Friday, October 2, 2009

Kindergarten – Homeschool style!

I can’t believe it’s been an entire month already!  I am absolutely loving teaching Bug Kindergarten!  I admit, it took me a couple weeks to get in the groove with the new things to do each day, but we’ve got it now!  

I get so many questions about what we do and how we do it, that I really want to document it here to share.  This is one of the greatest things that we have ever decided to do and I wouldn’t trade it for anything!  Please, please ask any questions that you may have.  I know that a couple years ago, this was not even on our radar and we had NO clue how to go about it.  We have learned so much and love to share that with others that are interested.

Currently, we only have one child.  However, when I was teaching her preschool, we had anywhere from 1-4 children ages 5 and under in our home because we were foster parents.  Then I was dealing with school, plus therapy appointments, entertaining little ones while teaching Bug, etc.  I can answer questions about that too!

Let’s start with WHY we are doing this.

Our Reasons for Choosing to Homeschool
1) We want our children to learn about the world from a Christian perspective, with a Biblical view, and to make that the foundation of everything they learn. 

2) We want to be able to teach our children in the way that they learn best, and with our daughter, the school system just would not cater to those needs appropriately.   We had no idea when we decided to homeschool that our daughter would be diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder and ADHD, but now that she is, we are even more thankful to be able to work with that, not against it, and to treat it like it’s “who she is”, not a “problem she has”.   I’ll go into more detail later on how homeschooling has helped us meet her needs.

3) We want our children to learn hands-on about things like volunteering, serving others, grocery shopping, the post office, even doing laundry.

4) We don’t want to be penalized if we want to take our children on a vacation, or worry about missing too many days of school.   Going to see a memorial on Veteran’s Day, going to Washington D.C. for Memorial Day, going camping to learn about science in the woods, taking a road trip to the ocean to collect seashells or to the Grand Canyon, or Niagra Falls --- are all things we want to be able to do, WHEN we want to do them, and would provide incredible opportunities for education.

5) We love that with homeschooling, we complete all our work  (including ‘homework’) in less than half the time that public school kids are in school.  That provides us so much extra time to go do fun things as a family.

6) The flexibility in the schedule is priceless!  I use the term “schedule” loosely anyway, since we don’t have to follow one to the letter.  I have the lesson plans of what to read/teach on each day, and go from there.   We have so many options!! Do it all in the morning,  some in the morning/some in the evening,  double up on one day to get an extra day off,  save one of the days for the weekend with Daddy, etc.   If we need to visit a sick friend, babysit for someone, get some extra rest to ward off a cold – we have time!
 Typically, we have a 4-day school week.  That gives us one day for a field trip, and then 2 weekend days in case we need an “off day” for whatever reason.  

7) I love to spend time with my daughter!!  I absolutely adore getting to see her learn and get excited about it.  I would be so sad to miss that.   I love doing the projects with her, taking her fun places to reinforce what she’s learned, and seeing her grow in so many ways.

8) We don’t want our children exposed to many of the things that are in public (and even private) schools.  We do not keep her in a bubble, but the truth is that kids are growing up way too fast, and if I can slow that down just a little for my children, it will be worth it.

9) We get to go to the zoo, museums, and other fun places when it’s less crowded because all the other kids are in school!

10) Voddie Baucham is very convicting :) 

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