Q: Hello where is the best place to begin? I'm still confused although I have saved some great sites I found here for future use?
1) Remember that homeschooling is a ministry. Not every family is called to it. Ministries change over time. Sometimes doors open. Sometimes they close.
2) God will show you the way although it may be vastly different from your best friends.
3) Laugh often. Hug your child. Celebrate their life.
4) Remember your husband. He is your partner. Do not become so overtired that the marital relationship suffers. Take time for him. Do not burden him with everything that went wrong or right during your day. Do not push him to take on more of a role in your homeschooling than he is willing or able to do.
5) Spiritual wisdom and character are more important than academics.
6) Do not anticipate being your child's best friend all the time. Especially when you are assuming the role of "teacher."
7) There will be conflict. Remember it is more important to be holy than right.
8) Do not assume that everything that goes wrong is because you are homeschooling. Everyone has bad days, off times and in general, frustration.
9) Laundry, meal preparation, clean bathrooms, errands are all a part of life and you must make time for these as well as times of refreshing for you. Teach your child these life skills. Make them a part of your "schooling" if necessary. However do not saddle your child with so many chores that their day is filled with responsibilites and there is no time to be a child.
10) Do not be too worried about filling up all your child's time. Let him have some free time to just laze about.
11) Limit outside activities to one or two per week. Sometimes there are so many good things being offered that you will find yourself busy every day of the week. This isn't good nor is it realistic. As your child matures and gets in upper levels you can't participate in everything. Academics must be done.
12) Do not panic when your child says he wants to go to school. This is normal.
13) Try to find a good homeschooling support group. Establish friendships for yourself and your child.
14) Read, read, read, read, read
15) Start small. Get to know how your child learns. What he likes.
16) This is kindergarten. Keep it simple. Keep it fun. Be willing to start small. It 5 days a week is too much for you and/or him, then back off. There is lots of time. When your son is 25 it won't matter if he read when he was 6 or 8.
17) Laugh. Laugh often.
18) Use games when you can to learn and drill. Remember music and art are important.
19) Take walks. Enjoy nature. God has created a beautiful world.
20) Do not spend a lot of $$$ on curriculum right now. You only need phonics/ reading & math. Then either do unit studies (lots & lots on the net. You can also access those I am putting together for my first grader at <http://www.hotlinks.com/members/ncsue. Scroll down to unit study and ... I also have several unit study links under lesson plans - units/themes. We enjoyed Before Five in a Row for this age and Five in a Row for older children. Worth its money. Lots of fun. Easy to coop with.
21) Find a couple of families (or at least one) that would like to do something schoolwise together once a week, every other week or once a month. This is referred to as coop's in the homeschooling world.
22) Do not be pressured to use a particular item/curriculum because everyone in your homeschool support group is.
23) Pray, pray often. Seek God's face and His wisdom for your family.
24) Try to attend the yearly homeschool convention by yourself or with your husband. No children unless, of course, you have a nursing babe.
25) Do not load yourself up with too many outside jobs. Its easy to feel "guilty" that you aren't working and should do this and this and this. You are working. Full time. At home. Raising your child(ren).
26) While schooling is important and a big responsibility it can take over our lives if we aren't careful. In fact it can become our God. Instead of the Gospel of Good News we are preaching the Gospel of Homeschooling. Do not make homeschooling the largest part of your life.
Now where to start for preschool --
The Library -- READ, READ, READ, READ, READ, READ, READ. Well, you get the idea.
Support Group - Find one.
Decide what you want to cover -- alphabet recognition, handwriting, nursery rhymes, easy poetry, fun arts/crafts, mathematics. Take some time to read Ruth Beechick's Three R series. Good, simple advice.
Handwriting Paper with Boarders
Kindergarten and of course, Kindergarten Apps
--Susan B. in NC
Used with permission (c) 2004 Susan Bothern