13 February 2012

Home Schooling

What home school looked like today. :)
So I never posted about this on my blog but the sh*% really hit the fan at Hannah's school back in November/ December. Lots of stuff went down with teaching and with the guidance my child was (not) receiving in the classroom and on the playground.

As Christmas break drew closer the feeling in my gut that it would get better went away and I began feeling that the school we had loved was not the right place for us anymore. I started researching other schools in our area, both public and private. I knew that since she was mid-term it was going to be hard to find a spot that H was comfortable in and I was concerned that she had fallen behind in math.

Trying to get her tested proved fruitless. Our district seems like a disorganized mess. I still get different answers to my questions depending on who or what office I talk to.

I talked to a couple of friends I knew that had home schooled or were currently and was lead to the Monterey County Charter Home School. I signed up for an orientation meeting and we all attended. After sitting through the meeting and then speaking to the presenter (a teacher) we "knew" this was the right fit for us right now. We signed up on the spot and Greg called her old school and dropped her while standing outside the office. BAM! We were home schooling.

They sent us off with some worksheets and a workbook and scheduled us to meet with our teacher ( we meet with her 2x a month) and we were off. It was a difficult beginning. The resources online are overwhelming, the load of books they gave me was overwhelming and the hardest of all was I had no idea where H was in the CA State curriculum.

I learned that not only was she behind in math (as we suspected) but she wasn't even getting some of the subjects. The upside is that she seems to be rockin' along in "language arts" and reading/ reading comprehension. Her 1-2 grade teacher managed to pound quite a bit into their brains while she had them.

This last meeting our teacher brought us retired questions from the CA Standards Test so we could better evaluate where she was. Well we're knee deep in math. Ugh. She has a lot to catch up before 4th grade. I am afraid she is going to follow in my math footsteps, where I had to have tutoring to pass my math classes. Math does NOT come easily to me. I have hopes that her Dad's math genes will kick in and she will buzz right along. Fingers crossed.

So, anyway, overall, home schooling.. while not a long term option for us has been pretty cool. I am trying to wrap my brain around the fact that I get to make up the lessons and curriculum. We can take a day and just go to the Tech museum or the zoo or the aquarium and it counts! We can gather pond water and look at it under a microscope and it counts! Our trip to Hawaii in Jan.??  We took pictures, learned about the landscape and geology, snorkeled and learned about fish, journaled, did puzzles and IT ALL COUNTED toward school.

While it sounds like quite the life.. shorter days, fun adventures, alternative learning. It does have its downside. The social portion is missing completely. I have to work hard to set up play dates with her cousin and friends. I have to make sure I get in the car and take her places and don't get wrapped up in computer work/ projects.  My work has really changed. I have had to take a leave from the office of our family business and just work on specific projects at home, but the upside of that is that I have gotten a nice handful of design work all of a sudden too. Thats all work I can do while she is reading or after "school" is done for the day. The other thing that is a bit of a challenge is that we are kind of sick of each other sometimes. We essentially spend 24/ 7 together and I know both of us need a break. When Greg is home sometimes I will go hide in the studio or just leave the house to go wander around the store or something.

Right now I am trying to look at it each day as the gift of being able to teach my child and be with her while she is young. I can't believe how fast it is going by and I hope I can look back and have a bunch of fond memories of her at home.


  1. I love this. I am so proud of you and your commitment as a parent. I look up to you so much!

    1. Thanks so much sweetie! Its been a rough year as you know but I am hangin' tough!

  2. i just want to tell you how awesome you are. seriously. thank you for sharing these pieces of your journey...(i wish we lived closer.)

  3. Good for you! I was feeling very much the same way at Christmas. I wanted to pull my 3rd grader out and homeschool. We decided to let her finish the year. So far I'm fine with our decision. She seems to be doing better.

  4. Thanks for the article, this sort of info should be published time to time. Best Regards