homeschooling

Our First Week Homeschooling Update

We survived! Our first week as home schooler’s went just as planned, great! I was a bit nervous to begin with but I found that I actually enjoy this versus sending them to a traditional school. We get all of our work done with in 3 hours which leaves time for playing outside and other fun projects. We ended up only having to do a couple of subject books for a couple days during this week and probably every week as we flew through the lessons quicker than anticipated. For our schooling we need to do 2 lessons per week for each subject to stay at a even pace. I thought that it might be too much but not at all the case.
As a mom I found that I am enjoying teaching my kids school work even more than I thought I would. At home there are no boundaries for all of the ways you can teach no regulations on when you have to do schooling its very flexible. We are able to do double work leaving us ahead of schedule and more time for other electives like Art or even to practice more of other subjects.
We don’t do a set schedule, instead school is after breakfast so when everyone wakes up we get into gear and get school work done! Having always sent my kids to a traditional school in the past I always hated getting up at the break of dawn and having to rush around getting everyone ready & out the door by a certain time. We always ended up cutting it real close with the schools tardy policy which where we live results in a court date that may lead to a variety of punishments. I think its absurd because not everyone is perfect to fit in that mold. Some of us are naturally all over the place and so are our kids! I feel a relief to not feel that threat of getting fined money because our kids were late to school one too many times. As I think about it more I have come to the conclusion that kids need to have more sleep than they are allowed to get by schools starting so early in the mornings not knowing if that kid is sleeping through the night or if they are having trouble falling asleep; so my point is that my kids can sleep in and rest for the day ahead of them. There is no stressful rushing around in the morning, no arguing with them to get dressed and stay that way. Most of the time my kids would have eaten at school unless they were late then they had to rush and eat at home. Something quick at that. Now they get that balance meal no worry about filling a time slot for school.
Before school started I asked both of my boys if there was anything that they would want to learn about besides what I would be teaching them. They told me they wanted to: learn to cook, learn to do art, learn about animals, & learn about bugs. Since we are learning at home and since we also have more of a flexibility when it comes to learning maybe they should learn about things that interest them also. In school it is a set curriculum plan that isn’t individualize per student instead it is for the whole class where everyone learns the same thing. I think that this approach will be better for them in the long haul. They are getting the main curriculum and something they can be excited about just for them.
Our first week has been great and enjoyable as I predict we will have many more great weeks to come. I know they won’t all be perfect some weeks I will think about pulling my hair out or I may scream into a pillow; but I think that it will continue to be less stressful than that stressful morning rush for traditional school and less stressful than dealing with all the things that come with sending kids to traditional schools. We are going to have fun the best that we can and just do homeschooling the way that works for us!

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Questions for you: Is anyone else doing home schooling for the first time? Were any of you homeschooling already? How have you liked it? What differences do you like doing school at home versus in a traditional school building? Feel free to comment below.

Motherhood

Life Update: Homeschooling

Very busy week for our family so I had to put a hold on fun crafts for a bit. There have been quite a lot of cases of COVID accumulating in our area some hitting too close for comfort. My husband and I sat down and had a very long talk and after much discussion we decided that we felt like we were being put between a rock and a hard place to send our kids back to school. We have a new baby who has just turned 5 months old; he stayed in the NICU for a month of his life and was born early on top of everything else. Then we have two other boys one of which has asthma that tends to get worse when he gets sickness especially coughs. We feel like taking that kind of gamble by sending the older ones back to school and I back to the school for work that we were gambling with their little lives. That isn’t fair of us to do. Call us crazy but we are just not willing to take that chance so we will be pulling our kids out of public schooling and start homeschooling for the year fairly soon.
I have been working all week to figure out how to do get started on this new journey of ours; figuring out what I have to do to get us going. Every state has their own set of rules/laws for homeschooling, we live in Iowa. I do believe I have gotten everything ready just to get the forms filled out and turned in with everything needed and then gotta order our curriculum for the year. My two older boys will be doing school curriculum through Master Books faith based education. The oldest is going into 1st grade and his brother is on his second year of preschool; in Iowa preschool isn’t necessarily a grade but he will still need to be ready for Kindergarten next year so we are doing preschool anyways as he just did 3 year old preschool this past year. After doing a fair amount of research on a faith based curriculum I landed on Master Books; I may add things to it during the year for that extra amount of learning depends on how things are going.
Today some thoughts passed through my head as today was the opening day for our schools registration online; I thought long and hard and wanted to make sure we were doing the right thing by pulling them out completely as our school is offering a remote learning program for some of the families in the school if they see it is necessary. The real disappointing part of this was learning that it will not be offered to everyone just some. That was part of our decision against staying in the school as hey if we were one of the chosen families we would be able to stay at the school. Except they only offered it for our 1st grader so that meant that our preschooler wouldn’t be able to do that. And then some other worries crossed my mind; we would be taking up a place for some other family that may not even have the ability to home school outside of this current school due to whatever reason, the fact that it wasn’t guaranteed for all families who applied, we would not be able to move at our own pace (I was thinking well what if we get behind would we have to go to the school to catch up, defeating the purpose), & then finally what happens if the school decides to cancel that program or something similar that requires us to come in to the school anyways also defeating the purpose of the staying at home option. Our family like so many other cannot afford to gamble with our children’s lives they are too precious to take those possible life & death chances.
This wasn’t a decision we took lightly when deciding this new homeschooling adventure means we lose my income at the school and probably means my husband will have to work more. We weren’t super concerned with our jobs being the problem with all that’s going on either it was more, kids are not going to keep their masks on at school and for everyone in our family especially the safety of our immune compromised kids (new baby/asthma) it wasn’t worth it. My husband would be the only one going out unless we all had doctors appointments or to the store where only one of us goes and we sanitize and mask up always! When he’s at work he wears gloves and a mask all day long and we felt that was something we could live with in me not having a job as we have to have some income. It is not our hope to have to struggle to pay bills for the rest of our lives but I would rather have a struggle with money than to watch my kids go through this awful virus and it affecting them the rest of their lives if they survive it. That’s not easy to think about and I felt so weird typing it just now… but it’s true. Money is necessary but it is not more important than my children’s lives; you can always make more money but there is only one of each of my kids ever! I would rather keep my kids as healthy as possible even if I have to forfeit the best job I have ever had in my life. I love it but I LOVE my kids more!
If there is anyone else kind of going through the same things know that you are not alone. I am having a hard time with my decision in the sense that this is NOT a easy decision. Hopefully we can return back to school next year that is if everyone wants to go back because I may just rock at this home school thing. Let’s hope that is the case. I could see it as a permanent thing, maybe! Feel free to comment below if anyone has any tips for homeschooling or maybe you have a question for me. As always thanks for reading. Drop a like below and follow this blog. Also follow me on social media and check out some of my other posts if you enjoyed reading this one!