Homeschooling - Part 1

How did your homeschool journey begin? Why did you decide to homeschool? Are you homeschooling the whole time? What does your schedule look like? What do you do with them all day?

These are just a sampling of the questions I often get from friends, family or even strangers when they find out I am a homeschooling mom. To answer the questions for you I will give you a little back story first. (But I will warn you this will be Part 1 of our homeschooling journey!)

I am a former Kindergarten teacher (I did a stint in first grade for a year and went back to my love which was the Kindy's) I was a single gal when I started my journey into education and it actually was never my plan to be a teacher, I came home from college with a Human Development and Family Studies degree and I was ready to conquer the world and work in the Department of Children Services and rescue children from abusive homes... but alas in order to do that I needed to get my masters degree and honestly I just didn't have it in me to go back to school at that moment but I definitely needed a job. So a friend let me know about a Kindergarten Assistant Position and I applied and got the job. After working with four amazing seasoned teachers I just knew this was what I wanted to do. They encouraged me and helped me take the test and voila I became a teacher. (Obviously it wasn't that quick and a lot of studying took place but you get the gist!) 

I started teaching and absolutely loved it! Loved having my own classroom, decorating and seeing little ones eyes brighten when they read their first book. You have to understand that when I started teaching, school looked a lot different, the children actually played!! They did social centers and were engaged by books, art, music, etc... and then everything changed. I know it seems like I taught eons ago and honestly it feels that way but the demands on teachers and what we needed these babies to know was to me overwhelming not only of me but for the kids. I mean we went from learning by play to sitting in a desk all day, removing art, music, social centers and even rest time. The expectations for teachers and the degree on which we were being monitored and rated was just unreal and honestly sad. 

I got married and of course we started talking about having a family and I remember telling my husband if things continued changing in the education system then we were homeschooling our own children.  Of course this sent me into a journey of researching all the things dealing with homeschooling since I didn't really know much about it and didn't know anyone who home-schooled at all. 

Well lo and behold we got pregnant and had our first baby boy! So exciting and yet terrifying that we had this little one  we are supposed to take care of and shape into a future adult!!  After being with him for months I now had to find someone to take care of him because I had to return to work (insert tears... like heavy uncontrollable sobbing tears people) It was hard but God knew what He was doing because the person that took care of him was a homeschool mom and she taught and confirmed that this was the right path for us to take with our own children.

Let's fast-forward a bit because you don't want to really know all the details. So now my little one was 4 about to turn 5 which means soon to be in Kindergarten and well at this point I am being observed in the classroom by a random person that has never taught Kindergarten, I have students that are throwing chairs and disrupting classroom, hurting other students...(did I mention I was now pregnant with kiddo number 3). I mean who can really teach in that kind of environment and I knew that I just did not want my own children to be part of that. I wanted to be in control of what I taught them based on our Christian beliefs. I did not want them sitting on a chair all day. I wanted them to be able to explore things they wanted to learn without a time limit. And I definitely did not want to miss a single growing moment of their lives.  So we decided that homeschooling was definitely for us. 

The first year was hard ya'll!! I was working and I was pregnant with baby number 3. Our schedule was crazy. My hubby at that time worked nights so he would teach Math and Bible and I would come home in the afternoon and teach Reading. We would do Science and Social Studies during the weekends.  We somehow made it work but it was tiring!! And of course we didn't have time for any type of co-ops or field trips or anything like that. I felt bad for the poor kid. I knew he craved being with other kids besides church and sports. Kids that were home schooled just like him. 

After that first year we got a surprise and got pregnant again! And so we decided that with four kiddos under the age of 6 it was time for me to stay home and do this thing full time. And I am so glad we did!! We have now been homeschooling for 6 years and things in our home school lives have changed for the better. If I would of known then what I know now, it would have definitely been a lot easier and relaxed... but I have to admit that becoming a homeschooling family has been the best decision we have made. 

I hope you join me tomorrow as I continue with Homeschooling Part 2! 

Until next time,
Kelly-Ann

No comments

Post a Comment