Thursday, July 30, 2009

My Answers to the 10 Questions

1. Why am I home schooling? I have always been interested in home schooling, ever since I learned of it in college. When I was a kid, I loved school. But I think things were a little simpler then, even though it wasn't THAT long ago. I would have to say that I am home schooling because I think that all kids are different and have unique strengths and weaknesses. You can't force everyone to fit into one mould. Square pegs, round holes, all that. At home, I can give my kids an environment where they don't have to be afraid to be who they really are. Plus, I love kids! I don't want to send them away all day. I'd be bored.

2. Why am I home schooling this particular child? My 7 yo, the Chief, is a nonconformist. Seriously, I would pity the poor teacher who tries to get him to do things like everyone else. He has his own ways of doing things, and hey, they work. If it ain't broke, don't fix it! But he doesn't do them the same way as everyone else. Chief also has a hard time focusing on some things, and I think we do a good job here teaching him how he can do that in his own way. He can grow into "conformity" as he matures, instead of being forced into it. It saves a lot of rebellion this way, and plus it preserves some self esteem!

We are in the process of adopting another boy, and I think that home schooling will really help the attachment process.

3. What do I enjoy most about home schooling? Hmm.... Being able to spend lots of time with my kids, learning new things, setting our own pace, and being able to take side roads when we want to.

4. What do I enjoy least about home schooling? Making decisions. The question, "Can I be done now?"

5. What do my kids enjoy most about home schooling? Being able to follow up on things that are interesting, being able to change things that aren't working.

6. What do my kids enjoy the least about home schooling? There is no big yellow bus. Seriously, that is what the Chief just told me.

7. What really works about my home school? A few months ago I started using Sue Patrick's Workbox System. It really made a difference in how we do school. I use it pretty much how she suggests in her manual. I like it because we can put fun things in with school things. It helps keep me more organized.

8. What definitely does not work at all? When I lose sight of why I home school, and when I can't see the big picture, it all starts going bad. When I start comparing with other families, and when I forget what is good for MY family, things don't work. My son needs a bit of structure, too. If I am too lenient, things get chaotic and he just loses it.

9. Imagining the perfect home schooling scene: What are my kids doing? Where are they? What am I doing? In my perfect home school, my kids could be doing anything, as long as they are fascinated and have a sense of awe about it. They are saying, "Wow!" And me, I'm standing there watching. I'm NOT making the experience happen. I'm letting it. I'm able to let go enough to let the kids learn the wonders of the world for themselves, without a filter.

10. What are my biggest fears about home schooling? Aunt Maybelle. I am afraid about messing my kids up for life, and I'm afraid that my kids will resent me for it. But my fears are unfounded for the most part. I see what my nephew goes through in public school. It would not be any different, in fact, it would be worse, for my son. I see the light in my son's eyes when he is learning, and in public school, all too often boys like him have that light flicker out. No, I am afraid, but it's a healthy fear. Enough to keep me honest ;). Enough to keep me thinking and not just going through the process like a sheep.

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