the 4 steps to a successful homeschooling experience!

Lif’e’s been a whirlwind since we started 2nd grade homeschooling last week.  I forgot to mention that these 2 weeks have also been filled with Luke’s golf competition and tournament. WHEW!  But he’s doing great!  Just a heavy schedule for a time!

The topic of educating from home came up twice just today on the golf course!

The first conversation began with a mother of one of Luke’s golfing buddies, Melanie, asking me where Luke went to school.  She had always wanted to homeschool.  She mentioned so many things that she felt he was ‘missing out on’.  She also talked about a friend of hers, mother of 4, who left the workplace to come home and educate her children.  I could tell Melanie really wanted to have her little man at home.

The second time homeschooling came up was at lunch, after the tournament, with another golfing buddy’s dad.  He’s a doctor, and his wife homeschools.

So my thoughts tonight:   So many realize the flaws of the public school system, but can’t afford to send their children to private school.  So they homeschool.  Which is awesome!  But here’s the BIGGER PICTURE:  What drives a family to homeschool even when they DO have the funds to send their children to private school?  well, I’m sooo glad you asked!!!

I ran across this information a while back and found it CRAZY AWESOME!  It’s the 18 Reasons Why Doctors & Lawyers Choose to Educate Their Children at Home!  take a moment:    http://consciouslifenews.com/18-reasons-doctors-lawyers-homeschool-children/1152660/

Now, let’s dig into how to get started!!!  (just Laura’s ideas anyway)

1) create order in your home.  Children cannot properly learn in a chaotic environment (they can’t truly relax in one, either).  Work to get some kind of structure to your everyday lives.  Your children will thank you for this whether you homeschool or not.
IDEA:  Have a chore chart.  A visual where every member of the family understands how they contribute to making the home run smoothly.

CHORE CHART

2) build excitement about learning at home!  Make sure you are communicating how AWESOME this is going to be!!!  How lucky they are!  How much extra play time/free time they’ll have!!!

3) Connect yourself to some lifelines!
IDEAS:
For starters, google homeschooling networks in your local area.  These are families just like yours that gather once or twice a month (or more) to go on awesome field trips together, play sports and activities together, and much more!!! You’ll LOVE the support you feel from meeting with other moms just like you!
Another idea is to find some online resources to help you make the most of this opportunity even before it begins.  Blogs, Facebook groups, and even Pinterest sites like this one: http://pinterest.com/angie76/homeschooling-ideas/   LOVE THIS!!!

4) Choose a Curriculum!
IDEAS:
A Beka (Pensacola Christian )  This is what we use.   It’s pricier than some, but I cannot find another curriculum that I love more.  It’s VERY nice for the parent because the daily lesson plans even tell you the exact wording to use.  It’s very through.  When I taught school, the schools I worked in used this curriculum because of it’s academic excellence.    It is very advanced and challenges the student. Slow learners do not adapt well in my opinion.   Abeka even offers the video program and live streaming!   and they have built in helps for those families with more than 1 child in different grades, learning at the same time.  to see more:  http://www.abeka.com
Rod & Staff –  I’ve only heard people talk about this curriculum.  I’ve never used it myself.  I know some advantages are that it’s much cheaper than the average homeschooling material, and it’s not nearly as fast paced academically.   to learn more:  http://www.rodstaff.com
BJU Press (Bob Jones) I have seen and used this curriculum when I taught in the classroom.  I did like the feel and layout.  I feel like this would be a wholesome option for any child.  http://www.bjupress.com
These are just a few… there are TONS out there.  You can easily google and do some research to see which curriculum fits your child’s needs.

Once you have taken these 4 steps, choose a date to start!  We begin in July, so that I can be generous with our vacation days… and also, so that Luke can take advantage of nice weather.  We usually get out around the end of March/first of April while it’s still pleasant enough to enjoy the outdoors!  I also do this so he can enjoy the perks of homeschool!  For example:  he gets an entire week off JUST for his birthday in October!!!  He’s LOVES to be homeschooled because I make it fun!

I hope this gives you a basic idea of what’s involved in the making of a SUCCESSFUL HOMESCHOOL EXPERIENCE.  Or at least what works for the Godwins!!!
Hugs!

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