Sunday, January 20, 2013

Building Character in Kids!

Have you ever wondered what you could incorporate into your curriculum to teach your children character and integrity. I know I did until I came across this great resource today. Kids of Integrity offers lessons tailored to children to teach values and integrity. Lessons include topics such as acceptance, forgiveness and many others. The best part about this resource is that it is FREE!


Monday, January 14, 2013

Curriculum Choices 2013-2014

After doing some research based off of my goals and my children's learning styles, I have decided on the following curriculum choices for the 2013-2014 school year.

Rapunzel (Grade 1/ 2)

Bible, History & Geography, Science, Music and Art

Learning God's Story




Math


I will start with Alpha

Spelling

Handwriting


Grammar



Online Activities

McQueen (Grade K4)


Bible, History & Geography, Science, Music and Art


Adventures in U.S History MFW
adapted to his needs

Math


I will start with Primer

Spelling


Handwriting




Online Activities





Thursday, January 10, 2013

Homeschool Methods

Homeschooling Methods

We love Montessori. My Children have attended school in a wonderful Montessori School for the last three years. I have experience teaching in a Montessori classroom. Montessori Seems like a good method to use in our homeschool right? Wrong! The truth is that our home is simply not set up for a Montessori schooling environment. My children are working at very different levels right now. Rapunzel is working on K-2 grade work and McQueen is still working on preschool level work. I would not be able to provide the Montessori environment, manipulative and curriculum for them to thrive in.

After many hours of research, I have decided that I will start off using a combination of Charlotte Mason and Classical methods. I choose to utilize the Charlotte Mason approach because its goal is to install a lifetime love of learning and a curiosity about life in it students. Charlotte Mason used nature study, literature, copy work and the study of fine arts to teach children. This philosophy resonates with me because my main goal for my children is that they love learning. I believe if they love learning, everything else will fall into place.

I also would like to incorporate the classical method into my teaching approach. The classical approach to homeshooling is based on a trivium of grammar, logic, and rhetoric in its teachings. This method of schooling developed critical thinking in its students. The goal of this method is to teach the student how to think for themselves. I think my children would benefit from this approach because I want them to be able to think for themselves and question everything.

There are many different methods to choose from. What may work for my family may not work for yours.
To get more information about the various homeschool method's, please visit the links below:

Under the Golden Apple Tree
AVKO
Homeschool.com

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Know the LAW!

The most important piece of information I can give you is... Know the homeschool laws for your state. Each state is different. To get a complete summary of what is required in your state go to the HSLDA website. I live in South Carolina and have minimal requirements but your state may be different.
Sunday, January 6, 2013

Why are we homeschooling?

Where do I start? 

After spending much of this past week having a million thoughts and questions running through my mind, I asked myself where do I start with all of this homeschooling stuff. That is when I did what any person would do when they have no idea where to start. I turned to the internet. After reading several websites, I finally got some clarity when I came across Erika's Blog Confessions of a Homeschooler. She states the first step to homeschooling your children is to create a vision for why you want to take on that challenge. 

Our Vision

Let me start off by saying that we love the school that our children attended. They have benefited so much from there Montessori education so far. That education has not come without a steep cost however. My husband works hard for the Navy and I am in school full time. On top of doing my school full time, I work off my kids tuition at their school three days a week. This leaves me exhausted. 

My husband and I want the very best for our children. We believe that for them to get the attention that they deserve they need to have one on one attention. They have grown so much from having individualized attention in there previous school. I believe that I am the only one who can give them the one on one attention they deserve without costing our family a fortune. 

In addition to having one on one attention, I want to make sure our children have a well rounded knowledge base. I want to develop there interests in all subjects by making learning interesting. I want to be able to make sure they have a mastery of the subjects they are learning before they have to move on to the next.  I want to foster their creativity not conform them to everyone else. I want them to have a lifetime love of learning. 

I think the most important factor in my choice to homeschool is how much more time I would get to spend with my children. The fact is that even though my kids drive me crazy sometimes, time goes by so fast. I want to spend as much time with them as I can now because they will be grown and starting their own lives before I know it. 

Homeschooling also allows us flexibility. With my husband being in the Navy, I am often left alone while he is deployed. I am stuck by myself because of children's school obligations. Homeschooling them will allow me the flexibility to travel with them to see family and stay with family for extended periods of time while my husband is gone. 

The final reason in our choice to homeschool is to strengthen our family bonds. I believe the time that "McQueen", "Rapunzel", and I spend together will only strengthen our relationship and foster an environment for communication and trust as they grow. I will not have to worry about who my children confide in as they get other because our relationship and trust will develop in time. 

These are my reasons for homeschooling. What are yours?

Join us on our Adventure!

Have you ever question the decisions that you make? I know I do. All the time in fact. I have been questioning a lot of the decisions in my life lately. The first question I have asked myself is, "Stephanie, why are you spending all morning working at the kids school just so you can afford to send them there?" This question has been plaguing me for some time. 

Let me start by saying that I love my children. I would do anything for them. That is why I spend my mornings working at their Montessori school working off their tuition. I work as a teachers assistant two days a week and I clean the school every weekend. I assist in teaching other peoples kids but I don't get to be apart of my own kids learning. It was after this realization that I had an idea. This thought popped into, "What if I homeschool?"

This thought is scary to me because I realize that I alone will be responsible for their education. It is also exciting when you realize that you have the opportunity to challenge and grow your children's minds. I welcome you to join me on our journey as I try to find answers in life.