I was not always onboard with homeschooling our kids when my husband first mentioned it to me. I didn’t want to be responsible for the educational success or failure of my children and I certainly didn’t want to mess up their reading abilities with my failed attempt at being a teacher, since I have never felt called to BE a teacher. I just didn’t feel I had the patience to do any such thing!
Some things happened to change our minds:
- My oldest son appeared to have what some would label as ADHD, and would react very strongly to sugars of any kind when he was nearing school age. My husband and I were unwilling to medicate him when we felt he simply needed discipline and structure in order to focus within a classroom setting.
- We were living in Louisville, KY at the time our oldest was hitting Kindergarten. There was going to be a required test that my son needed to take in order for the ‘powers that be’ to determine what school he was eligible to attend. Options ranged from elite privates, to magnet, to classical, to plain ol’ public. His test scores would help to place my 5yr old in the proper classroom. I thought this was just nuts!
- Even the public school had fees and such that were required for my son to attend. I wondered what my taxes were doing??
I believe there are several benefits with Homeschooling your children.
- I get to be personally involved with my children’s education.
- I know the teacher’s worldview and her teaching goals (because I am she).
- I can see what is ‘sticking’ and what needs more review. The kids aren’t pushed beyond what they can handle and their time is not wasted on things they ‘get’ quickly.
- Our classroom is small, even with all 5 of our children sitting at the school table, so the students get plenty of one-on-one time with their teacher.
- No child is ever left behind, EVER!
- The educational materials are tailored to each child’s specific learning styles, which helps them on their educational journey.
- I now how the school year is progressing and we are able to take breaks when Daddy is home for a long weekend, promoting family time and bonding.
- We are able to do as many or as little field trips as our schedule allows.
- We can get involved in any number of group classes or coops we desire.
- As a military family that moves around A LOT, homeschooling provides some consistency for our children.
- My children get to hear about Jesus Christ is a positive light, fully integrated into their education, something the public school setting refuses to allow.
I prefer the classical model, using an open schedule, allowing for variations according to the attitudes and needs of my classroom. Having a military background, we “practice like we fight” around here. I know that I want to prepare my children for future jobs where they will need to perform and adjust to someone elses imposed schedule; they will need to follow a time clock and someone elses itinerary, so I want to teach them how to do these things while they are young. I also like to be creative within our classroom or outside the classroom, yet I believe that paper and pencil are still necessary. Interacting with other is also key for development, so we incorporate group things as well.
I also do an eclectic curriculum, simply because I can do this cheaper than getting a pre-cut curriculum for the large number of students we have in our classroom. I have stumbled through many different books, trying to find the best options for my kids and I would happily share that with anyone who wants to know what worked, and what didn’t.
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- Bible (Show Me Thy Ways)
- History (Tapestry of Grace, Y1)
- Science (Exploring Creation, Zoology 3)
- Spelling (Sequential Spelling)
- Latin (Prima Latina)
- Literature (Tapestry of Grace, Y1)
- Geography (Tapestry of Grace, Y1)
- Art (How Great Thou Art)
- Typing (Typing Instructor for Kids)
- English: BJU English 5
- Math: Horizons Math 5
- English: BJU English 4
- Math: Horizons Math 4
- Handwriting: Horizons Penmanship 4
- English: BJU English 2
- Math: Horizons math 2
- Handwriting: Horzons math 2
- Phonics: Horizons Phonics & Reading
- Handwriting: Horizons Penmanship
- Horizons Preschool Set
My oldest is currently in 4th grade, so this is not a bridge we have crossed yet. We chose to homeschool because it was the best option for us. We also want our children to have the best options for college and if they need a diploma to accomplish college, then we sill send them to an appropriate high school wherever we happen to be at that time. Looking at the current trends of public education, I just don’t know if that really is the best option for any child. Many more colleges are opening their doors to homeschool students. They are finding that these students can think logically and perform better than their publicly educated counterparts.
The whole reason for doing what we do is to give our kids the best education available to them, and that includes college or whatever higher educational level they want to attain. So our decisions as parents and educators keep those goals in mind.
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