Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Filling In the Gaps with "Homeschooling"

Science: Which material is the best conductor of heat?
When I was considering my options for Jonathan's education, I gave lots of thought to homeschooling. For a variety of reasons, I decided that, for now at least, this was not the best option for our situation. However, there is a lot of homeschooling going on around here!
I feel very strongly that a child's education is a partnership between parents and the child's teachers. Making sure Jonathan is well educated is my responsibility, not a teacher's. Certainly teachers and schools are very important, but ultimately it falls on my shoulders to see to his education. I will do everything I can to see to it that any gaps in his "formal" schooling are closed by filling them with what he needs.
I like to think Jonathan has been homeschooled since he was born, starting in infancy. I used to carry him to the front door every morning when he woke up. We would open the door, take a look outside and talk about the day's weather. He has been read to consistently since birth. He knew his colors and shapes well before he was 18 months old, and has always had a supply of toys and books to stimulate his mind.
I can stop now, right? He's in real school. I don't think so! Last year he had science in preschool, which he loved! I don't think he will have very much science in kindergarten, not the hands-on kind he loves. We have decided that Friday mornings before school will be science day, when we can do experiments and demonstrations and learn about a variety of things. We've done this for two weeks now and it is fun!
Homeschooling our children is, or should be, part of every parent's life for many years. We have so many opportunities every day to teach our children. Be it manners or morals, math or science, or a host of other things, we are our child's teacher. As such, we need to be aware of teachable moments. Always remember they will learn far more from us than from any teacher they may have, whether we are homeschooling or not.

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