my oldest is in 4k this year, and i am having reservations about continuing with public school next year. we are very rural and have a long and early drive into school, and my daughter is extremely sensitive and introverted and i am already seeing that the school environment is hard for her.
my husband and i both have our teaching licenses, although we aren't teaching, and have no doubt about our abilities to do the work of teaching. however, i wonder...is this really for me? will i have time for other things in life outside teaching my children? i am working part time on a masters degree-can i do both?
how did you decide to home/unschool? what does your day look like? do you ever feel overwhelmed with the responsibility?
Mama to two girls, born 5/08 and 11/10.
I am currently homeschooling my 2nd grade twins, and their little sister, who would be in preK this year. I taught for 9 years before staying home with my kids. My husband is a private school principal, so education is in our blood. I have seen both sides of the school/homeschool divide.
I wouldn't have homeschooled if I hadn't been home anyway. Because I was home, it opened up a lot of choices I hadn't even considered. I began my journey unwilling to commit to the time and financial burden of shuffling my boys to preschool with an infant in tow. Beginning my research in what I "ought" to be doing made me realize quickly that I already was doing it.
I read a lot, and got pretty fired up about boys and education. I realized I wasn't willing to turn their school experiences over to someone else yet. And so each year, I commit to one more year. I do not think I'll be able to stay home much longer, as there is a need for me to return to the workforce. But for now, I plan on one more year (3rd grade for the boys, K for little sister).
As for what we do and what our day looks like? We do not use a purchased curriculum, but I do use books and workbooks to guide what we do. Each year as the boys moved up, we've added more time to our "school" day.
I like that we have flexibility to visit my parents when they are around, go to the children's museum, have daytime piano lessons, etc. I like spending the days with them.
Good luck with your choice.
We did public school pre-K, and then homeschool Kindergarten with our oldest child. We figured we would then feel that we had tried both and could make a more clear decision. What we found was that homeschool worked better for all of us. (My daughter was/is introverted as well.) And if it hadn't worked, all we'd have "lost" was a year of kindergarten, which in our state isn't mandatory and many kids enter first grade without it.
It was much easier to get out of conversations where people try to grill you about homeschooling or credentials or "what will you do about prom?" when we could say "We're trying homeschooling for this year, and then we'll make a longer term decision."
I work part time now, with a 3rd grader and a Pre-K. We do part-time co-op programs twice a week, which allows me work time. It's a juggle, but it's doable. When I was home full time and DH worked all the time, it was too much time with the kids for me. This is a decent balance. I found that dividing into homeschool days versus work days for me/coop days for the kids works better for me than homeschool mornings and work afternoons.
We still take it somewhat year by year. Currently we are debating if DD will go to school for 4th grade. The 8-9 year old eye rolling, huffing and complaining, and general attitude (which appears to be developmentally typical amongst her home schooled and public schooled and private schooled friends, a little taste of teenager hood) may lead to us deciding that school will serve her better.
As to what our day looks like, this is different for my kids than it will be for yours. We do 3 days a week that are academic-focused. When my daughter was homeschooling for K, we did about an hour of academic work a day, a lot of reading together, and museums/playgrounds. My Pre-K kid son does about 3 hours of "schoolwork" because he wants to be where his sister and I are and "do school."
We use workboxes, and for my pre-K kid, the only specific curriculum we use is Mimio reading, Umizoomi math, and Little Passports. Everything else is worksheets or library books on the subject he's interested in at the time, mixed in with coloring, look and finds, scissor practice, build with playdoh, etc.
Book loving, editor mom to 2
|Homeschooling , Unschooling|