HOMESCHOOLING

{ home } school thoughts

some thoughts on school

Turns out, I'm more curriculum than eclectic.

My two "most important purchases" — a large dry erase board, and good shelving, were truly my two most important purchases.

Buying everyone a set a name-engraved pencils was a third good purchase.

When I fall into my former "school teacher" ways, good things happen.

When we crowd on the sofa and they fight over seeing the pictures and who sits closest to me, and then finally settle down to listen, good things happen.

Sometimes, they need their own space.

They like to see the plan for the day, laid out before them, before we start.

They like that little stack of starred and checked work paper-clipped together and sitting on their desks each morning.

Emma likes the striped paper clips. Mary likes the glittery purple ones. Elizabeth hasn't noticed.

When you're making dinner and discover that they're all back in the school room flipping through the books from that day, you know things are moving in a good direction.

When you find a good group, a good co-op, it's a really good thing.

Emma likes to raise her hand. For everything. And it's just the four of us. But I indulge her.

Though setting up "school rules" at the beginning seemed a little stuffy, they've really come in handy.

A piano in your schoolroom is a tough temptation.

I've heard it takes five years to get your own business off the ground. I think similar laws apply to homeschooling.

No matter how much preplanning I do, some things can't get worked out until I jump into the thick of it.

Turns out, laundry doesn't do itself.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Based upon the emails I get about homeschooling, it seems like it may be time for an FAQ. If you have a question, would you mind sharing it in the comments? I can't promise to answer everything, but it will be starting point as I pull it together. Thank you!

some thoughts on school

Turns out, I'm more curriculum than eclectic.

My two "most important purchases" — a large dry erase board, and good shelving, were truly my two most important purchases.

Buying everyone a set a name-engraved pencils was a third good purchase.

When I fall into my former "school teacher" ways, good things happen.

When we crowd on the sofa and they fight over seeing the pictures and who sits closest to me, and then finally settle down to listen, good things happen.

Sometimes, they need their own space.

They like to see the plan for the day, laid out before them, before we start.

They like that little stack of starred and checked work paper-clipped together and sitting on their desks each morning.

Emma likes the striped paper clips. Mary likes the glittery purple ones. Elizabeth hasn't noticed.

When you're making dinner and discover that they're all back in the school room flipping through the books from that day, you know things are moving in a good direction.

When you find a good group, a good co-op, it's a really good thing.

Emma likes to raise her hand. For everything. And it's just the four of us. But I indulge her.

Though setting up "school rules" at the beginning seemed a little stuffy, they've really come in handy.

A piano in your schoolroom is a tough temptation.

I've heard it takes five years to get your own business off the ground. I think similar laws apply to homeschooling.

No matter how much preplanning I do, some things can't get worked out until I jump into the thick of it.

Turns out, laundry doesn't do itself.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Based upon the emails I get about homeschooling, it seems like it may be time for an FAQ. If you have a question, would you mind sharing it in the comments? I can't promise to answer everything, but it will be starting point as I pull it together. Thank you!

27 comments on “{ home } school thoughts”

  1. Love this. I taught elementary school for 11 years and often wonder if I will be too “teacherish” when and if I homeschool any of my children. I do think children appreciate structure, but how much? How long do you do “school” each day?

  2. Wow molly, so well put. I so much enjoy visiting your little nook everyday. You capture your life so vividly, it makes mw feel like I’m right there rooting along with you. Best wishes towards a new season of learning.

  3. OOOoooo, just been strugglig with back to school stress with me seven year old boy. He finds the daily separation distressing at the start of a new school year. Its a painful time but he copes well ( with the aid of lavender to sniff!!) and school is good for him. But when we go throug the tough start I can see many many reasons to home school!thank you

  4. Happy to hear your school year is off to a good start!I’d love to see what you are using for read alouds and the curriculum choices that seem to be working for you.I love the mommy pencil-great idea.

  5. We’ve added a bit more structure to our homeschooling routine this year too. We’re all digging it. But every now and again, we just leap in the car with a pile of books, a thermos of tea and cookies, and head to the beach. That works too! 😀

  6. love your pencil idea~ I actually bought different pencils at the local teacher store for each of my kids! They know and I know if it didn’t make it to their school box! We’ve succeeded in the structure part of the day, but now I need to work on spontaneity and take the day to go to the city or on a hike!

  7. We’ve embarked on our first year of homeschooling this year and while I love reading unschooling blogs, that approach has not worked for us. We are a family that likes a routine. The kids like to know when it is time to sit quietly and work on something and when it is time to play. They like dividing things into tangible subjects and they like to have a plan. Your post really resonated with me. I love how many different ways there are to educate our kids and how differently each family interprets homeschooling.

  8. One question I have, which I’m sure I’ll pose again as our little guy gets closer to school age and I get closer to needing to make some concrete decisions, is more, hmmm, existential? than practical. I wonder if it was at all difficult “giving up” on the public school system (or whatever your other options might be). Maybe it wasn’t a thought you faced at all and if not, that’s okay of course! I am leaning strongly toward homeschooling and think my passions and constitution are probably very well suited to it, but there’s a part of me, maybe the former teacher in me, maybe the former teacher’s pet in me who loved school so much, maybe the woman in me who has worked with so many kids who probably won’t ever have the chance for an enriching homeschool or public school environment — this part of me is a bit uneasy. Any thoughts on this?

  9. Thanks! Great post, mainly because I love the images you paint in my mind, but secondly because I have just started ‘homeschooling’. Really it is a preschool level of schoolwork but I think he need a little instruction following time before Kindergarten. So far so good. We just started this week so we shall see. The thought actually just crept into my head today “Do I want to do this next year too?” Hmm thoughts to ponder. thanks for your expeirence Molly.

  10. My children very much love the spreadsheets I make them each week with little boxes to check off for each subject :)I am in my fourth year of homeschooling and finally feel like I have a grip on things!

  11. I am a new-to-homeschooling Mom of one 5-year old, and I am feeling a bit underprepared and just not “getting it.” I have been using (loosely) some bits and pieces of outlines and reading lists I’ve gathered from a variety of free online resources, however, I would wholeheartedly welcome ANY curriculum advice from you, as well as, what a day in the life of your homeschool looks like. With much appreciation! Mea

  12. yeah, I was so disappointed to find out that the laundry didn’t do it’s self either, really shocked when the dishes sat patiently waiting for me in neat high piles…lol.I love teaching on a whim, but found out myself a little help, a little direction for something, or from someone else..a curriculum, no matter how simple or small lets me think a little less or gives me time to do those dishes & clothes. 🙂

  13. I’m a new reader to your space and loving it! I’m also a new homeschooler. We have started a very loose preschool for our 3yr old twins this year. Our heart is to homeschool through the elementary years and then see from there. I love the concept of unschooling but we would be a house of chaos I think if we went that route completely. I’m hoping to be a bit of a hybrid (like many) so my question… do you have extreme differing personalities and learning styles among your girls and if so how do you handle that? My two girls a very very different in how they learn. I feel one would love traditional school and me as “teacher” the other will balk at “school work” and me as “teacher”. Any insight would be great! Thanks!

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