Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Don't give up Homeschooling.

                    I can only speak for myself but I have wanted to send my daughter back to school plenty of times.  There are some great days and then there are days when I wonder was I completely insane for even thinking I could do this. When the going gets tough, I wonder was I even my right mind when I decided to homeschool my six year old and take of my three year and my baby.
                 If you have ever felt this way just know you are not alone. I do not know many home school families. Actually I only know one, and have met some others at a zoo class, but other than that I see no one else. It has been hard getting out of the house with all three. I am now getting used to traveling with all three. I know that one thing I can add is more activities outside the home and making some friends.  Friends for my kids and friends for this crazy mamacita that understand this journey.

              I say don't give up because the past few days were tough. I wondered if would it be easier if I had just done what is the usual, send her to school. Not that there is anything bad with that. When it gets rough at home and I have no breaks. The baby is crying ,kids are fighting, dishes are piled up, dog needs to go out everyone is hungry and its only ten in the morning, I tend to lose it a bit. But then today I witnessed something new in my daughter. Something I had never seen before. She was doing her math and I explained to her that in order for her to have more play time and more breaks she needs to focus. I wanted her to understand that it is her choice to get her work done. It is up to her how much play time she has. Miraculously she heard and understood me. She finished her two math worksheets in record time. I was amazed and I was so happy to see such a big progress. Not only did she work through those problems quickly because we have been working on adding and remembering addends, but she can  also focus. That was that hardest part of homeschoolin.  Getting her to focus for at least ten to fifteen minutes was a challenge to say the least.
Building roads with tens using blocks and on the dry erase board.
They loved it.

             That big moment happened again today during a Saxon phonics assessment in the afternoon. During the test she said, "Mom this is actually fun." What? Did I hear her clearly? She hated doing the Saxon phonics. She is actually having fun learning. It was such a wonderful moment. I will never forget it. And that is one of the reasons I wanted to homeschool. To make learning enjoyable for my children.
So if you feel like there is no way you will make it. Just hang on for one more day. And take it one day at a time.
              I realized that I needed to review how I was approaching certain subjects, and also my organization.  I can not afford the math manipulative's I want, but I have been using our mega blocks to make tens and nines. It was also another amazing learning experience. I am able to learn my daughters learning style..  In the process it has been difficult. I assure you, I have wanted to quit. But I did not quit and I am so glad today that I went with my heart and for what God called me to do. I still have a lot to learn but there is so much invaluable information on the Internet. There are so many parents sharing their experience. There are so many free resources if it seems homeschooling is expensive.
             I feel that homeschooling is such a wonderful experience for a family unit.  I would love to hear about your experience and how you overcame some obstacles. Or maybe you need to vent.
I know for my family and I this is our journey and it is beyond what I could have imagined.

Some of the things you can do if you are thinking about quiting. I

1) Step back and take a break. This could be a walk. A coffee or tea in some quiet time. Take some time to be by yourself. To find who you are and what is you want.

2) Speak to someone who understands. If you can not find someone, go online and find blogs from parents who are sharing a similar story It helps to feel you are not the only one.

3) Pray. Maybe some of you reading this do not believe in God. But I do, and God keeps me grounded and able to keep moving when I feel I have no more in me.

4) I turned off the T.V. We are selling our big screen T.V. I am just so tired of mindlessly watching it. Its not as if we watched it all day, but when we did we binged watched. And the kids were watching too much of it. Once I unplugged they opened up more. Less combative and more imaginative.

5) Exercise and eat healthy. This is so important, we must take care of ourselves.. You have probably heard the analogy, if you were on a plane, and someone needed a gas mask. You would need to help yourself first before you even think of helping another. Same goes here. If we do not put ourselves as a priority it will show and our families will suffer.

6)Reevaluate your teaching methods or the way you organize. I am not the most organized person, But with three children I have realized I can not keep doing the same thing and expecting different results. I may not have an hour to hour schedule, but I have an overview of what I want to cover and it helps me stay on track.

7) Have fun. We are so busy being mom, we also need to have fun while teaching. The kids love when we play. And they learn better.
My daughter would not read out loud before. Now she reads to all of us.

I know there may be more to add to this list. This is just some of the things I have done.
I hope it helps at least one mother or father out there.

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