Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Are You New?

My top 10 Tips For New Homeschoolers!
Are you knew to home schooling?...If your starting this year, or fumbled your way through last year, or are debating the pros/cons of home schooling, I hope this post will guide you along the way! First some background!

I have home schooled my children for 3 years, I was NOT home schooled myself. I do NOT look down upon anyone who chooses to place their children into the public/private school systems around the world {our families are all different and what works for one may not work for another, just a fact of life}! My oldest is only starting 2nd grade this year, I am not a pro, I am still learning too, each and every day!

My goal with this post is to in some way guide you along and tell you a few things that might be of some help to you or someone you may know!

Here Goes!

Tip 1) Research: research EVERY nook and cranny on home schooling in YOUR area! There are tons of blogs and sites online that offer advice on what you should be doing, how long you should school, when you should school, what counts as learning, etc, etc...a website I would refer you too is: HSLDA {I have linked you to the laws page of their site, if you need anything else click the navigation button at the top of their site}...they have what you will need to look for and are advocates for home schooling families all over! Go and browse over their site, contact them with questions and sign up for there magazine {its free}...

Tip 2) Research Curriculum based upon your children's interest! See what topics your children are interested in and would like to learn and then go research it all out online to find the best fit in that area!

Tip 3) Research Curriculum based upon Home Schooling Methods! No two home schooling families are alike, we may share some common ground but our way of doing it is very different. I personally am eclectic, I pull from almost all methods of home schooling in some way, no set method works for us, and we like bits of them all. A book I would suggest is: Homeschooling Methods: Seasoned Advice on Learning Styles...it has every method in it and breaks it down for you and offers advice on how to go about choosing a method!

Tip 4) USE YOUR LIBRARY! I cannot stress this enough! As a home schooling mama I find it difficult to turn down a book, but living on one income that of which is my husbands, I cannot afford to purchase every single good book there is out there. I try my best to give my children wholesome books to read and not so much of the junky things that are out there now. However, if you run across a book you may like or think your children would be interested in check your library first, get a feel for the book and then if its a absolute must have, then purchase it. Libraries are full of the real deal on books, and its FREE! In my case 3 people in my home have a library card, technically we could check out 300 books at a time {HA, Id never do that, way too much to handle for me there} but do you see what I mean? Its free and is pretty much unlimited! Just be sure to return books on time to avoid a late charge! Not to mention the majority of libraries have movies, games for the playstations, wii what have you, music, and audio books for your taking!

Tip 5) Socialization, its always the big NO-NO word in the home schooling community, its pretty much a curse word...well, if your getting out visiting places, volunteering, church, outdoor activities, co-ops, etc...that is all socialization...I wont even begin discussing this because every family is different, our views on this word vary...heres a GREAT article on Socialization that breaks it down completely for you and she explains it better then I want too!

Tip 6) Its OK to purchase used curriculum or new, stay within your means when you purchase items, some companies offer a money back guarantee on their items, you can try it out and if you dont like it return it within the allotted time to get your money back and try something else!

Tip 7) Dont waste your money on a preschool curriculum, preschool and kindergarten in my opinion are very basic, some home schooling moms have put together curriculum for these age groups that all you do is pay under $20 for a years worth of items minus your arts and crafts stuff and print the items you want...there are a ton of preschool and kindergarten packs out there that you could use for a weekly theme! Some of my favorites are: 1+1+1=1{Pre-K & K} Homeschool Creations Confessions of a Homeschooler 2 Teaching Mommies and 3 Dinosaurs....

Tip 8) Invest in the sales of back to school at your local stores! If your planning on home schooling you will soon realize that pointy crayons, glue, and lots of paper are very much needed...invest in organization units and lots of shelving to hold your supplies...you will need it!

Tip 9) Space! A learning space that is! Clear out a room in your home to have as your main learning area. I do  understand that some families just cannot afford that but if you can make it happen, jump on it. I am very much on the end of where I need our learning space separate from our living space, I cannot have papers all over my dining table and sometimes projects need time to dry and other times you will just want to shut the door and walk away for a time! If possible make room for a space dedicated to home learning, you will love it later!

Tip 10) Breathe! Everything will work out and you will get the hang of it. Every day is a new day and you will learn and so will your children. It takes time for adjustments. Take a little at at time, get into a routine and be ok with mess ups, because they will happen! Some days will be longer and others way shorter then you had planned. Enjoy being a mother, teacher, and best friend to your children. A big thing I would suggest is LOTS of prayers, God will always guide you in the right direction, He knows what is best for you, your children and your family more so then you do! Hand it all over to Him!

My List Of Pros & Cons:
-freedom for your children
-no living by a clock
-less work and more fun
-religious freedom
-a lot of family time
-you set the rules for what your children learn

Cons: Well what cons? In my opinion a family that decides to home school knows that at least one parent will be with the kids 24/7, that money will be tight if they are living on one income {God will provide your needs}...and honestly to me there arent any cons, but again that is my opinion, each family is different and your con list could be longer then mine! But remember its ok to step back and admit your being ridiculous, because God has it under control (:

Here's a Article on the Pros/Cons of Homeschooling if your interested...Another...and Another! Remember your list will be different and you should not base your decision off of anything I have said or that someone else has said, you must base your decision on where you feel God is leading your family and how you feel about homeschooling!

I hope these 10 Tips of mine help you or someone you know who is interested in home schooling or just starting to get their toes wet...If you have any questions you can either leave it in the comments or you can personally e-mail me by clicking my e-mail button on the right sidebar! Enjoy this journey and make the best of each and every day! You are not alone...Blessings!

1 comment:

  1. What a nice post from you!! I was really worried last spring that I was losing you as a fellow homeschooler! Glad to see you got the ind back in your sails and are still feeling encouraged to stay on this course for the kids. :)


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