A so called wrench was thrown in my plans - homeschool. I was not too thrilled when this came across my plate. In fact, I balked at it for a while (meaning weeks, because that is all the time I had to decide). But, after careful discussions and prayer, I knew it was right. I could give you a whole list of reasons and complaints about things, but I won't. I felt much more comfortable and not overwhelmed going into homeschool this time, even with a baby due in 4 months. I totally feel that this is tender mercy from above. The Lord knew I needed some peace with our lives and he gave that to us, in the most unusual and unexpected way.
We did homeschool before and while it went okay. My expectations were too high the first time and because of that, I look back at it like a hot mess. We knew we only had to do a year. This time, we are looking at an indeterminate time (between 2-4 years or more) and my mindset is different.
The support system is different.
My children are different.
I am different.
Our curriculum is realistic and my expectations, realistic also. The curriculum is not quite complete yet, but I'd rather wade in slow and add more as we go. This is something we learned last time. Too much, too soon means A LOT of tears for all parties involved.
I am using a few work books, but we are keeping most of our studies online.
We bought a year subscription to IXL.com. This has math, science, social studies/history, and language arts. We have only been using it a few days full time (my children used it before as a supplement to their school curriculum and loved it), and I am impressed. I really want my children to self-guide their learning and I can see where their strengths lie already. I step in when they need help, but they clip on at their own pace most of the time.
I get daily, weekly, and monthly reports and they have daily analytics broken down within their site. I can see areas that need work. The site also provides more questions if they are struggling until they show that they can master it. It's like unit test, but with each section. I really like it. I am sure I will test them every few weeks to make sure, but it is also sequential, so if they don't know it or don't have it mastered then it will show up in the next section and we can go back and review.
We use a few other sites for reading an AR quizzes (as they finish books, they quiz on what they read, earning points per book).
This blog post is coming during a break and it is over now.