This new documentary, Homeschool Dropouts, produced by the Botkin siblings looks quite intriguing.
I am particularly interested in watching it because this statement from their website expresses almost the opposite of what my interaction with homeschool graduates has been:
The Botkin siblings have been talking to their peers around the United States, many of whom are planning futures that do not include home education. Is this the first sign of homeschooling failure? This documentary examines the history of the movement and the character that will be required to sustain it into the second generation and beyond.
Almost all of my friends, and other homeschoolers with whom I have spoken, look forward to homeschooling their own children some day. That said, I wholeheartedly agree that we need to be reminded of the vision for the next generation and how homeschooling fits into that bigger picture. In fact, I’ve recently been reading Alexis De Tocqueville’s Democracy in America, and one of the observations he makes is the tendency of those in democratic nations to be constantly charting their own course rather than looking to ages past for wisdom. It occurred to me that with such emphasis placed on individualism and each person figuring out all the answers for himself, we often miss out on the great advances that can be made by “Standing on Shoulders.”
Here is a relevant excerpt from de Tocqueville:
“…I discover that in most of the operations of the mind, each American appeals to the individual exercise of his own understanding alone…In the midst of the continual movement which agitates a democratic community, the tie which unites one generation to another is relaxed or broken; every man readily loses the trace of the ideas of his forefathers or takes no care about them. Nor can men living in this state of society derive their belief from the opinions of the class to which they belong, for, so to speak, there are no longer any classes, or those which still exist are composed of such mobile elements, that their body can never exercise a real control over its members. As the the influence which the intelligence of one man has on that of another, it must necessarily be very limited in a country where the citizens, placed on the footing of a general similitude, are all closely seen by each other; and where, as no signs of incontestable greatness or superiority are perceived in any one of them, they are constantly brought back to their own reason as the msot obvious and proximate source of truth. It is not only confidence in this or that man which is then destroyed, but the taste for trusting the ipse dixit of any man whatsoever. Everyone shuts himself up in his own breast, and affects from that point to judge the world.”
Some food for thought anyway… and all that to say, I’m looking forward to hopefully watching this Homeschool Dropouts documentary soon. If anyone else watches it, I’d love to hear what you think!