Wednesday, October 24, 2018
I never thought I would be a homeschooling mother. Much less teaching three kids. The decision to home-school our children came about quite suddenly. Our Bug was in preschool and Sunny was still a babe. I kept noticing all the bad habits Bug was picking up. And the germs. And how she started shutting down when things didn't go the way she thought/wanted them to. After many conversations Bug finally told us that there were several boys in her class that were being very mean and sometimes violent to her. Right about this time California started its pro-vaccination campaign. Our family has a history of vaccination reactions that require us to skip them. Reasons that are not entirely my own to share there for I wont. While we could get a medical exemption I was hesitant to keep my child in a school system I had no faith in. The large class sizes, lack of supervision or discipline, and really mean kids were not my ideal learning situation. So we started to explore our options. The first year we tried a long distance through the mail school. I quickly realized that I needed more supervision to keep me on track. Still to this day we would rather do all our "book" work on one day and all the fun hands on stuff the rest of the week. Another down side was this school was super expensive. With me staying home to teach the kids we were down to a single income and the cost was killing us. The second year Bug transitioned to our local charter school. We would meet with her Teacher once a month and she would make sure we were sticking to the state standards. This is one of the biggest problems I have for this system. They very closely tell me what I can and cannot teach. And when I have to teach these things. In California that means common core. Which is harder for me to teach since it is not how I was taught. One thing I love is that since this is part of the public school system it is free. They actually give me and allotted amount of money to spend on supplies of my choice. Any parent will appreciate this with the amount of arts, crafts, and science experiments children love to do. This is our third year and we have stayed with our charter school. Also enrolling Sunny in Kindergarten. Bug is now in 2nd. While I expected it to be a little harder to teach two different grades at the same time the biggest challenge is keeping my very active almost 2 year old out of our stuff and entertained while we do our work. I might be slightly blessed with two very smart eager learners. They usually will do any and all work that I ask of them. Since I have two kids to keep track of I decided to meet with our teacher weekly to help keep us on task and she also helps provide me with ideas to help the girls in anything they need it with. The hardest part of homeschooling for me is keeping my own head out of it. My anxiety shows itself in the strangest ways. You know that nagging worry we get as parents that we are messing up our children. Now I also have the worry that I am making them fail at learning too. Meeting weekly with the teacher has helped that feeling immensely. Then if anything is going off course or we didn't finish she is right there to stear us back on course. Watching them learn is so rewarding and worth all the stress. The way their little faces light up when they get a right answer or a difficult concept comes clear is magical. And it can be a lot of fun if you let it. How many opportunities does an adult get to play with water beads or make playdoh.