Thursday, March 30, 2006

HOMESCHOOLING?

A new practice here in Singapore and some would even think it's radical. I've spoken to a few people about homeschooling and I've received very diverse reactions… 50% gave me the thumbs up, while the other 50% were skeptical and wary of it.

What got me interested in homeschooling was a conversation over a meal with Noel and Jenny (our church friends). Witnessing how their children behaved and carried themselves with confidence really drove both Steven and I even more curious about how homeschooling might work for Timothy.

Also I've discovered that these days our children (especially primary school) are loaded with so much homework and activities in school that they are reaped of playtime altogether. A friend of mine shared with me how heavily loaded her Pri 5 son was with homework, remedial classes, CCA and other activities that he stayed in school literally 12hrs almost daily. By the time he got home he was deadbeat much less has the energy to do homework. This really makes learning a chore and a real joy killer.

I recall watching the "Good Morning Singapore" recently where 2 girls were doing 'xiang(4) sheng(4)' stating that Singaporean kids have 3 major lack in their lives -
1) lack of playtime,
2) lack of time with parents (building meaningful relationships)
3) inability to do deep thinking

I really hope that my son wouldn't be deprive of our (Steven & my) attention, love and playtime…Hence I started my journey of research…giving myself more time to learn, find out and decide if homeschooling is for us… I know I'm a little kiasu here (esp when Tim is barely 3mths old hehehe) what to do? I'm a new parent mah

Here are my findings thus far -
To what I've learnt from Jenny, there are currently about 46 Singaporean children being homeschool here (not a lot, I know).
There's a homeschool support group here in Singapore which offers help and assistance to those who might be interested to homeschool their children. This support group organizes activities as well as fieldtrips for the homeschoolers and their children to participate in. There are also social gatherings for parents to meet other homeschoolers to share their experiences. Here's the link Homeschool Support Group .

Do note though, this group is run by foreigners (residing in S'pore , homeschooling their children here), who volunteered their services by putting together a support group in Singapore (how do I know? Well, I've directed some queries to them in which I was then referred to MOE to find out more details on my own). To what I've gathered, there are other Singaporean parents who are within this network too (I've yet to take part in any of their activities though).

I've sent MOE a few queries, hopefully I'll get a response soon. Will share that on my blog once I have received word from MOE.

Meantime, for those who wish to learn more about Homeschooling, you may want to check out the following sites -


Getting Started


Should You Homeschool


The Pros


The Cons


What About Socialization

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