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I think I just became a homeschooler

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I have just had a major revelation. My oldest ds is 4.5, so not even school aged yet. But homeschooling is on my radar for next year and with all the doubts and trepidations about this decision, it really is nice to be slapped in the face with reality.

I'm not usually one to care about what people say my kids "should be" doing. For the most part they hit their milestones on time or ahead, and they're healthy. But when our "parents as teachers" home educator gets on my case because my 2yo doesn't want to dress himself or I haven't taught my son how to do buttons and snaps, for a minute I get panicky, and I wonder if I'm not doing what I'm supposed to. But then I remember, my now 2yo WILL dress himself eventually. Plus, my 4yo walked in the room the other day and proclaimed that he taught himself how to snap his pants, and he was so PROUD of HIMSELF!

I know a little about unschooling, and it's just not something I'm comfortable with because my kids, although very bright, aren't really asking to learn anything or especially curious or industrious on their own....so it just doesn't feel right to me (right now!) Little by little, I am seeing that my kids will learn what they need to when they need to.

So, as I'm looking at homeschooling next year, and looking at curriculums...seeing all the stuff that he is "supposed" to know as a kindergartener, I again panic. Oh no! I have never taught him about patterns! He's 4 and I haven't showed him how to put things in a pattern! Well, just now, before my very eyes....he took his magnadoodle and a circle magnet and square magnet and said, "Mom look! Circle, square, diamond, circle, square, diamond, etc." Again, PROUD of HIMSELF that he had figured this out. What am I worrying about??

Is this what homeschooling is all about? Is this what unschooling is all about? What a real pleasure it was to watch my son discover something on his own rather than "look what the teacher showed me at school today."

I think I just became a homeschooler
post #2 of 6
This is totally tangential, but what on earth is a "parents as teachers" home educator?

And yes, I know exactly what you mean about kids learning things on their own. I'm not an unschooler, but I'm constantly amazed that so many people seem to think little kids need to be specifically taught about things like colors. My kids learned perfectly fine from ordinary day-to-day activities, such as having me ask, "would you prefer the red shirt or the blue shirt?"
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by skueppers View Post
This is totally tangential, but what on earth is a "parents as teachers" home educator?
Parents as Teachers is a program through the school systems, I think it might be the same as Eearly Intervention--though not positive. Basically, a woman who used to be a teacher comes to our house a few times per year, makes sure the boys are hitting milestones and provides ideas for crafts or other activities appropriate for their age. The intention of the program is to help people struggling and catch kids who need special services. We participate because I was told they would help me with creative activities for kids (not) and you get access to free days at gymboree and other social activities.
post #4 of 6
I had a similar panic yesterday. Kindergarten will be next school year for the twins, and I suddenly started to panic yesterday and started to look at curriculums. I wasn"t going to buy a kindy curriculum, but in my panic I'd forgotten that. Thankfully, in a moment of clarity I went to the state department of education website, looked again at the kindy standards, and felt much better.

Those standards are a good starting point, and at least for me, relieve a lot of anxiety.
post #5 of 6
Kids learn so much on their own. My oldest does need intervention, but my typical 5yo can do addition and subtraction in his head and I've never taught it to him. He likes to figure out how many more times he's run around the house or jumped on the trampoline than his siblings have.
post #6 of 6
my kids are 4, 2, and 4 months. with my 4yo, i was always SO concerned about everything he learned....i made it a point to go over things with him over and over again, scheduled specific learning topics into our week, etc.......and half the time he already knew about the things i started to teach him (me: this is a octagon, him: yes mom, i know that already), etc. many times he has done/said things that just blow me away....things i never knew that he learned about or understood (where DO they learn these things?!) now, with my 2yo, i'm MUCH more relaxed, much less intentional about things....an guess what, he knows everything that his brother did at that age and then some! somehow eventually they will learn what they need to know.....often just by living life. i'm not an unschooler and i do plan to use curriculum materials, but i can totally see how unschooled kids still learn just fine!
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