-> Some children in England don’t go to school but they study at home. Do you think it’s right? Our reporter, Jean Anderson, went to talk to some children.

The Richardsons live in a big old house, 20 kilometres from London. The family is large – two girls and three boys. Our reporter visited them on a Wednesday morning. The children were at home. She heard music inside the house, a piano and a guitar. A normal family? A normal day? Yes, but in one way the Kichardsons are very different. The children don’t go to school. Their parents, Marian and Roger, teach them at home.

Jean Anderson spoke to Marian Richardson. Marian said: “My husband and I don’t like the schools in our town. We don’t think the teachers are very good. The children don’t learn much. Some children at these schools can’t readTIt’s terrible. Go to the schools and look: the children fight; smoke and drink. Roger and I are both teachers. We can teach them more at home.”

Jean Anderson also spoke to Ginny. Ginny is one of the daughters of the family. She said: “We all love music. I play the piano and Donald plays the guitar. My parents are very good at music and languages. The schools here are very bad. We learn more at home. I think we’re lucky.”

About 4000 families are teaching their children at home, and they are doing very well. One example is the Tanner family from Hertfordshire. Eve Tanner, 27, and her 29-year -old husband James do not send their children to school. The Tanner children, six-year-old Stephen and eight-year-old Jason, study at home with their mother. They have a bright, comfortable study in their home. All around there are lots of books and the children’s paintings are on the wall. James says, “Both Eve and I think we got nothing from school -only a diploma. We had no fun at all; in fact, everything was boring.” Some parents who are teaching their children at home have a study
programme, but the Tanners don’t. Eve says, “The children love books – they read all sorts of things. And, of course, we read story books together. I teach them writing and mathematics, too. They write shopping lists for me. Then they go shopping with me and pay for the things we buy.” Eve and James take their children to the library, to museums, to concerts, to swimming pools and to gymnastics. They think these activities are very important. What do friends think? Eve says, “Most of them are very interested. Some friends are also thinking about teaching their children at home.”



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