Hi. I'm starting K homeschooling with DD in the fall, and have a "cirriculum consultation" with someone from the "school" on Tuesday this week (I live in BC where you can do a type of homeschooling called distance learning and get some cirriculum paid for by the govt).
I am wondering what sorts of things you seasoned moms would discuss or ask.
I am currently interested in teaching about a million subjects and don't have an approach nailed down (CM, Classical, Unit Studies and a bunch of other certain things I just like and want to teach the kids (2nd kid is DS who is 3)). I realize that I am just having way too much fun researching and seeing all these cool cirriculum ideas - I suppose like what happens at a HSing convention for a newbie like me.
Deep down I know that 5 is a time to be a kid and not be academically pressured - yet I want to teach 500 subjects a day... (I know that I don't really want to do that)
So, any advice for what to do? What do you wish you'd done or known when you were at my stage in the game? If it changes your advice, my DD is a very sweet, reserved imaginative kid who likes to dance and is a bit of a perfectionist.
I plan on having her dance classes be part of the cirriculum.
We've been with three different DL programs here in BC over the years, plus also done some time as registered homeschoolers.
I would spend the time talking about what's available but make it clear to both yourself and your liaison teacher that what you need to be able to do is respond to your child's interests and preferences for learning style, pace and format as you get in the trenches and start working. In other words, make sure that you're not committing to using Curriculum A or B or C. That you like some of what you see in Curriculum A and would like to test-drive it a bit in the fall and see how your dd responds, and then maybe add in some pieces of Curriculum B and C as well, and and see if a mash-up of them will work, and then possibly discard them all if they don't seem to be working and make it up as you go along or else use Curriculum S and bits of J and K.
You and your dd won't really know at this stage what's going to work. You can only find that out by diving in and trying out an approach or two. Make sure that your teacher understands that. If you feel like you're being asked to commit to something bigger than that, I would run the other way and find a different DL program.
Mountain mama to one great kid and three great grown-ups
I don't have a lot of advice, but I am just finishing off K with my daughter. I found we did much less formal work than I had planned, and this was a good thing. We did a short reading and writing lesson most days, and music practice. Then as we felt like it we'd read, do some math work, or explore subjects she was interested. Other than that she played a lot and spent time outdoors and with family.
She real;y blossomed with just the amount we did, and I can see as she is getting on to 6 1/2 that she is getting much more ready for real academic learning. I think that taking it really easy this year has been a very good thing developmentally. Five is really too young for much formal learning in most cases.
My son turned 6 in Feb so he was a good 5.5 when school started around here and a bunch of his friends went to K. I got all excited to HS "for real", bought some curriculum I love, and we "did school" almost every day for a while. He even asked to do it on the weekends. It was great. Then, about 3 months in, he burned out. I don't even really know what happened, except that it was just overwhelming all of a sudden. So we stopped. I don't regret it at all. It has been really good for us to just relax, concentrate on playing every day, and exploring whatever comes up and going with it. Every single day he is learning stuff, and blowing me away most of the time by what he's figuring out, often just on his own. I had originally considered unschooling, then freaked out and decided no way, I had to have curriculum. Now I'm not sure, but what I do know for sure is going with the kid's interest and not pushing my own agenda is the best thing I ever did. :)
Not sure if that helps (at all) but that's my story.
Well thank you for your input. I think the meeting went well and having your insights into how starting worked and what to ask of a DL situation helped a lot.
The woman I met with was very nice. They are very flexible with whatever we want to do for cirriculum, and it sounds like reporting for the mentor will not be onerous. I asked with specific examples and I think that helped me get a good idea of what they really mean. She was writing up a number of cirricular options (of which she obviously had her preferences), but she also put a few options for each subject area and said I could change them at any time by letting her know we'd decided something else. I stumped her with a few questions about zoo memberships and international book ordering (how certain aspects of it would work), but she'll get back to me.
It was kind of funny though trying to talk about what my DD already knows and then she thought I'd used a cirriculum with her already and I haven't - I had been hoping to get more of a gague of where DD fits on the levels of different subjects, but she hadn't been expecting that type of a discussion and had expected we would start at learning letters and colors and stuff. So she didn't have examples of stuff to see if K or 1 or whatever was the right fit or not in the stuff I was interested in. But she couldn't have had that big of a pile of books with anyway and she pointed me to a good bookstore to visit one day, so that's good.
I also was interested in a few social skills books that she didn't seem keen on because they had a superhero in them, but I think that was just her personal preference shining through and she didn't say it wasn't allowed in, just seemed to want to steer me elsewhere.
It seems like it will be really easy to pay for stuff - there are online forms to use and it's pretty straightforward. Now, hopefully, the one day a week class thing is a good fit for our family.
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