Sunday, October 2, 2016

An Effort to Journal Record our Homeschooling Journey

Hey. This is my attempt to keep track of what we are learning with homeschooling, and see if any of what we've done is helpful to others.

We decided to home school this last summer, after our oldest finished first grade. I'd become disenchanted with the public school system -- our daughter's impression of school was that she had to spend a lot of time with her head on her desk waiting for other students to finish their worksheets. Recess was always her favorite part of the day, and it hurt to think that was only 15 minutes of being outside each day.

We chose to do year round homeschooling, making learning a part of our every day routine. Though I do not always get in all that I want to, I am still pleased enough with the results that we are sticking with it. These are some of the things I like about homeschooling:

1- I get to be with my girls. Some parents sound so relieved to send their kids away from home for a little bit, but I found it more stressful actually. I liked to make her home-made lunch, so I was always having to get up and make sure that was made, and then I missed her during the day, and when it came to pick her up, it was always right when someone needed a nap. It's easier for me to have them all home -- noisier, but easier. I love being involved in their education, because then I can remind them or tie things in later when we see an example of something we've learned.

2 - I get to incorporate religious learning into their day. I try to have a morning devotional each morning where we read from the scriptures, and I've been amazed at how well the girls have been able to memorize scriptures even at a young age. I've picked short scriptures that I feel have helped me, ex. "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind." 2 Tim. 1:7. I love being able to answer my children's questions about God and life right there, because they crop up during every day activities.

3 - My kids get to have a lot more time outdoors. When your eyes are looking for learning experiences, you'd be surprised how much biology is right in your own yard. This summer we've found a horntailed woodwasp, a tiny green cuckoo wasp, a cicada just emerging and pumping up its wings, a yellow finch that flew into the window and died, ant colonies, worms, swallowtails and more.

4 - I like that my girls have more time to learn homemaking skills. I've known to many people in college who cannot do their own laundry, keep their rooms clean, cook decent meals, or balance their finances. It is my hope that my girls will have all these skills well established when they leave out home.

5 - There is more time for art and music lessons. Our daughter's school only had art during the fall, and then no funding for it to continue. My girls love to draw and paint, and play with play-dough. I feel that creativity is an important part of education, and time is needed to do those things.

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