Tag Archives: John Taylor Gatto

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maria m         bruce lee

john holt                     colouring

lr knost   tamara kelly

sue m awww dayna        JTG 3


education  coleour


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Cool home school memes

meme 3   why do i have to go to school

meme 2    meme 4

meme5 JTG2

charlie D HS

time colour hs revosobel

managing... curiosity HS2 art


stanley k dependentMORE COOL HOME SCHOOL MEMES:  More cool home school memes

How do you know you are teaching the necessary when home educating?

You may wonder what reassurances there are that you are teaching all that needs to be taught. The answer – who states what must be taught? How can this be defined and why? What criteria is being used? Who can teach EVERYTHING? Schools certainly aren’t doing this. Also, schools don’t expect one teacher to be able to teach every subject as they have different teachers for each one, so why should you be expected to know every subject, let alone your child. Start with your views on what an education should be. Do some research on the internet, try and hook up with other home educators – join a forum, a facebook group, search for support in your local area here, maybe read some GOOD books and/or magazines on education and home schooling e.g. John Taylor Gatto. You could also request some catalogues from curriculum suppliers, spend some time in educational shops or the library. You may find that you are already naturally covering some of what your child needs/wants to learn. If a method of teaching feels right for you and your child, stick with it. Fortunately in the UK we are not required to follow the curriculum when choosing to home educate, giving much leeway and the unique opportunity to tailor a childs educational needs to suit them (and you) perfectly. For instance, your child may know exactly what career path they wish to take from a very young age – imagine cutting out all the BS and getting straight in to what they want to learn. I was just talking to a mum today whos daughter will be taking a math GCSE this year at age 13 because she is ready. Next year she will do English and another subject I have forgotten, but she is ready  and doesn’t have to wait ’til age 16 to take her GCSEs, nor have the stress of mock exams, nor the stress of taking GCSEs she isn’t interested in, let alone needs. Yes you have to pay an entry fee (not sure how much, I didnt ask but I think its around £100-£200 per exam), but a childs happiness is priceless….

Also you may be wondering how are subjects taught that you, the parent(s) aren’t familiar with? The answer – you don’t need to be familiar with what you are teaching. There are workbooks and textbooks available, these can be purchased online, you may find books in charity shops (one of our favourite haunts for ‘educational’ and non ‘educational’ stuff) There are also libraries, books, the internet and family and friends who have different knowledge to you (and are accepting of home ed that is!). You couls skill swap with other home ed families. If you have the financial means a private tutor could be hired for certain subjects. The parent doesn’t have to be the only one teaching the child. You could always set up a group for certain subjects and split the cost  for tutors with other home edders. Parents who home teach are assisting the progress of their child(ren), they are helping them find out information and to also meet with other people. Some parents  even turn to the LEA for help. Children who are home schooled are often interested in subjects and participating in activities their parents know nothing about, and that is fine. There is a world of resources available. Relax and enjoy the freedom that home ed brings…


What is home schooling

Home Education – Getting Started

Benefits of Home Education

Academic subjects alone will NOT ‘set every child up for life’

‘Employers are crying out for recruits who are creative. The notion that arts and music are not seen as ‘hard’ enough subjects is damaging to the economy ‘.

I just read this really well written article – academic subjects alone wont ‘set every child up for life’.  Quote – ‘The government is going to cling ever more tightly to the old certainties of pointless rote-learning of a few chosen subjects that are deemed – in Nicky Morgan’s word – to be “hard”, on the basis that if they’re hard, they must be good. Why?’

Why indeed??? The mind boggles!  Its like they actually WANT to quash the creativity and life out of students who don’t do well academically. In later life, unless they have their own drive, these students will always feel like the ‘loser’, the ‘underachiever’, who takes any old job without much looking up, lacking confidence and feeling ‘lucky’ to even get a job. That is, if they even feel confident enough to apply, or if they don’t turn into disruptive class members, who are just acting out of boredom and frustration.

If kids dont do well academically, why not let them work in areas of ‘learning’ they are actually good at. Like music, art, drama etc. It seems like the government is almost afraid to admit the concept of individuality, or that there are different avenues of learning. Maybe they are afraid of what would happen if the country was full of free thinking, happy individuals. The noose of control is ever tightening – see Grieving children can’t have extra days off school – even after a funeral and Child benefit dock if parents of truant children dont pay fine – ALL parents should be made aware that home schooling is an option for their child if they are unhappy in school.

RELATED READING – Dumbing us Down, John Taylor Gatto 

Dumbing Us Down, The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling. John Taylor Gatto

This radical treatise on public education has been a bestseller for years! 30 years of award-winning teaching in New York City’s public schools, led John Gatto to the sad conclusion that compulsory governmental schooling does little but teach young people to follow orders as cogs in the industrial machine. I have this book in my collection 🙂

When I ordered this book, these customer reviews on Amazon inspired me to buy it

“I truly feel that John Taylor Gatto has liberated my soul by writing DUMBING US DOWN…John Taylor Gatto confirms everything I had always believed about schools: that they are simply cruel prisons where spirits are destroyed and minds are conquered. Easy for me to say, though, seeing as how I myself never did too well in school. John Taylor Gatto, on the other hand, has been named Teacher of the Year several years running by both New York City and State. Here is someone accepted by the teaching establishment, honoured by the teaching establishment. He speaks for me and thousands of others who’ve been tortured in these horrible institutions. ”

“This book provides cogent arguments for homeschooling.”

“In Dumbing Us Down, Mr. Gatto gives his first person perspective on the tragic waste of human potential induced by coerced 12-year confinement of the young to the artificial and anesthetizing environment of the classroom. The book is both enlightening and frightening. Personally, I felt a sense of vindication while reading the book. It put into words my negative feelings about education resulting from my unsuccessful 15 year struggle to encourage my own children to love learning. Mr. Gatto’s writing has encouraged me to think that perhaps it was a GOOD thing that school was not able to press them into its mould!”