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I'm thinking about pulling my oldest daughter out of public school and doing the home school route. The only problem is we aren't sure if it will work for her as she seems to not have the attention span that would be needed. She does very well in school and her teacher told us we should consider the gifted program for her in a year or so. So I'm curious what was your reasons behind the decision to home school and how has it worked for you, what's a typical day like?
I've been teaching my children at home for 8 years, and I can tell you from experience that this will be a much better option for your daughter. You will be able to give her the one on one attention she needs, and you will be able to bring activities and approaches into her education that may not be available in another educational setting. Being home schooled will allow her to move as quickly through a subject as she needs to, and if she is struggling with something you can slow down until she understands the topic and is ready to move on. It will be an adjustment for your entire family, and you will need to read anything you can about home schooling so that you can be prepared. Now is the perfect time to begin educating yourself about this choice because you can learn and make plans over the summer. I'll give you a few links to sites that have a great deal of information about home schooling to get you started. There are also a large number of books available on this topic. Some things are written from a Christian perspective and some from a secular so you can decide which you would like to read. Here are the links:
http://www.youcanhomeschool.org/starthere/default.asp?bhcp=1 Information on how to get started.
http://www.thehomeschoolmagazine.com/How_To_Homeschool.php More information on how to get started home schooling.
http://www.hslda.org/laws/default.asp Learn about the laws concerning home schooling in your state. This is important, as you need to know the process of taking your child out of the public school system and how to follow any rules your state might have to regulate home education. Some states regulate home schoolers and others do not. I would suggest if you do decide to educate your daughter at home that you join this organization (HSLDA). Some home school organizations require an HSLDA membership. They will help you with any legal issues that may arise regarding your home school. In 8 years of home schooling I've never had any problems, but I'm thankful that there is an organization like this that will provide legal assistance should I need it. They also do other things as well, but you can browse their site for more information.
As for the reasons that we chose to home school there are many... Religious reasons, wanting to guide my children's education without restrictions from a school, to protect the hearts of my children from things in schools that they don't need to be exposed to, and the ability to be able to give my children the time they need to learn something they may struggle with.
My children range in age from 10-14. A typical day in our home is...
begin working on subjects that can be done independently
break for lunch
read history together (with grades ranging from 5 to 8 we all do the same history lesons and I require different levels of work from them)
do history assignments individually
finish any subjects not yet completed
We read aloud books of interest as a family at night sometimes, depending on our schedule. While the children are working on school work I try to do things I need to do around the house or paperwork, etc. I'm always available to work with them in a subject if they need help or if I have assigned a lesson with them. In grammar for example there are some days that we do lessons together (when introducing a new concept) and other days when they do their work pages independently and I check them when they are finished, going over anything they missed.
With younger children they won't work independently until they are a little older so if you will be home schooling more than one child you will have to plan out how to teach as many subjects together as you can (a real time saver) and how to schedule one on one time with each child.
I know this may seem overwhelming right now, but you can do this and your family will benefit from it. You will learn as much as the children learn. I've learned diligence, patience, and flexibility, as well as some things I don't remember covering when I was in school. There is a wide variety of curriculum available so you won't have to worry about not having anything to teach them.
Look for yahoo groups that are set up for home schoolers in your area if you need to ask questions about home schooling. Try to go to a home school conference in your state if you want to get a look at lots of different curricula at one time, and hear some great speakers. This is also probably a good place to talk to people about concerns or questions that you have. Also, most curriculum publishers have forums on their web-sites or yahoo groups have been started by those who use the curriculum. These are good places to learn about the curriculum and how others use it.
I know this was long, but there was so much I wanted to share with you. I just want to leave you with this thought. No one else knows your child as well as you do, and no one else will love her more. You will be able to give her what she needs to grow and to learn. You can do this!
Last Edited on: 4/30/10 4:33 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
I homeschool my grandson and we love it.There are all sorts of reasons why parents want their children to be homeschooled. What's your reason for wanting to homeschool? It can be a great and fullfilling experience for you and your child. There are so many different methods and styles to use, so many philosophies that you can taylor to you and your child. There are benefits and drawbacks depending on many things from lifestyle to environment to personalities, etc. In terms of attention span, I can't imagine that you will have a problem. You can help your daughter to learn to have a better attention span by individualizing your homeschooling approach. There are so many ways to do that. If you want to you can ask people what they do about helping their children learn to have a better attention span. For me, I would want to find out what is causing your child to have a poor attention span. One possible reason is that she may be bored at school or her learning style doesn't fit into the schools teaching methods. There are so many reasons, it's worth looking into. If you already know, it would be a good topic to bring up here. You may find your answer.
I'm looking forward to hearing more from you,