Thursday, September 12, 2013

It's not giving up....it's doing what's best for now.

Olivia started preschool Monday.


So yes, we went ahead and signed her up.

And then I spent the weekend defending our decision.

Which can I tell you my husband isn't going to be happy about this post because he feels we shouldn't have to.

I heard a lot over the weekend "is this what you want?" No, it's not necessarily what I want, but this isn't just about what I want, it's about doing what's best for Olivia. 

Here's the deal....the homeschool vs. school conversation is an on going discussion in our house.  Why?  My husband and I don't necessarily see eye to eye on the subject.  We have very different opinions about what's best.

Regardless, we have always agreed that we would take the schooling thing on a year by year basis.  So, what worked for last year may not necessarily work for this year. Which is obviously the case this year.

We also have always agreed the kids wouldn't exclusively be homeschooled.  I would be lying if I said we didn't have a problem with Georgia public schools, because we do, but we don't have anything against the school setting in general, if that makes any sense.  Do I think 30 kindergarteners in one class is a good idea? Heck, no.  But I don't think there is any harm in a class of 12 kindergarteners or in our case, eight preschoolers.  Do I think we need to test for every single thing and base teachers pay off of it?  Heck, no.  But I do think when a teacher doesn't have to worry about getting paid based on teaching her students how to take a test, children can learn and thrive.  See what I'm trying to say? 

Traditionally, I have always thought we'd homeschool in the younger grades and then send them to private school when they got to middle school or higher.  The higher grades have always scared me and to be completely honest, it seems that majority of homeschool families do the same thing or at least have their kids enrolled in hybrid programs by then.

One of the issues with homeschooling is that most hybrid programs or co-ops do not start until first grade.  I understand the theory behind it and agree with it, but that makes it hard on us when you have an almost four year old who has a seven week old at home and just wants someone to play with on a regular basis.  Obviously, seven week olds with reflux don't make for very fun playmates.

I believe in homeschooling and I still do. 

I don't believe it's for every child or family, but I do believe it has and will have it's place in our family at the right times.  Last week, I wrote that I was sad because it would change the dynamics of our family.  When I wrote that, I meant it as in schedule wise.  One of the biggest draws for us to homeschool is the freedom of the schedule.  David has never worked a traditional Monday thru Friday 9-5 job in the fourteen years we've been together and odds are, he never will.  Homeschooling gives us the opportunity to have a weekend together as a family, even though it is on a Monday & Tuesday.  Without homeschooling, our kids would never have a weekend off with Dad.  Plus, we love traveling/going places on the "off times."  As a family, we no longer go to the beach during the summers and we've honestly gotten to the point we hardly leave the house during the weekends.  We love that homeschooling allows us to go whenever we want.

Right now though, we're trying to figure out life with a new baby in it.  Though her reflux is improving greatly over the past few days, I'm still going on just few hours of sleep at night and no matter how you slice it, new babies still take a good bit of care, even the happy reflux free ones.  It's just another season in life.  Like all seasons, it will pass.  Olivia just needs an outlet right now just like David and I do.  However, since we can drive and be out without adult supervision, it's a little easier for us.  She just can't run to Target or the gym to get away for a few minutes.  I know it might not be the route every family would go, but it's the only thing we can think of now for her. 

Contrary to belief, it's not about her catching up.  The "school" part of all this isn't what worries me.  In fact, I'm actually more worried about her falling behind by sending her to school.  She only goes three days a week for three hours a day.  That being said, we're still doing school stuff at home.  I have her doing way more advanced stuff school wise than what they are doing in her preschool class, so to keep her still going strong, we're still doing a little bit at home.  In fact, I'm not one to normally brag like this, but her teacher has already made a comment about how much more advanced she is compared to the other kids.  It's only been two days, but she's came home and still asked to do school, so obviously, the "school" part of it isn't satisfying her.  So, to be completely honest, we (Olivia included) look at it like a play group that meets on a regular basis.     

It's been only two days, but I'll be honest, it's already been an adjustment.  We are going to try to keep her in till the end of the school year, but I'll be honest, a few things have already come up and school is getting in the way of life.  So, how long she stays in will be questionable.  That's the thing I think that most don't understand about homeschooling.....it's not just a type of education, it's more of a way of life.  A way of life we're quickly hoping to get back into.  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

wondering who put any negative comments in your mind about this subject. wouldn't it be marvelous if we could all be stay at home moms who home school their children? obviously. but with 90% of us that isn't he case. Olivia should go off and play and learn at school, as it seems the baby life is rough on the fam this time around. We don't talk a lot but I want you to know, do you and your family and everyone else who has an "opinion" on whats best can shove it. just sayin. I hope she loves school! and I hope if home schooling is the answer you can start that back up :) prayers for you and Amelia, Owen had reflux and I can honestly say it sucked. big time. hang in there sweet heart!!! Alicia P.