Grab your beverage of choice, friend, and sit with me for a minute, because I’ve got some news to share with you about some exciting changes happening with my family. Goodness knows I’ve got my iced coffee by my side as I take deep breaths and write this all out. After all, announcing something makes it much more real, right?
My big news is that my husband and I are going to be homeschooling our kids next year. I will be the primary teacher since my husband works full time, but he will also be teaching as his schedule allows.
This news is so huge for us because until about 2 1/2 weeks ago, doing school at home was absolutely out of the question, and that’s because I refused to even consider it. I had some preconceived notions of what home school was like (very insular, very taxing on the teacher, very risky for the kids) and only recently did I become open to changing my mindset.
Tim and I sat down together while my mother-in-law took our girls to the park and we had the goal to really “figure out” school for next year. The private school tuition we were paying was getting increasingly difficult to cover, and the next private school we’d been loosely planning on sending our girls to after Montessori was more than double the cost of what we spent now. We couldn’t figure out how in the world we’d be able to pay for it, and so we were making plans for me to go back to 9-5 work and to increase our “side hustle” opportunities and work more to earn more to pay for school.
And then in a stroke of pure genius, I sat back in my chair and said, “Wait a minute. This is stupid! Why are were strapping ourselves down with debt and giving away all of our time with our kids just to pay for their school?”
And that’s when Tim, who has always thought home school was a cool concept, saw his moment. He reintroduced the idea, and we talked about what home school could look like for us, vs. what I’ve always imagined it had to look like. Suddenly, we were both SO excited!
This year we are saying “no thank you” to huge tuition bills, “no thank you” to a public school option that never quite felt right (despite 4 different tours and hours of conversations with parents, principals and school board members), and we are saying “HECK YES!!!” to having a year of exploration, adventure, and fun with our children. Our little ones still want to be with us more than anyone else, and we are keenly aware that this won’t be the case for all that much longer. And so, while they want to learn from us we will be their teachers.
I don’t yet know exactly how this is all going to work. So far I know that I don’t like the idea of doing a boxed curriculum that emphasizes sitting at the table and filling out worksheets (those have their place for reinforcement, though). I want to offer my girls something hands-on and experiential. I want to follow the rabbit trail when something piques their interest. I want to learn right along side them and to experience the joy of seeing the world with eyes much less clouded than my own.
This blog isn’t going to turn into a “home school blog” but I will be writing about some of our adventures and about things that are working for us (and yes, things that don’t work…I know rough days are ahead of us, too). My hope is that I can help inspire parents with some cool enrichment ideas that can happen after school or on the weekends.
If you have any questions or suggestions for me as we embark on our new adventure, I’d love to hear them. Do you have any experience with home school (I’ll take it all: good, bad and ugly!)? Leave me a comment!