Trying again to say this (Homeschooling from scratch)

I don’t want anyone to worry about my children’s education.

That said, I’m not very good at expressing myself when I attempt to dispel concerns.

Last Sunday a retired teacher noted the rapidly approaching school year and said, “I bet you’re really busy planning now!”

Did I say, “I began researching in January, stopped buying materials in March and simplified my curriculum in July”?


I told this career K-2 teacher that no, I wasn’t in the midst of planning, that I was only going to focus on reading, writing and arithmetic (feeling that’s plenty for a 5-year-old), and as Natasha can already read and we do other activities together already, “school” wasn’t going to look much different than life right now.

I know this lady trusts me, but I bet you a nickel she’s trying really hard not to worry right now.

I love the books I collected for teaching, but the reality is that at this point they are more for my comfort and enjoyment than to apply on my own child (just yet).

Tomorrow I will be attending a meeting for “independent homeschoolers,” a group defined mostly by it’s members’ choice to homeschool apart from state aid or direction.

I’ve been asked by a number of people (usually more than once!) why I’m not “taking advantage” of all the “great programs” that are designed to “give me money” to “do whatever [I] want.”

The easiest out is the one my mom suggested  yesterday: it’s genetic.

Mom taught (and I learned) out of a random-yet-comprehensive collection of books salvaged from the school district’s annual text-dump (that, unfortunately, it doesn’t do any more).

My one experience with a structured curriculum, with daily assignments and a set amount to get through in a year was Calvert.  Two years actually: 4th and 6th, if I remember right.  I hated it and hope I would never do that to my children.  There was just this unmitigated *weight* of never being done.  Ever.  It just dragged on and it was impossible to get ahead.

And I thought it was horribly wasteful– you couldn’t use the curriculum or any of the books from one kid to the next (I’d never have the pleasure of watching my little brother re-live my misery) but had to re-buy the whole set for the next kid.

Anyway, I’ve been told there are other experiences to be had, but  as the mom/teacher, I’m going to stick for now with what I enjoy.  And that means playing at school before I need to, in order to prove to myself and anybody who cares that I can do this without someone “official” hanging over me.

One thought on “Trying again to say this (Homeschooling from scratch)

  1. Grandpapa says:

    I enjoyed reading your post. I appreciate the transparent honesty that comes through. Personally I think you are making a wise choice to stick with the 3R’s for now. In my opinion the Calvert Curriculum is ‘too structured’ for the first few years of homeschooling.

    Enjoy your Natasha!

    Grandpapa from Homeschool Castle

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