Thursday, March 10, 2011

Homeschooling. The Beginning.

I've been homeschooling the kids for the last month or so.  One day I'll go into detail about the reasons, but for now I'll say that we're very unhappy with our local school, the administration and many of the children that attend the school.  The administration also refused our request for a transfer to another school.  We can't afford a private school, and I'm not sure that's a solution we would like anyway.

So, we're homeschooling.  It's a decision we didn't take lightly.  This means that I won't be able to work outside the home, and with Fred's travel/work schedule this means very little, if any “me” time. 

I truly think we've make the best decision.  The Padawan is enjoying what we're doing, even if I have to remind him that we're homeSCHOOLING, not just playing video games and building with Lego.  The Princess really liked school, so I have to try a little harder to make it interesting for her.  She also likes that we can do whatever we want to, or not do each day.

I've been browsing many homeschooling websites, and took the advice of many sites to not buy too many things all at once.  I have quite a collection of small workbooks that we've used before, and took advantage of a few websites printable worksheets; but we finally went to an educational store and bought math workbooks and English workbooks comprised of Canadian curriculum.  We've also used the Library and internet for many resources. 

The kids have chosen topics they would like to learn more about.  They've also decided that planting a garden (flowers in the front and veggies in the back) would be a great idea.  We're also going to buy a membership to the Science Centre and use that often.  We’re also going to the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida in May and plan to include a stop at Delaware Bay on the way back to participate in the Horseshoe crab census/survey, this is something that the kids have wanted to do for a while.  We watched a documentary about the relationship between Horseshoe Crabs and Red Knots (birds) that has stuck in their minds for over a year.  Fred and I are pretty excited about this too!

But getting going in the morning is a challenge.  I have to focus on getting our school-work done in the morning, first thing.  The kids are most productive then, and there's less arguing about what needs to be accomplished.  It seems like we've had so many distractions lately getting in the way.  We took an impromptu trip to Montreal, while Fred was working there.  (We did learn quite a bit, stuff we wouldn't have been able to do if we had been stuck at home)  The weather hasn't been cooperating either.  I was hoping for a few days of snowy perfect weather, to use for animal tracking.  But lately it's been miserable and raining.  We go outside when we can, but I can't wait for Spring. 

Most days I feel like I have no idea what I'm doing!  But the kids are happy, they're learning and we're taking this one day at a time. 

1 comment:

  1. I think you already got half the battle down: knowing when your kids are most productive. It's all about scheduling your day around that time period. In some ways you have to be laid back about distractions as they can often lead to a whole new path of learning. That's the beauty of homeschool: you never know what will spawn learning next! I love your plan to use trips and the like to give your kids experiential learning opportunities. I really think it's what we're missing in public education and one of the strengths of homeschool.
    Good luck!