We are 2 weeks into our 1st ever experience sending our boys to school, outside our home. From my 1st born son Caleb’s 1st day in Kindergarten to his final day in the 6th grade, we’ve home schooled. This was the start of our 7th year of home school and after 10 moves, 4 states, in 12 years and 4 boys in 8 years, a lot of job change and transition, lets just say, a break was welcomed. My husband is on staff at a church in town that has a wonderful Private School. Because our oldest expressed interest in trying a school besides home, I thought it was a good options to start with. Will they always be in private school? We don’t know. Will they ever go to public? possibly. Will we ever go back to home schooling all of them again, maybe.
I don’t have an answer for “what is to come.” I am a firm believe in taking it YEAR by YEAR. Being flexible IMO is one of the best methods to things like this. Being open for change and not quick to judge anothers choice.
To often I see home schoolers bash the public school system. Or Private School families bash home schoolers. It goes back and forth and neither party is innocent. Home Schoolers can be just as judgemental as a Public or Private school family. So lets just be kind, respect everyones decision on what they feel is best for their child and move on. :)
The question I keep getting asked is “How do you like it?” “How do the boys like it?“
Photo above taken in 2012 home schooling in Georgia
So I thought it be fun to do a quick update on that… and share some.
1st off, having to be up early and dressed, huge adjustment.
If you’re a long time reader of my blog, you’ve seen plenty of shirtless and pajama school days on here. My boys had it made, being able to wear whatever they wanted every day of school and some days stay in their PJS until dark haha. I LOVED that about home school and I do miss that, but the boys having to be up and ready for school by 7am, isn’t a bad thing.
I have enjoyed seeing it teach them responsibility. At the school they are at they have a set dress code. M, Tu, W and Friday they have to wear their polo’s with certain color shorts or pants. Belt. Certain color shoes/socks. On Thursdays they have chapel and have to wear a button up, fancy dress shoes and yall, even a bow tie or tie. SO STINKIN CUTE! Not exactly a favorite for my 13 year old, but it isn’t a bad thing. I like the uniforms and I love not having to worry about my child not having a certain brand or type of clothing to “fit in.“ Uniforms to me are a beautiful thing. Such a fan.
The school setting is forcing my boys to curb their hunger. After week one, one of my boys said to me “I kind of wish I was home schooled again.” When I asked why, he responded “Because I get so hungry, lunch time just isn’t enough. I need more food, all day.” As a home schooler, we had more frequent breaks and yes, even snacking as we worked. Usually on something non-messy like carrots or grapes. Either way, not being able to have those breaks, is an adjustment. Again, not a bad thing. :)
My boys are being taught that grades matter. One thing that I think a lot of home schoolers do (guilty as charged!), is not using grade books as much as we probably should. Until high school, you really don’t have to keep track of grades religiously as a home schooler. Its the beauty of home school. You can gauge your childs progress based on how they do daily, since you see that daily. Not so much based on a list of grades in a book. I also am not a huge fan of test. I don’t think test are bad, but I did not like the idea of a test lowering a childs grade so much because of the percentage is equaled. I don’t think ill ever be a fan of that. Cause lets face it, some of us just struggle with test, regardless of how good we know the work. However, it is something they have to now learn and realize matters. So the whole “pretending it will go away” wont work and they have got to learn to take things serious, be aware of their grades and be careful as they do test. Rushing is a big “no, no.” They are realizing this already.
So over all, the experience has been good.
I am SO incredibly thankful for the break. You guys, I NEEDED IT! Like, bad. Like, if I didn’t get the break I may have needed a prescription to get me through it LOL. That bad. I have so enjoyed only having two younger children at home, in order to focus more on them. It doesn’t mean I don’t think home school life is beautiful and wonderful and can’t be with a house full. I think it is amazing and I honestly would be cool home schooling all 4 again one day (NOT TODAY! haha). For this season though, these lessons and this time away, is a good thing for my older boys and me.
It is teaching them things I believe they needed to learn. Things that I could not have taught them. Things they had to experience on their own and among others.
Thank you to all those who have been involved and curious. I love knowing people care for my boys and think of our family.
I hope everyones school year has started off well. To those who home school, keep at it, cause it is a blessing. Savor the flexibility. Enjoy the field trips and fun at home, on your schedule. To those who don’t home school, be involved, support those teachers and praise your kids. Encourage them. No matter what we decide as parents, the best thing we can do is be involved and pray for our children. Be flexible and never above correction or change. Had you asked me 4 years ago if I would have sent my kids to a private school, I would have said no. Seems like the older I get and the older my kids get, the more I realize I have to eat my words haha. I’ve said “I’ll never do that.” more often than not, to many situations. Funny how those things change. <3 *To those curious what curriculum I am using with Owen & Reed, ill do an updated post on that in time.*