So What's This Homeschool Thing All About?

Since my daughter was in pre-school, the idea of homeschooling was always thrown up in the air. My husband has been pushing the idea a lot more than I have. I never had an issue with public school. Yes, you get some bullies, or the nasty preppy girls who think they are better than everyone else. You get the outcasts, the jocks, the nerds, the average joes....school has it all.

I grew up going to public school my entire life. I had my shares of ups and downs with it. I had some good years and so years I wish I could take back and redo over again. But all and all I was perfectly happy with the idea of public school for my children. Until my child actually went to public school.

I guess back when I was growing up, school was a bit different. Well, for starters, I grew up on a military base until I went to Jr High. So living my entire childhood on a base, schools were safer in a sense. We didn't hear about school shootings and crazy people lurking around the school yards. No perverts were ever a threat and we could walk to and from school at a young age unassisted.

It also seemed that we were taught things that made sense and were done in the simplest and fastest way possible to reach the correct answer without having to spend countless minutes figuring it out. I remember school being really easy for me and I liked it. The only subject I hated was math. Math was not my friend at all. We didn't life each other LOL.

But now, after sending my own daughter off to her first day of kindergarten, I realized school had changed. Now, we were being sent emails and phone calls and letters about possible threats in the area of the school. Phone calls were made saying the school was on lock down because of a nearby shooting in the neighborhood. Or that a man was sitting in his car outside the playground with no clothes on showing the little girls his body parts.

These things are so scary for a parent new to sending their child off to school for the first time. This was an eye opener that school just wasn't the way I remembered it being. And homeschooling felt like it should be talked about more in our family. Because for one reason, concern for safety. I know you cannot protect your child from everything, but sometimes, I sit and think about how maybe something could happen while she was at school and I couldn't be there to do anything about it or save her.

But another reason was after I started seeing the homework being sent home, I thought things were a bit off. The way the kids were learning things was so much more difficult than I remember learning them. But because it was kindergarten, I decided it couldn't be so bad and maybe it was just the teacher being harder on the kids and trying to see how advanced they could be.

Now that she moved on to first grade, I noticed her homework became more and more difficult. I started getting frustrated that it would take me a good 20 mins to figure out some of her homework lessons and I still couldn't understand what the crap she was supposed to do or what the answer was supposed to be. And that made me mad. I think I'm a pretty smart person {I got almost all straight A's in school...except for math} and I knew I should be able to help my first grader on some simple homework.

So after the school year ended, we decided that we are going to try homeschool. Not because we want our daughter to have an "easy" answer because that it not it. But because we are just not liking what the core curriculum seems to be offering. It made me sad to hear that some of the mothers I talk to in my daughter's class said they are requesting their children be held back in first grade again next year. They said that first grade just confused them too much and they are not comfortable with sending their child on until they feel the child can understand this new way of learning and doing things.

I didn't feel that was right. That's not how it should be. But it is. So we decided that this coming year, we would like to try and homeschool. There are a lot of reasons why we are going to go for the homeschool deal this time around. I like to try all options. A lot of the things mentioned above are all true, yet not all completely the reason. I just want to see as well if this is what would be better for our family. And I'm terrified!

Yes, I am terrified to start homeschool and yet, I'm also not. I have so many mixed feeling about it. Since I never thought we would homeschool, even though it's been something thrown up in the air for a while, I keep wondering if I'm good enough to teach her. Will she learn enough from me? Am I going to be able to be patient like her last teacher? What the heck am I supposed to teach her? Where do I start? How am I going to be able to handle focusing on her with two other little ones crying and needing attention non-stop all day?

I have so many questions. We have chosen a curriculum so at least we have that to start looking into. I figured we would probably do about 4-5 hours a day of school. That should cover almost a day of public school scheduling. Most of me friends who homeschool say they never go over an hour a day. I was told one hour is probably the most to go. Two hours would be pushing it. But I don't think that would work for us. I'm glad t does work for those who suggested it, but I think I need more like the above 4-5 hours to cover things I would like to do and go over. So that is where we would start.

My biggest concern is being her teacher, trying to give her full attention with the two babies needing me so much. That is a big issue that I have to figure out how to juggle them all at the same time with that. But I'm sure I can figure it out and deal with some sort of  schedule. 

So for all those homeschooling moms {and dads} out there....how do you do it? Do you have a schedule set so that your little ones don't interfere with lessons? I'm looking to take in all the advice I can get. And hopefully, we will have a very successful school year coming up.

8 comments

  1. Katherine LacabeJul 17, 2014, 9:32:00 AM

    I don't homeschool but I used to be a substitute teacher (the economy threw me into a different career a couple of years ago). I hope the homeschooling works for you. I can understand the fears you are/were having about security. I think a lot of the reason that it seems scarier and less safe to send kids to school these days is because we are hearing about the things that are going on and we didn't used to. I remember when I was in elementary school we got letters about a predator being around my school and I was even approached in my neighborhood by someone who wanted me to watch him get off. It's all much more open and in the public eye than it used to be. As far as the curriculum - I agree. As a teacher... wow! Some of the stuff they try to teach really is just crazy. I don't know how old you are or where you grew up - but when I was growing up in California there was no curriculum. Every teacher taught what they wanted to teach and how they wanted to teach it. Now teachers have to go through thick books and teach it just the way it is in there - mostly because that is how it will appear on the state tests and they want their kids to pass. THAT is the big problem in education today. Anyway, I hope the home schooling works and I can't wait to read about it!

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  2. I was homeschooled all the way through and I just finished kindergarten, homeschooling, my daughter. Kindergarten is easy, though. I could just wing most of it and we'd get done everything in two or three hours and she's still well ahead of where she should be for her age. First grade is probably going to be a bit harder and I'm planning to write out a schedule.

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  3. That's great Rebecca! My siblings and I were homeschooled for 2 years in elementary school and my mom used the Seton curriculum and brought lesson plans and they even graded our tests for us. We had a schedule but we were each 23 months apart so my mom didn't have any babies to take care of. It was a good experience for us but I think we were all glad when my parents decided to put us in private school! Hope homeschooling works out for you and your little girl!

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  4. How exciting!! I homeschooled both my girls from Kindergarten all the way through high school. I graduated my oldest daughter two years ago and now she is entering nursing school this fall (by the way...she has a 4.0 gpa at Sam Houston State University :)...I'm a proud mama. My youngest daughter will be a senior this year which is making me very sad. It is my last year of homeschooling and being with my baby :( I can tell you that I have cherished everyday of homeschooling them. When my girls were in Elementary School, we did about 4-5 hours, but we did a lot of hands on activities, crafts, experiments, etc... If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to email me. I love encouraging fellow homeschool mom :)

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  5. We've been doing informal homeschooling since March. It was a real struggle at first. I felt she wasn't respecting me, she felt I wasn't respecting her, and I just got more and more strict. I realized I couldn't do it anymore so I just reflected on the situation for a while. Then I decided to go into super patient teacher mode. Just try my best to act like the best Kindergarten teacher in the world would act. Each night I'd hype myself up to do the best I could the next day. I was still feeling guilty, confused, and terrible a lot of the time. But it got better over time. Now we have a good rhythm going. And honestly, I feel like I've grown as a parent and as a person. I don't mean to make it sound like starting homeschooling is like some sort of boot camp. It might have been more difficult for us because of Kaylee special needs and her still recovering from brain swelling. But just saying, if it does start out hard or seem impossible at first, stay with it. You'll find a way that works. I love homeschooling Kaylee; seeing her progress and seeing her learn new concepts is priceless. I love it when she finally grasps a concept and is so proud of herself, and so happy that I'm sharing that moment with her. We are going to try public school this September and I'm sad to stop homeschooling, but I'm hoping to be able to go back to college and finish getting my degree.

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  6. Congrats, on this journey! I'm also taking on this homeschooling journey, and very very nervous about it! My sons learning is all in my hands, wow!! Maybe we can swap stories and help each other out. PS: I hate math too! When he gets past third grade I'm going to need a tutor just to teach him. LOL

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  7. Oh, YAY! Good choice mama! You won't regret it! We've been homeschooling for 4, going on 5, years now and my best advice is this: Embrace it. Choose it out of deep conviction. When you are convicted about the why, it'll carry you through the bumps you'll hit! Also, this will fall on deaf ears for this year, but keep it on file in the back of your head: Don't recreate a little school in your house! It's been a journey for me over the last 4 years, but I can say we're so much happier in our experience since we ditched the idea of recreating school at home and embraced a deeper, more organic meaning to what an "education" is and can be. This last year our HS experience didn't look like public school at all- and I don't just mean in the hours we keep. We ditched text books and curriculum and did tons of reading. I know that sounds crazy now, but a few years from now, once you have your confidence, you'll be amazed at how much the public school mind set had a hold on you and how happy you all will be to be free from it! Blessings!!

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  8. I'm going to share the label links to HS related posts on my blog- some of them might be a blessing and encouragement (and maybe even a practical help)! http://rensredeemed.blogspot.com/search/label/Education-%20Resource, http://rensredeemed.blogspot.com/search/label/Homeschool%20Jouney, http://rensredeemed.blogspot.com/search/label/Philosophies%20of%20Homeschooling

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