Friday, March 30, 2012


So, who do I homeschool?
There are three of them.
The oldest is really my reason for homeschooling. He's 8 and more or less doing 4th grade this year. He's my Little Professor. He's been diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome, plus ADHD and a mix of other alphabet soup diagnoses. He's also very, very gifted and when he wants to learn about something, he's like a sponge! Of course, the things HE wants to learn about don't always match up with what *I* want him to learn, but we can usually find a middle ground. I've also gotten pretty good at adapting what I want him to learn to make it interesting for him.
Little Professor doesn't converse very well, but he is the king of lecturing. When he learns something, anything, that he thinks is interesting, he will corner someone and tell them every excruciating detail. From sharks to bugs to video games, he has an amazing number of facts stored in his little head. He doesn't care if you're interested or if you already know what he is telling you, or even so much if you just walk away...he will just. keep. talking.
The up side to this is that he has taken over a lot of the work of homeschooling his younger siblings. He will latch on to whatever topic of the day we're discussing, and usually takes over. They have learned a lot from him, especially when it comes to math or science.
Up next is Princess, age 5. The nickname says it all, really. She is the only girl, and since she is more or less developmentally typical, she is frequently the leader in choosing what the other kids should be doing. They do tend to follow her lead, too. She is loud, opinionated, bossy, and always thinks she is other words, she takes after me ;) It doesn't matter who she is playing with, older, younger, boy, girl, it doesn't matter, she just want to be in charge. Most of the time this works out perfectly, since Little Professor either goes along or just walks away, and her little brother hasn't earned the nickname Puppy for nothing!
Puppy is almost 4, and he follows his big sister everywhere. It is heartbreaking to have to separate them for any reason because they cry when you separate them, and then whoever is left at home just wanders around aimlessly and bored until they are reunited. Lately, though, Puppy is starting to stand up for himself a little, which has lead to a lot of screaming, "YOU DO WHAT I SAY OR I'M NEVER PLAYING WITH YOU AGAIN!" followed by crying on both sides. I try to stay out of it and let them work it out on their own, at least until the hitting starts. Puppy is very flexible most of the time, though, and manages to work what he wants to do into whatever game Princess is forcing on him. I frequently find him crawling around on the floor in full princess dress and accessories, driving his race cars over the My Little Ponies.
Welcome to my blog! I've been homeschooling my three kids for three years, and it's been a blast. Last year, however, we moved to a very rural area where there are very few homeschooling families, and the majority of the few we have found are homeschooling for religious reasons. It's been interesting.
Originally, we tried joining the only local homeschooling group, which was recommended to me by the public school. It's held in a Baptist church, but hey, I'm open-minded, I have no problem with Baptists or Christians in general, and a little religious education isn't going to scar my kids, so why not?
Turns out the Baptists aren't as open-minded as I am. Shocker, that one.
I had the following conversation six time on the first visit alone:

Helpful Baptist Homeschooler: So, what church do you belong to?
Me: Um, none, actually.
HBH: Oh, are you new to the area?
Me: Well, yes, sort of.
HBH: So you're looking for a church? Because let me just tell you about how wonderful our church is!
Me: Actually, no, we're not looking for a church, but thank you.
HBH: Oh.

Then they sort of back away slowly while avoiding eye contact....
We gave up after the third trip, when I was warned that the botany group would be discussing plants featured in the Bible. I didn't mind the topic, but being warned was a little unsettling. 

I get asked why I'm homeschooling a lot, especially since religious reasons are definitely not a contributing factor. Well, there are a lot of reasons, but it wasn't something I originally set out to do. I have found, though, that there are more and more reasons every day, and I can't imagine sending my kids to school at this point!