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Homeschool?

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uggymnast

New Member
Jun 21, 2008
31
Region 3
My daughter's coach is seriously considering two a day workouts next year. Now is the time that we are having to make the desicion whether to pull dd from private school and home school her so she can attend this training. She is a sophomore and has most of her state required credits to graduate. She will still take PSAT in fall of 09 to try and qualifiy for national merit and has been taking sat and act for practice all ready. She wants an academic full ride scholarship to basically anywhere becuase she is only a level 7 and college gymnastics might not be possible. We are having to repeat 7 this year because of injuries all last season: she never got to compete a full meet. Her goal is to get as far as she can, she is very, very determined. She is very smart, so we don't want her education to be sacrificed. What homeschool programs do you parents use for your dd's and what is their scheduele? What is your opinion? Thanks
 

gymkat

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Jun 24, 2008
691
First, I think it would be a good idea to talk to her coach and have an honest conversation about her chances at competing NCAA in college (the only reason, IMO, to go to 2-a-day practices and homeschool at this point). If your daughter will be a junior next year, she should already have video footage ready to send to college coaches. Also, if she wants to do NCAA, then she should also have L10 skills (or at the very least, very strong L9 skills) on at least one event.

Your daughter's situation is actually very similar to mine when I was in high school-- I was a level 8 as a sophomore and a level 9 (with marginal L10 skills on one event) when I was trying to contact coaches-- and my gym also started a 2-a-day program when I was entering my junior year. However, I knew that I was not going to have a shot at any NCAA programs except maybe as a walk-on at the very weakest D1 schools... one D3 school showed interest after hearing my ACT score, but their program has been cut since then. For me, it was not worth leaving my high school when I knew that I was not competitive for a gymnastics scholarship. It wasn't a matter of me not wanting it enough; I just was not cut out for D1 gymnastics, and I knew it.

I'm obviously not doing NCAA gymnastics, but I'm still doing college club gymnastics (NAIGC) at a school where I did get a full ride for academics. If your daughter is truly more focused on a scholarship for academics, then I honestly don't see a good reason to homeschool, especially since she's currently a L7 and the vast majority of gymnasts her age that are vying for scholarships are L10s. Incidentally, Texas has several strong NAIGC teams: UT-Austin, Texas Tech, and Texas State, and schools like Cornell, UCLA, and Berkeley also have NAIGC. You'll find that the top gymnasts in NAIGC are mostly former L9s (a few former 10s and elites). I think that this might be a more realistic path that wouldn't involve sacrificing her education or changing schools, and that would allow her to continue gymnastics.
 

eeyoretumbles

Member
Jul 13, 2008
234
rainy washington
I think talking to the coach and your daughter would be a good idea. Personally I would keep her in. It sounds like she is very sharp, and I think staying in school would be best. If she's a level 7 and probably won't be getting a gymnastics scholarship, I think it's best to stay in school, and just have fun in gym. Being very determined though, if she wants to go homeschool I'd let her.
Personally, I'd stay in school. There is so much I wouldn't want to miss out on, and school is a nice break away from gym, and it's nice to have a little social life. I no longer am doing hardcore competitive anymore, but I remember in junior high my schedule was, wake up, school, gym, homework, sleep, repeat. School was a nice breakaway from gym. I missed out on A LOT of outside activities, and I can't imagine taking school away on top of that. Good luck with your decision and tell us what you pick!
 
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gymnut1

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First, I think it would be a good idea to talk to her coach and have an honest conversation about her chances at competing NCAA in college (the only reason, IMO, to go to 2-a-day practices and homeschool at this point). If your daughter will be a junior next year, she should already have video footage ready to send to college coaches. Also, if she wants to do NCAA, then she should also have L10 skills (or at the very least, very strong L9 skills) on at least one event.

Your daughter's situation is actually very similar to mine when I was in high school-- I was a level 8 as a sophomore and a level 9 (with marginal L10 skills on one event) when I was trying to contact coaches-- and my gym also started a 2-a-day program when I was entering my junior year. However, I knew that I was not going to have a shot at any NCAA programs except maybe as a walk-on at the very weakest D1 schools... one D3 school showed interest after hearing my ACT score, but their program has been cut since then. For me, it was not worth leaving my high school when I knew that I was not competitive for a gymnastics scholarship. It wasn't a matter of me not wanting it enough; I just was not cut out for D1 gymnastics, and I knew it.

I'm obviously not doing NCAA gymnastics, but I'm still doing college club gymnastics (NAIGC) at a school where I did get a full ride for academics. If your daughter is truly more focused on a scholarship for academics, then I honestly don't see a good reason to homeschool, especially since she's currently a L7 and the vast majority of gymnasts her age that are vying for scholarships are L10s. Incidentally, Texas has several strong NAIGC teams: UT-Austin, Texas Tech, and Texas State, and schools like Cornell, UCLA, and Berkeley also have NAIGC. You'll find that the top gymnasts in NAIGC are mostly former L9s (a few former 10s and elites). I think that this might be a more realistic path that wouldn't involve sacrificing her education or changing schools, and that would allow her to continue gymnastics.

I cant really add to this very sensible post from someone with all the right experience and information. I would just reiterate. She is 'very smart' and 'level 7' Stay in school.
 

uggymnast

New Member
Jun 21, 2008
31
Region 3
You all have very good points. She understands the college situation as far as a NCAA school, but we need to find out more about naigc. She said that her goal for this year is make level 7 nationals team in October and compete some eight during the year but 7 at state. She believes more hours would be very beneficial. Right now she and the rest of the optionals train m, t,th, f from 4-7 and w from 4-6. After 30 min warmup and 30 min conditioning. There is not much time. She saw the woga level 8s at regionals this weekend and was in awe. Her coach said that was the difference between 8 hours and 3. She wants eight, so I told her she would have to plan out the next years school situation with/o jeopardizing college. Any suggestions? Thanks
 

ellabella

Member
May 26, 2008
176
If she wants to go the extra hours because she wants to improve then I would do it. She's old enough to make a choice like that. Many, many smart kids are homeschooled. She might even be able to get further in homeschool than public school. Some classes can be taken at school and she can study subjects indepth that she is interested it.
 

gymch34

Member
Aug 2, 2008
322
east coast
I hope this does not come off offensive, my purpose here is to be honest.

A gymnast should no be doing 2/day workouts unless they are on the elite track. It seems like a simple decision: home school vs. reg school. But, the 2/day workouts are very hard on the body, and mentally exhausting.

Keep her in school!
 

ginnymac

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Jun 26, 2008
386
I'd have to agree with gymch34...I think that it is highly unusual to consider twice a day practices for a gymnast of her age who is not on the elite track. If she has had injuries, these could be aggravated as well by a dramatic increase in training time. I'd suggest staying in school and if looking for more hours, add a weekend workout.
 

gymkat

Active Member
Former Gymnast
Judge
Jun 24, 2008
691
I know for a fact that not all of the top Texas L8s train 8 hours/day. In fact, I strongly suspect that none of them do, unless you heard it directly from the source. FWIW, the Olympian elites in my state only practice once/day. When I was a first-year L9, I competed against 5th and 6th-year 9s... girls who had done L9 since I was a level 6, and girls who had dropped back from L10. I understand walking around with my jaw on the floor. But it's not worth doing anything that would sacrifice your daughter's education when she's this close to applying to colleges.

ellabella, the problem that I see is that OP's daughter will be a junior in high school next year, and she has spent her entire life in formal education. This isn't a case of a young child wanting to homeschool-- this is a top student who is looking at academic full rides. Do you want to do anything that would risk that when she already seems to be in a good position? There is no reason IMO for her to do 8 hours/day if she's not thinking elite, let alone NCAA, unless there is an issue with her private school that the OP didn't mention. I'm not against homeschooling when it's done properly in the least; in fact, I petitioned to take a math class through an accredited program because the honors version at my school conflicted with AP Bio. However, homeschooling just for gymnastics-- especially when she's not looking toward NCAA or elite-- seems like a questionable decision to me.

Since your daughter would theoretically be doing a lot of independent learning if she homeschooled, why doesn't she write up a proposal and compare/contrast homeschool programs that she researches herself? Include which ones are accredited (do not consider any that aren't), the expenses, are they appropriate for AP/IB level classes, etc. I did not find many programs that offered a level that I considered acceptable, and none of their solutions for foreign language were comparable to my high school. Also, are you willing to put in the extra effort to find tutors if she doesn't understand a concept? What happens if she doesn't keep up in her work?

NAIGC uses level 9 rules with level 10 bonus. My team practices 6-8 hours/week, and we consistently place top 3 at Nationals. I'd say that most gymnasts are around L8, although the girls who place on events at Nationals are usually former L9s or higher. It's not a league that you would train 40 hours/week to prepare for. Your Page Title
 

Scout's Mom

Member
Oct 2, 2007
89
Texas
Gymkat's reply was "on the money" in my opinion!

We've done one year of high school homeschooling (Texas Tech). It has been very hard for many reasons (the subject matter is hard, it's difficult to self-learn so many concepts, it's hard to have the discipline for school after so many hours at gym, etc.). I do feel it's a good program. We will not do homeschool next year! We'll do a modified public school schedule (4 core classes in the middle of the day and fill in with summer and on line classes).

At our gym (in Texas), all optionals go two a day (with the exception of one previous elite). Most are not on the elite track.

Good luck with your decision!
 
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allaroundgirl

Guest
Talk to your daughter. Do you really have the time and focus to teach her, does she have good study skills (this is quite helpful when you start homeschooling), are there problems at home that might hinder teaching/studying, and the big one, does she really need to be doing two-a-days? At her Level (I was also a Level 7) two-a-days might not be necessary and could make it easier for her to get burnt out. Choose whichever will make her the most happy.

Good luck!
 

Livinatthegym

Member
Feb 4, 2008
204
Region IV
The institution where I work gives 4 full ride academic scholarships per year. Now, there are a pretty fair number of kids who can put together need based and academic money to cover all their tution, but full freight, purely academic scholarships just aren't that common. If that's the kind of money your dd is going for, understand that it is probably even more competative than seeking a full-ride sports scholarship. Can you prepare her for that level of academic competion if she homeschools? If not, definitely leave her in school.
 
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socko

Guest
I agree with many prior posters about the 2 a day sessions...they are really not for anyone who is not at least an upper level optional (L10 or a really good 9) with the potential for going elite. My daughter has been a 10 and has NEVER done 2 a days and she has done well (has been to Nationals 4 X). Two a days are just so hard on the body and your potential for injury increases the more you are in the gym and with the harder tricks (i.e for Level 10/elite). That said, the original poster's daughter is only working out 12-15 hours/week so you might want to see if the number of hours per day could be increased rather than coming twice a day. Also, the fact that she is currently a sophomore Level 7 with hopes of an academic scholarship would be the deal breaker for me and she would not be homeschooled. My daughter had one coach way back when that "insisted she be homeschooled in order to succeed' and I basically told him it wasn't going to happen and we moved on from there and she DID succeed. I think many parents are willing to go with whatever a coach says because they think he/she must know what's best, but you are their best advocate so always go with what YOU think is best. It will serve you well in the long run.
 

ellabella

Member
May 26, 2008
176
The OP never said her DD would be going 40 hours a week. The gym where I live has a homeschool program is right under 30 hours a week. They only go twice a day for 3 days of the week and then they get Saturdays off. There are several girls who do it that are not high level optionals. They like being homeschooled, they like the more individual attention in the morning, etc.

I think the OP should make whatever decision is best for her daughter.
 
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gym4life915

Guest
In my opinion don't homeschool. I'm a level/pre elite and I don't homeschool. I have been told that I should homeschool but I don't want to miss out on experiences like school incase I don't go elite. (I'm 13 and on the elite track) I do very well at meets and manage a 4.0 grade point average. I don't think homeschooling will really benefit her at this time. Plus, she is only a level 7, most gyms don't talk about homeschooling until higher levels like 9 or 10.
 

gym law mom

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Dec 23, 2006
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The institution where I work gives 4 full ride academic scholarships per year. Now, there are a pretty fair number of kids who can put together need based and academic money to cover all their tution, but full freight, purely academic scholarships just aren't that common. If that's the kind of money your dd is going for, understand that it is probably even more competative than seeking a full-ride sports scholarship. Can you prepare her for that level of academic competion if she homeschools? If not, definitely leave her in school.

Boy, you said it Livinatthegym! Full academic scholarships are extremely competitive and many schools also look at extra-cirricular activties, community service etc. If all her time is being taken up with gym, it will affect her "college resume." I don't completely agree with having kids fried by the time they're 17 or 18, but thats what many of the top schools look at. Whatever your dd's goals are for her future, she also owes it to herself to have some fun in her last couple years of high school.
 

gymdog

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Jul 5, 2007
5,121
The institution where I work gives 4 full ride academic scholarships per year. Now, there are a pretty fair number of kids who can put together need based and academic money to cover all their tution, but full freight, purely academic scholarships just aren't that common. If that's the kind of money your dd is going for, understand that it is probably even more competative than seeking a full-ride sports scholarship. Can you prepare her for that level of academic competion if she homeschools? If not, definitely leave her in school.

It really depends on the school. If you're going to try to go for the most competitive school you can probably make it into, yeah, that's hard. But for a very strong student willing to consider larger state schools and put some effort into the search, in general I'd say that the "average athlete" has a greater shot of getting "recruited" for academic merit than athletic merit. For many, developing that potential may be more in reach than becoming one of the best in any sport.

Although I agree that any full ride scholarships (no matter what for) are relatively rare, between need based aid and merit aid, a very strong student can get pretty good packages if they're willing to search around and go a tier below the top schools they could consider.
 

jls1969

Member
Sep 27, 2007
105
Well...my dd is training L8 in region 3 and she is on what we believe to be an elite path. She is in 6th grade and a college scholarship is her goal. She works out 32 hours a week. We made the decision to homeschool in 5th grade--so far it is working out. My dd is also bright and we have started to think about high school. If I were in your shoes I would talk to her coach about the type of training it would take to get your daughter to be able to do gymnastics in college. If he honestly believes that this is an attainable goal for her, then maybe you can talk to the private school and they would be willing to work with her. Sometimes private schools are able to do those things. If can't happen and if you are thinking that she can be a National Marit Scholar, then it seems to me, that academics should be the priority and let gymnastics come second. At our gym, some of the sophmores are already putting together their recruitment ideas and by the junior year it is in full swing. Gymnastics--in all reality--will only last our girls through college, if they even make it that far. An outstanding college education will last her a lifetime. (Please don't anyone slam me for the "lasting through college" comment. I know the sport offers great lessons that the kids will carry with them for ever--this is just a specific situation I am referring to :))

As moms it is so hard to help our kids look at things from a different perspective. Your dd sounds like she has so much going for her. If her coach thinks it is a viable thing, then maybe look at the next step. If the coach thinks it is hard (I know it is a difficult jump from L8 to L9 on the bars), then maybe sit down with dd and have the coach try and talk realistically about what can be achieved.

I envy you that your dd has so many great things in her future---I hope it all goes in a way that everyone is happy with. Best of luck to you!
 

Aussie_coach

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I don't know so much about tthe US but in Australia Home school is an academic advantage. kids who are homeschooled tend to do much much better than those at a real school Homeschool kids learn to be self directed learners and dont rely on being spoon fed information. They do not have to try to learn in a classroom full of distractions, like disruptive kids. Also when they do school they are there to learn not to worry about who is friends with who, who sits with who and what everyone is wearing.

In itself this could give her an excellent academic advantage.

As for 2 a day workouts. yes this does seem unusual for a level 7 who is not headed for elite. But it could still be worthwhile to consider. How much does she love gymnastics? Is she one of those kids who wishes they could do it 24/7. Is she a very active kid who thrives on exersize? Or does she get tired easily? Is she one of those kids who is generally very healthy or does she get sick and/or injured easily?
 
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cher062

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I would talk to your coach to see what her chances are to get on a college team first and explain your concerns just as you have here. Then I would make decisions based on academic goals rather than gymnastic goals. For me I don't think I would choose Homeschooling in the high school years - those are the fun years and I wouldn't want my daughter to miss out on that for gymnastics sake unless she was this phenomenal gymnast with a gymnastic career ahead of her.
 
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