Homeschooling

All posts in the Homeschooling category

There are other options

Published February 8, 2017 by lynn k scott

I’ve had several conversations, some good and some that make me cringe, on the topic of Betsy DeVos being confirmed as Education Secretary.  While, I don’t typically write controversial posts, the education realm is something I have strong feelings on.  They definitely differ from the “norm”.

“She’s not qualified” seems to be the chant of the hour.  DeVos actually supports private schools and homeschools.  Oh the proverbial horror!!!  If you’ve followed my blog at all, you know I have homeschooled and I currently have my daughter in a very small, private, Christian school.  I am not upset by DeVos not being an educator or a school administrator.

WHY?  (I’m sure someone is asking that question.)

As a homeschool mom, one of the biggest “digs” we hear is ‘you don’t have a teaching degree’.  Nope, you’re right…I don’t.  However, my state simply states I have to capable of teaching…and I am!  Most people don’t realize, homeschooled children typically surpass their public school counterparts in the testing realm.  There’s a simple reason for this. The teacher/student ratio is smaller and the parents are more committed to their child.  It’s that simple.

I know homeschooling isn’t for everyone.  I’ve heard, “well I have to work and don’t have the luxury of staying home with my child”.  Gee….welcome to the club.  I work full-time too; thank you very much.  The nice part of homeschooling is…you can do it whenever you want.  So we did lessons after dinner and homework during the day.  It can be done.

I’m not super mom.  I’m exhausted mom.  I’m broke mom.  I struggle to keep my child in a private school.  A school where her emotional and spiritual well-being is as important as her academic well-being is.  A place they say the Pledge every morning and are free to celebrate Christmas and not have to be PC and say “Happy Holidays”.

Currently, my property taxes pay for a school, that I find unsafe, inept, protects bullies and embraces the educational nightmare known as Common Core.  I received no compensation for homeschooling.  I can’t write off the tuition for private school, yet I pay for public school.

I pay for a school, in a district that wastes money.  A school I had to send in a lot of supplies for because of mismanaged funds.  A school where several teachers homeschool their children because they know how horrible public school can be.

While public school is a must for many children and families, something needs to be changed.  Perhaps embracing school choice is the answer.  Perhaps leaving my property tax dollars to fund a public school remains unchanged.  I can live with that.  However, to be fair, I am not opposed to receiving a discount for homeschooling and/or a tax write-off for choosing the educational model that works best for MY child.

We live inn a time where personal accountability is at an all-time low; where entitlement reigns supreme. Schools are unsafe because the parents of kid-bullies threaten to sue or say, “not my child” or refuse to acknowledge their hellion attacked a teacher.  Teachers unions that protect abusive teachers who bully kids, humiliate them because they don’t understand a perceived simple concept.  PTAs meet right after school to omit working parents from attending, simply because it’s convenient for the teachers…THESE are the reasons why someone who is not tied to the public school system needs to be in this position.

Not everyone can or will choose to homeschool or use a private or charter school, but those options are out there.  Those of us who have researched and know these to be the best educational options for our children shouldn’t lose out because the public school system failed us.  We deserve to be heard and to receive the same incentives.

As parents, we follow the law of mandatory education.  However, our children are our primary concern and the district, the state and the government need to know, we have the final say when it comes to our children.

I am hoping this change will bring about positive and necessary changes for the sake of our children.  The current system has been broken for far too long.

 

Homeschooling Moment

Published January 14, 2016 by lynn k scott

This “memory” popped up on my Facebook page and I laughed just like I did when this first happened.  Kids…lol

Homeschooling moment:

Finished history unit on George Washington becoming the first President. Unit questions in the back. As usual, my daughter keeps it interesting.

Me: Where does the current President live?

Lil Miss: *omitting the word “current”* She responds, “the grave”. (Thinking about GW)

Me: ummm….true….smh

Going Into Business With Your Child

Published January 7, 2016 by lynn k scott

When it comes to parenting, there are more ways to approach to raising children than I could shake a stick at.  There are just as many parenting topics that could be addressed too.

I’m going to leap into the educational realm of parenting.  Whether your child attends a public, private or home school, parents and children have a relationship based on that environment.

I just realized, my youngest has been in public school, then we homeschooled and now she’s attending a private school.  I always tell my daughter, “We are in this together.  We are a team for your educational success.”

Sometimes my daughter agrees with me and she’s ready to tackle the world.  Other times, my “team” approach is met with a heavy sigh and rolling of her eyes.

I was preparing her backpack this morning; making sure all her books, homework and whatever else is needed for the day was included.  I love when my daughter shows me the graded work she’s received from her teacher.  Yet, I have to remember, I’m still dealing with a child, who isn’t always forthcoming with all her returned work; especially when the grade isn’t all that magnificent.

That was the case this morning.  I pulled out all these additional sheets of a paper.  Some were satisfactory grades, one was barely passing and one had ???? over it.  Me being me, I planned on speaking with my daughter after she was ready for the day.  It would seem the ???? paper wasn’t properly completed because she simply didn’t feel like doing it.

I can relate to that!  However, we’re not homeschooling any more and it’s not possible just to table an assignment for another day.  I had to reiterate she needs to complete the work as assigned, on time.

There was English work that I was concerned with.  Tenses and parts of speech getting mixed up.  I decided I was going to have the lil miss practice with some online educational games.

Her teacher is great, but I can see my daughter is struggling with a few things.  By being involved, treating her education like a business model, investing my time, we will grow her knowledge together.  School doesn’t have to be all boring.  We can play word games, have conversations and utilize the technology that’s out there.

Her success depends on my involvement.  I firmly believe in working with her teacher, keeping open discussions going, finding out where there are issues and addressing them.  If no official homework is assigned, then I give her something to do each night.  That could include reading her library book to me, playing Scrabble, catching up on some math concepts that could use reinforcement, etc.

Parents know their children best.  That is one reason I firmly believe in homeschooling.  When that isn’t an option, you don’t have to simply sit by and do only what the school says.  You can supplement or raise questions when you see areas that are causing stress.  I see that as my job as her parent, as her partner, for her education.

It’s my business to know where she stands.  It’s her business to be the best student she can be.  It’s our business to accomplish this together.

Christian School

Published January 6, 2016 by lynn k scott

The end of October 2015 was a transition for our homeschooling family. Circumstances change and we change with it.  For our homeschool, it meant my daughter attending a brick and mortar school.  This time, it would be a very small, private, Christian school.

While I am not a devout Christian, I do have my faith.  I know religion can be a “hot topic” with a lot of people.  While I’m of the Protestant faith, the school we chose didn’t come off “preachy”.

My daughter has Bible classes, memorizes a verse every week and attends Chapel on Friday.  I was teaching her Bible in our homeschool and this new approach was fine by me.  She is surrounded by positive teachers and it’s definitely not like the Catholic schools of decades past, walking around with rulers, waiting to slap at a child’s hands.

The Christmas program included traditional Christmas songs; not “holiday” songs.  Merry Christmas was said without reservation.  My daughter still sings parts of those songs she recently learned, even though Christmas is over for this year.

The lil miss frequently hums, “Amazing Grace”, while setting the dinner table.  I find these new qualities comforting.  I like that she is comfortable enough to express herself.

On our drive to school, she recounted the story of Noah and the Flood, as she was observing all the standing water on the farms that we were passing.

One night, my daughter threw me for a bit of a curve ball on our commute home.  She watched a car cut me off.  I did utter some not-s0-nice words when it happened.  As we passed the offending car, she looked out her window at the driver (who couldn’t see her) and said, “even though you have sinned, God will still forgive you”.

WOW!  I felt a bit guilty at my response to the other driver when my daughter was showing her grace.

For me personally, I believe this was a sign for my daughter to be attending this school.  It’s brought a peace and calm to our lives; for which I am grateful.

I think homeschooling is a great option (one of the best) and wish I had the opportunity to do so again, this private school, really is the next-best thing.  I pray the public school system one day is overhauled, common-core is banished, being “PC” becomes a memory, saying the Pledge of Allegiance every morning returns to the classroom and children are reunited with learning.

Feeling Like a Failure

Published November 3, 2015 by lynn k scott

I just got off a conference call with my daughter’s 4th grade teacher, the 3rd grade teacher and the principal. Her teacher spoke with me last week regarding catching her up to where they are in math. Now they want to include reading.

I know switching schools can be challenging in regards to curriculum. We took our time, wasn’t heavy into testing, did some child-led learning, etc. However, we did follow each subject’s book and felt good about her progress.

You always have to wonder what’s going on when the principal becomes involved. Basically, they want to put her back in 3rd grade. I vetoed that option immediately. My daughter can do the work; I just need to know where to catch her up.

It’s challenging enough starting a new school. I don’t want her to feel punished because we worked at her pace vs a standards pace. We agreed she would do extra phonics work for reading and attend 3rd grade math.

I’ve read about this happening to homeschoolers who return to school. It’s been one of my worst educational nightmares and it’s coming true. I plan to work with her on math and catch her up to 4th grade and her 3rd grade math can reinforce it. It will probably take the rest of the year, but we’ll get it done.

Right now I feel like such a homeschool failure, even thought, rationally, I know that’s not true. My daughter’s never been a strong reader and she’s stubborn as the day is long when she’s corrected. Now I’m wondering if I made the right choice putting her back in school. I really hate having to work when I want to be home and this never would have been an issue.

Just feeling judged, even though that’s not how they came across.

It’s time for a change

Published October 23, 2015 by lynn k scott

Could be it be true?  I’m back to blogging?

Yes, yes….it’s true.  No need for excitement.  I apologize for my disappearing act.  So much going on and so little time to blog while dealing with life.  Rest assured, I am here and I shall provide an exit blog should the time arise when I am no longer able to continue my ever-changing writing adventure.

So, as you can see, it’s time for a change.  This particular reference is in regards to our homeschooling journey.  After discussions with my daughter about her schooling preferences and her day and evening routines, we have made a change; hopefully for the better.

Starting on Monday, my lil miss will return to a brick and mortar school.  I still maintain my beliefs on the public school system and the shambles it’s in regarding quality education.  That being said, a private, Christian school has been located and appears to suit my daughter’s educational needs.

One, it’s not a public school and they don’t deal with Common Core (bonus points there).  Two, they have an American flag in each classroom and say the Pledge daily.  That might seem trivial to some, but it’s extremely important to this Army mom. Every school should be doing this, imo.  Three, she will have religion in her class.  While I am not overly religious, I find it important to have a foundation in faith; whatever that may mean to an individual.  Lastly, it’s a very small school.  My daughter will be the 10th child in her class.  The school holds K-8, but each grade only has one classroom.

For me, there’s a personal level and mirrors homeschooling, as close as possible, in a school environment.  Their goal is to teach during the day with no more than an hour’s homework per night, if at all.  Responsibility and accountability and coupled with the educational pursuit.

I was impressed when I inquired about the school, how they immediately invited me to come and take a tour.  I observed my daughter’s potential new class for 20 minutes and how I was able to have a private conversation with her potential new teacher.  I was impressed her tuition costs the same as what I was paying a friend to watch her during the day while I worked.

Change is scary but also necessary.  I have enjoyed homeschooling my daughter for the last two and a half years.  We will continue her art pursuit on our own.  She is nervous and excited to rejoin a brick and mortar school.  If this works out well, she will stay there through eighth grade.  At that point, we will see what charter schools are available.  If none meet our standards, then we can revisit homeschooling again.

The lil miss will still get the opportunity to hang out with her homeschool group friends.  We may not make every week’s meetup, but they have been a blessing the short time we’ve been involved with them and we’re glad to know we are still welcome to hang out when our schedule allows.

I firmly believe you cannot grow if you are not willing to change.  My daughter said this morning, her new school is a new door opening in her life.  How cannot I not be pleased with her acceptance of change?

Introducing Karma

Published September 25, 2015 by lynn k scott

The lil miss was very engaged in last night’s history lesson. We were discussing the Spanish and French explorers.

We read about De Soto, who was wealthy, but wanted more riches. He had planned on conquering the Indians, even though he knew they had killed Ponce de Leon.  The book went on to say some of his men died because of fights with the Indians and others because they became ill.  Basically, he was responsible for those deaths because of his greed.

The outcome of De Soto’s exploration, was he never found gold (false stories) but he did happen upon the Mississippi River and is credited with that discovery.

The book said how he eventually became sick with fever and died. My precious daughter said, “that’s what he gets for being greedy”.  I responded, “that’s what’s known as Karma”.

I never considered that at her age. I just learned the name, discovery, date and moved on. History is going to be fun with her.

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