Hello all! My name is Amber and I am a stay at home mommy of 6 year old Robert, almost 4 year old Kylie and 10 month old Diego. I have just recently decided to begin homeschooling Kylie....mainly because she blows my mind at how smart she is! I haven't been pushing "school" on her, but she watches various videos (Alphabet Factory by Leap Frog.....she LOVES it!) and listens as I'm doing homework with Robert, who is enrolled in Kindergarten at Petroglyph...in doing these things she has learned all of her letters, what they look like and the sounds they make. She can count to 20 in english and is already almost there in spanish (thanks to Dora and Diego). She counts everything and points out letters everywhere we go....I figured I would run with it.....she wants to learn, she wants to go to "school". So I'm ready to start teaching her....but I am nervous that I can't do a good job.....I used to be an early preschool teacher at a local day care and was thrown into a classroom full of mostly 2 year olds and had NO TRAINING at all on teaching...it was so scary....I was supposed to teach a number of things, create a curriculum and follow it....but didn't know what I was doing.....so it scares me that I am trying to throw myself back into the same type of situation.....being that I worked in a day care that is supposed to be highly recommended and I saw the 'behind the scenes' things that went on...I will NEVER put my children in a day care again....it is horrible to see the things that happen, the people that are in charge of watching the kids....basically, you have a high school diploma and can pass a fingerprint check then you are good to go...you can be a teacher......it's sad and scary..hopefully I am making the right decision though.....only time will tell. thanks for allowing me to join.....can't wait to meet up and get to know everyone!
Quoted from MnkyMama, posted March 11th, 2007, 5:36am at here
So I'm ready to start teaching her....but I am nervous that I can't do a good job.I will NEVER put my children in a day care again....basically, you have a high school diploma and can pass a fingerprint check then you are good to go...you can be a teacher......it's sad and scary..
Well, all you need to homeschool your children is a high school diploma. No fingerprint checks, though.
Our 3 kids have been homeschooled for almost 4 years. I released my sons from public school at the beginning of 2nd grade and we have no plans to send our daughter to public school ever.
You may want to lean more toward self-directed learning, eclectic homeschooling or unschooling for your daughter. She sounds like a 'sponge' that is eager to learn at her own pace, with little, if any, encouragement by you, as her 'teacher'.
First of all take a deep breath. What you're feeling now is completely normal. Those fluttery feelings of panic, those creeping thoughts of doubt. Those are the New Homeschooler Jitters, and we all get them. I have even spoken to people who have been homeschooling for years who sometimes get a case of them. The thing to remember, here, is that it will pass. I don't know what kind of personality you are, but some of us read, voraciously, everything about homeschooling we can get our hands on; some of us pull quietly into ourselves and think long and hard about what we want for our children and how to accomplish that; others of us reach out to community for support; and then there are those who combine the above, and other, approaches until they find a way to soothe those anxieties.
Another thing to keep in mind is that Homeschooling doesn't have to be what most people think it is. It doesn't have to be about doing "school" at home from 8-3 every day with 1 hour devoted to 7 subjects. Of course it CAN be that way, and for some people it is...And if that's the route you want to go there are endless curriculum options out there to help you along your way. But Homeschooling can be amorphous and free from. There are just as many ways to homeschool your child as there are ways to parent, meaning odds are stacked in your favor that you'll find something that is a great fit for your family. Before I started homeschooling my son, I had no idea how many different ways of homeschooling there are. It can be overwhelming, but also very liberating at the same time. Do some research and talking, and you're sure to find your way.
Lastly, remember that your daughter is still a babe. She's not even four yet. She has all her life to have formal lessons. Right now her job is to learn through exploration and play. I totally understand your concerns for her. My own son amazed me with the things he could do at 2 and 3, (at 5 he still does!) and sometimes I felt like I was failing him by not sitting him down for Math Lessons or what have you. But you know what? Math is everywhere. It's in sorting the tupperware lids, in playing with the water pressure in the sprinkler, in baking a batch of cookies and stacking coins. Reading is everywhere too...In pointing out the letters on signs, in making up silly rhymes, and singing your favorite songs. If your daughter brings you a work sheet and asks you if you can help her do it, by all means help her! But please don't feel you're short changing your little one by not doing anything formal yet. The world is huge, and the things about which to learn are innumberable...but she has her whole life to learn anything that she needs. Follow her lead, mama, and you won't go wrong.
Again, Welcome to the group! I hope you'll join us for a park day soon.
wow, thanks so much for all those great words of encouragement! I have been debating on pulling my son from Petroglyph and homeschooling him..he has problems with the kids and making friends....he is ADHD and recently got on medication....it helps SO much....but I'm wondering if learning at home would be better for him.....would he learn more? BUT.....with Kylie, 3 and Diego 10 months at home how can I handle all of them? Kylie and Robby fight all the time...Kylie is almost unmanageable by herself....how could I keep all of them with me all the time? I would go crazy......how do you all do it? Kylie instigates Robby until he is in tears.....I dread weekends and when he is off school......so anyone have some advice in that area?
I'm a mama to an only child, but we have loads of families with (what I consider to be) big families-3 or more kids. Of course there are challenges with homeschooling multiple children, and I'm not the one who can adequately advise you on how to handle them, but I know it can be done and it can be done well. This group has some wise and wonderful mamas (and papa's and grandparents... ) who are all chock full of compassion and advise.
My personal philosophy is that homeschooling is best for every kid, espeically those with learning disabilities or other special needs. New Mexico is pathetically low in the educational rankings, and the system simply can't take the time and care every child needs and deserves. I would say encourage to think about pulling Robby from public school, maybe at the end of the school year-though if he's truly miserable, you could pull him today if you wanted. With summer coming up in a couple of months, you could use that time to "practice" what you would do in the school year.
But that brings me to the homeschooling requirements. You are offically required to school 180 days but there is no requirement as to how those days must be labled or placed. Meaning you don't have to follow the public school calendar. You can decide when and how you're going to homeschool your children. NM is really a great state for homeschoolers.
Welcome to this journey! I know it's scary to think about, but it will all start to settle down soon enough.
The homeschool jitters is a normal part of the process. Just take a deep breath and know that everyone else has them too!! As far as your older son goes, I agree with everyone else that he's better off at home. The new report cards just came out for schools state by state and New Mexico got an "F"!! If you are worried that he's going to get behind, look up the standard on-line for kindergarden. I think you'll be suprised at how little they actually have to learn!
Carol, That's a terrific Blog. Very helpful for those thinking about homeschooling, new homeschoolers, and those 'oldies' just needed reaffirmation.
We experienced the same, "Well, maybe we should just wait...until a better time" syndrome. Really, it was just procrastination, fear of the unknown that delayed us from taking our sons out of public school and starting our homeschooling journey.
My husband is always afraid of 'rocking the boat' and he dug his heels in much longer than I did. Our sons started 2nd grade in August 2004 and things just started to spiraling downward with problems. God put the idea of homeschooling into my head around September. I felt like Noah being told to build an ark. "Why me, Lord?"
So, I dutifully did some homeschooling research online, in books, and through HSLDA to see what my rights and responsibilities were. I did this for several weeks, until I felt confidant. By the end of September, I was ready to pull my sons out of public school.
My husband kept saying, "Let's wait until after Thanksgiving....or Christmas...or New Years...etc." As if there was some magical date to begin our new journey.
On October 8th, I took the reigns by myself, and walked into public school with my sons, with the required 'removal from public school" homeschooling letters. And we walked home from that school with a huge weight lifted from off our shoulders!
For the next several weeks, I just basically 'public schooled' at home. For our family it was an adjustment period and this worked well for us and allowed us time to get used to the new arrangement while giving us some structure.
And then after Christmas we took some time off to de-school. We just enjoyed our freedom by going on more field trips, hiking, exploring, and reading just for fun.
That next phase made a world of difference. And we all started embracing homeschooling, as not just a part of our lives, as a way to educate our children.....but rather as a whole life approach. In everything we do there is something to learn.
Truly, just as my son Jackson tells strangers when we were out during the 'normal' school day doing our own hands-on whole-life learning,
Quoted from Twinville2, posted March 15th, 2007, 7:47pm at here
Carol, I felt like Noah being told to build an ark. "Why me, Lord?"
I thought of my sister when you said that, Lisa, so I'll share some of her story.
Many years ago, when her oldest daughter was in kindergarten, my sister was feeling a lot of stress over the problems they were having within the school system. She would send me very long emails about all the problems they were having, what she was doing about it, what the school wasn't doing about it, etc etc.
My sister is a very "mainstream" person, not at all the type to even consider homeschooling, so it was with some hesitation that I lent her a stack of homeschooling books (actually mailed them to her in California). She told me she spent all of that Christmas vacation reading them and crying, asking herself if she could possibly do this and agonizing over the decision. In the end, her daughter never went back to school after Christmas. I'm happy to say my sister now has a happy homeschooling brood of five kids and she's never looked back. But that first step can be SO painful and scary...
Wow! I needed to hear that, or read that rather! Thanks for sharing those stories. That is exactly where I am right now. Yes Elizabeth, that first step for me is a scary one too. Why is this such a scary thing? That is also me Lisa, not one to rock the boat and I've always been taught to stick to the "status quo"....(reminds me of "High School Musical," ha ha!) Can't wait to meet you all!
All of this really helps....I am still debating in my own mind and with 90% of everyone in my family about whether or not to pull Rob out of school and homeschool him. He is ADHD and anyone that has a child with that knows how hard it is for kids with that to make and keep friends. Rob is doing good now that he is on medication, thank goodness, but he still has somewhat of a hard time.....
And, for those of you with older kids....what do like high school aged kids do...I mean, part of high school is the dances and such.....do homeschool kids just miss out on this part of "life" if they aren't invited by a friend who is in school? I mean, high school had so many memories for me.....I think my experiences there made me who I am today....so I couldn't imagine keeping my kids from experiencing that.......
I've also looked at kids in like private schools...and seen how most of them have some what gone wild after getting into the "real world"....couldn't this happen with home school children as well?
I don't mean to upset anyone, I'm just curious...I've been thinking of so much....it's hard....ugh.....so hard...lol.....at least from all of these stories I'm hearing everyone goes through this.....