Wednesday, October 17, 2012

I got high schoolers....as homeschoolers! WOW

Well....4 years of homeschooling has given me 2 teenagers who are now both in HIGH SCHOOL! When we started this crazy road back in October of 2008, it was to get my oldest son through 6th grade, caught up and ready for 7th grade BACK in public school! Yep, that was the plan! 1 year, 1 kid, that was it. And now...I laugh! My son blossomed! He learned, he was a sponge, he got caught up, he learned to read and love it, he was HAPPY, he smiled and we were HOOKED! 3 months later we pulled my youngest son from 5th grade and away we went! And then the plan was to only homeschool through middle school years and as we wrapped those up, neither of my boys wanted to go back to public school! Fine by me! I can do it! I can handle it! I can homeschool 2 high schoolers.....RIGHT? RIGHT? HELP! No, really....I knew I could do it. I was a little concerned as for 4 years we had used Time 4 Learning 100% for our schooling! It was awesome! Then we tried an online high school program for my older sons 9th grade year. I hated it, he hated it and I felt that it was poorly done. So.....Mom decided this year to research curriculum and do a lot more hands-on vs. online. Thank goodness for secularhomeschool.com forum because I found lots of other parents in the same boat as me! I no longer felt alone, I no longer felt like a sinking ship and I have a place to help me with my homeschooling! So.... as we are 6 weeks into our homeschooling 2 high schoolers year......things have had their ups and downs. We have had some curriculum changes, we have had some meltdowns, we have had some issues but I know that I can do it. I have help, I have a mindset! If I can do it....you can to! Promise!

Math anxiety!

Another week, another lesson in MATH ANXIETY! What a 6 week run of Mom picking the wrong curriculum....to the point that I am about to just let my kids play video games all day....instead of using the Math I pick! UGH! You can find me sitting in the corner banging my head on the wall....over and over! As you know from my past(numerous) posts that we have math issues in our house! LOTS OF THEM! I mean LOTS! And this year is no exception but it is from BOTH my boys! We are working on algebra, as I have a 9th and 10th grader. I signed us up for an online Math that was new to us but looked MEGA cool. Well, it is cool and I love the concept but their teaching of the problem leaves little to be desired. It lacks showing how they get from A to B step by step. So, we are back at Time 4 Learning and using their algebra program! I love their teaching, I love their presentation, I just LOVE them period and it gives my boys something that is like home. We are still having our NORMAL math anxiety over stuff occasionally BUT...it is NOT the crazy OMG Math anxiety we have over the curriculum in general! So...maybe, just maybe....we might make it through another year of homeschooling!LOL

Sunday, October 7, 2012

My ABC or CBA talent....

Ok...my 1 talent that I can claim is the ability to say the alphabet backwards FLUENTLY! I could say it backwards before I could say it forwards! I am one of those crazy people! Do not ask me why I learned it like that so well...have no clue!LOL And I couldnt teach either of my boys it like that? I tried! We played sooooo many ABC games when they were little and I still use many of the same games in teaching the kids in my daycare! And now that they are teenagers, my boys assist me in using the games they learned with!! Of course we sing the ABC's, we use flashcards, we practice them as sight letters and anytime we are reading a story we look for the current letters we are working on! So....what are your favorite ABC games to teach your kids? Love to hear how stuff works for others! Happy Homeschooling!

Hardest thing ever for me, was to teach my son to read...

You would think that it would be easy....teaching a child to read. Well, if the child learns easily, is accepting of it....then maybe it is. I was one of those kids. I learned to read with Dr. Seuss. I was 4 and my Mom was a teacher so for her it easy. My boys went to public school through elementary school and while the school taught them to read, they were not without their learning difficulties! My older son struggled with it through 3rd grade. He did not become a strong reader until we started homeschooling. Not sure if that had anything to do with public school or with homeschooling? Maybe he was more relaxed at home that he was able to read fluently? Or the fact that I found lots of great books of subjects he was interested in! Learning to read is a turning point in any child's life as far as I am concerned. Once a child has the power of reading, there is no stopping them! Reading opens doors, it gives them power to a whole new world of learning! And kids with this kind of power have nowhere to go but up! IF, I had been put in the position of teaching my boys to read 100% aka if we homeschooled since birth....then I would have probably found a tutor or enlisted my Mom's help in this matter! I do not feel that I would have been 100% confident to do it alone. And, there is no reason to be upset about this! The whole reason of homeschooling is to give our kids the best learning they can have from whatever resources we need to utilize! Happy Homeschooling!