The new school year has begun and like my children, I am also learning new things every day. Learning is a lifelong process. I never really knew much about homeschooling. I was excited when a fellow YOLO mom, Mary Anne, was willing to be a guest blogger sharing her experience with homeschooling.
“It’s that time of the year again-Back to School time! Shopping for pencils and notebooks, back to school wardrobes, first day of school pics posted on Facebook -except we homeschool. So my kids begin their first day in pajamas around 9am after all the school buses have left our neighborhood.
I never thought we’d be a homeschooling family. As a product of parochial schools and a former elementary school teacher, I never imagined any other way of educating my children. We even moved to our current town simply because of the reputation of the great school system. The first couple of years were fine, my kids had some great teachers and made friends but by the time my son was in third grade and my daughter in second, school wasn’t really working for our family.
I had been following a blog about a homeschooling family and I was inspired by the relationship the mom had with her children and the way homeschooling gave their lives flexibility. I started researching homeschooling laws in my state and reading every book about homeschooling I could get my hands on. I learned about different styles of homeschooling and the various curriculums available. I joined a homeschool message board for members in my area and read about the many options for classes and meet-ups (for the all important socialization that most people worry about). Next, I had to convince my husband who agreed to try it for a year.
After spending the whole summer researching and planning, I was ready! The first month or so was difficult as I tried to recreate school at home since I was terrified of deviating from the schedule. But as the months went on and the kids and I started figuring it all out, we really started to enjoy it. The kids met new friends, took interesting classes, and went on incredible field trips. The flexibility also allowed us to take family trips to California and London.
So here we are beginning our second year of homeschooling by taking a trip across our state (very useful since my daughter’s curriculum this year is studying NY). Will we continue to homeschool next year? I have no idea since we are planning one year at a time with a lot of evaluating to see how it is working for the kids and our family as a whole. But for now my family is enjoying our decision to learn together and doing what works for us.”
Mary Anne – thanks so much for sharing your experience with homeschooling – one of the many different ways we can educate our children.