My homeschool way

New to Homeschooling?

I have a number of opinions about home school methods, many of them have changed over the years as I have grown and took my journey to discovery. I am sharing my thought of what works for us and what I believe, I do not expect everyone to agree with me.

Homeschooling to me is not just about getting your children out of the main stream environment, it is not just about teaching your children in a safe and secure place. It is also about getting to know you. As we learn and discover new things about our children, so we learn and discover about ourselves.

Being a homeschool mother is not always easy. We go through various seasons in our journey. Many begin in the season of schooling at home. This must be in my eye one of the worst mistakes any parent could ever make. Yes we the parents were taught to sit still and listen up, do not fiddle, pay attention, work in your book, silence...bell... break time... and the list goes on.

I know of a number of mothers who time every single subject/activity. They use a bell or an alarm clock to let them move on to the next subject. Children work through books and books; they are drilled like little soldiers. Is it only me who see something wrong in this picture? What is going to happen here? These children are going to HATE homeschool. But why you may wonder? They are at home you may say. Listen up! Your house should be a home! Your home should be their safe heaven. This is the place they love, this is the place where they can be themselves and grow. This is the place where they discover new things, build and explore. This place is where mom/dad reads to them, laughs with them, does projects with them, plays with them. 

Don’t get me wrong here, some people are just natural planners and do plan out their time. There is nothing wrong with that, BUT for us that will not work. One always needs to be prepared to the unexpected. I don’t want to set schedules to the last minute and then something comes up and our day is messed up. This can cause unnecessary stress.

We start our day and work until we have finished everything we need to finish for that day and that is how we work every day. The next day we pick up where we left off. Yes I do plan some work. We work on Konos too and there is planning that goes with that. I plan what books we need to use, what sections I will read to the kids, what they need to read to me. I plan all hands-on experiments. For our art work most of the time I don’t plan. They just happen and the kids love the element of surprise in their day.

Another serious mistake homeschool mothers make is comparing their children to others. All I can say is STOP IT! No two kids are the same; they are all special individuals with special interests. Who cares what Johnny across the road can or cannot do? You know what your child can do and you know how you can help your child to develop talents even further.  I say again NEVER EVER compare your child or even yourself to other homeschoolers/people.

To move on to some serious business – curriculum. Don’t really like that word, but it is reality. Moms go all bananas when they start looking at what is on offer. For us South Africans the resources are limited of what is in reach. BUT that does not mean we can’t shop from overseas. The choices are endless and that just cause for such confusion and even sleepless nights.

So how does one decide what you want to use with so many options? You need to ask yourself, what are you using now? Is it working? If so, why change! DO NOT change if it is working, you might just throw money away. Don’t get every single book that you see, be cautions of sales and books someone is parting with. Yes, bargains are great, but you need to decide, do you really need those?

Here you need to plan. What do you want, what should be your main focus? It is about using the most expensive curriculum out there because you think your kids are getting better education. No, it is about instilling good moral and Christian character in your child. (I assume everyone reading is Christian) Would you rather your child be a genius at Math but got the manners of a Buffalo? Or would you help your child grow in their field of interest and be a caring, good hearted person?

The reason to homeschool is different for everyone. I really believe in my heart that this is not a decision that should be done just because! This is really a calling from God. Pray about it, research, read reviews. Don’t make any decision just now at this very moment. Really think it through and do your homework. Homeschooling is a big commitment. Not just to ensure you children get a good education, but also to teach them the ways of life and ensure they grow as beautiful souls.

My ideas and opinion on various areas within homeschool is big I would not be able to talk about it all, but if you have any suggestions or questions, go ahead and post them in the comment box.


Anonymous said...

I haven't been HS-ing as long as you have, but I can only agree on what you said. I fell in the trap of trying to use everything I had at home, or were given by well meaning outside individuals.

As you know I received files and files full of worksheets, etc. and I felt pressured to use it. But it didn't work. Soon the kids and I became unhappy, restless, irritated and frustrated, and we always went off on a bunny trail. I have finally figured out what the boys and I, like most, and now we are following this line/way of work, and we are happy.

Don't try to please others, you, your partner/husband/wife, and kids are the important people when it comes to how to HS and what to use.

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