As most of you know, we've been homeschooling C since November. She started out the year in kindergarten at a local public school, but the experience was not great. (See a previous post about it -- look back in October or November of '08)
Homeschooling has been going very well. It has been an amazing journey for me to not only be C's Momma, but her teacher as well. It's been great to see her grow and learn and to be able to do school our way, on our time, at our pace. The flexibility of scheduling, the ability to pace her according to her learning needs, and the lack of early morning scurry to get ready really made homeschooling fantastic.
However, while those things were wonderful about homeschooling, I was also starting to notice some problems. First, C was becoming almost territorial of me. She didn't want to share. I assume that is normal for a child who has siblings, however it was becoming an issue. I was also having trouble dropping her off anywhere that required a caregiver other than myself. It was as if she'd regressed to being really shy, uncomfortable around strangers, and very stubborn when asked to behave bravely. It was not fun for either of us. And, it was beginning to rub off on her brother. I also noticed that she was having trouble separating home-is-home from home-is-school. Constantly asking for TV, or playtime, etc. I always allowed her breaks of "free time" between each subject (which were only 15-20 mins at a time anyway).
I was recently talking to a friend of mine and she mentioned a local Christian school where she sends her daughter. This friend is someone I've known for over 6 years and her daughter and C have gone to school since they were 2.
So, C and I went and looked at the school last week. We both loved it. Why?
~Small Class Size (13)
~Contained Class (all activities with one group of kids -- great for my shy one!)
~GREAT curriculum -- A beka -- same as I was using at home
~A Bible based/teaching school
~Shorter day than public school (4.5 hrs. vs 7 hrs)
~Not as much alone time with my girl (I think that's a drawback, but right now I'm just relishing the "me" time!)
~It is a 25-30 minute drive ONE WAY from our home.
Though she's only been going for two days, I can already see a difference in C. She's happier, more talkative, more outgoing. I know it sounds weird, but it's true. It's like she's found something she was missing -- something that I couldn't give her. I think it was the love, encouragement, and company of a group of kids her own age.
So, anyway, that's our big news. C is now in a Christian Academy and loving every minute of it. (The only thing she doesn't like is the uniforms -- but I think she looks very cute!)