Every Friday Heart of the Matter online magazine hosts a meme for homeschooling families. Today we are to share how we got started homeschooling.
Well, I know I've posted about this before, but for those that don't remember (lol)...Ds1 (now 18yo!) attended public kindergarten. The school and our home were on opposite ends of the school district and it was a 45 minute drive to and from. On top of that the majority of the students were so far behind they not only couldn't write their own name, many did not even recognize it when they saw it. The teacher was a lovely older woman and did her best, but children like my ds1 were left to basically twaddle while she helped others. There was no parental help either, only me and one other mom ever came by the school. So we enrolled ds1 in the private school that dh and I both attended as children. First grade was great! His teacher was super, and we actually re-connected with many friends that we had gone to school with who were now sending their kids, too! It felt very right. Second grade went well, too.
Then in third grade ds1 started bringing home c's. Now I know c's are not bad, but when I'm paying that much for an education, I have to make sure he is getting the most out of it. We would have meetings with his teacher and she would say everything was great, and then he'd bring home more c's. I found out that the teacher was using some unorthodox methods and that the class used only worksheets and no textbook for many subjects (including math.) I also had a few run-ins with the administration, mainly over the now mostly defunct and court-challenged "voucher program" where public dollars were to be used for funding private education. Despite what you may think, I was and still am completely against it. We started to worry a little about what we should do.
I honestly don't remember how I came to know about homeschooling. But it came up and after I attended a workshop at the school district office about it we decided to give it a try. That was 9 years ago and we haven't looked back. I was worried in the beginning if ds1 was keeping up with his peers, until we attended a bday party for one of his former school friends and they began discussing what they were studying and ds tells them he is studying the same things! Ds1 is now about to graduate from the public high school. We have moved into a much better school district (although we still prefer to homeschool for grade school level) and ds1 has thrived at the high school. He comes home every year and proclaims how he is familiar and comfortable with subjects that his peers seem lost in, so again I know we are doing something right lol. Ds2 will be in 8th grade next year. It is his choice if he wants to attend the public high school or not (he has been homeschooled from the start.) We may have had certain reasons for starting homeschooling, but we now have many many more for continuing to homeschool...for us, it is the best!