Tuesday, January 15, 2008

What you'll find under my living room couch

A friend of mine said you can tell a good housekeeper by how clean it is under their couch. Meaning that, if they know someone is stopping by, they may quickly pick up items from the floor and furniture, but probably won't think of under the couch. I must say- that gave me reason to pause. So I always remember to check that spot during my daily tidying of the house- atleast the part visible to the casual observer.

And so it was that I happened to see a corner of paper sticking out from under my couch. As I looked it over, I couldn't believe it. It was the test results of my eldest son's state testing. We did this testing right around a year ago. At the time I was anxious to know the results. But anything government takes time, and it really had pretty much slipped my mind.

So here it was.

Not only did he meet state standards, but he actually excelled!
May I say I am one proud mama?

Okay, I know he was only in the third grade. But it is still a boost to this homeschooling mom.

And it is probably more a reflection of his personal brightness than my teaching ability.

When I started homeschooling, it was a matter of finances. I didn't want to send my kids to public school (just a personal choice, hubby went to public school and turned out quite nice!) but couldn't afford to send them to our Christian school ($260. per kid each month-and that's cheap for this area). Then there was the fact that my youngest with her issue (apraxia) could not go to either school.

So, homeschooling seemed to be the choice left standing.

Our first year we tried Connections academy. And I know I may just have ruined my reputation. You see, many homeschoolers (atleast the parents) feel you are a traitor to the cause to use a "government" program to homeschool your kids. That you are basically taking the easy way out. And I have to admit I can see their side somewhat.

But I assure you, it was not the easy way out. I've never worked so hard homeschooling! We often spent 6-7 hrs each day working on schoolwork, and worked on school projects on the weekend. And none of their classes were combined (as in Science or History) so mom's brain was busy computing the whole time. It was quite stressful.

In early Spring I finally decided it (connections academy) wasn't for us. But I can assure you, I am not quick to judge people who choose to go that path. I really feel anyone who takes on homeschooling their kids deserves to be supported and encouraged. It's an incredible challenge.

And if they feel they are not up to the challenge, they shouldn't be criticized. It's not for everybody. I know a few people whose children would be in mortal danger if they should try to homeschool- and I'm not totally joking there. Some people are not mentally up to it. Life has to go on while you homeschool, and not everyone can do that balance.
Or needs to.

So, now we are up to the present day. I love homeschooling. We are doing a different curriculum, and I have found some electives that are as much fun for me as for the kids! Two days a week we go to a friend's house and combine literature and English grammar.

That's right- my kids are taught two classes by Mrs. Darling at Dishpan Dribble! This is a blessing in more ways than one. Not only do they get a little social interaction with other kids, but it also gives me one-on-one time to work with my little girl. Mrs. Darling has been an incredible encouragement to me on my homeschooling journey- I wish everyone could be so blessed.

And so, instead of working a job to add to the household income (like I thought I would be doing by now) I am homeschooling three kids. I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I get by. And I'm pretty sure my eldest son will bypass me in a few years, as he seems to have inherited partial genius from some unknown ancestor (well, hubbys pretty smart too).

And I apologize to anyone who feels misled by the title to this post.

But you see, it was really nice to find those test results under the couch instead of the old peanut butter and jelly sandwich, covered with ants, that I found last time!


Minimalist Mommy said...

Thank you for stopping by and thank you for adding me to your blogroll. I will return the favour and make your page a part of my daily routine.

Frasypoo said...

I admire anyone who homeschools kids,it takes special discipline.
Dont feel bad about using a system to help you.If you and the kids benefit who is to blame?
Yikes,there is dust and potpurri under my couch,my dog likes standing on it and tips the potpurri over !!!

Anonymous said...

That's funny... I am about to post on what is in my glove compartment. ha, ha!

Always good to hear a fellow homeschooler express satisfaction and enjoyment!