Encouragement - About to begin homeschooling! Transitions.

Art, Foreign Language, Music, Nature Walks, as well as general ideas and encouragement
Julie in MN
Posts: 2927
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Encouragement - About to begin homeschooling! Transitions.

Unread post by Julie in MN » Sun Aug 12, 2007 11:45 am

I'm sure we all remember being in your position -- excited yet suddenly... scared!

One thing that helps me each year is to evaluate my child and make goals for him/her. I take notes on where he is at in all subjects -- both academic and character. I set some simple goals. Then at the end of the year I can be assured that we have progressed in some important areas, and I have some direction for where we need to improve in the coming year.

I'm not talking huge goals. Simple things that are do-able and observable. Things like beginning a habit of starting each day with prayer and Bible -- wow, what a gift to my child! This first year, many of your goals may be very basic: Evaluate what level she is at in each subject; solidify her addition math facts; find ways to encourage a love of reading; evaluate receptiveness to foreign language; develop a real familiarity with the world; take steps to find the right group of homeschooling pals for my child; move toward more concern for accuracy...

But there are always difficult days, and I feel it helps to have this reminder of the goals I am working on in my child's life. It encourages me (and everybody else) that the grass is not greener over there :o)

And don't worry, it's lots of fun, too :o)
Julie

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 10:15 pm
I personally feel confident that your kids will do fine if they have been following the MFW plan. My son tests well on standardized tests, and often seems advanced compared to his many public & private schooled friends.

My best advice for new homeschoolers is to start with the structure of a schedule -- these are the hours we are doing only educational stuff. But within that schedule, to start of gently. The information you gather in the beginning about each child's abilities and learning styles, and the relationships you develop, will just make everything easier, and in the end are more important than the facts that you will be feeding them.

Enjoy,
Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

TurnOurHearts

Unread post by TurnOurHearts » Sun Aug 12, 2007 12:05 pm

(((hugs))) I know how overwhelming things can feel, especially when there are so many challenges.

Just a few gentle thoughts:

1 - No person on the planet loves your child more than you & your husband. That is reason enough to be with her everyday, instructing her in the way she should go.

2 - Your dd has had a lot of worldly input, so you'll have to love her through this transition. You may both be in tears at different times or even the same time this year! That doesn't mean either of you are failing. It means transitions are tough, and the enemy & the flesh will rise up to try to win this battle. Stand strong, remembering that He is strong in us when we're weak & dependent on Him.

3 - I know you know, but I'll say it anyway: You will not be alone in this journey. You have a Friend that will never leave you. I would encourage you to pray about why your husband seems to have cooled off regarding homeschooling. If the Spirit leads, maybe talk to him about how you're feeling. I know sometimes husbands can be a little jealous of what we get to do. Others begin to fear what it means financially when Mom is committing to h/schooling. There could be many reasons he seems to be retreating. Trust the Lord to bring you & your husband to joyful agreement.

4 - You'll find encouragement here. :) The ladies on here are so kind & thoughtful - and quick to respond! I've certainly been blessed by them. I hope you will be as well.

Chris, I'm praying for you. This will probably be a very challenging, but very rewarding time in the life of your family. God is so very, very GOOD.

Be encouraged!

Mom2MnS
Posts: 87
Joined: Mon Jul 03, 2006 9:05 pm

Unread post by Mom2MnS » Sun Aug 12, 2007 1:16 pm

I am praying with you! Thank you so much for sharing your heart. Like the others who have written to you, I want to send you hugs and encouragement :)

Every single day of our homeschooling has been a little bit different - some days things go just exactly how I hoped they would, some days develop into the most unexpected adventures and joy and heart learning, some days we struggle with a hard lesson or an attitude issue, some days the Father changes the day altogether, and some days things seem to completely fall apart...

One thing is sure and is true every day: His mercies are new every morning! It is true :) I just want to run around shouting that and praising Him for what we see Him doing in our days!

May this year be a blessed one in your homeschool and in the life of your family.
WLiC, Quinne

MFW since 2006
ECC (8th, 4th & 2nd) 2015-16

kellybell
Posts: 475
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 2:40 pm

Unread post by kellybell » Sun Aug 12, 2007 4:44 pm

One day at a time! Let tomorrow worry about itself.

Although MFW has a schedule built in, don't be afraid to deviate from it if a deviation helps your family. Please feel free to take a day off to go to the apple farm, the zoo, the nature center, the candy store tour, whatever. Just do it. You can do that with homeschool groups, but you can do it with just your family too. Take a hike -- all day. Visit an elderly person from church ... just because. Go to the ethnic grocery store or restaurant (great for ECC), see a play. Visit someone who has an interesting job or hobby (perhaps someone who is a glass blower or a chef or a painter). Let dd see that you can do some really awesome things that you can't easily do with school. And, it's fine to go out to breakfast on a school day or finish a great week with a trip to the ice cream parlor! And at home, give her time to sew, cook, draw, write, create!

If she misses school, ask her what she misses and recreate some of it. When I took my two older girls out of school, they said they missed lunch on Fridays which was always take-out pizza, orange wedges, and those tiny powdery donuts! So, for the first year we were at home we had pizza (ours was homemade), orange slices and those little powdery donuts. Hey, whatever.

Pray for good friends.

Hopefully the mission focus will help her realize the folly of her materialism. It's easy to get that way. I remember being very materialistic at her age, going to PS. I had to have THOSE tennies. My book bag was "dorky" so I needed a new one (this was before backpacks). I can't use LAST YEAR'S lunch box! I was so insecure and I thought having the right things would help. They didn't. Our school served a neighborhood of kids that were all about the same (financially) and I thought I was entitled to all they had. I didn't even realize that the next neighborhood over was basically folks in poverty! In my own zip code!!! I had no idea the rest of the world was so poor. And depraved.

Anyway, one day at a time. Enjoy her. Learn with her. Challenge her to the geography game in ECC (she'll probably beat you).
Kelly, wife to Jim since 1988, mom to Jamie (a girl, 1994), Mary (1996), Brian (1998) and Stephanie (2001).

cbollin

Unread post by cbollin » Sun Aug 12, 2007 7:27 pm

Just a little idea to tag on.

You might want to consider seeing if your dh is interested in a book called Help! I'm married to a Homeschooling Mom, by Todd Wilson. or signing up for Todd's email newsleter. It is Dad to Dad talk. It's not specific t MFW curriculum or anything like that. Todd is a funny and light hearted guy in his books, and cartoon books. I think it something like familymanweb dot com for more information. But his cartoon books are really funny and just show the real side of homeschooling. I got my dh the little daily desk calendar. Don't worry --- Todd's books are encouraging. They aren't the heavy stuff that you feel like you'll never measure up. lots of little advice from someone who learned along the way.

you can do it! Some days the house will be messy from fun, but that's ok.


-crystal

bethben
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2006 4:34 pm

We're starting school tomorrow...

Unread post by bethben » Sun Aug 12, 2007 7:31 pm

and I'm nervous too even though this is my 3rd year! Every year I've felt like this - I'm guessing teachers do too. Just that start of something new shift. I'm starting VERY gradually just to ease us into it better (for both of our sakes!). I wonder if he'll like what we've planned out - if I'll be able to teach him the new stuff, if he's going to fight this or that, what will I do when... type stuff. Just one day at a time. One thing I try to remember is that God is more aware and wanting the best for my child than I am. And He's the one who's "got my back". So, even if I fail, God is faithful.
Beth

lyntley
Posts: 100
Joined: Thu Feb 15, 2007 10:31 am

Unread post by lyntley » Sun Aug 12, 2007 9:09 pm

I'm new to MFW too but just wanted to say relax, take a big breath smile and enjoy learning together. It's trying at times for all of us but so much fun too.

Lucy
Posts: 442
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2004 9:37 am

Unread post by Lucy » Mon Aug 13, 2007 2:10 pm

I have been home schooling a while too, but starting again every year is a bit scary and this year feels especially so since I have one starting high school and one who I am trying to move to more independence. You are not alone in needing prayer and in feeling a nervous about getting started.

ECC is so much fun and you will see that you and your kids like it and will find it to be an enjoyable learning experience.

Remember the one who has called you is faithful and He will do it. This is one of my favorite promises.

Also my verses for the year are from Epha. 3:14-21. One of the key verses for me is "Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than ALL we ask or imagine, according to HIS power that is at work within us, to him be glory...."(emphasis is mine) Immeasurably more! Wow! I am asking God to help me to believe the reality of that. He says he can and will. I need to let God out of His box to do what I can not do and to let Him do what He can through His power that is within me. The very power that raised Jesus from the dead.

May we all learn to hold on more tightly to Him this year: his truth, grace, peace and His power that is at work within us to accomplish the work that He has laid before us this year.

Many blessings to you all as you begin this new year.
Lucy
wife to Lee and mom to Twila 18 (girl) and Noel 16(boy). Happy MFW user since 2002.

donnagio
Posts: 19
Joined: Sun Jul 29, 2007 2:13 pm

Unread post by donnagio » Tue Aug 14, 2007 9:37 pm

It seems like sometimes so many obstacles arise when we commit to homeschool! Rest in the Lord and trust in Him. Let your challenges bring you closer to Him, and depend on Him and not your own strength. The relationship you and your family have with the Lord is what is most important. He will be there for you.

mgardenh
Posts: 174
Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2007 4:55 pm

I don't want to be overwhelmed

Unread post by mgardenh » Mon Jun 09, 2008 12:46 am

caspen1973 wrote:We will start hs in the fall and this will be our first time. I am very nervous and don't want to be too overwhelmed.
Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 4:10 pm
I know it is hard but try and relax. MFW is excellent and easy to teach for the most part. I used a different curriculum that was literature based like MFW but was way harder on the teacher. A lot of reading, more reading, and even more reading.

Find some homeschoolers near you to help. Join a co-op or support group. You will do great.

For whatever reason God has arranged it for you to homeschool and he will bless you in your efforts as you seek Him.

I have a two special needs children, one I school and the other turning 3, and I can tell you that God will give you what you need to school even if you decide to do two programs. There is excellent advice on this board and support. THe moms on this board are great, I'm a dad but love the support and help I get here.

Keeping asking questions, praying and seeking the Lord, and you will be successful.
caspen1973 wrote:I teared up reading this response! On occasions I find myself talking to Him and through this talk remind myself that He promises to give us what we need to complete anything He calls us to do. Every time I find myself so overwhelmed I try to remember this....I am so appreciative of everyone's advice and help!
Posted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:12 pm
MFW is very academic. It will meet the grade level you need for your kids. Enjoy it and have a great time using MFW. It's a great place.

trevorcarpenter
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Feb 05, 2008 4:09 pm

Unread post by trevorcarpenter » Sun Jun 29, 2008 12:22 am

Posted: Sat Mar 08, 2008 11:21 pm

I can't encourage you with detailed wisdom, as my wife is the manager of our daily schooling activities.

However, being a homeschooling dad, and struggling to effectively support my wife, I can tell you that it gets easier.

Not that the work is easier, it's just that it gets easier to manage. I've watched my wife over the last few years. She was overwhelmed too. Then, as she began to have a firm grasp over what she was trying to accomplish, getting away from the fear over the little things, she began to stand up a little taller.

Now, she's a champion. I'm proud to watch her on my days off, working through the lessons with one, whilst another is working on a project.

Then, when one accomplishes something new, they run over and excitedly tell me what they've done.

It's a wonderful thing to observe, and I'm blessed by the Lord to have a wife who loves our kids enough to make them a real priority. Not something either of us experienced in our own upbringing.

So, go and work hard for the Lord! I know He'll equip you and empower you through the Holy Spirit.

Lainie
Posts: 65
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2007 2:33 am
Location: Tualatin, OR
Contact:

The Big "What If..."

Unread post by Lainie » Wed Dec 31, 2008 1:34 am

Posted: Sun Jul 27, 2008 11:45 pm
Hi all,
I wrote this a bit ago and feel like it needs to be shared in the season of preparation and perhaps for some, hesitation. It's a bit long but I hope it reaches and blesses the person it's intended for...

The Big "What If..."

Somewhere in my early preparations to home school, I concocted two crazy ideas.

First, 1+1=2.
I sacrifice my time, energy, and "freedom" plus God doing His part and blessing our family which of course would equal my kids excelling, going radical for Jesus, and becoming the next Billy Grahams.
Or,
Second, 3 x 0=0.
Take three academically strong, well-adjusted kids multiplied by a poorly disciplined, often ill, inconsistent but well-intentioned mother which would equal prison sentences, skidrow and plenty of unrealized potential.

I didn't realize that I had these ambitions and fears in my heart until the Lord gently brought them to the surface one morning. That soft, piercing voice asked me questions that preferred to hide in the corners of my mind and heart. "What if" kinds of questions.
I didn't like the answers.

In the 1 + 1 scenario, what if I did "my" part but God didn't do His part? What if I didn't do my part, would God still do His? I some how expected God, Creator of the Heavens and the Earth, to do my bidding, follow my "formula" for success and let me have a piece of the glory while I'm at it.
There was pride. It was ugly. It had to go.

To my small brain, that only left 3 x 0=0. What if I took these three incredible kids out of school, totally failed them and ruined their lives. What if I did everything wrong? I didn't even have God in this equation. This idea was wrongly centered on me and my abilities and my efforts. Yuck. Ah, but there's always more pride isn't there? What if everyone thought I did a terrible job and I was the worst mother ever? What if people said or even thought, "She should have left them in school. They were doing so well you know!" Double yuck.

Isaiah 12:2-3 "Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid: For the Lord is my strength and song [praise]. And He has become my salvation. Therefore, you will joyously draw water from the springs of salvation."

Habakkuk 3:17-19 Though the fig tree should not blossom and there be no fruit on the vines, though the yield of the olive should fail, And the fields produce no food, though the flock should be cut off from the fold, And there be no cattle in the stalls; Yet I will exult in the Lord, I will rejoice in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength, And He has made my feet like hinds' feet, And makes me walk on my high places.

The Lord showed me that by His strength I would be trampling down the "high places" in my life. Those pagan altars of things I worship in place of Him. There are physical things like a home or gadget that I make more important than they are. But often they are less tangible but just as real. I mistakenly place above my relationship with God things like success, my children's "grades" or the ever popular: people's opinion of me and my family.

I needed to surrender to Him before I knew how it would all turn out.

He had to show me that home schooling our children was not a guarantee that my children will not rebel. He is a gentleman. Everyone must choose to follow Him.

He had to show me that home schooling our children was not a guarantee of "worldly" success, i.e. straight A's, perfect test scores, or high SATs.

He had to make sure I understood that even if I don't see any fruit of my efforts, I can and should take comfort that I was obedient and the Lord is still worthy to be praised.

He had to encourage me to Philippians 3:8 it- Consider it all rubbish that I gain Christ. Home schooling requires me to be on my knees in prayer. A LOT. I have seen His faithfulness.

He reminded me of the:

Reality of the cross- my life is not my own but to be lived as part of the body in order to do the will of the Head which is Jesus.

Reason I home school or do any other activity, needs to be God directed. Home schooling isn't a formula to a blessed life or great kids.

He reminded me to:

Request-Ask the Lord to show me, "What are my high places?"
Repent of the things I put above Him.
Release the outcome to Him. I can only do my part. I can't do my husband or children's parts.
Receive the grace that He offers to me and my family.

He reminded me of my:

Responsibility- first and foremost to love the Lord with all my mind, heart, soul and strength. So that my Response is to T.O.P.-Trust, Obey, and Pray

I am a mom. Like every mom I know, I want to see my kids do well. I don't know how my story ends much less theirs. So I have to trust Jesus. I hope their academics are strong. But more importantly I hope their character is strong. I hope they love the Lord and each other and other people. I hope they have an amazing life filled with fruitful work. But as much as I want those things for my kids, the bottom line is: I am educating them at home because this is what the Lord has called me to do. I don't do it perfectly. I can't. But God can and does do "exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think". He takes our meager offerings of faith, time, energy and effort and He does bless it. Not because we earned it but because He is a loving, generous, gracious God.

At the end of each day and at the end of each lifetime, it's just us and God. May we live for that moment when we will be face to face knowing it's His grace that gets us there.

Julie in MN
Posts: 2927
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by Julie in MN » Sun Jan 17, 2010 6:02 pm

sarah wrote:Okay, I'm new to HSing and just wondering when you veteran HSers felt like you had researched and studied enough about HSing to have confidence to stop researching, let it go, and actually homeschool.

In other words, being new is overwhelming, but I've read For the Children's Sake, the summaries of Mason's original essays, Top 100 picks, The Three Rs, Homeschooling the Early Years, and multiple other articles. I am also currently reading the Well Trained Mind. I've also talked to other homeschoolers I know about approaches to homeschooling and curriculum, etc.

I was feeling fairly confident in gaining a decent understanding of the main aspects to consider with HSing and felt settled on using MFW. But then I get to looking and reading and feel kinda ignorant or unprepared all over again. I mean I know I foremost should pray and keep it in perspective that HSing itself is what God has called my family to do... but I feel like there are SO many resources. My husband is supportive but is pretty much leaving the choices up to me.

My HSing friends are great but so many say, "You just do what works for YOUR family." And I'm thinking, "Yes, but I've never did this before!" I know no approach or curriculum is 100% perfect for everyone and I don't have unrealistic expectations, but at the same time I don't want to be one of those HSers always thinking I should be doing something different. I also don't want to spend every waking moment at this point reading books about HSing but yet I feel pressure to do this so I will be well informed. I know you will always be learning how to adjust your homeschool, but at what point did you quit feeling like you had to read every "must read" book about HSing there is. Guess I'm one of those people that hate the feeling I'm missing something or that I didn't do my homework up front. I also know once we actually start K my focus needs to be actually teaching my son, not teaching myself about homeschooling.
Hi Sarah,
Are you having fun yet :)

Seriously, think about it like bringing a baby home from the hospital. Yes, you could get a Ph.D. in early childhood development. But the most important thing is -- you're the baby's mom and you love him.

You sound well prepared. You only need to get ready for K right now, and teaching K isn't really that much different than raising a preschooler. You can get ready for 1st grade after K is over. Allow a little room to make adjustments as you go along, and you'll be fine.

<<hugs>> Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

cbollin

Re: New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by cbollin » Sun Jan 17, 2010 6:18 pm

what Julie said sounds like what I was thinking too. and (((hugs))) too

You certainly read more than I did. with WTM, I didn't really read it until I have been homeschooling for several years and set it aside. never really finished it. read enough....

God called you to homeschool. He's put MFW in your path. by the way, have you listened to any of MFW's workshops?

put the books down, grab some chocolate. You sound well prepared. Just like the rest of us, you'll make mistakes along the way with teaching. You'll have good days, bad days and days that you really wish you could ship the kid to Siberia (and I don't mean on a missions trip!). then we make adjustments, get some chocolate and redeem the teaching day with a snuggle on the couch, or trip to the store to make cookies.

One of my favorite homeschooling resource books is not a philosophy book: it's a cartoon book, by Todd Wilson, the Homeschooling Cartoon Book. all 3 volumes!
wahoo!
I think it has most of the important stuff in it for all of us. Yes it's important to have a road map when homeschooling (MFW provides that and get the workshop). But a sense of humor is important too.

((hugs))
-crystal

TriciaMR
Posts: 999
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 11:43 am

Re: New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by TriciaMR » Sun Jan 17, 2010 9:16 pm

sarah wrote:No, I've never heard a MFW workshop, but hope to in May at the NC conference. Not sure if they'll be there yet. Thanks for the reassurance. It just seems like everyone has a book that really helped them decide how they want to HS and I feel like I have to give everything consideration and explore all options.
I think it is kind of like life - you have to experience it. So, just start when you're ready. Don't read any more home schooling books (except maybe those Todd Wilson cartoon books that Crystal recommended).

You'll go along, and you'll find out that your son likes playing certain kinds of games for memorizing math facts, or certain kinds of flashcards are better for him. Or, he struggles with writing, but is really good at using scissors. Then you adjust. You buy the special flashcards because that seems to work for him. You add in more activities where he can use his scissors, and work on developing the writing. In the end, to quote Hannibal from "The A-Team" - "I love it when a plan comes together." God just does His thing, and it is so cool. He works on your character issues, and your kid's. He gives you amazing grace and amazing ideas to solve the problems you come across. You'll try some things and they'll be a big hit, and other's will bomb. But you just have to start down the path, and when you come to the inevitable fork in the road, you pray and ask for guidance and God gives it every time.

It's about the journey more than the end result. Trust God for the end result.

-Trish
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
2016-2017 - EXP1850, US1877
2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
My blog

sarah
Posts: 13
Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 10:17 pm

Re: New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by sarah » Sun Jan 17, 2010 9:21 pm

Trish,
Thanks for the beautiful words. I think that's basically what everyone has been telling me but you expressed them well. I still have days where I feel like I must read every HSing book out there or I'll be putting my son at a disadvantage. I'm trying to work through that; I need to get those cartoon books. :)

Amy C.
Posts: 202
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 9:12 am

Re: New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by Amy C. » Sun Jan 17, 2010 9:36 pm

Well said, Trish!

And can I just say I love the A-team quote from Hannibal? I haven't thought about that show for what seems like a lifetime, but I don't think I missed an episode! 8[]

And, yes, I put my vote in for Todd Wilson's cartoon books. I only have one, but it is great! I also have his calendar which has a cartoon for every month. It is great as well!

BTW, welcome Sarah! You have gotten some really great advice. I just wanted to say, "Hi and welcome." I also want to say that I know you will do great! You most certainly have done your homework. It sounds like you take this decision and this journey very seriously. I am certain you will make good decisions for your child. My encouragement is to pray, pray, and pray. God will direct your paths.

Amy C

TriciaMR
Posts: 999
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 11:43 am

Re: New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by TriciaMR » Sun Jan 17, 2010 9:40 pm

sarah wrote: I still have days where I feel like I must read every HSing book out there or I'll be putting my son at a disadvantage.
That's okay. I have days where I feel like I have to try every spelling program out there or I'll be putting my daughter at a disadvantage. :)

Over the summer, I usually pick one or two home schooling books from the library and read those as something to "inspire" me. Not to find some different method or better program. Just something to kind of recharge the batteries.

In a couple of years, you'll be the veteran home schooling mom giving the sage advice.

-Trish
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
2016-2017 - EXP1850, US1877
2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
My blog

sarah
Posts: 13
Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 10:17 pm

Re: New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by sarah » Sun Jan 17, 2010 10:17 pm

TriciaMR wrote: In a couple of years, you'll be the veteran home schooling mom giving the sage advice.

-Trish
I find that hard to believe :-)

RachelT
Posts: 352
Joined: Thu Aug 03, 2006 2:45 pm

Re: New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by RachelT » Mon Jan 18, 2010 7:22 am

Hi Sarah! It seems like I research something every few months when I feel like I need more information about a certain topic or I've run into a problem. I think you are about at the point where you need to just discuss with your husband what you think the best curriculum options are, see if he has other opinions or if he agrees with you, and then choose something and go with it. It is hard to just commit to something, but each year I feel SO much better when we have decided and ordered our curriculum and then I put the other books and catalogs away for awhile and start getting ready.

I think all good teachers will be asking questions or trying to improve how they are helping their students from time to time. However, my husband told me a long time ago when I was getting ready for my first day of school when I was really teaching at a private brick and mortar school building, "You don't have to be ready for the whole year on the first day!" I still laugh each year and remember his wisdom. He is right! It would be impossible to be ready for every situation on the first day, so just plan Day 1 (or sketch out a plan for week 1) and then jump in! You will learn as you go and we all make mistakes, just like we do in parenting, but with MFW you already have a lot of the planning done and this great message board can be like your "teacher's lounge" where you can ask questions and gain support!!

:-) Rachel
Rachel, wife to Doug ~ 1995, mom to J (17) and B (15)
MFW K (twice), 1st (twice), Adv., ECC, & CtG 2006-2010,
Classical Conversations 2010-2016,
ECC/AHL 2016-17, eclectic 2017-18, WHL & US1 2018-19

http://rachelsreflections-rachelt.blogspot.com/

Teresa in TX
Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Mar 16, 2007 4:20 pm

Re: New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by Teresa in TX » Mon Jan 18, 2010 8:33 am

sarah wrote: there are so many choices even after you figure out HOW you want to go about HSing.
I remember going through that when we first started. I researched to the breaking point. I read all that you are saying, WTM, Charlotte Mason, etc., and changed my mind a hundred times. I think of it like my homeschooling fog years because there was just so much to take in. Don't even start me on curriculum fairs...I'd walk through those and want to cry at all of the choices.

As time goes by, you really DO figure out what works and are able to toss all the extra catalogs and take the nuggets from the books that will help you and use them, then toss the rest. I would definitely encourage you to just pray and ask God to give you a peace about a starting place and then do it. This is the mfw forum, and I'm not saying this to tow the line for them, but we really hit our groove when I made the choice to go with their curriculum and many of their choices. We still had kinks to work out and a couple of their choices didn't work for us, but for the most part it gave me a structure to work within so I could just do the thing, do it well, and get more into the school part and less into finding the next great thing or changing my mind for the 100th time on what to use!! ;) I'll pray you get it lined out and are able to start and feel good about what you do! :)
Teresa, Mom of 5: 15yo dd, 12yo ds, 7yo ds, 5yo ds, and 1yo ds

4th year with MFW
Using:
MFW 1st w/ 7yo ds
MFW RtR w/ 7th grade ds
MFW World History with 10th grade dd
So far we have used: ECC, 1850-Present, CTG, RtR, High School Ancients and MFW K

dhudson
Posts: 320
Joined: Thu May 10, 2007 5:46 pm

Re: New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by dhudson » Mon Jan 18, 2010 10:18 am

I am a reader, a planner and a researcher by nature so I understand. I read about other curriculums and I read about other hs styles and I read from people who hs and those that don't but at some point you do have to stop and just do what you are doing. I also think it is a dangerous thing to continually change your hs curriculum because each one has it's own scope and sequence so if you bounce too much you will miss something. It does take some time to get used to a curriculum and know how it works and if it will work with your child so once you've made a decision, I find it best to stick to it, unless it dramatically doesn't work for the child. I am also a firm believer that if Mom loves the curriculum and loves to teach it then the child will love it too, because of Mom's interest and excitement.

Just an aside for MFW, I have researched and looked at almost everything out there. I have also been around the hs market place since I was a teen as I spent the last part of my high school years being home schooled. I have gone to the talks and read the books and looked over TM's and for my money, MFW has the best Bible and character curriculum around. That was our main concern and then after that we looked for a classical methodology with lots of hands-on in the early years but it was the Bible, character and missions mindedness that sold us and has kept us firmly with MFW.

Maybe it is time to put away the books and the research and just start putting what you've learned into action. Soon enough your child will hit a milestone and then you'll have to start researching again! :~
God Bless,
Dawn
http://www.shiningexamples.blogspot.com
blessed Mom of three - 16, 13 & 13
happy user of MFW since 2002

kerby
Posts: 18
Joined: Sun Jan 21, 2007 10:28 pm

Re: New to HSing: enough is enough?

Unread post by kerby » Fri Jan 29, 2010 12:07 pm

I'm coming into this conversation a bit late, but I just wanted to reiterate what some of the other ladies have said and share some of my experiences.

You can research until you're blue in the face, even later on. Trust me, I have failed at some things here at home because I kept trying to see what was "better" or what could "fit" right. There is soooo much. There comes a point where you just have to Do It, and learn from that. Until you have some experience under your belt, a lot of the info will not help you or will only make you question everything you have learned.

Unfortunately, there is a lot of trial-and-error w/ hsing. It's part of the nature of the 'beast' so to speak. Someone compared it to parenting, and that is a good analogy. Some things work, some things don't - and until you try, you won't know which is which. It's OK to make some mistakes and then subsequent changes. That's how we learn and find what works. Also, there are times in our lives, or the lives of our dc, that this item will work and then it won't. That's OK, too. We are all changing and growing, all the time. Now, don't get worried about this - it's really not that big of an issue and you will flow w/ it as you go.

Welcome to the world of hsing, and MFW! You will learn sooo much about yourself, your dc, your family, and life that it's worth the process. You've made the decision, now just GO! Enjoy the ride!
In HIS hands,
K

4 Blessings - 2 graduated
K, 1rst, Adv, ECC, CtG, RtR, AHL

Cyndi (AZ)
Posts: 543
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 4:22 pm

A new adventure! - Advice?

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) » Tue Jun 01, 2010 2:47 pm

ange4 wrote:My family and I are embarking on a whole new adventure this year - Homeschool! So far, I am very impressed with MFW. We are looking for a strong biblical foundation with a Charlotte Mason approach and this fit the bill. My only concern is that on the surface the phonics seems light compared to other programs. Is this really the case? I have not read the TM, so there could be more activities that I am not aware of. ( I am sure there are).
Welcome to the board, and to homeschooling! It is a rewarding adventure! :)

I love that the phonics seem light. To me, that's the Charlotte Mason influence. A lot of people get going in MFW, especially in 1st grade, and think, "Whoa nelly!" and have to slow down because the phonics can get a bit intense. It's supposed to seem light. ;) Short, valuable lessons. Then read more books. It's all good. MFWK is a wonderful Kindy program that is a great way to start school and have fun learning. And, of course, ADV is my favorite, so I'll just say that and not gush all over the screen about how great it is. :-)
2018/19: US1877
used MFW from K through WHL

NJCheryl
Posts: 78
Joined: Wed Sep 09, 2009 12:08 pm

Re: A new adventure! - Advice?

Unread post by NJCheryl » Tue Jun 01, 2010 3:56 pm

I just read your posted and it almost sounded like me a few years ago. We just completed our second year of homeschooling. When I started, I had a 2 and a half year old, a K'er and 2nd in Adventures. My best advice is to go with the flow. There will be interruption, and that is ok. Homeschooling has been a crazy, wonderful adventure. I am so glad God has led my family to homeschooling, and MFW has been GREAT. My 4 year old almost has the books of the Bible memorized, just by hearing her 1st grade brother recite them. I say, jump in and enjoy!

Cheryl

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