Monday, April 19, 2010

To Homeschool or Not To Homeschool????

That is the question...

I've been thinking about homeschooling for about a month now. I feel foolish for even thinking about it, because I have always said that I would NEVER homeschool my kids.

Here are my thoughts:
1. I am a Indiana State Licensed teacher for grades K-6. We are stuck in our current home, in our current city, and all of the local school districts are laying off. There are no job opportunities around here and there is no chance of relocating.
2. I love teaching. It's one of my greatest passions. I'm good at it (I don't want to toot my own horn, but I am pretty darn good at it, I think....) I have 2 children who will be entering school age within the next year to 2 years. Why not use the degree that I have and the passion that I have to teach my own children?
3. I'm considering taking on more than just my kids. I would ideally love to teach a group of kids ranging from K-5th grade. This would be a great way to include socialization, as well as a small group environment.
4. I'm concerned about public schools. There are A LOT of great teachers within the public schools who will do anything and everything for their students. There are A LOT of great principals who will do anything and everything for their staff and their students. My concern lies within the government control of public schooling. Teaching is not teaching anymore. It is catering to the demands of the state, i.e. standardized testing, NCLB, Race to the Top. I taught in public school for 2 years, and the pressure was HUGE. (I'm by no means claiming to have the experience and expertise of long time teachers) In talking with teachers of 30+ years, teaching is not what it used to be. Schedules are set, curriculum is set, teaching styles are basically decided for the teacher. There is no freedom in what is taught, how it is taught, and the pace at which it is taught. The teachers put the students first, but does the state? I'm not so sure anymore. Budget cuts, teacher lay offs, large class sizes, subject areas being taken completely away to focus only on reading writing and math, moving teachers around against their will....I'm not sure if this is the environment I want my children to grow up in.

Caleb will start Kindergarten in 2011/2012 school year. I have until then to decide. I'm starting some reasearch on it and we are trying to figure out if we could swing it financially. I also don't know how it would work in our small little house....There's just a lot to think about.

What is your opinion on homeschooling? If you currently homeschool, how did you get started? What are the financial aspects of it? Give me your thoughts and ideas!

5 comments:

Amanda Fluharty said...

I personally have no issues with homeschooling, other than I could never do it. I do think that kids need the socialization, that that is also a part of something they need to learn. I do not have the patience to teach my own kids. However, I do know of parents who have done it, and done it well. You are a teacher, so I would figure you do it with some ease as far as knowing what you're doing with the cirriculum. My problem is, I'm having problems helping my 3rd grader with math! LOL You have to remember that you are also going to have 2 other children at home that could be a distraction to you or to Caleb, or both. I totally understand your frustration with the school systems. But I feel, at least for MY kids, that they are better served with being at a public school than being at home with me. I just am not a patient person, I have five kiddos running around, and it's just too much for me. Plus, I figure my kids also like getting a break from me, haha. As far as doing more than just Caleb, I'd suggest doing more research into that. There may be some restrictions as to what you can and can't do. You have some time, so do your research, and then let God show you the way.....

rccalyn said...

We're going through this same decision right now! The district we are in is NOT so great, and we definitely can't afford to pay for a Christian preschool/school. I also have an early childhood degree, so I'll most likely start out by homeschooling for preschool, and see where it takes us from there. It's a hard decision though, even with all the homeschool groups out there, to give up the social aspect of a regular classroom. I was homeschooled for a year, and LOVED it, but it was because I was a wall-flower and hated being around too many people. I don't want me daughter to turn into me...it's a fine line!
Stacy

Molly Alisa Photography said...

We have been considering it too Jill... with our kids being so close in age, maybe we could work out a home school co-op situation when they are a little bigger. :)

I've never wanted to do it either... but I honestly feel scared to put so much of my child's development in to the hands of people I don't know.

SinkinginGrace said...

I was Homeschooled, and I turned out normal right? I mean other than making Mrs. Michelson crazy and convincing Mr. kaher that we were hating each other....

Anonymous said...

I would recommend that you check out the following website (http://www.fwahs.org/). It is the official site for the Fort Wayne Area Home Schools. This is a great resource. They are having a convention at the Coliseum May 15th. There will be speakers and curriculum. They also host a Used Curriculum sale in June. So cost can be as low as needed. Example I am looking into Grade 2 for our son for next year ... I can go as low as $150 for the year ... new!

I think your mom gave you my email, if you have additional questions.

Carrie S.

 
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