Get it? Home is cooler? Homeschooler? Meh, it was tenuous at best!
These days homeschooling is gaining in popularity as more and more people choose to keep their children out of the school system for one reason or another. Each family has their own personal reasons for choosing to homeschool, from not liking the local school system, fear of gangs or crime within school walls, lack of trust in the quality of teachers, religious preferences or even, like me, they just didn’t want to send their children off to school when the time came. My little girl seemed so small and still just a baby when it came time for me to “start getting ready for Kindy.” I decided then that I’d homeschool her, just for a while, just to see how it goes… She’s 13 now and never been in a school yet! Her brother is 10 and he too has always been homeschooled and our little baby girl who is about to turn one in a week or two will most likely stay home also.
Here is an idea of what we get up to at our house. Our days are unplanned and generally unscheduled. We all get up quite early as we are early risers in general. We tend to be dressed by eight ish although I know of many homeschoolers who enjoy spending the day in their pj’s! I take the kids and the dog for a walk around the neighborhood after breakfast and then the day pretty much unfolds as it will after that.
We may have errands to run, there are always chores to do and of course laundry… that just never ends does it? We make many trips to the library and haul away laundry baskets loaded with books. We spend as much time outdoors as we can, often in summer it’s too hot to be outside and in winter, too cold, but when we can we get out on the swings or the hammock, play basketball, go bike riding or sometimes out to the lake with the kayaks or the little boat. On rare rainy days we can be found watching Dr Who on Netflix, playing Minecraft on the iPad or playing chess at the dining table. (I routinely get myself roundly thrashed by my daughter. She has skills and a cunning streak!) Occasionally I look up from my book and find we are all quietly reading. That is a special moment… my son isn’t a big reader and prefers to be visually stimulated but when I see my big girl curled up with a book on her lap, the baby leafing through a board book on the floor by my feet and my boy looking through the adventures of Phineas and Ferb, it just warms my heart.
In the afternoons Jessie, my teen, works on her math on her laptop. She uses Kahn Academy, a brilliant and free program that teaches math from the absolute basics up to professor level. She really enjoys doing it and I don’t have to worry about trying to explain it to her! Jack, my son, works on math with me on a much more basic level. We use money and basic addition and subtraction. Things like “Did the tooth fairy leave enough money for me to buy a new Hot Wheels car?” 😀 This is usually when we are touring Target and looking for bargains.
At dinner time the kids help set the table or help with dinner then it’s clean up, some Big Bang theory and then bed time. A pretty laid back but happy day most of the time! Socially we see other homeschooling families every week when they come to visit us on Fridays and during the school year we attend homeschool co~op where the kids can take part in various classes and activities. Jessie has friends online, friends who call to chat on the phone and friends who come and sleep over most weeks. Jack has joined a social group that meets weekly and both children attended camp over the summer this year.
So there ya go: homeschooling at our house. Every homeschool family does homeschool just a little bit differently. When it works, it works because the family has adapted it to fit into their lives. There are SO many ways to homeschool your child, I honestly believe if you want to make it work there is rarely a situation where it can not. It might not look like my way of doing it, but your way is cool too!