Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Chester County, PA
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I have been toying w/ the idea of homeschooling my son ever since he began formal schooling at age 4. (pre-K 3 hrs/day, followed by full-day kindergarten, etc.) It seems that right around the time he began school, we started to experience discipline problems. There were also other factors involved so I didn't make the connection at the time.
Halfway through kindergarten, the teacher was convince that DS was suffering from ADHD. I had serious doubts, but agreed to allow an evaluation by the Child Study Team (social worker, educator & psychologist) to "prove" her wrong. The only unusual finding discovered was that DS is extremely intelligent. (of course I already knew that...)
First grade DS didn't have as many discipline problems, but did have difficulty concentrating, keeping on task, following directions and copying from the board. This year in second grade, he started out exuberant, but went through a phase where his attitude plummeted and the discipline problems returned and were worse than ever.
Anyway, my instincts are telling me that DS needs to be taken out of public school. We cannot afford Montessori, Waldorf, Friends or any of the other wonderful private schools in our area, so that leaves homeschooling. DS has agreed to give it a try over the summer and seems excited about the projects and outings I have planned. My biggest roadblock to making the leap to homeschooling is this: My son is the most extreme extrovert I have ever met. He's very social and has been from a young age. He seems to thrive off the energy of other people, but doesn't necessarily have to be the center of attention to do so. He even asks his sister to accompany him when he needs to go to another area of our apartment - and he still sleeps with us most of the time.
I have some ideas on how to keep him socially connected. But the neighborhood kids don't get off the bus until nearly 4 pm - how will I keep him occupied all day long, five days a week? HS groups and other activities can only take us so far - how do I meet DS's apparent need for social contact without becoming drained? (BTW, I fluctuate btwn extrovert and introvert, and I do need some time to myself throughout the day. Luckily, 2 y/o DD is the type to play quietly and I am able to sneak in some time for myself. I fear this will vanish w/ DS at home 24/7.)
DH is very skeptical of my ability to successfully HS DS for this reason. He also thinks we won't get any (school) work done because I am so disorganized. But I really think we need to give it our best shot. I don't think public school has the ability to meet DS's needs. I'm reading a book about learning style and DS is the type that doesn't fit in w/ the standard teaching model offered at our local schools. I feel that I owe it to DS to at least make an honest attempt to meet his needs and help him to learn and grow in a way that celebrates his uniqueness.