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 Post subject: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2001 5:41 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 11, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 13
Location: Tulsa, OK, USA
My fourteen year old daughter has been bringing up the issue of home-schooling more than once recently. We live in an area that has several gifted teachers, but ballet training is not the norm in our area. We have many tap-jazz-ballet competition schools in our area, but few real ballet schools. The one well known school has really gone down hill in the last few years and is not turning out the quality dancers that it has in the past. My daughter takes at a ballet school that has only been open for four years and gets a great deal of attention. He is a gifted teacher but since he is small he does not have enough students for the type of program my daughter desires. So to supplement she takes private classes with him and another teacher who recently retired from Tulsa Ballet. This gets expensive and time consuming trying to keep up with dancers from more prominent schools. I feel the training she is getting is quality, but we run to one place and then another ect to find two classes per day. I have thought about sending her to a year-round program, but I'm not ready to send her away. She has this all figured out that she can take morning classes and then home-school and take afternoon classes and get home and get more sleep. Since her schedule does send me a great distance she gets home after ten most evenings. I do not want her to regret missing out on normal high school activities, but she says she will still have her friends. She is currently student counsel president, the type of girl who is well like and respected. You know the type that loves school not hates it. She just is so focused on ballet that she is willing to make the sacrifice. I am afraid that if I say no that I will be to blame if she does not reach her goals. If I let her home-school, I am afraid that she will feel that she missed some important life experiences. What are your opionions?

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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2001 6:00 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 13071
Location: San Diego, California, USA
Raising a teenager is always a hectic time of life. There is so much out there for them to do and they do want to do a lot.<P>What your child wants to do and how that is accomplished is really a very personal family choice. Many home schools work out well - I haven't heard of any regrets. The kids seem to be doing well on the national spelling bees!! LOL <P>There are lots of activities (I raised a teenager too) in the schools - both good and not so good. I think the home schoolers do well when they have other friends that are also home schooled. <P>As for the ballet portion of your question - that is an individual decision too, and there is another parent on this board has faced this decision. It's hard to send a child away so young. And yet, some children really know quite early in life what they want to do.<P>You could start by sending her to a ballet intensive for the summer......have you seen the thread on ballet intensives? <P>Here is the link in case you want it:<P><A HREF=../../../ubb/Forum7/HTML/000246.html><B>SUMMER INTENSIVES</B></A><BR>


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Mon Feb 05, 2001 6:23 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 130
Location: Pa, USA
Another option is to do a half-day of traditional school and then pull her for her dance classes. If she has a morning class, see if her schedule could be that her English, math, Social Studies, and Sciences are during the late morning/early afternoon and ask for a gym credit for her dance classes. If she is not in a gifted or special needs program, she most likely does not have an IEP (Individual Education Plan) and you may need to prove to the school that she needs this option to prepare for a professional career--make sure to mention the fact that the high school is NOT currently meeting all of her educational needs (i.e. they do not offer ballet) and that in order for her to succeed vocationally she needs more training. <P>Quite frankly, I'm not able to keep up with the high school kids' work load--especially the trig and chemistry! Keep in mind that if you homeschool her you will need to keep her studies up to par to return to public school IF she is injured at any time OR she just wants to go back to school. Additionally she may want to pursue college first, and (unfortunately) the best preparation is still a traditional school setting for college admissions.<P>Think about what you are willing to take on, because in the end you will be responsible for her portfolios that show what she has learned each year. Unless you are a math whiz or a mad scientist you may have trouble keeping her at grade level with her peers in a traditional setting. <P>I do have several dancers who are homeschooled and one who is at Williams College right now--however, both her parents were college professors; so she had an educational advantage in that she could pick up extra courses at college for no fees (being a daughter of a prof) --most of my homeschool kids will be homeschooled entirely through their educational lives (until college) BUT, the majority of my homeschooled kids are not my students who are considering dance at a vocational level.<P>this is probably much more information than you needed!<BR>Jan


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2001 12:51 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 17, 2001 12:01 am
Posts: 54
Location: Warrington, Cheshire, UK
My daughter is 'educated otherwise' at home to enable her to undertake full time dance training. She is 15 years old, sat half her exams last year (a year early) and doing the rest this year. Anybody can do this but it is essential that you are SELF DISCIPLINED - (which I am not!). She has not wasted time on non-essential subjects such as Art and GCSE Dance and concentrated on the 6 major subjects needed for university entrance. There is a lot of time wasted on non-essential subjects at school, and breaks, lunch, assembly, tutor period and time wasted moving from class to class. She spends two to three hours a day of solid study and so far has gained all Grade A GCSE passes and is sitting higher level in all the subjects she is taking this year.


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2001 6:53 am 
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Joined: Tue Jan 16, 2001 12:01 am
Posts: 242
Location: Washington St.
I know several homeschooled children, and they are consistently some of the brightest and most creative children I know. They don't seem to be lacking for friends, either. They still maintain some outside activities with children their own age, through dancing, orchestra, Spanish lessons, etc. <P>It is likely that even if your daughter regretted missing out on her high school experiences, she would find that she could quickly make up for it in the rich social life at college. (I did!) Of course, that's if she goes to college, but if she doesn't, she's probably out there dancing, and then I bet she wouldn't regret her decisions much at all.<p>[This message has been edited by katheryn (edited February 06, 2001).]


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2001 7:09 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 13071
Location: San Diego, California, USA
Ap's Mom - is you daughter considering college with dance as a major? <P>I know there are lots of websites with information on homeschooling. Our library here in San Diego has an entire section just to help parents with this. There are also parent groups that meet through churchs or community groups to share information and materials. <P>It is true in regular school a great deal of time is wasted as stated above - but then each family and/or student has decide if such time is truly wasted or necessary to enjoying the day. Art class for some (like me) was never wasted time. And, I have to admit I enjoyed eating lunch with my friends every day. It is a personal choice....


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2001 10:26 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2000 12:01 am
Posts: 498
Location: neworleans, louisiana
I have watched the interview with Kevin Spacey on "The Actor's Studio" about 3 or 4 times now, and I am always so taken with his closing advice to the students in the masters' program: that it's not enough to have desire -- rather, that you have to really KNOW what it is you want, and that if you have that, nothing can stop you. The students were transfixed when he spoke (he was well on his way by junior year in high school). It is so rare that young people are truly aware of what they want for their lives, so if someone is focused at a tender age, it seems like a gift worth nurturing. I also saw Keanu Reeves talk to Charlie Rose last night about the same thing -- that at 16, he knew (and of course, received the needed breaks). I'm very taken with this self direction.


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2001 12:06 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2000 12:01 am
Posts: 498
Location: neworleans, louisiana
You may find the following helpful:<BR> <A HREF="http://www.home-ed-magazine.com/index.html" TARGET=_blank>http://www.home-ed-magazine.com/index.html</A>


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2001 1:00 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2000 12:01 am
Posts: 498
Location: neworleans, louisiana
And with particular respect to homeschooling teens:<BR> <A HREF="http://www.nhen.org/nhen/pov/teens/exploring_options.htm" TARGET=_blank>http://www.nhen.org/nhen/pov/teens/exploring_options.htm</A>


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2001 2:58 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 09, 2001 12:01 am
Posts: 241
Hi ap's mom: Is there a good network of homeschoolers where you live? Usually you pool resources; if you're not able to teach the trig classes for instance, someone in the homeschooler's group usually has a resource for that. <P>I know part of your quandary personally. My daughter's not interested in homeschooling, but she's stretched to the limit time-wise and I fear she doesn't get the sleep she needs. She's at a great private school and doesn't want to give that up. Luckily there's also a pre-pro school in the area so we don't have the send-away dilemma you're facing. But she gets out at 9:00 pm and has at least two hours, on a good day, of homework nightly. And her school is 6 days a week as is her ballet program. <P>I think you can make the homeschooling work well. Does she already have a network of friends from dance? If not, I'd want to ensure she'd get a network of homeschooling friends. Studies show that adolescents require only one or two good friends to develop normally. The current model of large high schools actually goes against what's best for adolescents' social development so I'd have no worries there. <P>Ultimately, I think it comes down to your own energy level. How much are you willing to take on?


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2001 4:31 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 13071
Location: San Diego, California, USA
Hello JM - let me offer you a warm welcome to our board - glad you joined us.<P>I believe that in some school districts when the children are home schooled - you can still have them participate in some activities - such as field trips. I have even heard of the children being allowed to take certain classes. So that might be something to look into.


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2001 2:11 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2001 12:01 am
Posts: 270
Location: Wisconsin
As a daughter of a nationally acclaimed public school educator (and hoping to one day become one myself)...<P>Homeschooling works for some, doesn't for others. It depends solely on the child and the parent - how much time you can commit, your general knowledge, the flexibilty of both parent and child, and the determination and drive it takes to make success happen. Please keep in mind that while focusing only on what some call the "real" classes you are also potentially missing out on the "un-real" classes such as art, advanced literature, drama, and music (unless you are an extremely talented parent!).


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 Post subject: Re: Homeschooling your dancer
PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2001 3:59 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 13071
Location: San Diego, California, USA
That's a very well thought out post, Bree - I commend you for it. Truly.


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