Before I tell you about myself, let me address some of the real questions you probably have about our homeschooling adventure. Let’s face it, you probably care more about why we homeschool than where I went to school or what I did prior to having kids, right?!
So first off, why do we homeschool? Homeschooling was always on our radar. My sister and brother-in-law have always homeschooled their kids (who are now 10, 13, and 15) as did my cousin (whose kids have now all graduated). They are bright, engaged, passionate kids who are a joy to be around. Once we had kids, we enjoyed the family life that came with it. We read together several times a day, gradually adding more activities as the kids’ interests demanded. LD (my son’s initials and the way I refer to him in this blog) was already quite an advanced reader by the time he could attend transition class (kindergarten in Australia) . He was doing so well and we loved homeschooling so much that it just made sense to continue what we were doing.
Many people want to know about the socialization aspect of homeschooling. They phrase this question a number of ways such as—do you do co-ops with other families? do the kids do outside activities? or ask straight out, do you worry about the kids’ socialization since they’re not in a school setting? If you are a homeschooler, then you know how many fabulous opportunities are out there in this day and age. My kids are very busy and see lots of other kids and adults of all ages in lots of settings. They have coaches and other adults that are in charge of them for classes/activities during the week. I am not worried about their missing out on the classroom scene as I am working hard to make sure my kids have manners, are polite, listen to authority, sit quietly when appropriate, answer questions when asked, raise their hands or wait their turns when the need arrises, don’t cut in line, and that they have ample opportunity to make friends. Like most every family, we have to guard our time so we don’t have too many activities that stretch the family too thin!
Do you follow a set curriculum? We are eclectic homeschoolers which basically means that we pick and choose from different books, curriculums, online resources, other homeschoolers and teachers. We loosely follow the classical model of homeschooling, but happily add in other elements that work for us (Montessori, Charlotte Mason, etc.)
Now here’s a bit about me. I am a graduate of Wesleyan University and went on to Brown University for graduate school. I spent two years teaching in the Peace Corps in Mako, Hungary. Overall I have more than ten years experience teaching at the high school level. I also spent several years teaching history for the University of Maryland. I lived in central Australia for more than twelve years and we returned to the United States about a year and a half ago. My outside interests include running, anything outdoorsy and music (oboe, guitar and singing).
The kids: When I started our homeschooling blog I decided to opt for a bit more anonimity than our previous family blog (which shared photos of our family and our adventures abroad). I wanted to highlight our homeschool activities rather than the kids themselves. Most of the time you’ll find the kids’ faces blocked out or obscured, just so there aren’t thousands of photos of them “out there.” I hope you understand. I also decided to use the kids’ initials rather than their full names. LD is my oldest son, age 10. My older daughter’s initials are DD; she is 7. And my youngest, ED, is 5.