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  1. #1
    Waterlillyfairy is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    Mar 2008
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    Default Hello, new here.

    A little about me: Hello, my name is Tiffany and I am getting ready to home school my 6 year old daughter. She is currently in Public school, and I couldn't be more disappointed with it. I always said I wanted to home school if I could, but I wanted to expose my daughter to public school as well. Her pre-k experience was wonderful and I figured we would try out kindergarten at the same school... what a mistake!! I have found that the school on occasion feeds them McDonalds in the cafeteria, undermines the ideals and principals we teach at home, and are teaching her the same things she learned last year, just to START the complaints.

    So I decided to go ahead and start her homeschooling for first grade. I've spent the majority of my time over the last few months doing as much research and planning as I could. We would like to begin her first grade in June, and not wait for the regular school year to begin. In fact, we will be doing a year 'round schooling, allowing time for vacations, and sick days, and what not, but generally I don't want month long breaks, as a personal preference.

    My husband is a full time college student and I work part time as a waitress in the evenings. We receive financial aid, GI Bill, and loans which allow us to maintain a basic lifestyle. We don't have a lot of money to spend on homeschooling, but I am determined to make it work.

    We live in an area that is not the most ideal for allowing my daughter to go outside and play with neighborhood kids, so I want to spend 6 days a week on some sort of schooling. I am planning to do sunday-thursday as school days, and friday we will do a field trip day. I have a pretty good plan that allows for plenty of independent play time, but not so much that she'll sit around being bored (like she does now sometimes.)

    I also want to include areas that I believe are important for her to learn to be a fully functioning adult (such as how to cook and clean up after herself) so those are included in the daily schedule. I'm estimating about 3 hours a day of actual study time, and everything else will be hands on learning with some crafts and experiments and whatever I can come up with, I guess.

    I involve her in as many after school activities as I can, given our limited budget, and I have also found some local homeschooling groups that we can meet up with regularly (about 2 or 3 times a week), so I think I have her socializations counted for. Am I over thinking all of this? I'm quite a worrier, and can sometimes make things more stressful than they should be. As all parents, I wonder if I'm doing the right thing for my daughter, but I am following my heart, and since she is so excited about the prospect I can't possibly turn back now, it would break her heart. I must admit, I'm nervous about taking on such a responsibility, and I'm scared that wont be able to fulfill it.

    Unfortunatly, most of the people I talk to around her are very discouraging of the idea, and I am constantly having to battle negative ideas about homeschooling. I think that adds to my anxiety. I am hoping to use T4L as a base curriculum, and using my own resources to add to what they offer here. My daughter is already pretty proficient on the computer, and enjoys playing games online (I let her go to PBS sprout and noggin web sites) so I'm hoping this format works well for her.

    Well I guess I've babbled on long enough for one post, thanks for reading along. I wont be getting started until June this year, but we've already been making plans and getting things ready, so that we can start day one off as smoothly as possible. Hope to get to know you all better!

    ~ Tiffany
    (WLF)

  2. #2
    twinmami01 is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    Mar 2008
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    Central Florida
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    27

    Default

    Welcome Tiffany!

    Seems like you have it all planned out! That is great. I have 7 year old twins. They just turned 7 this month and we are currently doing 1st grade. They have special needs and we too tried preschool in the public school. They were blessed to have a great teacher, however, we knew that the public school would not work for them. We started schooling in June as well and now keep a year round schedule. We found that we got alot done during the summers when its just too hot to be out and love the flexbility of a year round schdule.

    We have only been with t4l for a month and honestly, I did not intend to continue past the free trial. We live on a tight budget and did not think this was something we could afford. My boys love this program. I love this program. Enough said-we will tighten up else where in our budget and keep t4l!!!!

    You will have people who will not agree with homeschooling, but you know whats best for your child. Good luck to you and your family as you embark on this homeschooling journey. It has been such a blessing for a family and I am not looking back!

  3. #3
    adelenpaul is offline Member Regular
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    Mar 2007
    Location
    Des Moines, Iowa
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    88

    Default

    Welcome Tiffany! I pray you are blessed with these forums and the T4L program. Sounds like you are very well organized. Just one word of caution from someone who is on their eighth year of homeschooling - Grace and patience!

    Give you and your daughter some grace as you figure out what is actually going to work for you guys. Be willing to adjust (not to say you're not already planning on it). It rarely looks like what you have in your head. What I've finally found that has worked well for us is to have a plan with the directions we want to head but be flexible with how we get there. Use lots of library books and videos. Go on nature walks. Read, read and read some more out loud to her. Have her listen to books on tape as well. Hearing good quality literature is one of the biggest factors in language, vocabulary and reading development - and it's fun!

    Hang in there and blessings and you continue to research and plan,
    Adele

  4. #4
    ranchgirl is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    Jan 2008
    Location
    Western South Dakota
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    13

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    Hi Tiffany!

    You sound alot like me! I wanted everything to be perfect and be the best teacher my son ever had. The first week went pretty well, the honeymoon stage.. Then it came.. Frustration, stress, am I good enough to do this?.. Yes, you are! The child will let you know. Some days I know we've reached the limit and need to cut things short. Some days he wants to keep going. I let his mood tell me if we're doing it right.

    I live in a small town and get lots of negativity about homeschooling!!! It's terrible at times. I joined a group in a bigger town, 35 miles away and we go there once a week. That was a blessing! There are other crazies out there just like me! We ranch, live way out in the boonies, and don't socialize much, except about twice a week. Just discovering the other day that it costs me $12 to go to town and back in gas, about gave me a heart attack!!! So, we rely on each other lot. I am a lifeguard, in our little town, in the summer and teach swim lesson. My son gets to go to work with me. He'll have plenty of "socializing" then.

    I will also school in the summer. We are trying to get through all of Language Arts and the Extensions by the end of May. Then we'll hit the rest of math, then do social studies and science a few days a week. Hopefully, by August, most of it will be done. We're planning on a vacation in October, which will be really nice. Fall in Wisconsin! It's beautiful and he's never been there during that time. He'll love it!

    Just do what your heart tells you and everything will work out. We also do cooking and just basic things around the house. Next week we are going to start sewing a baby quilt for his piano teacher and refinishing the kitchen cupboards. Then, we will build a chicken coop and get chickens, which will be the boys' responsibility. And fresh eggs, too!!!! Life is school, as is each day. Just enjoy each day with your daughter. And help her make childhood memories. She'll remember it forever!

    Jennie

  5. #5
    sisymay is offline Member
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    Nov 2007
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    64

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    Hey! I started homeschooling my dd in the last 2 months of 2nd grade. I fought all those years with the school in trying to get her help thru special ed. They fought me like crazy. I learned this is normal all over the country.
    I was terrified of homeschooling. I decided to do it on a split second decision and I was not prepared at all. I felt I had no choice.
    First of all, I didnt know my child's exact problems. We couldnt' afford testing to get any diagnosis. So, all this time I've been 'winging it' and just helping her on what she has trouble with.
    I was so scared, how in the world was I going to teach her? What in the world was I going to use, we can't afford already planned out curiculum.
    Some people were negative toward me, but I just felt they don't understand how bad schools are and how she needed help.
    She is doing GREAT!! I had a hard time planning WHAT to use and WHAT to do, it took a LOT of time doing all this. That is until I found T4L !!
    We don't use this as our ONLY curiculum because she has trouble with math and spelling.
    We also use mathusee, sequential spelling and wordly wise for vocabulary.
    I get these used pretty cheap.

    It might be hard at first, will take a while till you get into a system, a groove so to speak. I wish I would have done this from the beginning.

    There are so many websites for learning and helping it's not even funny! I have a million websites saved to use for all subjects.

    Well, I hope that helps!! SHERRY

  6. #6
    Waterlillyfairy is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    Mar 2008
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    Oh thank you all so much for your replies! It's always comforting to know you're not alone. I do agree, that my original plans may not be what works out best for my daughter, and that's ok, I just want a jumping off point, so to speak. I really appreciate the advice and will take it to heart! I really appreciate your tips, and hope to talk again soon!!!

    ~ Tiffany

  7. #7
    adelenpaul is offline Member Regular
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    Mar 2007
    Location
    Des Moines, Iowa
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    88

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    Tiffany,

    I hope I didn't sound discouraging with my previous post. I felt a kinship with you because we sound very much alike! I too plan out things every summer. And every school year they never look like what I planned. We're in our eighth year but I still plan. It makes ME feel better and I get a better grasp of where we're going, what we're studying, and the big picture. I have to say T4L has helped me stay on track sooo much more than any of our previous seven years. I'm so grateful. In years past I've been 8-18 months behind schedule in history (according to the plans I'd made in the summer ). This year we're less than 4 weeks off. That has never happened! But I've learned to be patient and trust what needs to happen will and not sweat what we don't get accomplished.

    I used to be a teacher as well and many teachers don't always finish their texts either. So, we're all in good company. I figure if we're making progress, learning good life skills and study habits and my kids enjoy learning, we're way ahead of the game! So if something isn't working, I've learned to figure out a wa to make it work. For instance, we once had a curriculum that required me to read out loud for a long time every day. I felt so guilty that I never got it all done! So I figured I needed to stop beating myself up and start getting books on tape via the library instead. Worked great!

    Hang in there, have fun and let the character building be the goal, not a curriculum! May you be blessed, Adele

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