I'm glad to hear you've decided to give homeschooling a try! Transitions are a bit difficult, but it sounds as though you have good homeschooling support groups around
That's always good for socialisation! Now some background about myself and my transition between schooling and homeschooling:
Both dh and I were homeschooled though not for elementary school. My parents taught me how to read at age 3 and I went to a pre-school once or twice a week when I was four, but I did not go to kindergarten so I got to play with the neighborhood kids for an extra year. My parents took me out of public school towards the end of 4th grade (I was still able to go back for story times and Kindergarten Buddies and such at the 4th grade class since I enjoyed those activities and that really helped make the transition easier for me - though I did miss outdoor ed
). I wish my parents had taken me out sooner though. I had no choice in the matter, but I didn't like school very much anyhow and it was far too easy for me (my grades were wonderful!). I spent a lot of school time being bored and being a smart-aleck
When the next school year started (5th grade) I began taking a couple classes at the local homeschool resource center and meeting other homeschoolers (including my husband
). It took me a while to fit in - I've never been very social and I think that going to PS really made that a lot worse... being teased and all - but eventually I did. I started taking band classes when I got to 6th grade (they start in 5th grade now...) and that's where I really found my niche. By high school I was taking every band class offered and just coming to the hs and playing trumpet all day long. I pretty much got a specialised music education and didn't have to worry about how the music fit in with a schedule or with requirements or anything. My senior year was great because I finished all my school work for the year in two months and then I just hung out with my friends and played/wrote music for the rest of the year! I attended a couple classes with friends sometimes just to see what hs was like and I never regretted not taking all the silly requirements
I'm also an avid reader and that might have changed had I been required to do certain reading in a certain amount of time (It almost changed when that happened in college...).
Anyhow, back to your son and transition time! (I'm pregnant with a cold and my brain's not quite all there right now so I tend to ramble on just a bit
: ) My parents just told me they were taking me out of school (I was almost 10 years old). They didn't ask for my input on whether or not to homeschool, but they made homeschooling much much more fun than school which showed great regard for my feelings. They stressed that I would be able to go at my own pace and see other kids when I wanted to and not every day no matter what. I think it would also be good to let your son know that you want to try homeschooling for at least a year (because less time than that isn't sufficient to know whether he likes it or not, IMO), but that you welcome his input and want to make this a great experience for him!
For any 6 yo, I think just telling him that he doesn't have to go back to school this fall would make him pretty happy. If he really wants to go back to school then I think you should talk to some teachers and find out if he could maybe join a class for math or science or another subject that he really wants to take with his friends. I may be wrong about this, but I believe that school districts get money for every student that comes to the schools even if they are part time so schools do tend to be pretty accommodating to homeschoolers
At least they do in our area...
Best wishes with everything! And just remember what a pp wrote - that your 6 yo doesn't know whether he likes homeschooling or not. You can make the decision to give him an opportunity to find out whether he likes it better than school or not at all.
Also IMO, even if he takes it hard right at first, the idea may take him some time to get used to and he won't hate you for the rest of his life if you take him out for one year and he decides he wants to go back the next. School should equal learning, not socialising. He'll have more time to socialise than his schooled peers by not having all that down time at school (between subjects - even in elementary school all the students have to get out a different book and that takes time - walking to the gym/lunchroom/music class/art class) and he'll have more unstructured time to learn what he wants to learn in more depth than he would at school (whether that be music, math, art, science, etc). Stress the good points
love and peace.