I haven’t been writing much lately because, 1st, our life was INsane with end of school stuff, and then it got super relaxed (for me) because my loving husband gave me some “time off.” 🙂 I’m beginning to re-surface and thought I’d share a little of our current thoughts.
We’ve had some cold, hard, looks at our budget for the rest of the year. And it seems, unless God miraculously provides, that we won’t be able to afford the kids’ private Christian school (Calvin Christian) next year – even with a scholarship. We have really appreciated the common sense, effort and diligence on the part of everyone at Calvin and are pretty sad about this. Since we have already decided (based almost exclusively on class sizes – 30:1 is an average child:teacher ratio!) that our kids won’t thrive at the local public school, that leaves homeschooling.
Homeschooling is something we have had in the back of our minds for years. I’ve read the books, gone over the philosophies, looked at the reasons, and even tried it for Jonathan’s pre-K/Kindergarten year. Planning to serve as long-term missionaries in a country that has very few options educationally has made homeschooling a “when” not an “if” for us. But I have been so grateful that I haven’t had to do it yet, especially since my two oldest children are almost certainly special needs (and #3 is looking likely). I fully realize the amount of time and effort and aggravation homeschooling can be (especially with an “oppositional” child!). But, as my mom would say, needs must.
So today I took the chilluns with me to the park. Huh? 😀 Well, the Valley Center Christian homeschooling group was having their last playdate at our church’s park (VCCC) and I was invited by my mentor, a super lady who also happens to be a homeschooling mama of 6. It was….hmm. Let’s see if I can find some words.
Fun – lots of moms for me to chat with, LOTS of kids for mine to play with.
Unreal – In the 2.5 hours we were there, I only occasionally checked on my kids, who were always having fun with other kids (there was a wide range of ages). This was unreal for me because trying to keep track of four active kids (ages 3-7) at a typical park full of strangers is enough to bring me to tears (usually after a “Where’s Amara??!” panic). I didn’t know what it felt like to really relax at a park! Until today. 🙂
Hopeful – these people are normal people, some with similar struggles to mine, and they are making it – and apparently not just that but doing well!
and a little bit of Jealous – looking through their year book I was AMAZED at how many fun things they did and wished we’d been there!
So trying to mull this homeschooling thing around and I think, for the first time, that some strains of hope and expectancy have mingled in with the dread and fear. All in all, a good day! 😀
PS – for those of you who are curious about details – we are going to try unit studies this summer with Indians (first), coupled with a Charlotte Mason approach. I am hoping to casually cover enough material over the summer months that we can take November-December “off”; or on “low” after baby #5 arrives. I am soliciting advice on language programs, as I’ve pretty much settled on Singapore Math for our math curriculum. Please leave a comment for me! 😀