Monday, July 23, 2007

Homeschooling vs Islamic schools vs Public schools

Assalm alykom:
I am back to homeschooling after a year of teaching in an Islamic school. I think this year has really let me evaluate and change my mission for why I homeschool. My mission used to be that I did it for religious reasons. Now, I truly believe that it is for educational reasons mixed with a little bit of religious reasons. I discovered that the quality of my children's education was very high when it was me teaching them. After a year in an actual school setting, their level of education declined. I can control my children's accountability much better. If I find they are lacking, I have the time to reteach it to them. I can take more time to make sure they do their best.
Islamic schools, in general, are at their infancy stages in America. Most of them in my area, have been around for less than ten years and many less than five. They are going through the process of always getting better, but not quite there yet. Many of the schools have low funding and low pay for the staff. Therefore, the more qualified teachers tend to go elsewhere. While I am sure there are great Islamic schools in the States, as I stated, many of them are just starting up and going through the learning curve. During this curve, the level of education may not be very high.
Public schools are tied to the No Child Left Behind Act. I really hate this Act because it leaves behind all creativity and learning in the classroom and teaches the child only to take the State Standardized tests. This is my opinion and I know it is a big controversy. Some of you may have great public schools that try to go around this act and maintain actual learning and teaching.
My blog will began to fill with homeschooling posts once again. I am not going to do the K12 this year because it has to be completed in the 9 month school year. This is if I go through the state program. If I buy the program as a regular homeschooler, it is soooo expensive. With four kids, it is too much. I am looking into the Oak Meadow cirriculum. It is affordable and seems good. I will let you know once I purchase it and get into how it really is. That is the only way to know of a cirriculum really works for your family.


Zeinab Francesc said...

Assalamu aleykum sister.
Just would like to ask you, why do you think you need a curriculum?
I think that the best thing about homeschooling is that you can follow your child (children) and related interests, of course you an complete his/her/their knowledge with some standard textbooks just in case, but why purhase a standard curriculum that basically treats children eqaully while they are not?
Just my humble thougt.
Fi aman Allah.
Zeinab Donati

Um Nour said...

Assalm alykom Zeinab:

I really like the guidance of a standardized cirriculum. also, standard text books that are used in school are not always very interesting. Some cirriculums are integrated and this enforces all of the ideas more. While in the Islamic school, I found the standad text books quite boring. I was always having to search for innovative projects to peak the students interest. I like an interesting integrated cirriculum that does not take alot of my time to search out the extras for my kids. I have four kids and time is very precious. If I use a few standrd text books that I have to seach out answers and projects, it will take me to much time. Are you homeschooling? What do you use?

Juwariyah said...

As Salaamu alayki

Wow i have to admit i have been looking at your site now for a very long time and mashallah I LOVE IT but when you had stoped homeschooling I was rather sad lol but i am so glad you are back at it. I get alot of ideas from you mashallah may allah reward you ameen... I do have a question thogh are you conceidering the OK online or will you purchase thebooks as well? I am so interested in it but I do not think I can afford it so i am life with the internet to find all that i need for my children as I can use the k12 but since i am in egypt its hard for me to get my books so another bummer there but isnhaallah make duaa for me inshaAllah welcome back homeschooler and take care

Umm Samyrah
min Cairo Egypt

Anonymous said...

Salams, sister! I am glad you decided to homeschool again. I am also homeschooling my 3 girls and one boy here in Mesa, AZ.

I am not interested in curriculums. I just try to find out what seems to work for each subject and try that out with my kids! Curriculums used in Islamic or public schools do tend to be boring!

Relief said...

Salamu alaykum Sister,

You were the sister who inspired me to look into the K12 curriuculum when zoge mentioned he wanted me to homeschool the children. I'm still undecided about taking them out of the public school as my husband is getting flack from his mother about the detrimental affects and she ordered him NOT to take them out and she is Muslim. I like the pre-assessment they have you do. My husband is concerned about the science aspect and the laboratory work. Does K12 provide the resources for you to do handson science lessons? They are just starting in my state GA.

Anonymous said...

Essalam Alaikum,

I'm having such a hard time trying to figure out what curriculium to buy for my son, twelve years old. I'm happy to have found your webpage, Insha'Allah it will help me.

amatullah ummismael said...

juwayriah...i also use k12 and love the structure because i am not and feel that my kids may be missing out on some great things that k12 has to offer. i am coming to egypt in feb inshaAllah and i you need any books let me know. i may also be coming back in the summer so if you need to reorder also let me know. i know a sister who receives packages monthly in nasr city and al rehab (less freq) so you can get k12 to ship to you but really most of the pages you can print online and just purchase the hard covered books.