUDY ASSOCIATION (Susan/75, James/77, Donald/ 77) RD 4 Box 5500, Farmin9ton 04938 MD - Jack STOCKDALE, PARENTS FOR HOME EDUCATTUN, 13020 Blairmore St, Beltsville 20705 MA - Norman & Judith COPPOLA (Joshu/71, Calebl7O, Tabitha/74, Nathaniel/83) 5 Megonko Rd, Natick 01760 --- Ce-Ce & Mark FINS (Julie/ 78, Zachary/81) 46 Marcellus Dr, Newton 02159 --- Adele & David GARLICK, RFD 1, Southbridge 01550 (change) --- M.L. & Robert McGUIGAN (Gab ­ rie1 / 80, Abigai1/82) 131 Dry Hill Rd, Montague 01351 (change) --- Susan OSTBERG, APPLE COUNTRY HOMESCHOOLING ASSOCIATION, Box 246, Har­ vard 01451 --- Gina PROVOST (Joshua/78, Carl/ 80, Jeremy/82) 52 Forest Av Ext, Natick 01760

--- Adrian & Mary SULLIVAN (Lily 79) 18 West St, Milton 02186 MI - Tom & Theryl KRINGS (Nathani79, RachellBl) 535 Mae-Thy SE, Grand Rapids 49~08 --- David ROSEN & Carol CLAUSS (Shale/76) 5268 19-Mile Rd, Barryton 49305 MN - Tim RYAN & Su THURNG (Zoa/79, Javi­ er/84)~26 WGeorge St #1, St Paul 55107 MS - Robert ALLEN, MISSISSIPPI HOME SCHOOLtRS ASSOCIATION, Rt 4 Box 435, Pass Christian 39571 (change) NJ - Meryl & Ron FEINSOD, NEW ,JERSEY FAMILY SC~OLS ASSOCIATION (Rachael/77, Kira/78, Corey/82, Luke/82) RD 8 Box 868, Newton 07860 (change) --- Jocelyn JOCKETT, 58 Califon Rd, Long Valley 07853 --- Joseph & Ruth SCHAEFFER (Deborah/82) 32 E Crescent Av, Mahwah 07430 NM - Kathy KING, PO Box 510, Las Vegas 87701NY - Larry & Claudia BROSNAN (Anne/77, Gaea/7~ 137 The Crescent, Babylon Village 11702 (change) --- Jim &Mary Ann DANIELS (Judy!75) HC Box 92, Rt 26, Climax 12042 --Dorothy & Joseph NORTON (Daniel/82, Aaron/33) 4 Troup St, Seneca Falls 13148 --- Rose & Rick RUSS (Joshua/81, Mary Rose/84) 2028 Leader Rd, Waterloo 13165 --- Lori SMITH, 119-A Taborton Rd, Sand Lake 12153 --- Rick STEINBERG &Ann WILLIAMS (Benjamin/82) 310 Baynes St, Buffalo 14213 --- Stephanie SUNDINE & Victor DeRENZI (Francesca/82) 210 W 101st St, #9E, NYC 10025 --- Roy & Sue TANIGUCHI (Sa11y/83) 56008 Kan­ sas Av, Plattsburgh 12903 --- George & Lisa TREICHLER (Dorothy/80, E1izabeth/83) 132 Gates Manor Dr, Rochester 14606 --- Jim & Kathy VREEL~ND (Tanya/75, Ryan/77) 2375 Mead Rd, Savan­ nah 13146 --- Charlene &Michael WINGERBEARSKIN (Anis/76, Amelia/79, Martha/84) 25 Hill Terrace, Henrietta 14467 (change) NC - Jocelyn BUTLER & Fery1 MASTERS (Dun­ can/79~Luca/82) 717 W2nd At, Washington 27889 --- Richard MAILMAN & Judy SIDDEN (Seth/ 81) Rt 3 Box 190, Chapel Hill 27514 --- Lori & Will WAGONER (Braelyn/84) 2900 WVandalia, Greensboro 27407 OH - Janet & Norman BENNETT (Kathryn/62) 2747 N~arbor Dr, Maineville 45039 (change) --- Joe & Karin JERNBERG-BRIGGS (Laura/70, Jen­ ny/71, Jorianne/79, Joe1/79, Mariah/83) Phone 216-262-4070, Wooster (change) --- Rich & Kandy LIGHT (Rick/67, Dawn/68, Timmy/69, David /69, Amy/73, Annee/81) PO Box 7, Gambier 43022 --- Cleo &Mark NAFZIGER (Justin/81, Seth/83) 215-g Delhi Av, Columbus 43202 --- Bill RUFFIN, 6122 Dryden St #2, Cincinnati 45213 (change) --- Johnny & Kathy VAN STYN (Henry/ 81) 109 Mulberry, Cincinnati 45210 OR - David ~ Kitty DESMARTEAU (Heather/ 77, Daniel/81) 910 Carmel Dr SE, Salem 97301 --- Debbie DOUGHTY, DOUGLAS COUNTY HOME SCHOOL­ ERS CONNECTION, 4053 Hanna St, Roseburg 97470 PA - Dwight & Kathleen BOWEN (Timothy/ 78, Sarah/80) RD4 Box 141, Denver 17517 (change) --- Bill & Sharon DAVIS (Dustin/71, Clinton/72, Maritt/75, Adam/77, Brett/80, Meg-


As we said elsewhere, the all-new 1986 Directory will be made up only of those who tell us in 1985 that they wish to be listed. So fill out this form and marr-lt today, or use a separate postcard or 3x5 card (only one family per card). ADULTS: ORGANIZATION (if applicable): CHILDREN, NAMES/BIRTHYEARS:


Have been in Directory before: Yes


24 an/82) Fairgrounds Rd, Stoneboro 16153 --­ Scott & Christine De~ART, 747 Storch Rd, State College 16801 --- Dave & Glenda ERSKINE (Davi­ na/68, Pame1a/70, Shawna/ 75, David / 77) Box 260, Moore Rd, Butler 16001 (change) --- HOME EDUCATORS OF PA, RO 2 Box 334-A, Munson 16860 --- Mark & Joan MAUGHMER (Mark / 80, Kori / 83) 443 E Fairmont Av, State College 16801 --­ Peter & Deby MESZAROS (Andor / 81) 2011 Highland Dr, State College 16801 --- NATIONAL COALITION OF ALTERNATIVE COMMUNITY SCHOOL S, RO 1 Box 378, Glenmoore 19343 (change) --- Ethan REIN­ HARD & Molly HALL (Esther / 81, Corde1ia/ 83) 139 N 4th St, Rear, Philadelphia 19106 --- Debi & Adam SHUMAN (Dawn / 77, Mi1es / 79, Zachary / 82 ) 213 WUpsa1 St, Philadelphia 19119 (change ) --- Jeffrey & Lois STICKLER (Joshua / 79, Joe1 / 80, Rachae1 / 82) 240 E Goepp St, Bethlehem 18018 --- Bob & Janet WILLIAMS (Jenny / 71, Mat­ thew/ 72, Amy / 74, Jacob / 77, Katie / 79) 688 E Berlin Rd, York Spgs 17372 (change ) --- Rick & Becky WIRKKALA (Amy / 74, Ann / 77) 109 Ruth Dr, Hunker 15639 RI - Steve & Ruth CHERRY (Sasha / 77, Jer­ ed / 81)-C/ o 512 Metacom Av, Bristol 02809 (change) TN - Linda & Mike CLARK (Richard / 72, Amy/74~Rt 2 Box 314, Johnson City 37601 --­ Don & Sara GIESMANN (Carrie / 76, A1ison / 79) 520 Brookwood Dr, Bristol 37620 TX - Jim & Gloria COTNEY (John / 75, Joey / 77, Katie/83) 1030 Mayberry Ct, Lewisville 75067 --- Judy & Larry McMILLAN (Rebecca/ 72, Heather/75) 6411 Sugar Creek, San Antonio 78244 VT - Jim CUNNINGHAM, HOME SCHOOL CENTER, WaterviTl e 05492 VA - Don & Trish ROWLAND (Jesse / 81, Sim­ one/84~803 Mountain Rd NW, Roanoke 24017 (change) WA - Paul & Linda ANDERSON (Jessica / 79, Ju1ia!ST) 915 Melanie Ct NE, Bremerton 98310 --- Dan & Deb DEFFINBAUGH (Joy/ 82, Hope / 83, Grace/84) THE TIMBERDOODLE, E1610 Spencer Lake Rd, Shelton 98584 --- Richard & Catherine HAYWARD, 2845 Lys1e, Bellingham 98255 Debra & Eric STEWART, FAMILY-CENTERED LEARNING ALTERNATIVES, HCR 63 Box 713, Naselle 98638 (change) WV - Bill & Marianne HUGHES (Gregory / 77, Clare(7g) Rt 7 Box 67A, New Martinsville 26155 --- Ken & Sarah LESLIE (Tina / 79, Karl / 81) 512 Valley Rd, Morgantown 26505 WI - George & Jane SIEMON (Hawkins / 77, ClovisJgO, Cedarose/ 82) CIRCLE SCHOOL, RR2, Viroqua 54665 --- Toots & Steve WEIER (Fore st / 75, Horizon Blue/ 78, Winter / 81) Rt 2 Box 102, Pound 54161 (change)

PEl - Arlene ARSENAULT &Mike ANTOLIK RR 1, Montague COA 1RO --- John & Cindy BELL (Tobi / 74, Zachary / 79, Thatcher / 82) Box 7, Murray Harbour COA 1VD --- Ron FARMER & Cathy GENER (Susanna/76, Jude / 78, Noah/80) PO Box 76, Hunter River COA 1NO (change)

when they were printed, and we do not plan to repeat the information in them. Our rates for back issues : any combi na­ tion of back issues, mailed at one time to one address, cost 75¢ per issue, plus $2. For exam­ ple, GWS #1-45 would cost $35.75. (45 x 75¢ is $33.75. $33.75 + $2 = $35.75.) These rates are OTHER LOCATIONS - Rita STEELE (Paul / 76, Carmen for subscribers only; non-subscribers pay &Cody/IB, Skye/ 80) 23d Engr Bn, APO NY 09165 $2.50 per lssue. Index to GWS #1-30 costs $2.50; to #31­ (Hanau, Germany) --- Dan & Cathy JAIME, HHB / 2­ 43 ADA, ~09165 (Germany) 40, $l~se prices include postage). Address chan~es: If you're movi ng, 1et us know your new a dress as soon as possible. Please enclose a recent label (or copy of RENEWALS one). Issues missed because of a change in At the bottom of this page is a form you address may be replaced for $2 each. can use to renew your subscription. Please Group subscriptions : all copies are help us by renewing early. mailed to one address. Aere are the current How can you tell when your subscription group rates (lX means you get one copy of each issue, 2X means you get 2 copies of each expires? Look at this sample label: issue, 3X means 3 copies, etc.): 1 year 2 yrs. 3 yrs. 12345 6 iss. 12 iss. 18 iss. JIM & MARY JONES 27 01 47 lX $15 $27 $36 16 MAIN ST 2X $20 $34 $45 PLAINVILLE NY 01111 3X $25 $45 $67.50 The number that is underlined in the $30 $60 $90 4X example tells the number of the final issue 5X $37.50 $75 $112.50 for the subscription. The Jones' sub explres with Issue #47, the next issue. But if we were 6X $45 $90 $135 to receive their renewal before we sent our final account changes to the mailing house 7X, 8X, etc : $7.50 per person per year. (early October), they would qualify for the free bonus issue. Please send in the names and addresses Renewal rates are the same as for new of members of your group sub, so that we can subscriptions: $15 for 6 issues, $27 for 12 keep in touch with them. Thanks. issues, $36 for 18 issues. If that number in the third line of your label is 46, 47, 48, Editors - John Holt & Donna Richoux etc, please renew now - rates will never get Managing Editor - Patrick Farenga any cheaper. Subscriptions & Books - Steve Rupprecht ~andy Kendall Office Assistant - Mary Van Doren Editorial Assistant Mary Maher SUBSCRIPTIONS (Lydia~)

Our current policy starts all subscrip­ tions with the next issue published. Rates are : $15 for 6 issues, $27 for 12 issues, $36 for 18 issues. GWS is published every other month. A single issue costs $2.50. For all subs or orders of GWS (not books), please send check or money oraers pay­ able to GROWING WITHOUT SCHOOLING. Fore6~n payments must be either money orders ln funds or checks drawn on US banks. We can't afford to accept personal checks on Canadian accounts, even if they have ·US funds· written on them. Outside of North CANADA

America, add $10 per year for airmail (other­ ---NB - Laurence MARIE & Ian CURRY (Natha­

lie / 70~00nagh / 75, Siobhan/ 80, Yanneck / 81) 644 wise, allow 2-3 months for surface mail). Shediac Rd, Moncton E1A 2T1 (change) Back issues : We strongly urge you to get ONT - Judy & Laurence WRAGG (Stephen / 78, the back lssues of GWS, especially if you plan to ta ke your ch i ldren out of school . Many of Col1eenyg2) 3051 Cante10n Crescent, Mississ­ the articles are as useful and important as auga L5N 3J7

Copyri ht Holt Associates, Inc.



roVl ron rt ::I:

o o




RENEWAL FORM Use this form to r enew or extend your subscr i ption to GROWING WITHOUT SCHOOLING. Place the label from a recent issue below, if possible . If not, print the info. Thanks. Account Number :


Expirati on code :

Address (Change ? Yes / No) :

City, State , Zip :

YES , PLEASE EXTEND MY SUBSCRIPTION FOR : 6 issues, $15 Group sub:

copies of

12 issues, $27

18 issue s , $16

issues, $_ _ (see chart)

(Clip and send with your check or money order in U.S. funds to : GROWING WITHOUT SCHOOLING , 729 Boylston Street, Boston MA 02116 . ) GROWING WITHOUT SCHOOLING #46

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