Every family has a unique homeschooling story…

This is a snippet of our family’s homeschooling journey.

Hello homeschooling moms/dads and tots!

Howdy! It’s been a longish while since I last wrote here. Almost a month! The past month was so stressful. I kept on thinking about my parents back home. My kids’ nanny left them without giving any reason at all. She must be looking for a greener pasture out there. As you can see, I know how stressful life can be when there’s no household help at all. My parents, especially my mom, must be very exhausted at the end of the day. I left my kids back home for almost four months (you may read my blogpost here about it) because I was thinking I found them a good nanny to look after them (of course under the loving care of my parents). Who would ever thought that just after a month, the nanny would feign not feeling well then that would be the end of her service! If it was money that was her issue, she could have been honest with me. I didn’t give her a very low salary. What I gave her was more than the existing household helper salary in the country. I just hope and pray that my parents will be able to look for a replacement nanny ASAP.

Another thing which made me so anxious over the past month was that I waited for the new lesson plans to arrive. They arrived after 3 weeks. As soon as they arrived via Aramex, I browsed through the lesson plans and voila, I found the materials so impressive! My two girls will be learning Latin for this school year and also Philosophy! We’ll be doing classical education this school year. Here’s wishing we started with this curriculum way back when we started FORMAL homeschooling in 2014. We started informal homeschooling in 2009. [Yes. There’s no need to rush in enrolling kids in formal/accredited/unaccredited homeschool curriculum.] We could have prevented that massive burn out which we experienced for almost two years because of the previous curriculum which we had. Whew.

Truly, there’s no one formula in homeschooling that will fit a homeschooling family. As you go along with homeschooling, you will discover the curriculum that will fit your family. It will depend on your budget, on the learning style of your kids, on what you want to accomplish, and what your vision is for your children. Looking back, my homeschooling journey was a roller coaster for me. But I learned a great deal in this journey. My kids developed self-reliance as they learned more on how to make themselves busy. They learned a great deal via the things that they needed to learn because we were almost doing unstructured homeschooling for the past two years! Were you able to read about the benefits of doing a structured homeschooling than an unstructured one? If not, you may read the post  about structured homeschooling here.  For this school year, we’ll be doing more of structured learning. I am thankful for our new homeschool curriculum.

I don’t normally give a boxed curriculum for my kids. I always include other things that my children should learn. A few hours back, my 1st born said she and her baby sister wanted to learn Chinese. I have yet to include Chinese language in the schedule of my girls. They will also enroll in a ballet class starting April until May.

Looking back, whenever I think about the journey of my kids from birth to present (my kids are 5 and 7 & counting, respectively), I am well certain that I made the right choice in giving them HOME EDUCATION. The journey is far from perfect yet it’s the best thing that has ever happened to them. They know a lot of things that I didn’t know when I was their age, and yes, even until now. They do a lot of things which I didn’t do when I was young. They say a lot of things that are alien to me, in other words. Haha. I often say on a regular basis that I LEARN MORE FROM MY KIDS than they learn from me. Oh, of course, I don’t want to discount my contribution to why they are the way they are because I know in my heart that I PROVIDED THEM THE RIGHT ENVIRONMENT. All along, I was/am/have always been there for them. If you have been following my blog, I decided to quit the corporate world even before I gave birth to my 1st born. Not that I don’t have a career right now. My career even blossomed when I decided to become a work-from-home mom. It wasn’t that easy to embark on this journey. But it’s all worth it, despite the ups and downs. I know better now, thank God.

YES, EVERY FAMILY HAS ITS UNIQUE HOMESCHOOLING STORY. Whatever stage you are in right now in your homeschooling journey, whatever pains which you had in the past about choosing your curriculum, about how burnt out you and your homeschooled kids, about how difficult it is to homeschool during the formative years and primary years, hold on, momma, you’re STILL on the right track no matter how you feel, at times, that your kids might be behind. No, there’s no such thing as being behind in homeschooling. Your kids DO LEARN even when they don’t do anything that is spectacular in your eyes. They learn every single thing about anything whether you are aware of it or not. They learn from what they feel, see, and hear around them. Learning doesn’t just mean getting the lessons from their academics. Oftentimes, it’s when they have been provided the right environment and treatment that will encourage them to learn for more, on their own. It’s what learning is all about. It’s not spoon feeding. It’s not by the book. It’s beyond that. It’s how they have been able to think critically and do things spontaneously and on their own that will shape their homeschooling journey.

How about you? What’s your family’s homeschooling story?

 

How kids learn: clue to the homeschool curriculum that we’re looking for

After a week of sleepless nights, I have somehow found the missing link in finding the best homeschool kindergarten curriculum.

No matter how I searched for reviews online, the answer to the nagging question: “what’s the best homeschool curriculum provider” is that there’s no such thing as best curriculum. Everything will depend on how your child’s learning system is, and how you as the primary teacher-mommy will be coping with teaching your primary student, your child.

Glad that I was able to talk with MsM who works at my kid’s playgroup. I told her that I’m homeschooling my child but I’m having difficulty in deciding about the KG curriculum. She handed me a catalog about the ZooPhonics KG kit. When we reached home, I still googled some reviews between Abeka and Calvert, between Calvert and Bridgeway, etc. Then after getting tired in reading the reviews from other homeschooling moms, I searched YouTube videos about ZooPhonics. My 4yo daughter heard the ZooPhonics song, and she ran from our room to where the laptop was. She told me, “That’s my first time again to hear that song! It’s from my school!” She listened to the ZooPhonics song for three more times, and she was utterly amazed.

That gave me a clue…What made it so amazing was when she told me,

“When I was a little girl, I heard that song. It’s my first time again to hear that.”

I was utterly amazed at how she’s able to connect that experience when she first attended the playgroup at over 2yo. She’s 4.5 now.

I think that we’ll buy the KG kit from ZooPhonics, and enroll her to an accredited KG US curriculum, though she’s a Filipino, the reason for this is that English is her mother tongue.

Looking at how my child is learning, it’s best to tailor-fit the type of curriculum that makes learning fun, enjoyable, relaxed, flexible for a young child. I think that she’ll thrive more in a curriculum that makes her move all the time as she’s bored with heavy coloring, and stories that are purely text-based (no images). She’s currently enrolled in the preKG curriculum of Calvert and although she’s enjoying the lessons there, sometimes, she gets bored with the activities. When she’s on her own in using Starfall.com, she’s not bored at all. She jumps from preschool to 1st grade lessons. Hence, her KG curriculum will be a mix-and-match of the best of everything that we’re going to come across.

In the coming weeks, I’m trimming down my options to:
1) Abeka
2) Homeschool of Asia Pacific – US curriculum.

3) Actually, I’m still confused. LOL.

Supplements:
1) ZooPhonics KG kit
2) time4learning
3) starfall.com
4) leapfrog
5) and more boooks…
6) baking time
7) playing time
8) values formation time

and most of all, my time to just be with my two kids throughout their growing up years.

What is the best homeschool curriculum?

“What is the best homeschool curriculum?” is oftentimes the question that I get from homeschooling moms and moms who are looking at the option to homeschool their kids.

I understand. Majority of those who started on embarking in the homeschooling adventure have been, in one way or another, baffled with this nagging question. Search Google and it will give you a lot of results regarding the best homeschool curriculum. It’s a bit overwhelming though to really find the best answer to this question because what works for one will not work for another child. What works for a homeschooling parent may not work for another parent.

In our experience, the best homeschool curriculum is one that makes learning fun and enjoyable for your child thereby leaving more room for your child to have more energy and enthusiasm to keep moving forward in her homeschooling adventure. Learning doesn’t have to be monotonous. It doesn’t have to be boring. When a certain lesson doesn’t seem to interest your child, it doesn’t mean that the lesson is too advanced or too hard or too simple. It may mean the child isn’t ready yet. It may mean the child isn’t in the mood. It may mean other things. We can always experiment and supplement our homeschool curriculum. For example, if your child is enrolled in a current homeschool curriculum, see how s/he is progressing. If you think that your child is lagging behind what’s expected from him/her, then you may find ways to make it lively, enjoyable. Perhaps the first thing to know is the learning style of your child. Once you learn how your child learns, then you can adjust the way you teach him/her.

There are a lot of factors that one should consider when trying to find the best homeschool curriculum.

1. Your family’s budget

2. Your family’s lifestyle, work, time to be allocated for homeschooling.

3. Your resources to finance homeschooling.

4. Your Internet connection if you’re considering an online-based homeschool curriculum provider.

5. What do you really want for your child to learn? What do you want to be the focus of your kids’ education?

6. Know about your state laws about homeschooling. In the end though it’s your personal choice that matters the most.

There are a lot of homeschool curricula to choose from. You may want to visit all these links and find the best curriculum that will suit you and your child. After all, you’re your child’s first teacher/best teacher. Sometimes, it’s best to put ourselves in the shoes of our child. If you think that your child seems not to be learning from you, then analyze how you’re coming. Put forth the child in you. Don’t become a nagging teacher-mommy. You don’t want to raise a child who fears learning, who doesn’t enjoy learning at all. The true value of education is when your child learns how to think on her own, how to make wise decisions, and how to live in the real world. Realize that what’s important is not about the lessons that your child has learned, but the values behind the lessons, and the possible decisions that your child can make to survive the real world.

“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. – Proverbs 22:6

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A List of Homeschool Curriculum Providers

Sonlight Christian Homeschool Curriculum

A.C.E. Homeschool – Accelerated Christian Education

A Beka Book :: Excellence in Education from a Christian Perspective

Christian Homeschool Curriculum, Homeschooling Curriculum from AOP

Christian Homeschool Curriculum by My Father’s World

Classical Homeschool Christian Curriculum

Basic Christian Education: Bible Based Homeschool Program

BJU Press Homeschool | Christian Homeschool Curriculum

Online Christian Homeschool Curriculum | Liberty Online Academy

Tapestry of Grace – the classical, Christian homeschool curriculum

National Home School program Preschool thru High School

Our Homeschool Curricula: Heart of Dakota Publishing

Christian literature-based Homeschool Curriculum using Charlotte

NFC Academy – Home Based Chistian School

Bible Based Homeschool Preschool Curriculum | Cait’s Christian

Core-Curriculum: Home School packages and Homeschool

Oak Meadow: Homeschooling Curriculum

A Beka Book :: Homeschool

Homeschool Curriculum Excellence – Robinson Self-Teaching

Calvert School

Bridgeway Homeschool Academy

The Cambridge Academy: PreK-12 Private Online Education

Time4Learning: Homeschool, Afterschool, Summer Study 

 

Homeschool Curriculum Providers in the Philippines

Catholic Filipino Academy

TMA Homeschool

The Learning Place

Harvest Christian School

Living Heritage Academy under the School of Tomorrow

International Christian Academy

Center for Blended Learning

Kids World Integrated School Inc.

Homeschool of Asia Pacific

 

FREE HOMESCHOOL CURRICULUM

Ambleside Online

Easy Peasy All-in-One Homeschool

MyEducationKey :: Free Online Educational Video | K-12

 

To read some reviews about the curriculum providers, please go over this link.

 

 

 

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