I knew there had to more of us out there.
The Spectator, London, England, 23 September 2006, Rod Liddle,Â Who is right about home schooling?Â
(unfortunately, only a Google cache of a snip of the article is available)
I think it was the bit about CÃ©zanne which really got to me. It came early on in last weekâ€™s article. Perhaps you read it; my colleague James Bartholomew was explaining how he had intended to tutor his daughter Alex, now that he had taken the liberating decision to remove her from school because the teachers and everybody else were useless. From now on heâ€™s going to teach her at home, or in agreeable bits of the world where there is usually a nicely crisp dry white wine available and a modified peasant cuisine.
Crisp white wines and a modified peasant cuisine … I may have to cut short my mad blog-updating spree today andÂ haul out the cookbooksÂ (I’m filing like a fiend to try to get all the articles in order so I can post them,Â whether they’re ages-old in cyber-timeÂ or not).Â
I’d subscribe to read the entire article, but I’ve got quite enough online reading to do, plus, “Annual subscription to The Spectator online for only Â£57.50.”Â (!) Â I’d have to sacrifice my subscriptions to The New Yorker and New Scientist to afford that!Â I wonder if The Spectator‘s cartoons are as entertaining as those in The New Yorker?
[time passesÂ while She Who is Incurably Curious checks to see if the library has a link ….]
Despite the attractions of being able to live somewhere with good food and have it be part of the learning process, Mr. Liddle doesn’t like homeschooling.
Are they right? The obvious answer is a resounding ‘no’ – and simply because a thing is obvious does not mean that it should be treated with suspicion. It is a colossal arrogance – and a self-indulgence – on the part of those 180,000 parents that a) their knowledge of such diverse disciplines as, say, fine art and pure maths should exceed that possessed by the specialists; and b) that even were they to possess such encyclopaedic knowledge, they may not have the necessary skills to impart the ground rules of those disciplines to children.
The catalyst for Mr. Liddle’s article was one by his colleague, Mr. Bartholomew.Â While not fully weeping for joy at seeing the thoughts of a kindred spirit, I am decidedly misty-eyed.Â I’m not alone in the Universe.
The Spectator, London, England, 16 September 2006, James Bartholomew,Â My daughter is in a class of her own now.
(available only through subscription, or by an online library connection)
I have the idea, which some may think eccentric, of giving Alex a big picture of the past, starting with the creation of the universe, going through the development of the surface of the Earth and then on through the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans to the present. Perhaps that will prove over-ambitious. But having been repeatedly taught the ‘Tudors ‘n’ Stuarts’ through my childhood, I want her to get an idea of the big narrative sweep.
If your library has online access to periodicals, and if The Spectator is one of the periodicals to which it has a subscription, it is worth reading Mr. Bartholomew’s column, and Mr. Liddle’s, too.