So I’m very excited to announce that we have come to an agreement with Chris’s mom. I don’t have dates yet, but he will be moving back in with us, and our homeschool adventure will begin. Our tentative plan is to get him moved here sometime in the couple of weeks (before school is out) and get him withdrawn from public school. He’ll have a couple of weeks of deschooling (the decompression time where we find our feet), and we’ll take that time to get him enrolled in some extra curricular activities, meet our local homeschool group, and get him into some counseling. This is a tough time of year, just before traditional school ends, so we may have to get creative (i.e., art classes, or something along those lines), but I’m so glad hubby & son’s mom came to an agreement that works for both families. We haven’t told the twins yet, because if something falls through, I don’t want them disappointed. So we probably won’t tell them until we go to pick him up and get him moved.
So… my job this week is to go to the library (tomorrow) and get the books that I have rented before. Then I’ll finalize our plan for homeschooling. I had started a plan when he lived with us before, but abandoned it after he moved home, never fully developing it out. I’ve spent a lot of time over the past several months learning about different learning styles, homeschool options, and the sort. So I’m very confident that it won’t take me long to finalize what’s already in my head onto paper. But even though I’m an adaptable person, I need that plan to get started. 😀
I am a fan of unschooling; however, since Chris has been in public schools for the last 7 years, I think we’ve come to a decision to do eclectic homeschooling. Essentially, I am going to design a curriculum (NOT unschooling), and utilize unit studies to allow Chris to basically pick what he’s learning about, while I make sure that he is gaining instruction in all traditional areas. We will also be making the shift to a lifestyle of unschooling, where we involve him in and teach him subjects through the use of real-life circumstances. For those unfamiliar with this terminology, it’s the belief that children learn… math, for example, the addition, subtraction, multiplication and division of fractions not by studying a workbook, but by doubling or halving recipes, working with budgets, calculating the MPG on the family car, determining how long it will take us to go on a trip at a steady pace of 60 mph, etc. I have a strong belief that the majority of children will learn easier and retain the knowledge better when using real world examples. But I have agreed to the use of Unit Studies along with the unschooling due in part to the fact that both father and mother want some quantifiable knowledge of what we’re learning, and also because this is our first foray into homeschooling, so the worry is there that we will at some point need to re-enroll Chris in public school later. So it’s essentially a fail-safe for us.
I shouldn’t leave the little ones out here. When I begin Chris’s homeschooling, I am also going to begin working with them more actively. They wouldn’t be enrolled into school until September, but I’m hoping that we will now be able to keep them here, and utilize natural learning with them, too. Again, I will offer unit studies to supplement that as necessary (for my husband’s peace of mind), but hope that they will be able to unschool as a lifestyle.
I will post our journey here on this blog, under the tag of education, so you can follow along if you wish. Tomorrow… library. I’m very excited about this! It’s a new lifestyle for us, one I’ve wanted for a long time… for all of our children. And it’s the first step to our dream life. 😀 So strap in, and hang on… we’re changing our lives!