Thursday, November 29, 2007

To School.... or NOT to School......

My youngest is the most unschooled. I should have seen it from the beginning. When he was 3 he counted to 3, when he was 4 he counted as high as 4. When he was 5 he counted all the way to FIVE! I asked him when he was going to count all the way the higher numbers. He told me:"When I'm six, I'll count to 6. When I'm ten, I'll count to 10. When I'm twenty, I'll count to whatever that number is."When we started homeschooling he was almost 5. He told me he wasn't going to learn or do any school until he was 6. 'SIX is the age to start school. I'm not 6 yet, so I won't do any school yet. I will when I;m 6"...and he did (and he decided to count all the way up as high as he could, not JUST to 6"When he was learning to ride his bike and had training wheels he could ride without them the summer he turned 6. You could tell because the training wheels never touched the round. He refused to take them off though. He told me "I'll take them off when I'm 7. 7 is the age to have training wheels off. I'm not old enough yet." The first nice day after he turned 7 (it was rainy, I remember because my husband hated waiting to take them off when he knew Ki could do it already), he told us it was time to take the training wheels off because he was 7 now. and he rode off down the street just fine.He has always made his own school schedule and decided what games to play to learn spelling words. I started spelling words with his bothers when they were 5th and 6th grade and he wanted to try as well, but he made up how he wanted to learn them. He makes up part of his own spelling list.I dont think there is anything wrong with teaching my kids what I want them to know along with them learning about what they want to know. I guess that keeps me from being a full unschooler, it also seems to keep from fitting into any other type of homeschool group, LOL. But I don't like to have a method/label dictate how I should do things. So I do the parts of it that I want and not the parts I don't boys are working on some independent research right now. they choose their subject and I have a few requirements. (they are making Power Point Presentations- I figured it went with their interest of robotic and computer engineering type stuff). Ki (11) decided to do a puppet show as part of his research project. He decorated the couch and did his first act last night.

I am not a total UNSCHOOLER. I am more of a....."Child Interest Guided relaxed Eclectic with some unschooling tendencies" I think as the parent it is my responsibility to make sure my kids learn certain things. But I donlt go by what texts or reports or curriculum tell me they need to learn 'this school year'. I use their interests and needs. Like they older 2 are interested in Computer/Robotics so I teach them thinks like math and PowerPoint and brian teaches them computer programming. Gavin and Ki had lots of dyslexia, so I use certain techniques with them. A special Spelling program. I am not interest in spelling tests or how well they do on spelling tests, but the program is great for teaching kids with dyslexia decoding and word roots and foundation. WE choose what they learn, but we make our choices based on their interests and needs and with their input of what they want to learn.--Kimberly the partial unschooler7th yr homeschooling 3 boys
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