Many who embark on the Homeschool Journey (insert fanfare here) for the first time do the obvious thing in this digital day and age: they conduct obsessive research on The Internets. It is here that they encounter the mind-numbing rainbow that are your choices of curricula, the hedgerow maze that are your local compliance ordinances and the one thing nobody really talks about:
Your homeschooling peers.
Yep, they’re out there, the heavyweight forum posters (“Status: Queen Bee!”) who subtly – or maybe not so subtly – influence your choices because… well, what? Because they post a lot? Because they always, ALWAYS have something to say on a topic, even if they weren’t asked? Because THEY WERE THE LOUDEST IN THE FORUM ROOM?
You know who these people are. You’ve seen them, you’ve read their all-knowing posts. And because you’re venturing into what seemingly treacherous waters for the first time, you’re probably, to some degree, allowing them direct your choices.
Now, stop a second to consider something. Imagine you’re looking for homeschool advice, and you attend a commnity meeting with real, live people. You enter a room where a moderator is taking questions in a reasonably orderly fashion. But something curious is going on. Every time a person presents their question, some loudmouth on the other side of the room gets up and airs their opinion first. It’s always the same person. They talk at length. They often vigorously defend their point, and, quite frankly, they’re becoming tiresome.
(Coming back to this post after leaving it to stew for a long time) We’ll skip to the short answer: Even amongst the supposedly angelic, holistic, irreproachable homeschool crowd, we have our fair share of people we would like to club senseless, and then leave them in a room until they can learn to play nice with everyone else.