I love this homeschooling mom’s thoughts on why her education goals for her children far exceed that of the state’s, and especially that of common core.
Good news for education and for freedom: the Utah Senate today passed SB 39 – a homeschool-friendly bill. I want to post these words, written by another Utah mom, Rhonda Hair, because her point is an important one: that her high educational goals for her children are not the same as the goals of the board of education, nor of the new national dictators of education in Washington D.C. (Common Core copyright holders NGA/CCSSO).
This mother’s goals are higher, not lower; but being subjected to state-set or D.C.-set standards and testing could disrupt what she, the educational director (and ultimate authority over her children) has set out to do.
(Write to the senators and thank them for upholding liberty and education in this state, please!)
My Goals Are Not the Board of Education’s Goals
By Rhonda Hair
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Since we are learning about early American history, my son created this Indian diorama. He started with a box with the top cut off. First, he painted the inside sides of the box, blue. Then he used materials we were able to find where we lived (which happened to be Lima, Peru at the time), including modeling clay in various colors, cardboard, paint, toothpicks, cotton balls and glue. He also drew and painted a desert scene on plain paper as a backdrop (side-drop actually). It was time-consuming and a lot of fun for him to create his diorama.
When my son and I first embarked on our homeschooling adventure, it was literally, just the two of us at home during the day together, while his three older siblings were in public school for 6 hours. We’d walk his two sisters to their middle school every morning (after his older brother caught a bus to his high school), and then we walk back home and begin our day together.
Just the two of us. Which wasn’t a bad thing, but it was sometimes just a wee bit lonely.
There was only one other family near us who also homeschooled, and sometimes we’d team up and spend part of our day together, but that did not last long, as the other mother eventually told me she preferred to be a solo-act. I didn’t blame her. She had younger children who kept her busy, and she was by nature, more of an introvert, whereas I am very social by nature, and much prefer to do anything in the company of someone else, than by myself. It’s just the way I am.
Still, I embraced my solo act in homeschooling. Not by choice, but by design.
It did not help that my only genuine support in my circle of family and friends came from my husband (and our other children).
In our case, being as isolated as we were from other homeschooling families, I wanted some occasional social interaction for my son, since it was like he was an only-child during the day. (I will put it to rest right now that he had more social time with peers while homeschooling than he ever did when he was in public school.)
I also longed for support and encouragment for myself as a new homeschooling parent.
For my son, we set up playdates with his peers who were in every-other-day-Kindergarten, or who were preschool age. We also joined a playgroup that met once a week. (Later, he joined a soccer team, but of course, they met after school hours.)
For myself, I found friendship and support online. I searched homeschooling groups in my city, and finding none, branched out to a homeschooling group within my providence (Ontario) in Canada, and I joined one of those. From there, I made two homeschooling friends who started emailing back and forth with me. They lived too far away for get-togethers, but just having another homeschooling friend made all the difference.
For both of us, getting out of the house helped as well, because we easily got cabin-fever if we stayed cooped up inside all day long. So, we’d take a lot of nature walks, bike rides, visit parks, and we loved to visit the library, which was in walking distance.
Years later, we moved to Utah, where there are a lot of homeschooling families, and we joined a co-op. That was a lot of fun, and gave us actual homeschooling classes to attend once a week.
As time went on, I discovered some helpful homeschooling blogs. These are my top three favorite blogs for homeschool support and inspiration. I like to join their email lists so that new posts come right to my inbox-
So, if you are feeling all alone in your homeschooling adventure, take heart! I promise, there is support out there. You just may have to go out and find it, like I did.