Guest post from Christina Lang
I thought that I would home school forever. I was so excited to do it. I remember calling my mom to share my joy the day my oldest son started reading. It was inspiring to know that I was a part of everything that my son was learning. I home schooled my oldest son for three years and my second son for one year. I have wonderful memories of our time spent learning together.
While we were gearing up for the arrival of our two adopted children, I made the difficult decision to enroll my two oldest boys in a private Christian school. I knew that our two adopted children were going take a lot of my time in the beginning and I didn’t want my school-aged boys to suffer. So we transitioned from home to school. Because the private school was a safe and welcoming environment, my boys surprised me with how well they did both socially and academically. I volunteered as often as I could so that they would feel encouraged by my presence, but also so they knew that I was still a part of their academic structure.
With four little ones at home, we decided that two mornings a week our 4 and 3 year old would attend pre-school. It was a nice break, but it proved to be a lot of back and forth for only a couple of hours a week. So after one semester, I decided to keep them home for the rest of the school year.
When we moved to another state during the middle of the school year, my goal was to get the boys into the private school close to our home. Because the tuition was not in our budget I started to research alternatives. I thought about home schooling again, but our little ones are all still very demanding and my older boys deserved more attention than I would be able to give them at this time. I found the next best option which is a public charter school. This is basically a private school education, without the tuition. The boys have a conservative and traditional curriculum while also wearing uniforms and adhering to strict standards. Again, I was worried about how they would transition, but with a lot of discussion and support from home, they have done great. I also volunteer when I can, and between my husband and I, attend most field trips. I sit down with them every afternoon to go over homework and upcoming projects. When one of the boys was dealing with home-sickness I brought him lunch and even had a couple of uncles meet him for lunch and recess.
We are gearing up for the start of school again in a couple of weeks and my two older boys will still attend the charter school. My 4-1/2 year old will be starting pre-k out of a home in a private school school setting. Every year proves to be a transition year for us right now. I still haven’t completely ruled out home schooling in the future. Right now I am taking it a year at a time (and sometimes a semester at a time), and we are doing what is best for our family, without any guilt.
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