Dear Diary – Homeschooling
When I got up this morning, my eleven-year old daughter was dressed in a cow onesie and reading ‘Anne of Green Gables’ in a hammock. My fourteen-year old was also up early as she has recently become a mother. She takes her responsibilities very seriously and is very anxious about her new kittens. We live in a very isolated area and don’t have much interaction with other humans. Do you think I should be concerned?
Had a fantastic day at homeschool today. A finished the whole section on percentages and I think C has got to grips with fractions at last. All that time spent cutting up fruit and pizzas into pieces and joining them up again is paying off. We did eat all the pizza and fruit and don’t have anything left for lunch now, but it was fun. I love the way homeschooling gives us time to explore these topics in depth and really get to grips with them.
Just looked at the maths topics we’re supposed to cover this month, aaargh, we’re so behind. Will have to put away the pizza and playdough and concentrate on pages of work. Must get them through it all or we won’t meet our targets for the year. And the English Grammar, we’ve spent so much time reading and talking about books that we haven’t done that much formal grammar. I asked C what a noun was and she said ‘I think it’s a type of bread’.
Got off to a good start today. We started on time, covered fractions and decimals for Maths, then parts of speech in English. Did a wonderful lesson using ‘Jabberwocky’. We painted pictures of the Jabberwock and the other creatures. Then we labelled all the verbs and nouns and adverbs and adjectives in our nonsense poem. Not sure if they will be able to relate them to words in real life but still, it was fun.
We had so many interruptions to school this morning. The cattle got into the yard again and the children ran out to round them up. A found an amazing big animal footprint, so we fetched the plaster of paris. We then cast it so that we could identify it and add it to our collection. We went back out to collect leaves for nature study. C was wearing a long purple princess dress and she did look funny when she climbed up a tree and it got stuck in the branches. A took pictures of her for the family scrapbook she’s making and illustrating.
I need to settle down to do some proper lesson planning for next week. We’re packing up to go camping this weekend. But first we’re going to read a few more chapters of the Hobbit…
Home schooling can be wonderful, inspiring, time consuming, exhausting and is sometimes all of these in the same week.
Homeschooling is a fantastic way of spending quality time with your children. It also means taking part in every aspect of their learning, at their own pace. It is a great opportunity to be creative and explore subjects in depth that interest all of you.
Homeschooling means that you don’t waste time sitting in traffic and rushing from school to home to work to activities. You can make sure that your children get a quality education, have lots of family time, get life skills and get enough sleep. They also have nourishing meals together at a time that suits you and your family.
What it is not:
Homeschooling is not a perfect solution.
There are days when you will not feel like doing schooling at all, and neither will the children. You still have to get up and do it. You are responsible for their education.
Sometimes your children will get on well and at other times they will bicker and squabble and moan. They will wish they could have completely different siblings/ go to a ‘real’ school/spend more time with other children. At this point, you may feel an impulse to flee the classroom and spend the morning at the neighbour’s house drinking irish coffee. This is normal.
At times you will remember that you had a previous life and feel nostalgic for the time when you were a respected member of your profession. A time that you interacted every day with other adults and had a pay cheque coming in. After you have thought about this for a while you will remember the rush hour traffic and the long hours and the pressure. Then you may feel grateful to be able to spend time with your family.