What happened when my twins joined third grade public school?

After being exclusively homeschooled, our twins tried public school and what happened will blow your mind!

There are so many enticing reasons for parents to put their children in public schools. Perhaps the biggest reason is free childcare. But, what does free actually cost us? 

I've always struggled with the temptation to put my kids in public school during difficult homeschool days. I originally planned to put them in public school for only 30 days. Why? To allow them to see what most of the children in this country go through on a daily basis. My hope was that they would see how truly good they have it  and become more eager to learn at home. God did not want them in public school which became evident when they got covid after attending for just two days. Then after two days back, they came home again with the flu. Then after about two more days in school, they had reoccurring fevers, a nasty cough, ear infections and strep throat. 

I pulled them out sooner than planned but here is what they experienced while there...

Let's talk about some positives... School lunch is super cheap! It's only $1.50 and offered a large variety of food options which actually saved us money. They got free tutoring twice per week. I was disappointed when learned that half of the tutoring was on a computer without any assistance or interaction. Then later found out that much of the daily classroom time was on a computer as well. 

I got a break! I really enjoyed spending time with my two daughters while the twins were gone at school. Life was so much easier when I only had to focusing on homeschooling them. There were less messes and overall less stress in our home.

A huge shock was the schedule! The twins had to wake up during the darkness of morning to catch their 6:55 AM bus. The twins were super stressed that they didn't get home until 3:30 PM and then often still had homework to complete. They actually loved the experience of riding the bus. That is until, they were teased for running to the bus one morning. Homeschoolers don't have the same types of insecurities as public schoolers. They don't worry about running, jumping, dressing up, coloring all over themselves, doing their hair, wearing matching socks or things that typical public schoolers get teased for on a regular basis.  

My children have participated in sports, homeschool co-ops and groups where they were always able to make friends quickly. But in public school, no one attempted to get to know them. Public school children not only ignored them when they tried to make friends but seemed to tease each other constantly. Our twins quickly started learning bad habits and repeating weird phrases like "your mama" and "your face" in response to everything. They witnessed their peers being teased for believing in God. One boy mocked another student saying something like, "If you don't understand your homework, maybe you could ask God for help". 

During recess, kids were bullied and told by other kids that they were not allowed to tell adults. My twins witnessed kids getting punched, kicked and slapped left crying but were too afraid to tell an adult. One girl in particular consistently gave my twins evil looks and said she wanted to "eat their limbs". Yes, she wanted to eat their limbs like a demon possessed nut. 

Their math teacher "only teaches it once" so if anyone didn't understand the first time, they were out of luck. Students weren't allowed to interrupt to ask questions either. Everyone was obsessed with preparing for the upcoming state standardized tests. My son was teased by another student who said, "you'll never pass your state exams with that handwriting". Granted, his handwriting needs work and we've been working on it for quite some time and it's not a strength of his. My twins are advanced in math but continued to get low scores for not showing their work. They can easily solve math problems in their heads. I prefer to teach children how to think freely and enjoy learning instead of jamming useless information down their throats with the threat of a bad standardized test scores. Test scores which mean absolutely nothing in the grand scheme of life. 

I absolutely will never put my kids in public school again. But now it's a great threat to get them to cooperate on difficult homeschool days...haha Since the twins returned to homeschooling I created a new schedule that has been working out great for all of us. 

Comment below with your homeschool VS public school experiences. 

Categories: public school, homeschooling, unschooling