Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Switching Mid-Stream

"Never, never, never give up." Winston Churchill

I imbibe this principle. I was raised with the idea that just because something is hard doesn't mean you shouldn't be doing it, I rarely give up on anything. I pretty much have to be pried away from commitments. Kicked in the butt. Made thoroughly miserable.

Then I will give up. Or move on. How ever you want to phrase it.

Sometimes this is a good thing. Sometimes I wish my learning curve was a bit shorter. Sometimes I wish it was clearer to me sooner when God is closing a door or when I am supposed to keep on keeping on.

Today's homeschool topic is share your top 3 tips for someone who pulled their child out of school mid year.

I have never been in this situation. My kids have always been home schooled. When we started home schooling, we actually started at the beginning of a new year.  I don't know that I know anyone who has actually done this. I do know people who have contemplated it.

But, if I ever needed to change midstream, here's what I'd hope someone would tell me.

1) Forgive yourself. Let go of the guilt. You know exactly what I mean. No matter our choices, we women feel like we have somehow failed. (I will actually be sharing more on that on Thursday.)

This ties in with the above idea of never giving up. This decision you have made to take your child out of school is a big decision, but you have made it based on what you feel is best for your child and/or your family. So, rest in the peace and confidence of that decision.

2) Define your expectations and then hold them loosely. Why are you pulling your child out of school? Are they being left behind scholastically? Are they not being challenged? Teacher-student relationship isn't meshing? Are you pulling them out for moral reasons or convictions? Do you simply want more freedom and flexibility in your family schedule? Is it a temporary situation, with the goal of putting your child back in school within a year or two?

These will all determine what your expectations and goals will be.

If it is a scholastic reason, and you have ground to make up, depending on the time of year, you may not be able to finish your textbooks by the time you'd normally break for the summer. Is your goal to actually do every page in every book? Evaluate your expectations.

You want to teach and challenge your child, but you don't want to discourage them. Especially if that is why you pulled them out of school. Pray for discernment and wisdom on how to teach your child and the proper pace (accelerated or not) for your child.

3) Build your village. Raising godly offspring and/or trying to home school them is a group effort. So get key people in your life involved. Have grandparents listen to reading when they are around. Have artistic friends help with art. Join a home school group or co-op. Don't go at it alone.

What advice do you have for someone who is starting homeschooling mid year? What would you advice scholastically?

I'm betting you may get more practical and technical advice from...
Julie: Finding Resources
Lucinda: 3 Things you must do if
Nicole: Transitioning to Home Schooling
Chareen: From School to Home School