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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

 101:How to Begin Homeschooling

1. The Decision and Answer (Q: Can I do it?)
Homeschooling is a major decision that should be taken to our Heavenly Father in prayer. What's your vision? Listening and obeying the Holy Spirit is the key factor.

2. Q: How do I do it?
I've been in this boat. You can read  more about our experience found under Why We Home SchoolToday there is an ever-increasing variety of curriculum- from traditional textbooks, to specific homeschool-christian curriculum with correspondence courses. Thankfully, there are some seasoned mom's who have put together books to throw out to us as lifelines. My favorite is The Ultimate Guide To Homeschooling: Year 2001 Edition Book & CD by Debra Bell.  What makes it so special? I found this book packed with helpful information which answered a lot of my own 5w's and H questions. Here is a list of the ten parts covered in the book along with a overview of topics covered:
  • Homeschooling: Is It for You ( advantages/disadvantages to homeschooling, Single Parents,Special Needs* (see below), careers,and six ingredients of a successful homeschool)
  • Choosing Curriculum (how do I decide,homeschooling on a shoestring)
  • Organizing and Planning (setting up a learning environment, maintaining control of your day)
  • Prevent Burnout (Raise an independent learner, share the load, fantastic field trips)
  • What to Teach-When and How (subject-by-subject guidelines)
  • Homeschooling Teens (planning a course of study, college-at-home)
  • Computers in the Homeschool (what hardware should I buy, what software should I buy)
  • Creative Solutions (toddlers and other blessed challenges, transitioning from school to home, motivating the reluctant learner)
  • Measuring Your Success (are we on target, methods of assessment)
  • Resource Guide (homeschooling organizations and publications, academic/athletic contests and completions)
Did that help answer some of your 5w's and H questions? It did? Great! Now run, skip, fly, whatever you need to do and get this book. I highly recommend it. Did I mention it comes with a CD loaded with all the info?

3. Q: I pray for patience already. How much will I need to homeschool?
A: A LOT. I don't describe myself as a patient person. I possess little to no patience but I am fully aware of it and constantly work at seeking guidance through prayer and reading. When my oldest was less than two my husband and I noticed something very special about him. He was quick rambunctious learner (he knew the alphabet and sounds), and  mover (He walked right at nine months. I know poor us as first timers!). *By three we noticed he was not only quick but fidgety with a short attention span. We came to grips that our son has ADD. We knew we did not want to medicate our son or place him in any behavior-modification programs. After praying and discussing with my husband the idea of homeschooling, I went and researched everything I could about learning styles. Most of it was too analytical and drawn out. I couldn't figure out which style I was let alone his. I do, however, know who I am, most of the time:). I finally stumbled upon two great books called The Myth of the A.D.D. Child by Thomas Armstrong, PhD., and Calm and Compassionate Children by Susan Usha Dermond. Every year I crack open both books to get some insight. These books have tremendously helped us now more than ever in our home since we've found out our youngest has ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder).

4.  Q: Will my Child become a social misfit 
A: Let me ask you this: Where did you learn appropriate social behavior? School? Where did you learn to appreciate folks who dress differently, act differently, think differently? School? Where did you learn proper etiquette? 101 course in the cafeteria. OK...so you probably understand what I'm driving at:). Use tools such as Homeschooling support groups, co-ops, community events, blogs-hi:), and fantastic field trips.
5. Q: I already have problem keeping up with the housework. How can I get it done and home school?
A: I have problems with housework. And I've had it long before the idear of homeschooling. Yes, I am admitting that my house is not spotless. I sing the "clean up" song to my boys after activities. (sigh) One of my boys (it will be my youngest), will sing it to me one of these days. So I ran, literally to buy the book Organizing From the Inside Out by Julie Morgenstern. I can be honest and say I haven't applied this book in my life like the Bible. But I have found great insight. Baby Steps. Laundry/clean bathroom day in my house are Mondays and Fridays. Saturday is my baking day. In between it all is family pick-up. During school on Tuesdays and Thursdays we have Critical Thinking and Work Habits, which includes housework. 
My tip: Be open and honest with your family and say "I need help."

So I hope this has given some insight into homeschooling. If there's any guru's out there by all means leave a comment for us!  If you have further questions click below a zap me an email. I'd love to hear from ya!

God Bless

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4 comments: on "101:How to Begin Homeschooling"

Erin J said...

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mother plus teacher said...

This is a great post. I agree with all of it. My son is actually quite hyper,one of the many reasons I took him out of public school (pre-k). I think we all (homeschoolers) have a hard time keeping things clean and organized. It works great having the kids help out. I have gained so much patience since homeschooling, although I stil lhave my days!

legendswife said...

Thank mpt! My oldest was tested this past spring to see if he was kindergarten ready, and the gal suggested us placing him into first grade. Great to hear yes. For my son, no. He turned six this past fall, which would make him the youngest in his grade (the book Freakonomics by Stephen Dubner and Steven Levitt have great points about this problem). He's ADD, and I know for a fact with that and age, he would be labeled "disruptive". People need to place labels where they belong..on food!

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