Friday, January 7, 2011

Hippie HomeSchoolers

Daisy (10) & Julio (12) love doing their school work in my bedroom. The kids learn at their own pace and are always encouraged to experiment with things they enjoy doing. We spend much time during the day discussing current event issues, politics and history. I encourage all three of my home schooled children to ask questions about anything and everything. I strongly believe in being completely honest with the kids. Nothing - with the exception of cookies - is sugar-coated in our house. Honest, open discussions are always interesting.

In the areas where the kids excell, we move quickly through lessons. In the areas where they are having trouble, they are allowed to choose the lesson that works best for them. Julio has alot of trouble with reading, but he excells in math and science. He chooses the reading assignment that best suits him. That doesn't mean I let him do the easiest reading lesson. Often I will let him choose from several that I have printed out for him or from the many books we have here for the kids. After that I slip in a lesson that is a little more advanced each time. If he falls back alittle he can go back and work on his weak areas.

Daisy is a strong reader and learns very quickly. She loves all subjects in school, but reading is her favorite. She is encouraged by being graded on each assignment she completes. Whereas, Julio often gets discouraged by number grades, so I try to grade him based more on his completion of an assignment, then we work together to help him correct reading errors.

I encourage the kids to spend time alone when it comes to reading. Both phonics and word recognition are important to teaching them to read effectively.

Caleb (15) is encouraged to read what interests him the most. He can often been found reading autobiographies by his favorite bands.

When it comes to Math all three of the children learn with ease and they all three love Math assigments.

The number one reason my husband and I decided to home school is the time we are able to spend with our children. Over the past four years we have been home schooling, we have been able to travel without worrying about the children missing school, let them learn at their own pace without fear of failing (a word we do not use in our home school environment), instill the beliefs that we feel are important and be there for the children every moment of the day (no bullies, no missed bus, no waiting in line to pick them up from school, no explaining why things they are taught in public school aren't what we believe to be the truth). We teach our children to go with the facts. Read books, listen to older generations and evaluate every aspect of something before drawing conclusions.

Homeschool is NOT always about religion. For us it's about precious time spent with our children while they're young AND my husband and I (as parents) being the central adults in their life to give them guidance and encouragement. It's an old fashioned set of beliefs that should never die out or become extinct.

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