Makita at Twinkling Stars Family School has another Friday Freebie...and I would like to participate again, not for the prize, but just for fun!
The question is "When and how did you start home schooling?"
When Fairy started junior kindergarten in September 2001, we were both devastated. We had enjoyed our time together and she really wasn't ready to start school but I had no idea there was another option. No one I knew then ever mentioned home schooling and I didn't know any home schoolers. She adjusted after a few months, but she also turned into a very quiet and almost depressed little girl.
By the time Dragon started school, I had heard of home schooling, but only in the USA. I thought it was something that was allowed there, but not in Canada. Over time, with the Internet, I became more educated on the whole topic. By the time Dragon was entering his senior kindergarten year, I was reading everything I could about home schooling and I knew it was a legal option.
Fairy was a quiet, no-trouble for teachers type of student. She never asked questions, and I had this concern that she would miss out on basic education. I didn't know at the time that she was getting bullied (I found out after she stopped going to school). On the other hand, Dragon was a bright little boy that was so eager to learn. In particular, to learn how to read. When I approached his teacher, he told me that learning how to read wasn't in the plan for that year. Learning the alphabet and counting was what the teacher was covering in junior kindergarten. Dragon had learned all the letters at home with me, so he was bored at school. And what do little 4 year old boys do when they are bored? Get in trouble! School must have been really boring for him. The principal warned me at the end of his senior kindergarten year that first grade was much different and that Dragon would be expected to sit for long periods of time during the day and to pay attention and be quiet. She suggested I consider having him tested and that medication might be required for him to be able to handle the school day. That day I walked out of the school wanting to protect my son, wanting to quench his thirst for learning and not having him be labeled by the school system. I also wanted to give Fairy a chance to be happy again and to learn at her own pace, and be comfortable asking questions when she needed to.
After meeting a local home school group, and finding out all the great extra activities that were available to us, we considered home schooling seriously. The social part wasn't an issue for us. I thought anything would be better than the social environment they were getting at school.
Fairy finished grade 2 and Dragon finished senior kindergarten at school. Even though in theory I was optimistic about home schooling, I wasn't sure it would actually work for us, so I decided we would try it out over the summer and decide at the end. I. During that summer, we used a couple of workbooks (Math Smart, English Smart) and we also did some fun unit studies on animals (I didn't know they were called unit studies back then, lol). The main goal for me was to see if we could get along and get some "work" done together!
After a month, we were hooked and decided to start our adventure. In September 2005, I sent the notification to the school board and we started doing school at home. And it was truly school-at-home! Textbooks, workbooks, tests, even recess and snack time!
We have learned over time, to relax a bit and enjoy our learning time together. We now use a more eclectic approach to home schooling.
We take it one year at a time, even though when planning out our studies, I do look ahead a few years. I like to stay flexible. Over the past years, we have had our share of fun and also a healthy dose of challenges! It has been a great adventure so far for all of us.
Thanks Makita for a great question.
Fun home learning book sharing monday family books wordless wednesday nature journey north art wrap-up weekly report Reading nature study holidays photography science geography sketch tuesday canada homeschool report Me pets quilting cooking for our earth DPP Movies outdoor challenge sewing exploring get outdoors Fairy outdoor hour Iditarod birthday challenge math summer celeste journey north 2009 100books Dragon Lego music Princess animals halloween home journey north 2010 lapbook NaNoWriMo author fiesta field trip public school wreck this journal poetry 12 secrets baking birds blogs journey north 2011 spring city curriculum fitness gardening moving black history month bugs earth hour journey north 2012 planning reading my library shutter sisters sled dogs this moment travel unschooling December board games calendar quilt lego quest swap air cadets feeding my family food revolution hockey library recipes what works air show author study award backyard bird count camping dr seuss father's day pirates roald dahl space sports what my children are reading year 5 Ballet DQS6 St Patrick's Day TED talks arnosky basketball biographies eating clean for others geocaching happiness mail medical memory monday orion poems science rendezvous scree-free week 2011 skating spelling winter solstice winterfest youtube 2010 olympics Charlottetown PEI Patricia Polacco Rant appreciation book collecting good deeds helping others hooping hunger games jamie oliver maze nat orchestra peace quilt-along screen-free week snail stamps the next chapter book club video games wilderness wednesday wish wednesday world news writing