Our History of Homeschooling (the story continues)

Sunday, March 24, 2013

So, there were families in my past that I observed and decided that homeschooling appeared to shape them in a way that I liked.  There was a closeness in siblings that I liked.  There was a sense of community and respect in the families.  Some of it I can't put my finger on--but the way the parents related to kids, and vice versa was just...different.  Maybe it was because the parents had more time to study and understand their kids.
There was alot of freedom in these families.  Freedom to go off on a long trip or even a year long exchange without having to worry about what school the kids would go to.  I remember reading an adventure blog of such a family a few years ago.  I liked that.
 When I was in high school, I became intensely interested in Creationism and Evolution.  For a least a year or more I studied it at length, even choosing it as a presentation topic in my OAC (grade thirteen) Geography class (much to the dismay of my teacher, I'm sure, especially when I went twenty minutes over the twenty minute maximum time required).
There are alot of topics that Christian parents would probably rather their kids would just not know about.  For me, evolution is one of those topics.  But this is just not reasonable, nor is it wise!  Our kids are not going to be able to stand strong in their faith if they are unaware of the attacks upon it.  Instead of being scared of my children being exposed to the idea of evolution, I've realized that I can be the key influence on this topic.  Instead of shying away from the history book that begins with "billions of years ago", I can balance this presentation with information from one of my creationism books.
Over the years I've seen many "wake up you parents" type articles that claim that _______ media source or ______ pop/movie star is influencing kids these days far more than their parents.  ( *friends**music**movies*).
I am jealous for my childrens' attentions!  I want my husband and I to be their prime influences.  These were the things that I explored throughout my late teens and into my twenties, as I learned more about homeschooling.

Then, Jairus was born.

I didn't focus on much except his O2 sats, pumping every 3 hours and getting that piped into his little tummy for a very long time.  Then at 1 year of age, speech therapy began.  A couple years later, his therapists were recommending preschool so that he'd be around other talking children to boost his own speech.  Looking back, I can't say that this goal was reached.  It sounds logical, I'm sure SLP's would still recommend something like that, but Jairus doesn't 'not speak' for lack of exposure.  Apraxia is a physical inability to coordinate the muscles to create speech.  He has language, he has communication.  Watching other people speak doesn't help worth a hill of beans.  But of course, when he was 3 or 4 years old, we only had desperate hopes that what the therapists said would come true.  In any case, I gave fleeting thought to my homeschool hopes at this time and decided that preschool was acceptable.  He had a very fun couple of years at a place in Brantford and then one year at a co-op preschool in Hamilton, which Honour joined him for.  She has fond memories of that, and screeches in delight every time we pass the church that it was held in.  When she was tested at the end that year, the teachers confidently told me that Honour was completely ready for JK; she'd have NO problem.  I smiled, thanked them, went home and ordered my first homeschool curriculum: Little Hands to Heaven.

Haha, no actually, I liked how that sounded so I just wanted to write it.  I actually started homeschooling about halfway through that year.  The preschool was only 1/2 days 2-3 days a week so on the off days, we would do 'school at home'.

I cleaned up the basement, stuck up some posters and laminated resources from my local ASKE, set up a table and we began homeschooling in February of 2007.  I probably would have started sooner, but 2006 had us selling our Brantford house, buying our Hamilton house, moving, getting pregnant and then burying our son.  I think I did pretty good to get started only a couple months after that.

It was lotsa fun, the Little Hands to Heaven program.  My older three now each have a thick binder with dollar store report covers, stuffed full of all their finger painting, letter practice, number learning, cutting, pasting and macaroni creations that they love to pull out and look through.  So proud they are of their homepreschool!


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