The What, When, Where, Why, and How of Deschooling

When I started homeschooling, I thought I had it all figured out. Being a bit prideful of my “success” in my own school days, I thought I knew it all about education.

I was all that and a bag of chips.

I thought I knew everything there was to know about homeschooling.

I mean, sure. I had never had any personal experience with homeschooling. In fact, it was a pretty new concept to me when we began, but still.  Continue reading “The What, When, Where, Why, and How of Deschooling”

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The Biggest Mistake You Can Make as a New Homeschooler

I have made a lot of mistakes as a homeschool mom. A lot. And while I now neither claim to be perfect at this job or have everything figured out, there is one thing I can assure you I am 100% confident of:

Out of all the traps you can fall into as a new homeschooler, there is one that stands out above all the rest as potentially the most destructive and the most joy-draining mistake you can make.

Before I get into what that is, don’t lose heart if you discover you’ve been doing this all along. I think most of us are guilty of having done this to some extent in our homeschools- I know I have.

Ready for the big disclosure? Okay. The biggest no-no you can run into as a new homeschooler is…  Continue reading “The Biggest Mistake You Can Make as a New Homeschooler”

How to Get Started Homeschooling TODAY!

As difficult as it may be to make the decision to homeschool, knowing how to get started can seem even more impossible. Although homeschooling is more mainstream now than it’s ever been, with approximately 2.5 million homeschooled children in the U.S. alone, finding information about it that is accurate isn’t always a simple thing.

Since I’ve recently had so many people comment that they’re interested in homeschooling but don’t know where to start, I’ve decided to write a basic plan for how to do just that. Right now I have a book in the works that is a more comprehensive guide to this subject (still in the early stages of planning), but since I don’t have all night to write, and you probably don’t have all day to read, I’m going to keep this as bare-bones as possible, giving you only the essentials to at least help you get your homeschool happening. 🙂  Continue reading “How to Get Started Homeschooling TODAY!”

Lazy Day Links- 7/1/16

lazy day links
Image courtesy of porbital at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I can’t believe it’s July 4th weekend already. It seems like only yesterday I was thanking my lucky stars that winter was over!

I’m so excited right now because I just came back from shopping for our school supplies. 🙂 The only thing we need are the copy paper and ink we ordered off of eBay. Once those come in, we’re ready to go!

On with the links… Continue reading “Lazy Day Links- 7/1/16”

How to Peacefully Transition Your Child from School to Homeschool

Here’s What You Need to Know…

Whether you have decided to homeschool from the get-go or are removing your children from school, this decision is one of the biggest, most important resolutions you will ever make. The notion of being responsible for your child’s education can seem daunting and stressful, but so exciting.

Once the choice has been made, the first thing most new homeschoolers think is, “Where do I go from here?” The answer to that question may look different depending upon what your pre-homeschooling situation looks like.  Continue reading “How to Peacefully Transition Your Child from School to Homeschool”

Lazy Day Links- 6/10/16

lazy day links
Image courtesy of porbital at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It’s not even officially summer yet, and I’m already dying to start our homeschooling term back up again. I miss it so much, and I’m so excited to begin our new year! My children, however, are enjoying their time off, so I’ll have to press on until we do start up again next month. Now on to this week’s links!

Favorite Blog Posts:

Get Outside and Learn– Nourishing My Scholar

Everyday Schole: Multum Non Multa– The Sunny Patch

The Trouble with America: Republicans or Democrats?– Soul Survival

Homeschool Success– Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers

Are Public Schools Teaching Your Child an Alternate Religion?– Julie Roys

 

Posts You May Have Missed:

An Open Letter to the New Homeschooler I Met Today

Homeschooling Multiple Ages? Simplicity Is the Key to Success

A Tale of Ten Homeschoolers

Why Should We Homeschool?- Part 6- Centrality of the Family

Why Should We Homeschool?- Part 7- Focusing on True Education Instead of Mass Instruction

 

(This post contains affiliate links.)

Books Worth Reading:

With My Eyes Wide Open– Brian “Head” Welch

The Circle Series– Ted Dekker

Beloved Unbeliever: Loving Your Husband into the Faith– Jo Berry

Life Is Tough But God Is Faithful: How to See God’s Love in Difficult Times– Sheila Walsh

Are We Living in the End Times?– Tim LaHaye

 

That’s it for this week. Have a great weekend!

 

 

A No-Nonsense Guide to Homeschooling

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Image courtesy of Master isolated images at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Deciding to homeschool for the first time can be a scary thing. Whether you’ve decided before your children have ever set foot in a school or have resolved to pull your children from their current schools, the world of home education can seem like an intimidating and confusing situation to find yourself in. In the past year, I’ve had quite a few frazzled mothers ask me the question, “How do I homeschool?”

That question in itself can be answered in so many different ways because there are so many different ways to homeschool, so I’ve narrowed it down to, “What should I do as a new homeschooler?”

That question is a bit simpler and a bit more relevant for those new to the journey. Let me start to answer this query by telling you what not to do.

If I was only given the opportunity to tell you one thing about homeschooling, it would be this: Do not plunge head-first into a school-at-home routine from the very beginning. Just don’t do it. Seriously. I promise you, it will bring you more heartache than joy.

Let me emphasize that I said, “…from the very beginning.” After finding out more about how your children like to learn, you may well decide that this is the best method for you. But I implore you, please do not do it by default using the reasoning that “this is how it’s done in government schools.” Think about it. Why would you try to reproduce something that isn’t working?

The second thing I would tell you not to do is to run out and spend a ton of money on curriculum. If you are new to this, you probably aren’t familiar with how your children prefer to approach things. Watch them. Observe them. Interact with them. Once you’ve spent some time intentionally paying attention to the way in which your kids do things, you will have a much better idea of what will benefit them the most.

So what should you do? Live a full life with them. Go to the library often. Enjoy the park, the bike trail, and the creek down the street. Read to them. Take them with you on your errands and explain to them what you’re doing and why. Bake cookies for the elderly neighbor or the librarians who, more than likely, will soon become indispensible to you.

Keep your eyes open for resources that sometimes seemingly fall into your lap. When we first began homeschooling, I used everything from pamphlets from the electric company (science and safety) to newspapers (current events) to keep my children engaged until we had a more concrete plan in place.

Find out what they’re interested in and provide opportunities for your children to pursue them. If they like to cook, cook with them. If they’re natural artists, buy some good quality art supplies and/or look into a local art class. (The art school that my children attended actually have a class specifically for homeschoolers.) If reptiles are their thing, visit a reptile house or check out one of many awesome documentaries on Netflix or YouTube. Use your imagination to come up with ways to support your children’s hobbies. With the internet and the library as resources, you can literally find information on anything.

And while you’re accomplishing all of this for your kids, spend some time reading about and researching learning styles, and homeschool approaches and philosophies. Check the end of this post for a list of great resources I’ve used.

(This post contains affiliate links.)

If there is anything I would recommend that you purchase from the get-go, it would be:

-lots of paper, writing utensils, and arts and crafts supplies

-a deck of cards, a pack of dice, and some board games

-a map or a globe

-a library card (this is free, but it’s a must-have)

-and, if it really bothers you that your kids aren’t doing “schoolwork,” some spelling/phonics and math workbooks at Barnes and Noble (make sure you apply for the educator’s discount!), Five Below, or, depending on the ages of your kids, Dollar Tree.

Some people begin their homeschool journey doing activities like these and find that it is enough for them and continue to do so. Others, over time, may transition towards other types of learning methods that appeal to them and are very successful with them.

What’s most important is to ease into this lifestyle. Homeschooling can be a rewarding and exhilarating way of life, so remember to sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride.

 

Homeschool Resources

Learning All the Time

Free Range Learning: How Homeschooling Changes Everything

The Homeschooling Handbook

Teach Your Own- The John Holt Book of Homeschooling

 

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