Discussion Forums - Homeschoolers' Corner Homeschoolers' Corner

Topic: I need some help/advice.

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: I need some help/advice.
Date Posted: 9/29/2010 2:48 PM ET
Member Since: 8/21/2005
Posts: 989
Back To Top

I don't know how to insert a link to my other thread i started in the general discussion forum. I should have scrolled thru the list of forums to see that there is a Homeschooling forum.

My 14yr old DD has Generalized Anxiety disorder and struggles in school. I'm torn about deciding wether to homeschool her or keep her in public school. So i have a few questions for you ladies that homeschool.

How do you keep them socially active in  a small town with not much to do?

Do you do bookwork all day long or do some of you use internet programs?

Do you have a set schedule and a set time that they get out of bed each morning  and start schooling?

If you work part time outside of the home-how do you make sure your child stays on task when you are gone?

Date Posted: 9/29/2010 6:11 PM ET
Member Since: 11/9/2009
Posts: 196
Back To Top

How do you keep them socially active in  a small town with not much to do?

We live close to a big town.  Here are some of the options we have available:  PE, swim lessons, art classes, music classes.   We also have a homeschool co-op.  The co-op is a group of homeschoolers that get together to teach classes.  We have taken art, sign language, spanish, ancient greece, world geography and more at the co-op.  There are also non homeschooling activities such as 4H, girl/boy scouts, soccer, and rock club.  She is getting almost old enough to take classes at the junior college.  You can often get duel credit (credit for high school and college with the same class).

Do you do bookwork all day long or do some of you use internet programs?

There are all sorts of ways to homeschool.  Some do everything online, some do little or none.  We do nothing online.  Here is a book that helped me alot when I suddenly started homeschooling.  It is "100 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum" by Cathy Duffy.  She helps you to learn your teaching and your childs learning styles and helps you match those to a good curriculum.  She also includes how much work it takes for you to plan.

Do you have a set schedule and a set time that they get out of bed each morning  and start schooling?

You do whatever works for your family.  You have more flexibility when you homeschool.

If you work part time outside of the home-how do you make sure your child stays on task when you are gone?

I don't work, so we don't deal with this.  Maybe a reward system for doing all her work while you are gone.

 

HTH

 

Date Posted: 9/30/2010 11:51 AM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2009
Posts: 1,924
Back To Top

How do you keep them socially active in  a small town with not much to do?

 Friends! After school my 11 year old runs out to play with her friends. During the day there are homeschool groups that meet, field trips, internet chat with other homeschoolers. I think the biggest thing is a willingness to change the way you think of being social. Is school the way life really is anyway? Is it even a healthy place to be social?

Do you do bookwork all day long or do some of you use internet programs?

 We do so many things. Art, reading, music, dance, outside fun. Yes, some book work, a lot of internet.

Everyone does things differently. The beauty of homeschooling is meeting your childs needs! Do what will work for HER.

Do you have a set schedule and a set time that they get out of bed each morning  and start schooling?

 My kids normally are up about 7am but we have breakfast and fun time and do not really start till 10am. Go to Noon, have lunch and then go to about 3:30pm when the public school kids start ringing the door bell to play. If things did not get finished, they can be worked on after Dinner together. I let my oldest stay up, pick her own bed time, so she knows she has time when the house is all quiet at night to finish things up and have time all to herself. If it looks like she is not focused enough on things then friend time can be limited and this is a motivator for my social butterfly. She has never never been to public school and her last birthday party has 32 kids at it to give you an idea of what a homeschoolers social circle can look like. Considering we are military and move a lot, I can't even count how many friends she has all over the world now and she keeps up with some of them too! Unlike many public schooled children, my daughter knows how to be social with people of all ages, not just her own age, she feels comfortable getting to know people that are not just like her. She feels comfortable walking away from people who are not good for her. She knows how to fight and heal relationships. She tends to bake yummy food and go say she is sorry or go ask for time to talk about what ever the issue is. Don't get me wrong, she gets darn shy from time to time, but I think it is important to honor that space she needs and let her work her way in it. We homeschool, and I can make sure she gets the time she needs. I couldn't help her have that space if she was in public school.

If you work part time outside of the home-how do you make sure your child stays on task when you are gone?

 I do not work part time out of home, YET. But I have 4 children.... might as well be like I have a part time job. I ask for work to be done at times and I let her figure out how to get it done, just like she will be doing as an adult. Her boss will give her a job and expect her to get it done. If it is not done, I first figure out if the work was hard for her or if she was too distracted. I take distractions away, and then if that does not help, I do resort as I said to consiquences such as taking friend time away, tv time, computer time, phone time. I find however possitive things to be just as helpful. Sometimes I explain she needs to get this report done so we can take a field trip to go with it and if she does not hurry we will miss the field trip oppertunity. Sometimes I explain she needs to finish so we can do the art project that goes with it. Or sometimes it is as simple as, "please finish your math for the day, I would you to make dessert for tonight." and off she goes as she loves to cook things.

Date Posted: 9/30/2010 12:31 PM ET
Member Since: 3/20/2007
Posts: 931
Back To Top

How do you keep them socially active in  a small town with not much to do?

>> You find the next closest town or region that has a lot of HS activities going on.  Our local group has an online social network for the kids and the teens use it quite a lot.  There's also HS sports, field trips, scouting, 4H, etc.

Do you do bookwork all day long or do some of you use internet programs?

>> School doesn't have to be all "bookwork".  That's boring. ;-)  My son, who's doing all high school level work, has a mish mash of schooling types:  online classes we pay for with a live teacher; a virtual co-op where all the moms share the teaching load; another online co-op that is basically free; "virtual" classes where the lecture is pre-recorded; local classes at an art studio; local co-op classes for lots of fun stuff; and text-type programs he works on his own and discusses with me (Socratic).

Do you have a set schedule and a set time that they get out of bed each morning  and start schooling?

>> No. We've always been pretty flexible.  Each day is different since my son has a sort of college schedule (similar to a block schedule).  He's usually up between 7:30 and 8 and on Mon & Fri he has an 8:00 class.  Tues & Wed are pure "homework" days. Some days take longer to complete the work, etc.

If you work part time outside of the home-how do you make sure your child stays on task when you are gone?

>> I don't work outside the home, but I have been in cancer treatment this year, which means my son has been "on his own" while I go to treatment or rest (I have to take a lot of naps).  He knows what is expected of him and knows the consequences if he doesn't get both his school work and chores done.  With schoolwork, it's a lowered grade (or an F) and with chores it means no scout campout the next time the troop goes on one.

Date Posted: 10/5/2010 1:36 AM ET
Member Since: 9/12/2010
Posts: 12
Back To Top

Just a note that 100 top picks has mostly curriculum with a Christian worldview.  If this is what you have, then the book is great.  If you are not Christian, you might want a different resource. 

If you choose to go through a charter school, the school will pay for many extra-curricular activities (like PE, art, dance, or whatever else you want her involved in).  Our library has programs like chess club for teens that my kids are involved in.  They also see people at church, AWANA, and other weekly activities.  We are also with a homeschool group that meets 2x/month and does science labs, writing classes, and other things that help out.

If your daughter is not doing well socially in school, then pulling her out couldn't hurt her.  You'll just need to be creative about getting her involved where it benefits her most.

You know your daughter best- you'd have to find ways to motivate her to get her work done while you are at work.  Maybe if she's done when you get home, you can enjoy a movie together, or play a game, etc.  Otherwise, she has to do her work then. 

As for schedule, you pick what works for you.  Does she do better sleeping in and working at night when it's quiet?  Do you want to school around your work schedule?  I think there are laws in some states about children being unattended during regular school hours, so you should check on those.  Keep in mind that she will probably spend less time doing schoolwork than when she went to public school.  In school, much time is taken up with lecture, roll-call, answering questions of other students, moving from class to class, PE, lunch, etc.  Most kids tend to finish in less time when they're homeschooling.

Bookwork- it depends on how she learns best, and what you have time for.  I have my high schooler taking 2 online classes (with a live teacher), and a biology lab with a co-op.  He is also in a PE class once/week.  He's taking a video writing course on DVD (One Year Adventure Novel) as an elective, and will be reading a text for driver's ed.  (We also usually do text for math, and for the Biology book portion of the class).  For history & literature, we like the real book approach.  None of my kids do well with text books, actually.  You'll have to know your daughter's learning style.

I hope you figure it out & that it goes well for both of you.

Date Posted: 10/8/2010 9:23 AM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2007
Posts: 335
Back To Top

It must be so hard for you to watch your child suffer. I give you lots of credit for looking into alternatives that will help her deal with her anxiety. Homeschooling is an excellent option especially at her age.

The responses above are all very good. I'll just throw in my two cents too.

Socializing: look into community organizations which use volunteers, such as animal shelters, public library, 4H, soup kitchens, afterschool programs, etc. This will allow your daughter to participate in soething meaningful while meeting people with similar interests. Community theatre is also a fun extracurricular activity.

Bookwork vs. internet/ all day? It isn't necessary to do anything "all day." Read College without High School for tips on how much time is required, but I've found in homeschooling three high schoolers so far that the amount of time required is MUCH, much less than in school. My children have chosen to use combinations of reading books, watching video, taking outside classes, and computer lessons. Again, read College Without High School for ideas.

Schedule: If you are not going to be home to monitor the schedule, it may be less combative if you and she determine beforehand what you expect of her and allow your daughter to get it done at her own pace. Our schedule is based on the outside classes my sons take, and everything else that they do independently just fits in around those. Of course there is LOTS of unscheduled time as well, to allow for exercise, friends, planning, thinking, and being with us.

Best of luck to both of you.

Date Posted: 10/8/2010 7:42 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2006
Posts: 181
Back To Top

Hi, I didn't read all the replies, sorry if my advice has already been said by someone else.

 

How do you keep them socially active in  a small town with not much to do?

Have you investigated the HS community in your area? Maybe there are opportunities that you just don't know are there. Are there co-ops? What does your DD do no for social stuff in after shool hours? Can she continue that? (Leaving school doesn't mean ditching all her old friends.) She can also make new HS friends. If there is not much to do in your town what is she doing with her  time now? Have you asked her "if you had more time on your hands what kinds of things would you like to do/learn about/try?" Maybe she has some ideas for what she wants to do but never had time to do i.e. teach herself something, how to cook, make art, etc.

 

(I live in a small town but around a pretty densely populated area but still have to drive 30-45 minutes to get to quality activities, one way. Also the new HSers here are shocked at all that goes on when they used to not even know that there were homeschoolers in this community. So maybe there is more happening around you that you don't know about.)

Do you do bookwork all day long or do some of you use internet programs?

Of my 2 kids combined they did 5 online classes which were 8 weeks and under in duration and were single studies (i.e. electronics class, grammar, nature journaling). We do lessons at home. Since last spring we joined co-ops, 1 last spring, 3 this fall. Plus my kids do paid classes at places like museum docent led tours on a single topic, poetry workshop by a professional poet, experiential nature classes, etc and Scouts, and sports in the community and seeing their friends for social fun.

Do you have a set schedule and a set time that they get out of bed each morning  and start schooling?

 

We used to just wake up when our bodies woke up then do home lessons or go out in the afternoons for appointments. Now that we have morning appt's to get to for co-op and paid classes we have alarm set on those days.

 

We all hate detailed schedules for work to be done at home. I have a general plan for lessons at home but it's in my head or on short to do lists. Anytime I write out detailed schedules, one delay one day throws the whole thing off, very frustrating to keep revising the detailed schedule.

If you work part time outside of the home-how do you make sure your child stays on task when you are gone?

 

I do not work part time outside the home. However when my oldest is left home alone I give him assignments to do, such as, he doesn't want to go hang out while his brother has Cub Scout meeting so he would rather stay home and do lessons or co-op homework. I tell him what I expect and he does it. He is 13. He knows if he doensn't do it as he agreed to do he will lose a privilege, usually "no video games one day" and he only plays Sat and Sun as it is so it's precious time for him.

I think teens need to buy in to things. If your DD wants to HS she will have to be mature and step up to the plate to do the work required of her. If she doesn't buy in you will have power struggles non-stop.  If she doesn't do the reasonable work you gave her when you are working outside the home then she loses a privilege. Or the other way around, she does good at meeting her responsibilities and then she earns that privilege. Same difference to me but some people find the 2 things are very different.  (I liked when Dr. Phil said kids should prove their responsibility then they earn a reward. Fun things, entertaining things are not entitlements for kids/teens they are priviledges given for being responsible, following rules, etc.)

My boys are 13 and 10 and have never been to school.

 

Good luck with your decision!

Subject: Here's a forum that's great for asking questions or searching.
Date Posted: 10/11/2010 6:00 PM ET
Member Since: 11/19/2009
Posts: 16
Back To Top

http://www.welltrainedmind.com/forums/index.php

I've asked many  of the same questions.  We live in a town of about 600. Anything bigger is an hour away. It's amazing how things have played out. I have an elderly couple as a neighbor, who have become dear friends. We visit several times a month and often take some school work to share ( a poem memorized, an art project, or a WWII question to ask). There are other things we'll probably look into later: drama classes, science mini courses, homeschool group sports.

 

Accountability: slowly build,

  • one - two choices ex. math in morning or afternoon
  • order your whole day. other than those times when I say, I'm available now to do math questions, review history questions etc. If I'm not taken up on the offer, the teacher doesn't have to offer again and I go off duty at 4pm.
  • order your whole week. some things have to be at least 4 hours apart. foriegn languages, math drill. writing rough drafts might have a midweek due date.
  • plan you weekly schedule from a semester goal sheet: just starting this one with 11yr dd, She checks her math list that shows how many pages a week and chooses how to break these down for the week. We've been using a schedule for about 5 years. The schedule doesn't have to drive everything. Many a time we rearrange days, move things to next week, leave 1/2 a day blank for big projects.
  • choose your courses

Consequences, There have been many crashes with my three over the years. Sometimes they've brought their math with them to finish at a friend's house while the rest of us have fun. Sometimes they've missed a football game, free time the whole weekend, and special one-on-one time with a favorite aunt

Date Posted: 10/12/2010 7:52 AM ET
Member Since: 8/21/2005
Posts: 989
Back To Top

Thanks for all the info ladies! I'm still trying to decide what to do, things are only going slightly better for my daughter right now. I'm praying about it alot so we will see what happens.

I'm heading to work this morning. The day after a no mail holiday is horrible at work and i'm working all week. I just wanted to say a quick THANK YOU before i forget.

Subject: My perspective
Date Posted: 10/25/2010 5:28 PM ET
Member Since: 9/16/2010
Posts: 2
Back To Top

After skimming the answers above, I don't know if I have much to add, but I'll be happy to add my perspective...

I'm torn about deciding wether to homeschool her or keep her in public school. So i have a few questions for you ladies that homeschool.

I'm not a lady, my wife and I share the instruction. We believe homeschooling is really good for our kids, we also believe it's not for everyone. It takes a lot of effort and persistence to homeschool well. Again, the results can be amazing but by selecting "homeschooling" you are not automatically guarenteed your child will be provided a good education. There is a tremendous amount of effort, cost and time with homeschooling. (Not the least of which is the opportunity cost which requires the parent to miss at least some of their working hours.) However, in our case, anything we give up, has been magnified greatly by the time we spend togehter and bonds it has built.

How do you keep them socially active in  a small town with not much to do?

Homeschool often takes a hit for raising socially inept kids unable to interact with anyone not living under the same roof. Although I see the potential danger in a "bunker" mentality, the upshot of a homeschool education can be much more enriching than sitting in a classroom with 20 other kids the same age. As a homeschooler, your daughter can interact with people in society who are of all ages. Perhaps it's a clerk at a store, or a guide at a museum. Maybee another kid at a park or a neighborhood friend. There are many opportunites for more structured gatherings too, be it church, park district, athletic, or scouting/4H groups. Volunteering with an organization you respect is also a great way to get out and interact with a lot of people.

Do you do bookwork all day long or do some of you use internet programs?

Our typical school day includes wake up/clean up, eating breakfast together, and starting school. We begin school at 9:00 which includes a "wake up" song where we dance around, seat work (math and penmanship), a snack break, followed by "the fun subjects" read alouds, history, geography, and science. We structure is so evey day builds from tedious to most exciting. The subjects which require the most focus are addressed immediately after breakfast. We are usually done by noon. On days we are not, we break for lunch and then playtime is truncated so they can finish their work.

Do you have a set schedule and a set time that they get out of bed each morning  and start schooling?

As described above, we use a set schedule (and a cirriculum). This is not the best opetion for every learning style, although it has worked well in our case. Recently, we had a seasonably warm day so we ducked out of school and went to the park to enjoy the sunshine and get some exercise. We can't do that every day, but homeschooling allows you to break any schedule you may have to address unusual circumstances with your child (ie, a sickness), great cultual events (a parade or exhibit at a museum) or even something as simple as a really, really nice day.

If you work part time outside of the home-how do you make sure your child stays on task when you are gone?

My wife and I both work part-time. Because I can bill at "specialist" rates (vs: a salary) I earn nearly as much as I would working full-time. My wife is part-time with benefits, which is extremely unusual.

Hope this helps.

Hans

PS: For all those who are intersted, I would apprciate anyone's input on my new PBS list http://www.paperbackswap.com/Homeschool-Resources-Best-Books-Children/list/3061/

Subject: Hi Tanya
Date Posted: 11/3/2010 7:40 PM ET
Member Since: 10/18/2010
Posts: 1
Back To Top

Prayer is the answer. My wife homeschools our 2 special needs children. Through prayer we have seen God work in wonderful ways.

My site; http://www.homeschooling-dad.com is mostly for dads who don't do the majority of the homeschooling but I do have a special needs section http://www.homeschooling-dad.com/special-needs-homeschooling.html up. The site is still in construction.

HSLDA http://www.hslda.org/legislation/state/default.asp is a great resource. Click on your state and you'll go to a section that includes organizations which include home school groups. 

The Home School Foundation http://www.homeschoolfoundation.org/ also has many resources.

As for your part time work you may be able to turn your knowledge into a profitable web business like so many other homeschooling moms. This is the e-business suite I'm using for my site: http://workfromhome.sitesell.com/homeschooldad.html. It's the only one out there with a guarantee. cool

I'll send you a "friend" request. Keep in touch and God bless!