I like to think that I am succeeding as a homeschooling parent and I definitely hit the jackpot with my kids. It has been six years since we made the decision to homeschool. I never thought I’d be sitting here today as a homeschool parent.
How did we come to homeschool?
My oldest son is now seventeen years old and making a big transition back into school. When he was two we put him in daycare and he seamlessly jumped into public school. When he entered his fifth-grade year we started to see a shift. His character and that of his peers. There was more “drama” so to speak and we questioned how these next few years would shape him. Would he be a follower, would he hang out with the wrong crowds, would his grades start to suffer? Academics wasn’t his priority and he just got by.
To be honest I was worried that my son wasn’t going to go down the right path. I wanted to give him every opportunity to be a good human being, make the right choices and love learning. I felt like all those things were already starting to be compromised. He didn’t attend a bad school and he was surrounded by some great kids. What I worried about was those little nuggets of real-life fifth-grade antics. If fifth graders were already spewing inappropriate language to each other what would the next few years look like?
One day I mentioned homeschooling to my husband and he looked at me like I had two heads. To say he wasn’t on board would be an understatement. He had never known anyone to homeschool, but he kept the conversation open. The more we talked he realized that homeschooling could help us mold our child to make better life choices. It would also allow us to really dig into his learning. When you have one student and not 20+ you open up so many opportunities for learning.
New to homeschooling
The first year was hard, we had transition pains and we had to learn how to be parents and teachers. We were new to homeschooling and worried about everything. I researched homeschooling in Texas and found local co-ops. I also discovered a community of homeschoolers in our own backyard. As the year progressed we found a rhythm. We have always taken it one school year at a time and always wanted him to transition back into a high school setting. As each school year ended and we weren’t as new to homeschooling, my husband and I dreaded the idea of our son going to public school. We had this safe bubble and we knew that public school would be a sort of culture shock for him.
How to start homeschooling a high schooler
To our surprise, our son told us he wanted to homeschool again in ninth grade. I hadn’t even considered it and truthfully was terrified of the idea of how to start homeschooling a high schooler. Was I cut out to teach him high school courses? My plate was already full. I was already homeschooling his first-grade brother and had a 4-year-old who needed my attention as well. It was then when I researched how to start homeschooling a high schooler that stumbled on to Connections Academy. Connections Academy allowed my freshmen to take online Texas high school accredited courses at home. It was the best of both worlds, an education that would transfer into any high school if he ever decided to and he was still technically homeschooled.
Transition from homeschool
As we drew close to his senior year, he told us that he was ready to transition from homeschool to high school. I panicked wondering just how hard a transition from homeschool would actually be and I think he panicked a little too. We looked into a few schools and all decided private school would be our first choice. We fell in love with a school close to us and received the call last week that he was accepted into that school we were all praying about. So we close the door on homeschooling our oldest and enter a new and short road of high school. We hope this is a stepping stone that will help him prepare for his college years.
What’s next for homeschooling in our home
This year we have a fourth grader, second grader and (almost) two-year-old we are homeschooling. I have no idea how long we will homeschool these three, but we are taking it one school year at a time and enjoying teaching our babies.
I really enjoy sharing our homeschool journey and how our family copes. If there is anything you’d like me to share let me know.