I have been contemplating homeschooling my kids before I had them. Never actually crossed the threshold due to self doubt and the taboo that homeschooling your kids carries.
Why is homeschooling so taboo?
My decision was finally made when my oldest son had an incident at school which left him with a concussion and a open wound requiring 13 stitches.
We immediately unenrolled him and decided there was no other option for us temporarily and plus Mama bear is in full mode and I need him with me, for now until AppLe begins Pre K next fall.
So for the past weeks I’ve been on the hunt joining homeschool groups, researching the process online, reaching out to educational resources, searching Pinterest for ideas, curriculums, you name it!
The boys will be 3 and 4 in October so their learning mostly consists of of learn through play activities. We work on letter recognition and numbers but its majority introducing them to everything in their/our world and explaining EVERYTHING.
I found a few ideas I really like for them like these lap books we created.
A lap book is a folder that you include items or subjects that you’d like to introduce in your lesson plans. Ours include
• Full name
• Parents name
• 5/6 sight words
• Dominoes on slips of paper for counting
• Words that begin with the letter of the week
• Poem with the letter of the week.
What I love about them is that they can carry them anywhere. I work part time and have my own business as well helping my husband with his business so sometimes they are with their grandmother so they come in handy for travel and they’re pretty self explanatory. At their age grasping their attention for long is minimal so they work on them for 15-20 minutes a few times through out the day along with arts and crafts projects.
I am hesitant to post pictures or articles about education and my kids particularly when they are excelling. I never want another Mom to feel less than or a certain way when it comes to their kid. All kids learn differently and at their own pace. I can see the difference in how the boys learn and retain information. I have to work with them a bit differently because of age for one and two, interest.
My itinerary is pretty simple. We try to start around 9/10 with learning and no more than 4 hours total for a school day. So the beauty about homeschooling is that learning doesn’t have to be the traditional desk work at the traditional morning times. On days I work we may school later and
some most days dealing with toddlers are not consistent. We may have tantrums that need to be worked out or Mommy might have slept in late. When teaching science especially for toddlers it’s mostly nature for now, we walk right outside and go for a stroll learning along the way!
Here’s a sample of what I try to model when coming up with a lesson for the week.
It’s definitely work for me to keep track of, coming up with new lessons, executing those lessons and being intentional about it because you can easily get off track and waste the majority of the day.
Plus, the kids are used to the routine from school not necessarily the activities per say but the formality of participating in activities for an extended period of time so I want to keep the same momentum at home.
Separating being Mom and teacher is a challenge as well. Homeschooling is definitely fine tuning my patience. I have to be patient with myself in order for it work for my family.
The drawbacks from homeschooling is the negative reactions to homeschooling particularly the topic of socialization. There is an entire world out there for my kids to socialize with. Homeschooling has changed and evolved with parenting so there are many coops you can join, homeschooling play groups, kids are able to compete in sports against traditional school athletes, participate in proms, socials and an abundance of other socializing resources. My perception of public schooling is changing with the violence and bullying that is rampant in public schools let alone the education here in Georgia. And more important the racism. We recently had a sixth grader arrested for throwing a tantrum in class here in Georgia.
A six year old.
Arrested and a mugshot!
I have black boys and I’m very aware of the barriers they face off skin color alone. Some would say I’m sheltering them from the world but why would I want to intentionally place my kids in that type of territory. Even now the boys have come home with topics of subjects and sayings that we don’t say that they hear from other preschoolers.
School is real. And for now I’m teaching them how to be human before I release them unto other humans. We’re instilling the confidence some children will never get.
Maybe for now, I struggle with advocating for public schools because we have to be involved if the schools in our communities are going to change. I struggle with not wanting my kids socializing with certain elements in any school, our kid our choice.
Parents must respect children in the same manner we respect elders, we can’t do and say any and everything in front of them.
If you’re interested in homeschooling I implore you do as much research as possible and if you’re able start working with your kid now, do it. Realistically every parent can’t homeschool. Even if your kids are enrolled in a formal school you still have work to do with them so it’s no harder than trying it yourself. So I’m looking forward to the challenge of learning all over again.
Follow our journey here and let me know if you homeschool? Any tips you’d suggest?