Back to school part II

Last week I wrote about sending Siri back to school. She said she wanted to go back and I checked with the school, they said it wouldn’t be a problem. She hasn’t really brought it up since. Now, I’m really not so sure that I want to send her back. For the record, when she said she wanted to go back, she wasn’t crying or having a fit or upset. She hasn’t been bored with being home. Not that those things would change any of this, I’m just sayin’. She has loved being home. The girl loves life, I promise.  I think her wanting to go back is equivalent to any child wanting something now. It ws her want at that time, last week. Siri is mature, I give her that, but she’s 6. Its my job as her mom to know what’s best for her and make choices accordingly. I’m really trying to sort through all this, dig deep and ask myself a lot of questions before just jumping in and sending her back. We were close, but I realize there’s a lot more to consider.

Since last week I’ve been thinking a lot about her going back. I’m almost certain the reason she wants to go back is to be around friends and other kids. I totally get that and its often what makes me question what we’re doing and come close to caving. But I don’t think that school is the only way, I know it isn’t.  I don’t think I’m depriving her of anything because she can’t be around other kids at school. When she was in school she that she hardly got time to talk to her friends or play with them. So really, that’s not the quality time with friends she’s after anyway.

I realize homeschooling isn’t for everyone. I realize that there are people who think we’re weird. Why would you homeschool? They might not get it but I get why they don’t get it so let’s just leave it at that and all agree that whatever we choose for our own kids is fine and we can all get along and love each other anyway, without any judgment, k? K. We’re going against the grain. We’re doing something that only a small percentage of people are doing. When it comes to making choices for my family, for my children, none of that really matters and I mean that in the nicest way. Its not that I don’t care about the opinions of the people who love us and care about us. But those people, they see our kids. They know how happy, how smart, and how fun they are. Just like any other kid.

We aren’t homeschooling for religious purposes. The only reason I say that is because there are more reasons to homeschool than just the first one that might come to someone’s mind. We are homeschooling because we want our kids to LOVE learning. We want them to seek out what it is that they want to learn about. Whatever it is that they may be passionate about or maybe just a little curious about. Along the way they’ll also learn things that we are curious about, that other people in our lives are curious about. We feel that school stifles a lot of that.

Think about all of the schooling you did when you were younger. Think about the hours on top of hours on top of hours you sat at a desk doing worksheets, taking tests, writing papers. These are the measures schools take to get us to learn (a lot of repetition), but its not the only way. Think about what you’ve learned since being out of school. Did you seek out what it was that you wanted to learn? Did you study and research and read whatever you could find about that topic? I’m sure you absorbed whatever it was quickly and you learned a great deal all without repeating anything, writing anything down, studying or taking a test. You learned it because you wanted to. Think also about that one random time there was something you finally loved doing in school. You looked forward to working on it. You were passionate about something before you even knew what that means. Then the lesson was over and you had to move on to the next topic and you were a little bummed. Maybe this was just me? Home Economics anyone? Best class EVER! In all fairness, I liked chemistry and math too.

The goal for us is that our kids will have as much time as they want to spend on something they love. Again, this is of course depending on wherever we’re taken on this journey and however long it lasts. We are flexible and open-minded.

As for Siri, I realize that I need to set up times and days for her to be with other kids. So far, Siri and Cas are both going to game night at ArtsROC on Friday night. Who knows, maybe they’ll make a friend or two, maybe it will be a bust. We’ve got to try new things.  Also, Siri’s best friend is coming over on Saturday (which is also Elin’s birthday party). I need to get on my mom game and work more at setting up days for her to play with friends and maybe finding some homeschool friends too. Maybe she can Skype or Facetime with new friends and some distant friends we don’t see all that often.

This has been an eye-opener. I’ve been reminded that Siri’s tank is full when she has time with friends and other kids. It’s my job as her mom to be sure this need is met.

In other news…Siri and Cas have discovered Roblox and love it. Here’s the description from their site:

ROBLOX is the best place to Imagine with Friends™. With the largest user-generated online gaming platform, and over 15 million games created by users, it is the #1 gaming site for kids and teens (comScore). Every day, virtual explorers come to ROBLOX to create adventures, play games, role play, and learn with their friends in a family friendly, immersive, 3D, environment.

It’s definitely worth checking out if your kids are into gaming. Siri was playing a pizza shop game yesterday and she got to be the cashier. She is reading and typing like crazy all thanks to gaming.

 

 

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4 thoughts on “Back to school part II

  1. You and Eric know what’s best for your family, don’t worry about what anyone else thinks or says! Mommas gut instinct is the best! I have a ton of homeschool mamma friends and they belong to a local homeschool group that meets once in a while and go on field trips together. They’re also in something called Classical Conversations, don’t know much about it or if they have it up there but worth looking in to. And tell Siri to FaceTime Cambrie she would love it ❤️

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  2. Some interesting info from CNS below : )
    Homeschooling is actually way more prevalent than people may realize. I applaud your courage to do what you think is right with your kids Jen! There are so many co-ops, nature clubs, support groups etc. out there if you ever need or want that. Classical Conversations that Paige mentioned is a co-op that uses classical learning(repetition,memorization), typically meeting once per week. We don’t participate in that, but I have friends who really love it. We’ve been back and forth as well. This year my two oldest(6th,8th) actually spent a quarter this year at very challenging private school and did amazing. All A’s. And they were both taking classes above their grade level. It was nice to see that our style at homescool is working! And they happily returned home as they preferred it.
    There’s pro’s and cons to both, but I think it’s great that you are not being persuaded, but rather following your gut. Too bad we don’t live closer. Olive would love some girl time!

    (CNSNews.com) – In the ten-year period from 2003 to 2012, the number of American children 5 through 17 years old who were being homeschooled by their parents climbed by 61.8 percent, according tonewly released data from the U.S. Department of Education.Homeschooling is most prevalent in two-parent families where one parent works and the other does not, according to the DOE data. Among this type of family, 5.3 percent of all students are homeschooled.

    There are also patterns in the data: The more educated the parents, the more likely they are to homeschool their children and middle-income parents are more likely to homeschool than poorer or wealthier parents.

    In 2003, according to the DOE estimate, there were 1,096,000 homeschooled children in the 5-through-17 age group in the United States. That equaled 2.2 percent of the 50,707,000 students in that age bracket the United States that year.

    In 2007, there were 1,520,000 homeschooled children in the 5-through-17 age group, according to the DOE estimate. That equaled 3.0 percent of the 51,135,000 students in the 5-through-17 age group that year.

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    1. Sherry, thank you for your comment. I read it a while ago and have been meaning to respond. I KNOW deep down that what we’re doing is right, but we’re only just getting started and we don’t have firm roots in it yet, ya know? We’re the only ones we know (other than you!) that homeschool. I have read the data about the homeschooling numbers and I can’t wait to see updated statistics because I’m certain those numbers have risen substantially.

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