Homeschooling: Your Questions Answered!


 

Source: google.com via Cathy on Pinterest

 

 

I mentioned in a post a couple of weeks ago something about homeschooling on the Time 2 $ave facebook page and was blown away by your response. First, I want you to know that I do not have it all together.  If you’ve been hanging out with us for any length of time you’ve probably heard me say that I’m unorganized and I’ve got ADHD.  Although this is my fourth year, I am still figuring things out. I feel closer this year, and feel like I have a better understanding of what our day should look like.  However, in saying that we are still a work in process for sure.  In order to answer as many of your questions as possible, I thought I would do a Q & A for this post as an introduction into our homeschool world.

Why did you decide to homeschool?

For several reasons, the biggest being my daughter’s diabetes.  She was diagnosed right after she turned three years old.  With all the finger pricking, insulin dosing and carb counting that goes along with diabetes I couldn’t imagine sending her to school (You can read our story here).  Of course there were other factors that influenced our decision including our faith, educational preferences and my crazy work schedule.

What grade are your kids in?

My daughter is in 3rd grade (she’s 9) and my son is in Kindergarten (he’s 6).

What kind of curriculum do you use?

Our main curriculum is called Classical Conversations.  It’s a classical approach to education, much different than what you would find in the public school system.  You can find a comprehensive explanation of Classical Education and Classical Conversations here.  We met with our Classical Conversations group every Tuesday from 9:00 to 12:00.  Each of my children are in a classroom of 7 other children with a “tutor” who introduces the next weeks memory work, and facilitates science experiments/projects as well as fine art.  I go back and forth between the kids classes helping out where I can.

Classical Conversations includes:

  • Geography
  • Science
  • Math
  • English
  • Latin
  • History
  • Fine Arts

Classical Conversations is divided into three cycles – every year we focus on a different cycle.  By the end of this year, the cycle one curriculum  exposes my kids to over 400 pieces of information that they work to memorize.  It sounds daunting, however this is our fourth year and I am absolutely amazed at what my kids are capable of memorizing.  Most all of the memory work has songs and motions that are super catchy.  I find myself singing the memory work all the time!

Cycle 1 Memory Work Covers

  • 161 events and people in a chronological timeline
  • 44 Presidents
  • 24 History Sentences to add depth to the chronological timeline
  • 120 locations and geographic features in Africa, Europe, and the Old World
  • 24 Science facts (including the classifications of living things and each continent’s highest mountain)
  • 5 Latin noun endings and their singular and plural declensions
  • English grammar facts (including 53 prepositions, 23 helping verbs, and 12 linking verbs)
  • Multiplication tables up to 15X15, common squares and cubes, as well as basic geometry formulas and unit conversations

Plus:

  • Exposure to drawing techniques
  • Music theory and tin whistle
  • 6 great artists and related projects
  • Introduction to orchestra and 3 classical composures
  • 12 science experiments and 12 science projects
  • 23 oral presentations

I supplement our CC (CC is an abbreviation for Classical Conversations) with a separate Math, Reading, Spelling, Grammar and Social Studies Curriculum.  Below I have listed what I am using this year. I especially love our reading and spelling curriculum.  I’m a terrible speller, so it’s giving me a chance to relearn all those “spelling rules” I had long forgotten!

Math In Focus

All About Reading

All About Spelling

Shurley English

Mystery of History

What does our day look like?

My goal is to start each day by 9 and end by 2:30 or 3:00.  With the exception of Tuesdays (we attend CC group) and Friday’s (we attend a Spanish Class from 12:30 – 1:30) we pretty much keep to our schedule.  If I have to go out of town for work, I will try to have school work ready for their sitter, but it’s usually less work than we do when I am home.  I don’t travel very often so it works for us.  We start each day off with a praise and workshop song, and a devotion.  Even if we are running late getting started I have found that it sets the tone for our entire day.  We break for about 30 minutes for lunch, and jump right back into school work.  We usually go longer in the summer than the local school system just to make sure I’ve covered everything.

Where do you homeschool in your house?

We have a homeschool room, that we do most all of our school work in.  Otherwise, I’d have books all over the house.  We have found that a kitchen table in the middle of the room works best for us after trying desks for a while.  That way I can sit between them, to help with their school work. In one of the corners of the room we sit on the floor for our reading and spelling lessons. I’d like to set up a couple different “learning stations” in our room, but just haven’t had time.

Are there days you want to give up?

Of course!!!  However, at the end of the day, I truly treasure this time with my kids.  I know that homeschooling isn’t for everyone.  I’m not against public or private schools, homeschooling was just the right choice for my family.

I hope this helped to answer some of your questions.  Make sure to click the links I’ve included if you’d like to find out more information about Classical Conversations.  Depending on interest, I am thinking about starting a new homeschooling series.  I’d love it if you’d leave a comment if you’d be interested or leave a comment sharing your experience.

Comments

  1. Barbie says

    Thank you for sharing. Homeschooling is something we are considering for our 4 youngest because we are not comfortable with the direction our public schools are going. It’s wonderful to hear the perspective from someone who is doing it.

    • says

      Sure! Happy to share, I really enjoy homeschooling my kids. I love CC because they are both memorizing the same material. A friend of mine has 6 kids (ages 9,7,5,4,2 and 8 months) and she also uses CC curriculum. It’s great to use with multiple children of various ages.

      • Kathryn says

        Hi! I just found your blog today searching info on cc. Thanks for sharing your Experience! I love reading of ideas and things that other moms are doing with their children.

        I have 7 kids the exact ages of your friends children (except my 6 year olds are twins). Does she have a blog that she shares her experience? I’m very interested to see how to make cc work with a larger family. Thanks!!

  2. mala says

    Hi Kasey!
    Thank you for sharing! My older kids are already in school (one in 5th grade and one in 7th) so I plan on leaving them there, they don’t want to leave. But my i’m thinking about doing pre know with my 4yr old to see if homeschooling will work for us and if it does id go on with my 8mth old as well. I would love some ideas on how to get started….. By The way I have adhd as well so I would love to know how you manage to stay on track! Thanks in advance!

    • says

      Mala,
      To be honest, I get off track more than I would like to. However, the past couple of weeks I have written down a pretty specific goal each day that seems to help me stay focused a little better. It’s not easy, as I’m trying to run a business from home to. At the end of the day, I do the best that I can do and know that if God called me to it he’ll see me through it. With a 4yr old I would go to Dollar Tree and pick up some of the preschool educational books to start working on a little together. I’ve used them with both of my kids starting at age 3 or 4 and have had great success.

      Blessings,
      Kasey

  3. Meleisha Powers says

    Hi there! We use CC as our mainstay as well. It is really easy to use the Memory pegs introduced in CC as a jumpstart for all your social studies (science, history, geography) since they are put into such a nice order. (CC actually puts out a guide that helps with using “The Story of the World” as a great classical History/Geography/Art curriculum in one.) Once the kiddos reach 4th grade there is an afternoon portion (also once per week) called Essentials. It is a comprehensive Language Arts (grammar and writing) program with some mental math as well. CC also has a wonderful middle and high school level called Challenge. It is a FULL curriculum and often before they are mid-way through high school, these kids are doing better in their logic/reasoning/writing skills than are many college level students, from what I have heard some parents say. Many wish they had found this a long time ago. Our community meets on Fridays so we have all week long to work on the new stuff before heading back to class. We just LOVE it! Hope this is helpful to someone out there. I sure am glad you opened up this discussion!

    • says

      CC is awesome, I can’t recommend it enough. I’ve heard great things about Story of the World as well as Mystery of History. Thanks for sharing Meleisha! Love hearing from other CC families!

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