Dear New Homeschool Mom,
Your dissatisfied-no, that is an understatement- you are done with the school system. Maybe it is severe bullying, maybe it is the risk of various assaults against your child. You are concerned with the increasing threat of physical bodily harm to your child that requires “drills” in case there is an active school shooter. Maybe it is the new cultural trend (despite our children’s biological design) that we can suddenly “choose” our gender, or the ideology that once our children hit the school sidewalk they are no longer ours.
Maybe it is a system of education that treats children as a collective body instead of individuals, teaching to the middle- holding some children back and even worse, pushing many along and disregarding what they didn’t learn. Maybe your child is different, and this difference has placed an invisible target on your child’s back. Not only are they bullied by their peers but a team of educators call you often-not to say how great your child is doing despite his or her differences but to tell you how-“he won’t sit still…” “he is a disruption to the class…” “he needs more meds…” even worse, his confidence and self worth is dwindling.
For me it is all of it and the stark reality is-I know that I can do better.
Say good bye and don’t even bother looking back.
Instead-welcome to the world of home education.
Find peace in knowing you are now able to educate your child(ren) based on their individuality and allow them to progress through their education at the rate at which they develop.
Now you want to know where to start, what you should do, and maybe some direction on what curriculum to use?
I was there too at one point. I’ve poured over countless amount of curriculum, listened to seasoned home educating moms online and in life, and gone to my share of homeschool conferences and conventions. I’m confident enough in what I have experienced and what I have learned to share my thoughts with you.
This is something I wish someone had told me to do right away. Regardless, if you are pulling your children from conventional school or if you are homeschooling from the start, you should de-school. What do I mean by this? You are used to viewing education one way-through a teacher, at a desk, in a classroom. Open your mind and understand that the process of education is different at home than in a conventional school system.
This is why home education can be so successful. Unless you try to re-create conventional school at home which many of us try to at first and often (not always) find that it is an awful experience. Then we de-school and informally learn through all of what life has to offer. What you should focus on during this time is your relationship with your children. You are about to have a deeper and closer relationship with them and it is better to focus on that bond before you start to dive into formal lessons.
Forming A Deeper Relationship
I cannot stress enough the importance of forming a healthy and loving relationship with your children. If you’re removing your children from a school setting then you are adding another dynamic to your relationship. You are not only their mother or father, but also their academic educator. Working on creating love bonds (bonded connection rooted in love) and earn a deeper level of trust before you start any formal learning. Not that you didn’t have a relationship before, but it is about to get deeper and more complex. My advice on how to do this? Communicate to your children in their love language. I view home education as holistic and that it encompasses the whole child. Focus on your child’s heart, earn their trust, and forge a bond with them anchored in love.
The 5 Love Languages of Children: The Secret to Loving Children Effectively
While you are de-schooling and reforming your relationship with your children, in your free time begin researching curriculum. Evaluate yourself and your children, make an assessment off of that evaluation, use it to determine your teaching style and their learning style. Then search for a curriculum that closely suits all of your needs. This is what I did and found that a Charlotte Mason Education is best for all of us. A Charlotte Mason philosophy is a teaching method that focuses on the individuals progress and believes that education is more than academics it is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life. If you’re interested in curriculum based off a Charlotte Mason philosophy, check out this article: The Ultimate Charlotte Mason Curriculum List.
I do recognize that what works for us isn’t what works for everyone else. To help you have a better sense of direction I’ll steer you towards other popular curriculum choices (these are merely a few):
Or check out this article from Rebecca at Homeschoolon: Master Homeschool Curriculum List
I also highly recommend this group: The Christian Homeschool Oasis. The group administrator is Tina Hollenbech she is a “recovering” public school teacher (her own words, not mine lol). She is a seasoned home educator who runs an engaging homeschool facebook group, she has insightful advice that is full of wisdom. I definitely have been able to glean some from her in the last few years.
One last thing before you go, you may have people that tell you can’t do this, that you are not enough. I’m here to tell you that you are everything to your children. No one will love them more than you. No one will be as dedicated or passionate about their education as you. Your love, dedication, and passion will be what fuels all of their success, which will be a shared success. You can do this, I am not saying it will be easy. It will be hard at times but it will be worth it.
Are you ready to Homeschool?