homelearning: one year later

It’s been one year since I posted that we had DONE it: unenrolled our kids in public school and registered for homeschooling. Oh my, was I scared!

One year later, what does life look like here?
As I type, Adam is playing a science game on the computer. To be honest, I’m not exactly sure which one it is, I can hear it but I’m not standing over him….this is his downtime and he is permitted to play anything on his list. Noah is playing with Legos at the Lego table. Lily is laying beside where I sit, alternating between reading words she sees on my screen and sucking her thumb (oh the irony!). Seth is playing in the playroom the way he does (multiple toys from multiple sets/shows/stories all rolled together in some elaborate world he has created in his mind). It is that time of day I’m a litle sleepy and everyone else is a little bit quiet (hooray).

In regards to the 2013-2014 school year (our very first homeschooling year), what a success! I honestly could not have expected things to go as well as they did.
Adam is reading!!! Anyone who follows along knows that Adam was our main reason for homeschooling to start with. He needed one-on-one attention, the time to master skills and some major work in phonics. I cannot express my relief and my joy when, a few weeks ago, the kid just started reading…everything! I can’t take all the credit, (and some I even give to his stellar speech therapist this past year) but we are thrilled with this development. His pediatrician told me at our last ADHD checkup that he believes we have done the right thing by Adam by choosing to homeschool. He felt that a very different child sits before him than last year. Adam’s anxiety is under control, and so much of his sensory seeking is better. I have no words to say how encouraging this was to hear and how happy I am for my sweet son that life is a little bit easier  when we live a homelearning lifestyle.  As for Noah, he is right on target in his subjects and has even progressed up a grade ahead in math. This doesn’t “matter” (I hear you, homeschool moms) but at the same time, to the naysayers who couldn’t believe I could do it: this homeschooling thing is working! Hooray!

As I type this,we haven’t started back to school officially yet. We have done some summer school to keep some of ours skills but we haven’t been sticklers about days/hours/subjects. We have taken all of the last three weeks off. If kids have done schoolwork it has been on their own.  I have to have some time to plan, right? (And I think I needed the break more than they did since we have schooled since last summer!)
I have an ‘easing in’ week ready to go soon but we just aren’t that worried about it. We will start when we do and I know it’ll be a great year.

I’m just not afraid anymore.
I know homeschooling is the right thing for my kids. I know we made the right decision. The doubt is gone.

(That doesn’t mean I don’t ever doubt my abilities; any one does and every one of us should do self-assessments anyway. But just like I know I was meant to parent these children, I know homeschooling was the path we were meant to take.)

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This week, public schools in our area returned to school. I have several friends posting on social media sources their sorrow at their kids leaving for school, their worry and sadness and lack of peace at sending them to school (“school in a building” as my kids like to say). How much I remember that feeling! I believed so whole-heartedly they were supposed to go to school and I was supposed to “get used to” that feeling. I’m so glad I was wrong. And to those who are in doubt about their schooling choice: trust yourself. It is okay to keep your kids home for learning.

As many of my fellow homeschool bloggers post at this time of year, I plan to do a post on our curriculm choices and such. We also are participating in a weekly co-op for the first time this year. We will still have ballet, baseball, soccer, gymnastics, and Awana. We will be back to our field trip adventures and library dates and science experiements so soon.
Stay tuned for more homeschool posts on another day.

 

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