Have you recently made the switch from schooling to homeschooling—or are seriously considering it? It can take some time for your child (and you!) to adjust to this new way of learning and being in the world. Some students adapt quickly, but others need a longer transition period. If your child is struggling or needs help navigating the transition, here are some suggestions that may help... Continue reading »
From School to Homeschool: Deschooling
Deschooling is an important part of the transition from an institutional school setting, whether private or public, to homeschooling. it is important for both parents and students for different reasons, as these articles show.
My son is 12 and in 6th grade. He is failing this year. Truthfully, I don't know how he has passed in past years, and this year he seems to be regressing. He is currently reading at a 1.5 grade level. It is making it impossible for him to learn anything in school when he can't read. He is in special ed, but they can not work with him one-on-one - not enough resources. We have spoken with the special ed dept and the staff and they agree that pulling him out of school and working with him at home would be best for him. I want to go back and teach him the basics of reading and math. My question is how do I legally do this? I mean I want to start over with him at 1st grade, so how do I do that and still have him enrolled in some homeschool program? He doesn't have the ability to go to school and then me teach him the basics at home. It's just too much for him. So how do I start over with him? Please help. Continue reading »
When you've suddenly taken your kids out of school to homeschool, there is a long list of things to do, and it all seems like it needs to be done quickly so your kids won't be behind.
When you start homeschooling, one often overlooked aspect -- especially if you hadn't planned to homeschool -- is the need for you and your child to come to terms with the school experience and the reasons you find yourself homeschooling.
To help you process the big change that comes with suddenly starting homeschooling, I recommend this... Continue reading »
I’m a member of several homeschooling groups and email loops, and the most common questions are all related to, “It’s a battle to get my child to do her work. I thought homeschooling would be better for my child, but it’s all tears and yelling. For both of us. I may have to put her back in school.”
The specifics vary, but many parents new to homeschooling are trying to recreate a public school environment in their home and finding that it doesn’t work. It’s not their fault. Most of us went to public school; it’s what we know. We’re taught that this is the only way to get an education. That children won’t learn if we don’t tell them what to learn and force them do so. We shouldn't be surprised when we find homeschooling not working under these circumstances. Continue reading »
Sending your child off to school is a big transition. Making the shift to homeschooling when your child has been in school is another big transition. It may take some time to feel settled on the homeschooling path. Here are some things to anticipate as you make your way. Continue reading »
New homeschoolers and non-homeschoolers sometimes wonder about the word "deschooling" vs. "unschooling". The prefixes "de" and "un" often mean such similar things. We "de-humidify" and we "un-tie" our shoes — both acts of reversing the meaning of the root word.
And in that sense, the words are related. Both deschooling and unschooling require thinking about the inverse of schooling.
But within the world of homeschooling, the two words deschooling and unschooling have meanings that are, most often, distinct from one another. Continue reading »
Do you think of yourself as a rule breaker?
Well, if you're starting to homeschool, I’ve got news for you...
You will be.
Home educators take pride in the fact that we violate some of the most sacred (often unwritten) rules of school - and we do it with gusto! Part 1 detailed the first 4 rules we like to eschew, in the efforts of giving our kids the most effective, individualized education possible. Although it can feel daunting to break out of the box when you embark on the homeschooling journey, it won't take long before you begin to revel in the freedom of loosing the large-scale schooling chain of expectations and creating your own way -- a path unique to your special student. Continue reading »
If you’re new to homeschooling, you’re going to have to think differently. Yes, you’re going to have to be willing to break the unwritten "rules of school" and forge your own, often uncharted, path. And although this can be nerve-wracking and downright terrifying at first, it is the key to an effective, individualized, fulfilling homeschool experience. Continue reading »
What are your parenting defaults? What are your go-to strategies with your kids? Are they effective? Do they contribute to a positive relationship?
The deschooling period is a good time to begin examining your parenting defaults. Although your default parenting style may be healthy and appropriate, there are a few defaults to watch for that might be counter-productive in the long run. Continue reading »
Parental Deschooling Part 4 - I've explained why parents need to deschool as they begin homeschooling their children, and I've given you reading homework and asked you to network with other homeschoolers as part of the transition process.
Another aspect of deschooling involves things to do as you make the transition to homeschooling. Here is your "to do" list... Continue reading »
While you're in a deschooling period with your kids, I hope you're doing some of the reading I suggested in Part 2 of this parental deschooling series. Another thing you'll find beneficial is to begin networking with other homeschooling families.
There are two basic versions of homeschool networking, online and IRL -- in real life. Both are valuable in helping you with deschooling -- the transition from school to homeschooling. Continue reading »
One of the most important things you can do is to read about homeschooling, education, and de-schooling. Read books, magazines, and online articles, blog posts, and websites.
Stretch yourself and read some things you don’t think apply to you, that are outside your comfort level. You don’t have to accept the premise of each homeschooling book or article you read, but even if you don't agree or find certain ideas too radical, you’ll educate yourself about the many approaches to home education.
Continue reading »
Will your child's ADD get better if you homeschool?
I'm no educational psychologist, but I've been homeschooling for sixteen years in three states. I've met hundreds of homeschooling families at conferences and workshops I've presented, I've answered hundreds of calls at a statewide homeschool phone line, and I've been a homeschool evaluator in Virginia for quite a few years now. I've heard dozens of parents praise homeschooling for their children who were labeled with ADD/ADHD in the school setting. But it's not magic. The parents who observe such a change in their children also generally report actively shaping their homeschooling to address attention problems their child had in a school setting. Here are some of the things that have made them successful... Continue reading »
Have you decided to homeschool? You probably need some parental deschooling. Most parents who are choosing to homeschool their children today attended school themselves. We have also lived for many years in a world where the public school model of education is predominant. School is the status quo. School is the default. School is the norm. As many of my school-teacher-turned-homeschooler friends have pointed out to me over the years, one of the hardest things about transitioning to homeschooling as a parent is getting out of the school mindset. Continue reading »
For children who are starting homeschooling after an experience in a traditional school setting, deschooling is an important part of the transition. In an earlier post, we defined deschooling and how it might manifest in children who are transitioning from school to homeschooling. Knowing about deschooling helps parents to have realistic expectations about their children's adjustment to homeschooling after they have attended school.
Today, we'll take a look at how to start homeschooling after a traditional school experience with tips for deschooling... Continue reading »
Deschooling is the adjustment period a child goes through when leaving school and beginning homeschooling. To really get the benefits of homeschooling, a child has to decompress and disconnect from "school" being the default and "school ways" being the standard expectation.
The longer a child has been in school, the more important it is to allow generous time to process the huge change from not being in school to learning as a homeschooler. Continue reading »