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Home Education - The Beginning

This is my first official home education post! Make a coffee, sit back and enjoy!


BACKGROUND//


In 2009, we started our homeschooling journey. We had two children, Bailey, 4 1/2 years and Jude, 2 years. I'd liked the idea of homeschooling, but I only knew of two families that home educated, and it wasn't very common. The general consensus was that home education was for hippies or weirdos. But my eldest was a quiet child and disliked nursery school (kindergarten) and I had my doubts about sending him to full-time school.


However, I felt that sending him to school was the "normal" thing to do, so off he went! Two days into his first year of full-time school, two days of crying, I decided enough was enough and he never returned. Our homeschool life had begun.


My eldest had learned to read at age 3, he was quick to pick up new concepts and loved books. He was an easy student and learning came naturally to him.

I have learned over the years, intelligence comes in all shapes and forms. Jude and Reuben are immensely practical. Jude, now aged 14, fixes cars with my dad and has a natural talent for anything hands-on. Everyone has their gifts, we just have to be there to help them embrace and develop them! have.


The next two boys came along in 2010 and 2013. Reuben, now aged 10, is very much like Jude. He likes a more hands on approach to learning and he loves sports, any sport! My fourth, Asher, now aged 7, is also a fast learner and has developed a love of drawing, which I am overjoyed at!


Each child is unique!


I have learned over the years, intelligence comes in all shapes and forms. Everyone has their gifts, we just have to be there to help them embrace and develop them!




2011//My eldest boys had made their first main meal for the family.



WHAT I HAVE LEARNED//


Each child has had their own struggles to overcome. Some days I have cried, some days they've cried, some days we've given up altogether and sat and built lego for the day. Even now, I try to keep in mind that teaching your child isn't a Monday to Friday, 9 am - 3 pm job. Take any/every opportunity to teach them something.


We have changed our teaching methods many times over the years, we've tried unschooling, no schooling, fun schooling, hands-on schooling, strict, rigid schooling, schooling like schools, structured schooling, Charlotte Mason methods, Waldorf methods, Montessori methods.....and after all this, we've discovered we need a bit of it all. Always remember there is no right or wrong way to teach. The most important thing is that your child is happy and they are progressing.


Nowadays, I pick bits from all methods. I struggle with unschooling because I went to school and it's ingrained in me to have some kind of structure. At the same time, I love the Montessori child-led approach. (I am not an expert in this area so I encourage you to research this method if it is of interest to you). But, as a creative person, I fight the structure (so contradictory I know!) so I don't like to stick rigidly to one method or one way of teaching. As the primary teacher, have to overcome my own flaws too!


I also make sure we don't have too many resources. I had books upon books and printed lots of worksheets but found it just felt too overwhelming. I encourage you to try different methods to discover which one works best for you and your family. After 12 years, I have realised I NEED to enjoy teaching just as much as the children need to enjoy learning.



2015//Lyme Park, Cheshire



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