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Original Message
"Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"

Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 09:51 PM
I can't wait to see the WHACKER!

This looks like it is going to be a good one!

Who all is out there tonight?

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

Table of contents
  • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,ARnutz, 10:03 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,volsfan, 10:04 PM, 11-10-04
      • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,ARnutz, 10:07 PM, 11-10-04
      • Hey!,Mon Cherie, 10:07 PM, 11-10-04
        • RE: Hey!,volsfan, 10:08 PM, 11-10-04
        • RE: Hey!,ARnutz, 10:13 PM, 11-10-04
  • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,ARnutz, 10:06 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,volsfan, 10:07 PM, 11-10-04
  • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,volsfan, 10:13 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,Mon Cherie, 10:18 PM, 11-10-04
      • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,Nanook, 11:15 PM, 11-10-04
        • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,Spidey, 02:30 PM, 11-15-04
          • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,HistoryDetective, 03:29 PM, 11-15-04
  • Cindy...,volsfan, 10:17 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: Cindy...,ARnutz, 10:18 PM, 11-10-04
      • You called it!,Mon Cherie, 10:20 PM, 11-10-04
      • RE: Cindy...,volsfan, 10:21 PM, 11-10-04
    • Rule changes!,Mon Cherie, 10:19 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: Cindy...,Mon Cherie, 10:27 PM, 11-10-04
      • RE: Cindy...,volsfan, 10:33 PM, 11-10-04
        • RE: Cindy...,shannwa, 09:30 AM, 11-11-04
          • RE: Cindy...,buzzmooch, 03:11 PM, 11-11-04
          • RE: Cindy...,volsfan, 09:01 PM, 11-11-04
      • Military dad,Loree, 09:29 AM, 11-11-04
  • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,ARnutz, 10:26 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,volsfan, 10:34 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,tvhead, 10:48 AM, 11-11-04
  • Melissa,ARnutz, 10:41 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: Melissa,volsfan, 10:43 PM, 11-10-04
      • RE: Melissa,ARnutz, 10:45 PM, 11-10-04
        • RE: Melissa,volsfan, 10:45 PM, 11-10-04
      • RE: Melissa,amea_gari, 05:19 AM, 11-14-04
        • RE: Melissa,volsfan, 01:21 PM, 11-14-04
          • RE: Melissa,amea_gari, 06:38 AM, 11-17-04
            • RE: Melissa,volsfan, 09:54 PM, 11-17-04
    • RE: Melissa,ARnutz, 10:43 PM, 11-10-04
  • The Biggest Question...,volsfan, 10:50 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: The Biggest Question...,ARnutz, 10:51 PM, 11-10-04
      • RE: The Biggest Question...,volsfan, 10:54 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: The Biggest Question...,trudy, 11:01 PM, 12-13-04
  • Cellphone=Discipline?????,ARnutz, 10:53 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: Cellphone=Discipline?????,volsfan, 10:55 PM, 11-10-04
      • RE: Cellphone=Discipline?????,ARnutz, 10:58 PM, 11-10-04
  • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,bigsue, 11:12 PM, 11-10-04
    • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,Nanook, 11:20 PM, 11-10-04
      • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,bigsue, 00:54 AM, 11-11-04
        • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,ivoryElephant, 02:22 AM, 11-11-04
          • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,volsfan, 09:23 AM, 11-11-04
      • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,volsfan, 09:26 AM, 11-11-04
        • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,sisyphus, 10:13 AM, 11-11-04
          • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,volsfan, 12:49 PM, 11-11-04
        • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,SilverStar, 01:36 PM, 11-11-04
          • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,volsfan, 03:02 PM, 11-11-04
          • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,trynity7, 09:31 PM, 11-14-04
        • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,Nanook, 02:34 PM, 11-11-04
          • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,yourstruly, 11:45 PM, 11-11-04
          • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,trynity7, 09:35 PM, 11-14-04
  • Lazy vs pro-active,ilmas, 12:17 PM, 11-11-04
  • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,xserver, 04:10 PM, 11-11-04
    • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,sisyphus, 04:16 PM, 11-11-04
    • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,trynity7, 09:39 PM, 11-14-04
  • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,Lisapooh, 04:45 PM, 11-11-04
    • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,HistoryDetective, 01:37 PM, 11-12-04
    • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,trynity7, 09:22 PM, 11-14-04
      • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,yourstruly, 11:38 PM, 11-14-04
      • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,HistoryDetective, 09:57 AM, 11-15-04
        • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,trynity7, 07:07 PM, 11-15-04
          • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,HistoryDetective, 08:18 PM, 11-15-04
            • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,volsfan, 09:27 PM, 11-15-04
            • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,yourstruly, 10:46 PM, 11-15-04
              • RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04,HistoryDetective, 06:54 PM, 11-16-04

Messages in this discussion
"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:03 PM
Hiya Vols!!

WOW, they found rigid & strict VS. loud & loose for this week, huh?

A J Slice original (c)2004

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:04 PM
I LOL'ed when the one mom said, "I have to home school the kids?...I am gonna mess them up!"

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:07 PM
That was funny! This looks to be a good episode!

A J Slice original (c)2004

Posted by Mon Cherie on 11-10-04 at 10:07 PM
My favorite line so far:

"My kids would never hurt anyone..............intentionally."


An IceCat/Mon Cherie Production
"You will find as you look back upon your life that the moments when you have truly lived are the moments when you have done things in the spirit of love."
-Henry Drummond

"RE: Hey!"
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:08 PM
That was priceless!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Hey!"
Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:13 PM
Hi Mon! That was a good line! LOL

A J Slice original (c)2004

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:06 PM

"This is like a military church with a bunch of vegetarians in it."

Icey bounced me!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:07 PM
LOL! This is gonna be good!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:13 PM
LAST EDITED ON 11-10-04 AT 10:14 PM (EST)

An overbearing controlling butt!


ETA: Cindy has a breakdown!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by Mon Cherie on 11-10-04 at 10:18 PM
She needs to chill. First day and she's freaking out? It's just one week. I'm sure by the end of that week she will have lots of vitriol saved up for her rule changes!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by Nanook on 11-10-04 at 11:15 PM
One week with Paul is more than enough. I think I'd being going crazy before the end of the first day too. That guy was beyond irritating.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by Spidey on 11-15-04 at 02:30 PM
Not only beyond irritating but, IMO, creepy as all get out.

Creepy as in "Law & Order psychopath serial killer" creepy.

Reminded me of the character Stephen Colbert of Daily Show fame played on a L&O episode

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by HistoryDetective on 11-15-04 at 03:29 PM
I'm with you, Spidey. He could have been straight out of an episode of "Millenium" back when that was on...

Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:17 PM
is going about this the wrong way...IMHO!

She didn't follow the rules and how can she expect them to follow her rules!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Cindy..."
Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:18 PM
You are so right! I wonder if she'll try to get them off to school next week??

A J Slice original (c)2004

"You called it!"
Posted by Mon Cherie on 11-10-04 at 10:20 PM
Off to school the kids go!

"RE: Cindy..."
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:21 PM
Yep...off to school! Here the drama begins!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"Rule changes!"
Posted by Mon Cherie on 11-10-04 at 10:19 PM
This is gonna be funnnnn!!!!

"RE: Cindy..."
Posted by Mon Cherie on 11-10-04 at 10:27 PM
Now the dictator dad isn't practicing what he's preaching! Those kids, bless them, are going to be so freaked when they grow up and get in the real world.

"RE: Cindy..."
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:33 PM
I do feel sorry for them. So so sheltered!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Cindy..."
Posted by shannwa on 11-11-04 at 09:30 AM
Yeah, what we REALLY want is for those kids to be influenced by the school the fat Bittners go to. Socialized to stuff your face with junk food until you weight 400 pounds, socialized to dress like a slut and be permiscuous at 14, socialized to disrespect adults, have no rules and run wild. If this is YOUR real world, where do I send my condolences?

In actuality, it's the fat Bittner kids who are going to be shocked when they enter the real world. A world where there are rules. A world where people don't let their ##### hang out over their jelly rolls and expect to be taken seriously. A world where treating people with respect gets you farther than the juvenile eyeroll. A world where weighting the equivalent of a grand piano might be a detriment. Yep, the real world is going to be a shock to the Bittner cows.

At least this week both of the women were actually WIVES. Unlike the shack up concubine the network tried to pass off as a bonofide wife last week.

"RE: Cindy..."
Posted by buzzmooch on 11-11-04 at 03:11 PM
Who was the shack up concubine ? Did I miss something???

"RE: Cindy..."
Posted by volsfan on 11-11-04 at 09:01 PM
Shannwa, why so pissy?

Yeah, what we REALLY want is for those kids to be influenced by the school the fat Bittners go to. Socialized to stuff your face with junk food until you weight 400 pounds, socialized to dress like a slut and be permiscuous at 14, socialized to disrespect adults, have no rules and run wild.

Has NOTHING to do with home school and/or public school! It has to do with the parents and how they have raised their children. If you read my posts...I have never said that the Bitners raised their child correctly and/or any better than the other parents.

and this:

In actuality, it's the fat Bittner kids who are going to be shocked when they enter the real world. A world where there are rules. A world where people don't let their ##### hang out over their jelly rolls and expect to be taken seriously. A world where treating people with respect gets you farther than the juvenile eyeroll. A world where weighting the equivalent of a grand piano might be a detriment. Yep, the real world is going to be a shock to the Bittner cows.

No, the Bitner kids are not gonna be in any shock about the real world and rules...they go/have gone to school where they have had to abide by the rules!

If this is YOUR real world, where do I send my condolences?

In MY real world, I struggle everyday to make ends meet. I abide by the rules and laws that govern us! I by NO WAY have ever said either one of these families have/are raising their children the way I would!

BTW...I first read your post and was really upset...I took time away and came back and re-read it and I must say you have offended me! I don't like your tone nor your approach!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"Military dad"
Posted by Loree on 11-11-04 at 09:29 AM
I was laughing at military dad in those baggy blue shorts by the pool. Then I swear he went a little psycho when he was jerking the pinata. That look in his eye was scary.

The one mother had no class either. Why was she so proud that her children don't do anything and have no discipline?

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:26 PM
Military dad seems unwilling to accept all the freedoms his kids have now, at least the other dad is willing to give it a try... but YUCK that was some vegetarian dinner, I would not be full on greens & couscous!

A J Slice original (c)2004

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:34 PM
I totally agree! I like couscous but I need more than that!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by tvhead on 11-11-04 at 10:48 AM
when those military "robots" tore into that candy
i was hysterical.
but cindy was a little too critical of mr uptight trying to loosen up---what did she expect from him?
at least he let go;for him that was a major !

Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:41 PM
I know they are supposed to live by her rules, but she has to realize you cannot just lasso a wild stallion.

Those 2 girls have had NO rules and now they are supposed to live in a military installation?

A J Slice original (c)2004

"RE: Melissa"
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:43 PM

I feel so sorry for the military kids! They have to go back to living such a sheltered life! I hope some changes have occured!

"RE: Melissa"
Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:45 PM
LOL!!! Jinx... great minds think alike, Vols!

A J Slice original (c)2004

"RE: Melissa"
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:45 PM

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Melissa"
Posted by amea_gari on 11-14-04 at 05:19 AM
There is nothing about their life that is sheltered. There is no evidence whatsoever that they are sheltered. The assumption that they are sheltered can be based only on the fact that they are homeschooled.
I've known families like that-- not as extreme, but certainly more restricted than I have grown up. I admire the discipline shown by such children when they become healthy, socialized, intelligent, and knowledgable adults.
I am not saying the military family is without fault, but to claim that they are going to get a shock when they enter the real world isn't very enlightened.

A J Slice siggy

"RE: Melissa"
Posted by volsfan on 11-14-04 at 01:21 PM
Amea...I don't know what definition of shelter you adhere to but in my eys, EVERY aspect of the military chilren's life is sheltered by their parents!

I don't agree with the strictness of how the military parents treat their children but it is their DUTY to shelter their chidren. I would say that every parent wants to keep their children as innocent as the day they are born. However, we know this isn't possible.

To say that there is no evidence whatsoever that the kids are sheltered is an incorrect statement! IMHO!

I admire the discipline shown by such children when they become healthy, socialized, intelligent, and knowledgable adults.

There are such children in public school systems as well! I like to see that too. However, the military kids are only going to be socialized and knowledgable about the things their parents taught them. They have no diversity in their daily interractions.

Now, what we were not shown is their friends and the time they get to spend with them and what types of friends they have. By having the party, it is a safe thing to say that they have friends and maybe this will give them a very balanced way of thinking...I sure hope so!

"RE: Melissa"
Posted by amea_gari on 11-17-04 at 06:38 AM
"To say that there is no evidence whatsoever that the kids are sheltered is an incorrect statement! IMHO!"

Well, how about you share in what way the kids are sheltered.

A J Slice siggy

"RE: Melissa"
Posted by volsfan on 11-17-04 at 09:54 PM
LAST EDITED ON 11-17-04 AT 10:03 PM (EST)

Um...read my prior posts in all this thresd!

"RE: Melissa"
Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:43 PM
I feel so bad for those military kids, they should be able to be kids, at least to some extent. Not that they should run wild and eat junk, but they need some socializing.

A J Slice original (c)2004

"The Biggest Question..."
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:50 PM
Where's the whacker?

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: The Biggest Question..."
Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:51 PM
I hope it's gone for good, discipline OK, but a whacker on each kids door???

I bet the military family has more changes for the better, like adding some fun!

A J Slice original (c)2004

"RE: The Biggest Question..."
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:54 PM
You called it!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: The Biggest Question..."
Posted by trudy on 12-13-04 at 11:01 PM
"The Whacker" is nicely wrapped and waiting for Santa to place it under the Gotti Christmas tree. Of course, being "whacked" at their house has a slightly different connotation. The world should be so lucky.

Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:53 PM

A J Slice original (c)2004

"RE: Cellphone=Discipline?????"
Posted by volsfan on 11-10-04 at 10:55 PM
Stewpid...just stewpid!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Cellphone=Discipline?????"
Posted by ARnutz on 11-10-04 at 10:58 PM
Oh my goodness! Cindy will not change... she will just fall back into her old ways... and her kids, need some responsibilities!

At least the other kids were happy in the end!

A J Slice original (c)2004

Mon??? Where'd ya go???

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by bigsue on 11-10-04 at 11:12 PM
i only caught the last 10 minutes of this show and i have never been on a message board before, but cindy(?) the lady with the over dramatic vocals..she needs to go back to the kitchen and get a big glass of SHUT UP!!! maybe some parenting classes would help her...such a waste of childrens minds..she need to take more away than cell phones...get a clue lady

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by Nanook on 11-10-04 at 11:20 PM
Too bad you only saw the last ten minutes. You should have seen military dad in action. I kept wondering if he was human or robot. He's got to be one of the biggest dingbats to appear on this show yet, and I feel that Cindy was totally justified in her rant.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by bigsue on 11-11-04 at 00:54 AM
i didnt see the miltary dad..but not letting her husband shake another mans hand, was disrespectful..he had his own view and she had no right to stop him..but i felt sorry for the other ladys kids..they were afraid of her..and if my kids were ever sad of the thought of me coming home..it would make me feel ashamed of myself

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by ivoryElephant on 11-11-04 at 02:22 AM
Ok, I missed the first 15 min and I have never seen this show before so I have a few Q's if anyone is still out there.

What is the premise of the show? do they get money, do they know what they are getting into from the beginning.

Why was the fat lady so pissed that the military lady made rules for her kids? She knew that was going to happen and made rules also. I thought it was stupid of her to get mad ast the military lady for making rules.

mind the gap

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by volsfan on 11-11-04 at 09:23 AM
What is the premise of the show? do they get money, do they know what they are getting into from the beginning.

They do not get money and they do know what is going to happen. The mothers go live at the other house for 10 days. The first 5 days the mothers have to live like the other mom and do the things the other mom does. The last 5 days are spent with the visiting mothers making the rules and the family has to live by the other mothers rules.

Why was the fat lady so pissed that the military lady made rules for her kids? She knew that was going to happen and made rules also. I thought it was stupid of her to get mad ast the military lady for making rules.

I agree. The lazy lady was adamant to the military dad that he HAD to abide by her rules. WTF did she think was happening at her house during the same time frame?

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by volsfan on 11-11-04 at 09:26 AM
Nanook, which rant are you talking about? Hell, she had a rant every 5 mins!

I think the rant she went on at the smoothie place was not warranted! She was the one breaking the rules because she wanted to eat her fast food.

Also, I felt sorry for the military dad during Cindy's rant about the pinata! The military dad was finally breaking down and having fun and the rules wasn't bothering him at that time!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by sisyphus on 11-11-04 at 10:13 AM
You know even though I agree with most of what everyone says.....I have to say I much preferred the military family last night....yes the father was out there....but as he stated iit is not as if the children are not given treats such as ice cream, cake, etc ...it is just that they are a part of their main dietary intake.....yes the kids, especially the smaller ones liked the availablity of candy and junk food but was really a valid rule change to make....I really don't think so...the kids going to school is okay...because even though I think home schooling is better if you have to temperament to do it...they need the socialization of school....the older girl did do dancing and they had friends so it was not really as bad as it was portrayed....

On the other hand, there is no way my 14 yr old would have her "man" over at my house hanging out in her room and dressing like she does.....that is trouble waiting to happen...and the 18 yr old needs to join a gym, and find herself a job or a school....she did absolutely nothing ....not even her own laundry....

I would bet the farm that the military kid grow much more successful and well adjusted....

The fat mom I think went way overboard and was loud and abnoxious and disgusting....

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by volsfan on 11-11-04 at 12:49 PM
I totally agree with you here! However, the part I didn't like is that the military mom and dad have FORCED their children to be vegetarians (forced to do everything else too)! I think the kids should have a choice to eat meat or not. They devoured those hot dogs like they were cotton candy!

There is nothing wrong with letting the children have meat every now and then! I am not sold on the fact that vegetarian eating is that much better for people. The children are missing out on very useful vitamins and minerals that are in meat.

I just think the military family was far too forceful in their beliefs. Let the kids live a little. However, I do think Cindy takes things far too lightly with her children and she needs to be more strict!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by SilverStar on 11-11-04 at 01:36 PM
I think the rant she went on at the smoothie place was not warranted! She was the one breaking the rules because she wanted to eat her fast food.

I disagree with you here Vols. She told him that she was not buying them to eat right then, she wanted to take them home with her. I just thought that maybe they were some kind of chips that she had never seen before and were not available where she lives or something. Weren't they in a health food store? I don't think a regular grocery store would serve weird vegetarian fruit smoothies, or whatever they were. So, they might have even been some healthy chips. I don't know, I couldn't read the label. She did fly off the handle a bit, but having someone try to control what you buy at the store would irritate anyone I think. I hope she went back to that store and bought them when the rules changed!

Handcrafted by RollDdice & Bouncey by Icey

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by volsfan on 11-11-04 at 03:02 PM
You may be right about her just wanting to buy the chips and not eat them. However, Nanook below reminded me that Cindy puts the chips up and starts to get some dried fruit and the military dad was harping on her. So, yeah, I can see where you guys are coming from!

Director of Public Relations for GAWKUR!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by trynity7 on 11-14-04 at 09:31 PM
The place where they were is a WONDERFUL fruit stand called Robert Is Here. It is out in the farms of Florida City near Homestead Florida. It has every imaginable kind of fruit and lots of veggies too. They make the most amazing fruit smoothies from all different kinds of fruits (key limes, papaya, guava, etc) all fresh. They used to have these huge tortoises and iguanas, but someone stole them about a year ago. They also have every kind of jelly and sauce, from marinades of hot sauces - everything you could even think of. They even have nut butters and flavored honeys. I live 5 minutes from there and I love going there. It is almost always packed with people on weekends. People travel from all over to go there for smoothies. There are regular junk foods there, like candybars and chips and crackers and cokes.

And I thought Cindy behaved like a spoiled 5 year old. She reminded me of my own 5 year old when I tell him no about something he wants. He runs to his room and whines. We're working on that ;) - but this woman was horribly immature. There is nothing wrong with him saying "Melissa wouldn't have done that." And expecting her to abide by their rules for the first 5 days - especially when you see what she expected of him for her week!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by Nanook on 11-11-04 at 02:34 PM
I'm talking about the rant near the end of the show when the two couples met.

All Cindy picked up at the smoothie place was a bag of chips. After military dad gave her grief, she put it back and picked up a bag of dried fruit, and he started nagging her about that too. I thought the man was a control freak, he objected to everything, and the way he was following Cindy around would irritate me too if I were her.

Cindy was just upset because military dad shook all the candy of out the piñata, only giving 4 out of 11 kids a chance to hit it. I can understand that. He did seem rigid during the pool party. It was ridiculous when he went up to that girl who isn't even his daughter and started lecturing her about swimming before they had eaten. All of the kids had been swimming at that point! I'm guessing he trying to make the piñata game hurry up and end.

I'm sorry if I sound harsh, but military dad is a weirdo. I've never seen anyone like him. Beyond anal. It's like he doesn't let his kids be kids. 20 minutes of video games in one day? Wow, what a treat! I thought Cindy was right that he was about to have a stroke when it was her turn to run the show. I'm glad he and his wife didn't bring the whacker back at least. That kind of punishment is so old fashioned, and the kids are too old for spankings.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by yourstruly on 11-11-04 at 11:45 PM
Actually he tried to tell her that the fruit and jams were just fine. She went off the rocker because obviously she had no intention of following any rules. One of those rules were no fried foods. Those chips were not baked.
I thought the military dad was amazingly controlled. My personal impression was that he was doing his darn best to not do or say anything he would regret. I also thought he did a much better job of following the rules than her husband or children.
Both families had some really wacky ideas. However, I know which family I would much prefer my munchkins around. Did you see the chaos at that swimming party? I worked as a camp counselor for years, as a pediatric nurse, and have thrown many a party for my munchkins. Yikes never have I seen the like.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by trynity7 on 11-14-04 at 09:35 PM
that was 20 minutes of video games before breakfast and homeschool. They were allowed tv and video game time later too. I have a similar rule - 30 minutes of non-educational games before breakfast and they have to earn the time. It was the only thing I could think of to reduce their computer/nintendo time from 5 or 6 hours a day to something more reasonable. My kids never went outside before I made a rule that restricted their non-educational video game time. They earn 30 minutes for doing their daily chores and another 30 for finishing their school work. They also get to earn time for good behavior and doing things that usually are a struggle, like eating all their veggies without complaint. But over all, they never earn enough time to spend more than an hour a day playing non-educational games. Educational games are free and they can do that in their spare time as much as they want.

"Lazy vs pro-active"
Posted by ilmas on 11-11-04 at 12:17 PM
The military family has a purpose in life whereas Cindy's purpose seems to be to do nothing but do things that are pleasureable and easy.....sheesh, that's not all that hard. I liked the military wife much better. She was pro-active and tried to accomplish something. Maybe her methods weren't best but she acted. Cindy did nothing but vegitate and do what was easy...she did nothing.

Cindy's husband was a sweetie, but the military husband wasn't bad. Military dad was just controling himself. I know a fellow like him and he just measures everything he says and thinks before he acts.

What a weird show that was.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by xserver on 11-11-04 at 04:10 PM
So some people think the military family was sheltered? If you ask me, the Bittners kids are sheltered from responsibility, accountability, healthy lifestyles and self-discipline. The real world is going to be a big shock for them...look at the 18 yr old, no job, no prospects, obese, she looks depressed & unhappy.

The military kids are seem responsible, well-adjusted and ready to become good citizens. Maybe they will be a little naive, but they will soon learn once they leave home.

Why is that when a bad parent visits a home with strict parents they always comment on how good the kids are but how bad the parents are? And the strict parent comments on how bad the other kids are? Yet the bad parent still thinks their parenting methods are much better?

Does anyone else find it ironic that a non-TV watching family signed up to appear on a TV show (name WifeSwap, no less)?

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by sisyphus on 11-11-04 at 04:16 PM
I agree with you xserver.....

well about non-watching families on a tv program....I just think that they were recruited in some other ways....flyers, radio spots, friends, social groups...etc

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by trynity7 on 11-14-04 at 09:39 PM
I hadn't thought of that. But you're right. The permissive parents are always adamently against the strict parent's manner of parenting, but their kids are always holy terrors (with, possibly the exception of the bizzare california buddhist family with the non-traditional parents who'd been reincarnated a few dozen times or whatever - those kids seemed pretty mild despite the lack of obvious structure). The strict parents tend to come away with the notion that they might need to lighten up a little and let the kids have more fun, but the permissive parents tend to come away with the attitude of "Now I'm SURE I'm a wonderful parent!" - although there was one episode with a family from Memphis where the dad of the permissive family ended up saying "it wouldn't hurt the girls to work a little" and he seemed to start to step up and discipline a little more (remember the dad was doing all the work while mom did all the spoiling?)

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by Lisapooh on 11-11-04 at 04:45 PM
Both families were extreme- even more so than usual.

I read the military wife's manual (they have them on the show's website) - they have some rules I would call unduly harsh and restrictive.

For example, the 14 year old girl is not allowed to spend the night at a friend's house if that friend has an older brother. They also mention having a two-headed shower so the boys shower together and the girls shower together. I think that at the age these children are, they are entitled to some privacy in regards to their own bodies.

Chores and responsibilites are essential for kids. But it should not be the focus of the kids' life and the kids need socialization with kids outside their family. Kids also need time to be kids - they have their whole lives to be responsible adults. On the other hand, the Bittners need to get those lazy girls up and give them some responsibility.

The Bittners were also ridiculousl. Cindy's manual said that her 14 year old daughter's boyfriend stayed over. That's crazy! And while I think a teenager has earned the rights to a little autonomy as far as clothing goes - they don't need to dress too old for their age either. That clothing is simply not appropriate for a child. The 18 year old needs to find a job or start attending school. That family does not do the children any favors by making them completely dependent and unmotivated.

The food choices for both families I thought were needlessly extreme. At least the military mom sorta eased the Bittners into rules. And the Bittners could definitely benefit from structure and limits.

Cindy's rules were just designed to piss Paul off. She wasn't interested in bringing about a lasting change in that family. When he finally lightened up a little with the pinata - she was visibly ticked off that he was having fun. Cindy is a miserable woman who has to have her own way. Melissa strikes me as a miserable woman unable to vocalize what her own way might be. One home is too quiet, the other too loud. Steve struck me as a saint and at least tried to get Cindy's daughters to accept the rules initially. Paul was so unyielding and domineering that I dont' think he is capable of treating a woman like an equal. I think that notion is fundamentally repugnant to him.

I'm beginning to think the main point of these shows is to make the rest of us feel better about that fact that our families fall somwhere in the middle of this nonsense.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by HistoryDetective on 11-12-04 at 01:37 PM
Such a reasonable and balanced look at these two families! I completely agree with your assessments, poho.

Especially about the shower situation - that just sounds downright creepy. (I don't even want to imagine what kinds of extremes they will go to to prevent "unclean" teenage masturbation.)

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by trynity7 on 11-14-04 at 09:22 PM
I think you've fairly assessed both of the families, with one exception. I don't see that Paul was inflexible and unable to to treat a woman as an equal. It is pretty obvious to me that Melissa feels like she has equal footing as far as input into decision-making, but she allows him to have the final say about issues. It works that way in my home and it is a very good system as long as the husband is considerate and not domineering. Melissa's Household Rules manual stated that he listens to her and gives her opinion equal value. The biggest thing that stuck out for me was the Cindy's rules were all to spite the father. She seemed bent on making sure things happened that would upset him. It didn't seem that she was interested in imparting values to the kids, but maybe getting them to like her just to spite Paul. She keeps saying that he's a control freak, but it seems to me that this control problem is, at BEST, a two-way street (although I have my doubts about just how much of a control freak Paul really is- he reminds me very much of my own husband except my husband wouldn't have tolerated being spoken to the way Cindy spoke to him - he would have left the room rather than be abused verbally - and I know this from experience ;) ). She didn't seem capable of being flexible enough to handle the different lifestyle of the family she swapped with. And even if, on some level, she WAS flexible, she wasn't willing to be with this family.

I am a strict homeschooling mother who happens to live in the same community as the Reimers. I didn't realize this until I saw the Robert Is Here Fruit Stand where they had fruit smoothies (the site of the 'potato chip incident') which is a place just down the street from me. There is a great deal of misconception about the socialization of homeschooled children. My kids get weekly exposure to other children of all ages during park day and during enrichment (arts and gymnastics they have on fridays). The rest of the day their primary socialization has to do with me and their father having direct influence over what they are exposed to and how to behave, and their afternoon playtime with our neighbor kids. There is a great amount of information available about the positive aspect of socializing children who are homeschooled. Think about it: who would you rather have the most influence over your children? You or their peers? If they spend 8-10 hours a day being influenced by people with values that differ from your own (whatever they may be), how much time are you going to have with them to teach them about the things you want them to understand and value? There are a lot of things that the Reimers family has available to them to get their kids around other kids as many days of the week as they wish. I know because I'm in the same city as the Reimers family.

Yes, there are plenty of kids that go to school and are well-behaved and well-adjusted children. But there are plenty of kids who go to school who are niether of those things. Since I began homeschooling my kids I've seen a big change in their attitude about learning and in their maturity. I want my kids to have fun EVERY DAY, but I also want to be their primary influence at their young age.

There is nothing wrong with discipline and holding your kids accountable for their behavior. Does anyone honestly believe the Bittner children are well-behaved and respectful children? Are they doing their part as a part of that family? Or is their mother working every day to take care of ungrateful and rebellious children?

I do think that there is something about this show throwing people into such polar opposite situations that is designed to create very dramatic tv. It is upsetting to see people who are hateful and angry with each other. I honestly thought that Mr. Reimers was very self-controlled in the face of an openly hostile, immature woman. She never once allowed him to explain himself and he didn't yell at her and get all over-heated so she just shut him down. Mrs. Rimer and Mr. Bittner clashed, but at least they tried to hear each other out. Mrs. Bittner was an angry, hostile, unpleasent woman. I am surprised she was allowed to go on this show. She was unable to cope with it because of her absolute lack of flexibility. She wanted to hurt other people. She had no intention of being open to anything other than her own way.

It bothered me to see such unkind words on here towards the lifestyle of the Reimers family. But I can agree with the parting words between the two wives: we can agree to disagree.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by yourstruly on 11-14-04 at 11:38 PM

Just as a word of encourgement, I was homeschooled from the age of 13. Before that I had spent time at both public and private schools. My parents decided to homeschool me do to my obvious frustration at dealing with schoolwork even in advanced classes not fulfilling me. On the opposite note, my sister was homeschooled because her style of learning was not utilized much in the classroom. I am thankful every day for that decision. We had sleepovers at least once a week, visited nursing homes, went shopping, took babysitting jobs, took outside classes for arts and sports etc. Never once did I asked to go back to school. I would have begged not to. I am proud to say that I flew through college with no problem as did my sister and brother. We were already disciplined to making the time to study which many freshman find hard. Also we had spent hours researching areas that interested us which the textbooks only hinted at. Many homeschoolers do. Research is a big part of college.
On the other hand, my husband whose IQ is out there will tell you quite firmly that school only encouraged laziness in him. They could never challenge him enough no matter what class. School was play to him. When things finally got a little difficult (he actually had to do a little work) when he was going for his doctorate. He hated it. He had never had the opportunity to be challenged before. Now, he is a hard worker, but he never had to work hard to learn before. He insists that we homeschool our son who is much like him. He wants him challenged from the beginning. I am glad to do it.

The thing is there are homeschool families out there that do give us a bad name. Also there are homeschool families who think you are terrible to not homeschool your kids. Which is just ridiculous? Bless their hearts, I know some moms who would not even know how to begin.

I do not think that it was the homeschooling that offended some people so much as some of the rules. I agree I prefered the military family. But I will admit some of their rules made me roll my eyes. Good luck as you homeschool.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by HistoryDetective on 11-15-04 at 09:57 AM
Hi trynity7! Welcome to the forums. I read your post with interest and I appreciate your point of view, but there were a couple of places where I differed.

First, let me say that I did not prefer either family. As with most episodes, each family represented an extreme and I think that somewhere in the middle is the best place to be.

Unlike you, I thought that Paul was VERY controlling of his children and tried to squash any little bit of independent decision making or individuality in them. Yes, I agree that children should respect their parents, but parents also need to remember that children are people too, not just miniature carbon copies of themselves. They need some freedom, within limits. As an example of something I found very controlling: each child asking in turn to be excused from the dinner table and having to wait for Paul to tell them that they could leave with him exercising all the power about whether he would say yes or no. I did not get the impression that this was a formality of good manners; instead, I got the distinct impression that it was his way of controlling even their smallest actions. As I was growing up, if everybody at the table appeared to be finished or nearly finished with their meal, the children could politely excuse themselves from the table. Sure, some parents might not want to give their children that much "liberty" but is there a reason that at the end of the meal that Paul could not have just made a blanket announcement that anybody who was done with their meal could be excused? Why was it necessary to get each child to specifically ask him for permission as he lounged at the head of the table? Or, once the first child asked to be excused, he could have given blanket permission to all of them (holding back any child who did not eat his vegetables or whatever on a case by case basis).

As for homseschooling and socializing, it sounds like you do a great job of making sure that your children get out of the house and interact with other children their own age. I didn't get the impression that Paul's family takes the same measures. We saw the oldest daughter at ballet, but they made a point of saying that she is not allowed opportunities to socialize with boys her own age. What about the rest of the children? Did they give much indication of what kinds of opportunities they had to meet other kids their own age? Even if they go to the local playground on a regular basis, aren't they likely to meet some of the same "bad apples" there that they would meet at the school?

I'm also curious about what can be taught via homeschooling. I am asking out of curiosity and ignorance of that sort of system, so please do not take my questions as being a judgment of that lifestyle. How do handle teaching such a wide variety of subjects? What do you do when a child gets to high school age and much of the subject matter moves beyond the "common knowledge" that most adults possess? Can one parent really handle teaching Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Western Civilization, U.S. History, Government, English Literature, American Literature, Computer Science, Algebra, Trigonometry, Calculus, and a variety of other subjects? These are all subjects that I had to take in high school and I know that my parents could not have taught them to me. Also, what do you do about equipment? Do most homeschooled children have access to science labs to do the experiments that are part of the usual coursework?

I'm also curious about the connections between intellectual and social growth and how they are handled for homeschooled children. I noticed that the history book that one of the children was reading could be described as rather "specialized." I'm currently working on a PhD in American history and I felt that the children were being shortchanged in their understanding of that subject. I am not saying that they should not use that textbook, but I would suggest adding another text to provide balance and an alternate interpretation so the children have the fullest possible understanding of the course of American history. Similarly, if they were in a classroom with children from diverse backgrounds they would be more likely to be exposed to a variety of ideas on many different subjects, not just history. That kind of exposure would help their critical thinking skills as they learned to evaluate the material they were learning, regardless of which interpretation they ultimately decided was the best. After all, people in the outside world are going to hold different ideas than they do, so they will need to learn at some point how to get along with those people.

I can understand any parent wanting to impart their values to their children, but at the same time I think it is possible to do that without so rigorously controlling what kinds of people they meet and what kind of information they get exposed to.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by trynity7 on 11-15-04 at 07:07 PM
LAST EDITED ON 11-16-04 AT 08:44 AM (EST)

You have posed some very thoughtful questions and I will attempt to answer them to the best of my ability. I appreciate your civil tone. Many people would have disagreed with me in a much less congenial manner.

As for the Reimers family, I think that what was portrayed of their actual life was so limited that we can't form a reasonable judgment about either the socialization of their kids or the curriculum they use. The manner in which the show was edited surely was meant to display only the most extreme examples of the issues that created the necessary friction to be 'good television'. I doubt that the more mundane aspects of either family's lives would be considered interesting enough to include in their one hour. After all, you have 10 days of film from two different families that must be condensed into something like 47 minutes of actual programming. So, while we have our opinions based on what we saw, we should keep in mind (me included) that we saw an extremely limited amount of real life from either of these families, and what we did see was edited to demonstrate the highest degree of dramatic tension.

Now, onto homeschooling (hs'ing). Since my children are still quite young, I haven't had the experience of hs'ing high school students. I do, however, know many families that are doing just that. Here is the way it tends to work with the families I know: throughout any given year most of the families I know use a hodgepodge of different types of curriculum. We spend a lot of time evaluating texts and curriculums in the hopes of finding programs that incorporate accommodating the needs of different learning styles and that will teach well-rounded general knowledge in each subject beyond the early basic 3 R's. Most families who have hs'ed for more than 3 or 4 years have been through a number of different types of curriculums, thus exposing their children to an array of different approaches to science, social studies, geography, history, etc. Some families use unit studies that take basic subjects and use them like the hub of a wheel where all different manner of subjects are linked like spokes from that hub. I am currently using a unit study that begins with teaching about Ancient Egypt and through that my kids will explore history, geography, language arts, spelling, word roots (Latin and Greek), etc. I have to add in math myself (which I am doing using a program which teaches math by association which includes by-rote practice, instead of by-rote practice alone - it is called Miquon). When we finish our unit studies on Egypt, Greece, and ancient cultures, we will move into a unit study of the New World (western civilization) and will continue to learn all the different subjects from that platform.

Some curriculums are more traditional, similar to what a child would get at school. But many children struggle with boredom and frustration with excessive workbook-type work. The goal most homeschooling families share it to teach a love of learning and a desire to learn and research. A quote I love is "Education isn't so much filling a bucket with facts as it is lighting a fire." We still have to make sure our children know basic skills, but the way we go about it gives us tremendous freedoms to choose methods and subjects that interest our children and give them the desire to do more!

As for high school, this is not something I can answer with authority. I do know that there are enrichment facilities (we go to one every Friday) where certain higher math courses are offered (along with science and computer labs). These are becoming more and more popular. Also, these days, many schools, including colleges, allow high school students to come in for some classes, such as chemistry and trigonometry, without them having to be fully enrolled. Many parents have worked together to trade off teaching subjects when you have a group that has one parent who can teach higher math and another who can teach more advanced literature. But often, by the time a hs'ing child reaches these levels she is able to utilize home-learning software and other programs designed for homeschoolers. There are books on the subject of hs'ing a high school student. And if you look into college acceptance rates and standardized test scores for graduating hs'ed students you will find that somehow they are managing to excel FAR ABOVE the average of children who have grown up in the public school systems.

I realize that it is hard to conceptualize. I was afraid that I wouldn't be able to teach my children in the beginning. It is an enormous responsibility and there are still many people who have decided that it is foolish of a parent to assume she could teach her children better than a certified teacher. But once you take into account the disciplinary issues faced by teachers in public schools, the necessity to teach to the lowest common denominator in many districts, and the student-to-teacher ratio, you can begin to understand how even large families might have a more ideal learning situation than the average public school.

The elementary school a block from me has scored D's two years in a row, with less than 50% of their third grade students able to pass the reading portion of the state standardized test. My oldest son started first grade reading on a third grade level because his father and I read to him and worked with phonics. We weren't structured about it. We weren't trying to program him to be some super-educated freak of a child (have you ever seen the movie Parenthood?). We just read to him and he sponged it up. There are some perfectly wonderful public schools in this country. I just don't happen to live near any of them. So hs'ing is the best option for my kids. I also have a child with ADHD and I can let him work while he walks around b/c if he has to sit still he can't concentrate because the sitting still takes every ounce of his energy. It just turns out that I'm in a better position to teach my kids than my local public school is.

I've never known any hs'ing mother to feel like she couldn't teach anything other than maybe the higher maths and sciences. And there are a lot of resources to help parents who homeschool face those particular challenges. I happen to know of a science store that sells everything from microscopes to telescopes and every kind of science material in between. The man opened the store specifically to market to homeschooling families. In many hs’ing homes you walk in and it feels like a regular classroom in some ways – with maps on the walls, white boards, the American flag, and books everywhere.

I could go on and on and on about it. If you are interested in discussing it further with me, I would be happy to. I could even point you in the direction of some websites that might help you understand better how mere parents are managing to educate their children all the way through high school and turn out extremely competitive and highly motivated and mature young men and women.

You said that you feel like children are being shortchanged in the area of history and exposure to diversity. I think that classrooms themselves are to blame for the lack of actual understanding of history, geography, and cultural diversity. While they may see the faces of different races, come lunchtime the kids inevitably split off into groups, and rarely do races mix it up socially. The US can't stack up to children from other industrialized nations in the hard academic subjects. So I would hypothesize that it is the public schools that are failing to teach kids. If you test children who are homeschooled against children who grow up in public schools you will find that homeschooled children are MUCH more consistently above the 70th percentile in their understandings of hard academics. And lastly, among my park group there are a number of families that are transplants from other nations (Australia, Great Britain, Italy, many Latin American countries, etc.) who can’t abide the public school system in the US. They have told me that they can’t trust the public schools to teach their children basic skills. And when you look at the way the US stacks up internationally, you have to admit they’ve got valid concerns. Again, I’m not saying every single public school is bad and that if your child goes to public school they won’t learn. But it is becoming more and more difficult to get the kind of education parents want for their kids here. If people didn’t think public education systems were a mess the politicians wouldn’t be vowing to do something about it.

The socialization issue is one that every homeschooling parent has to run up against. There is a very ingrained opinion of most of society that children must spend 8 hours a day with other children their same age to be socialized properly. I have very strong opinions about this as a misconception, but this is already so long I fear its run folks off! So we can continue this in email is you're really interested in understanding more about why more and more families are choosing to homeschool their kids. There is SO MUCH more I’d like to tell you, but it just would take forever! So email me and we can talk more.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by HistoryDetective on 11-15-04 at 08:18 PM
Thank you for providing such a great ansswer, trynity7. I sent you an email, but I wanted to publicly acknowledge that you have given me a lot to think about. Like I said, I was coming at the subject from a place of ignorance; I was not attempting to judge the system.

As I mentioned in my message, I still have one complaint, which I will repeat here. I was not clear enough in one of my points and you misunderstood me as a result. In case others came away with the same misunderstanding, I wanted to address my biggest concern. I don't think you understood my objection to one of the textbooks that they were using, a history text written from "a Christian perspective." Now, I firmly believe that all students should exercise their own critical judgment as they interpret history. I always tell my own students (I am a graduate student teaching assistant at a university while I am working on my PhD in American history) that there are no "right" or "wrong" answers in American history, though historical evidence suggests that some theories and interpretations are much better than others. I don't mind that some home schooling parents want to give their children a Christian education, but it does concern me that they sometimes choose texts that mainstream professional historians would likely consider out of step with conventional historical scholarship. That is why I suggested that they supplement that text with an additional textbook. People could certainly argue about the politics of history and various textbooks and I can see how some parents might consider certain textbooks to have their own "agenda" (for lack of a better word). I do not want to indoctrinate children with my interpretation of history, but at the same time I want them to be exposed to the broadest possible array of interpretations to assist them in making their own judgments about history. I imagine that the history taught in the textbook used by the Reimers is from the Whiggish school of history, a way of examining the past that was prevalent in the 1950s. History has advanced in many ways since then, going through several schools with each decade marked by a distinct way that professional historians look at and teach history. Just as children need to be taught about the lastest advances in science, I also believe that they should be exposed to the most recent advances in history and the way that Americans talk about their own past. Like I said, I don't object to the Reimers or other parents using that particular text, but I think that if they want to be more responsible educators that they need to provide an alternate text as a supplement.

Again, thanks for giving me so much to think about!

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by volsfan on 11-15-04 at 09:27 PM
WOW! HD and Trinity...great info here!

I would like to say that I didn't really think about the good points that Trinity has brought up. I was coming at this from a stand point that was like HD...I didn't know that much about home schooling.

Along the same lines as HD, I worry about the diversity (HD was talking about diversity in history books) and the social skills that going to a public/private school provides. Now, I am not saying that public/private schools are the only way to get this type of skill set...I am just curious what do HS'ers do?

Also, what about diversity in friends and being around others that have different sets of values and beliefs? Trinity, this isn't an attack on HS'ers but I am just asking so I can understand. I understand that parents want to teach their children their beliefs and values but just because those beliefs and values are those of the parents doesn't make it the best for the child. How do you (Trinity) deal with this?

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by yourstruly on 11-15-04 at 10:46 PM
Dear History Detective,

I would like to reply here as I was personally homeschooled through high school. Trynity7 did a fabulous job. The subject of homeschooling is a hard one to detail in a paragraph or two.

On the subject of curriculi in this case your interest is history. I think unintentionally you hit on why most of us want to homeschool- our inspiration so to speak. Most elementary and high schools have strict curriculums that provide no alternate textbooks. Most of the time the whole subject matter is not even throughly covered. It is impossible to do with 20 students of varying aptitudes. You have no time to develop much of an interest before you are off to the next lesson. With only one student, the world is your school ground. Explore, research, go beyond is what we encourage. To love learning, to desire to learn more and above all to think.

Most homeschoolers do stick with a textbook that mirror their beliefs in the early years. These are not the years for critical thinking rather laying a firm foundation. We still supplement though in many ways. We cook food according to the culture. We rent books from the library about subjects that the children find interesting. We tour museums that feature the culture or period we are studying. We put on plays with each being a significant character from the period. We start detailed timelines and add to them throughout the school years. We encourage them to develop a deep understanding of the time - the political climate, the weather, the arts, the music, the way they educated, religous preferences, the heros, the way they dressed, and yes the facts and dates. I challenge you to find this in a traditional school. There just is not the time for much beyond the facts. And I doubt most elementary teachers know much more than that. (this is not a knock against the teacher. Goodness knows the work they have to do to impart what they can.) By the time they reach high school, most homeschoolers have studied ancient and modern civilization two or three times. Now is the time to encourage them to read the published articles, books, and documentaries. They have the basics now go deeper into the different interpretations. Many hs interested in history are taking university or community classes by high school. Some do not. But the time of Christopher Columbus, Genghis Khan, the Tudors, and even Jimmy Carter are alive for them.

History is often what we base our unit studies on, and something many homeschoolers are passionate about. However we are equally passionate about science, math, and literature. (Unfortunately, I have always hated Grammar and find it the hardest to impart with enthusiasm.) With science, many homeschoolers purchase chemistry sets, microscopes, and even animals to dissect. We run around culturing everything in our vicinity, take fingerprints and studing them, put cells, plants, blood, insects, hair etc under the scope. We raise butterflys, watch ant farms, have gardens, go bird watching, go to every museum we are ever near, visit the zoo and then do detail studies on the animals we are particuarily interested in. We go tree and plant typing, insect hunting, and spend hours under the stars for a science class at night. Many a homeschooling mother has walked into her kitchen to start lunch only to find a chemistry experiment being conducted.

With literature, we put on Shakespearean plays by fourth grade, are reading Dickens by second, and Poe long before high school. Once you give a child an appetite for good literature and poetry, your only job is making sure it is appropriate for their emotional developement. We have poetry reading at least twice a week starting with nursery rhymes in preschool.

Math is daily living. We teach fractions as they help us cook. Learn to count to twenty as we walk up the stairs. Sort buttons and play with the abacus. Do rote tables at the top of our lungs as fast as we can and fall down laughing when we are done. And yes we do use a carefully researched math curriculum. Often different for each child.
Many a mom has stayed up hours getting that geometry problem worked out in her own head. If not there is always the computer program, her daughters friends dad, the homeschooling message board, or the tutor listed in the homeschool group newsletter. Most likely though her son/daughter will not even ask for help after reading the material. By high school, they figure out most things on their own or research until they do understand the concept. You are pretty much there to provide the praise. Independent learning has been established. Of course, you still quiz and test as they are adolescents.

Many children take music classes and our personal favorite activity is finding instruments from normal items then composing and performing with our own "orchestra". Every once in a while it even sounds good. LOL They study artists and composers. Learn a foreign language and often study Latin also. I do not know why, but most serious homeschoolers do.

And the best thing about this is that they sit down for strict work maybe three hours a day four days a week. That is plenty of time for one child. However, you see them at the computer and ask what they are doing. "Oh I was really interested in (insert preference) that we touched on today. I wanted to see what this site says about it." Or you call your daughter six times before she answers. She is reading one of the twenty books she picked up on turtles. Her new interest. Your topic of conversation over the dinner table is The Merchant of Venice, and your mouth fall open to listen to your childrens analysis. Your toddler is groovin to Saint-Saens while your baby sleeps to the Brazilian CD you picked up while studying that country. Not that they do not enjoy video games, movies, television, and talking on the phone. It just that to most homeschooled children school is fun. It is not 8 hours of torture followed by two more of homework. My son cheers when I tell him it is couchwork time. I am not kidding.

Now is this the life of every hs. NO! But many it is. I know countless hs families to which this is normal daily life. Yes there are those unfortunately who seek to mimic public and private schools with set hours, little diversity, many worksheets, and one textbook to teach American History or Natural Science. And we all have bad days when we do not want to do anything. We have family arguements and have to make them redo their math problems. But you hit on the reason why most of us choose to homeschool. You cannot really learn out of one book that skims over the basics from that one authors point of view. And in my opinion, the majority most definitely will not learn to crave knowledge in such an environment.

I hope this helps. It just struck me as so ironic that what you were questioning is the basis of many a homeschoolers choice to homeschool. I firmly believe that it is the right choice for my family. However, I just as firmly believe that what is right for us might not be right for the next person.

"RE: Wife Swap Episode 11/10/04"
Posted by HistoryDetective on 11-16-04 at 06:54 PM
Wow, yourstruly! Thanks for elaborating even more. I am not opposed to home schooling; I just did not know much about it so I wanted to learn more - and the two of you have convinced me that it is a much better option than I thought it would be.

You have to admit, though, that we live in a culture where teachers are often celebrated for having specialized knowledge about both their subject area and teaching, which they have gained through at least four years of college. That was my starting point for asking some of the questions that I asked.

I will be the first to admit, however, that although many teachers are wonderful, others do not deserve their reputation as educators. I am not pleased with the education I received when I went to a public high school in the early 1990s. Many of the teachers should not have been teaching, but there were a few teachers that I look back on as mentors. My parents, on the other hand, could not have home schooled me since they both worked. Also, my father would be the first to tell you that he only got out of high school because he was too valuable to the track team to not pass him, so he would not have been comfortable trying to teach his kids. My mother, who is a pharmacist, probably would have done a good job through elementary school, but I can remember various points with the different subjects when she said that I had surpassed her knowledge. I applaud you for being able to teach your children - and for finding them so many opportunities outside the home that also enrich their learning experiences.