Let me give a bit of a disclaimer before I venture into talking about homeschooling. I know very little about homeschooling. I am a brand-spankin' newbie. I hesitate to even write about it here because there are so many great homeschooling mothers out there blogging great stuff. I am not attempting to do that. I'm simply putting this out because it's part of my life; it's what's going on; it's something I'm learning. That said, read this for what it's worth. For you seasoned homeschoolers - maybe you can leave me a bit of love. :)
I've known for a long time that I wanted to homeschool. And I've heard a lot about homeschooling from my mom and two sister-in-laws who are all doing it for the first time. I've even heard a few things from friends. Outside of talking about it, thinking about it some, and reading a little online, I have not done much. Actually, I have not read one complete book on the subject. I'm kind of lazy about it. Well, not so much lazy, just always putting other subjects or projects ahead of it. After all, I have some time - she's just three.
But even still, I've been feeling some pressure to do more, figure out more, read more. Maybe it's because most of my friends' children are a year ahead. Maybe it's because she's so smart. Whatever it was, I decided to "start" this year. No big "first day of school" or strict schedule. Just four little objectives I want to try to address. The plan was to add a little "school" each day as part of our Circle Time (a time where we do calendar, memory verse, rhymes, songs or poems, a Bible story, and some times other things). In a week, Circle Time happens maybe two out of the four hoped for days, and school had happened maybe three or four times total this month. Sometimes intentional, sometimes spontaneous.
I'm intent on doing better, but really, I was okay with this pace. I was looking at it as a trial run. And I know she's young and she's still learning all kinds of things without any "school," but....
About week ago I was talking to a friend who actually bought a curriculum and started it with her four year old. After hearing about it, I was starting to second guess myself.
The next day I was thinking about it and I remembered Ambleside Online. They have free Charlotte Mason-based curriculum. So I looked up their pre-K curriculum. Know what folks? They don't have one. They have a grade 0, which is basically newborn to age six. SIX!!! It had a small booklist, but basically said "Let your child outside!" And when I think about this I nod my head and think, "She loves being outside." and "Oh we don't go out as much as we could." So I have started to make a point of going outside more, and hope to continue, especially before it gets cold. They also had links to information on art and music appreciation, foreign language, sewing and drawing, hammering and painting. And while I won't be doing all those right now, it will give me some ideas for the future. Add those onto Spell to Write and Read, Cursive First, and Cuisenaire rods, and I think I'm set... for a few years at least!