Home education has given me many a wobbly moment over the last few years but this week has seen a huge shift in my thinking. I have a written plan to refer to that I devised. It keeps me on track and makes me reassured that the children are covering things that matter according to received wisdom and our own family’s views.
I wanted to share some quotes from my amazing children that gave me great heart this week.
On discussing the heat wave my son’s response was “Why do we need the sun? Let’s learn about that.” I am always happy to tailor our days to what they want to learn so I have a new challenge to work on here. He also agreed it would be interesting to learn more biology based on how we respond to heat waves.
On sharing information on the big Friday event astronomy wise, my son responded with an email to me “SPAAAAAAAAAAACE!” This confirms his passion for all things moon, stars and so on. Similarly my suggestion we should start working through classical composers resulted in “I’d like to learn about this soon.” If he had not left school, I would have no idea of his great passion for classical music!
I have started to share something inspirational, funny or both with them on a daily basis too via email. Yesterday’s contribution resulted in this from my son “I seriously burst out laughing at this!” We also had some fun watching some Catherine Tate videos on a more stressful day this week. If I can teach them you can feel better with a laugh, that has got to count as a vital life skill right?
Now I have a struggle to decide my favourite subject and their responses this week. I am torn between poetry and history as both went well.
So from my son, I give you “Poems are beautiful things. I enjoy how smooth they feel compared to modern music.” I find that a stunningly beautiful way to put it. He is so full of soul and can recognise beauty so easily. What a wonderful 12 year old boy!
My daughter is quite self-directed learning loads about art, design and Japan this week. However she nailed it for me with her response to information I sent her about the Sarajevo assassination that sparked World War One.
“It’s interesting, considering the event of his assassination was only slightly touched upon in school. However, it appears there was a huge issue with world leaders over thinking their importance – America right now – which probably would have lead to some kind of conflict, even if it didn’t match in scale.
Of course, there is also the fact that it would’ve only prevented that World War, and so World War 2 might’ve happened anyway, causing that to become World War 1”
So there are this week’s home education reasons to cheerful.
I would love feedback on this post for my wobbly old days!
I know it might not suit many home educators but I have decided I need a written home education plan to steer our days and to help me on those days where I wobble a lot about our decision to home educate. I thought I would share what we are working to currently in case readers are looking for a home education plan. We can all learn from one another.
My personal struggles with mental wellbeing have proved to me how valuable it is go get outdoors for some of that delightful Vitamin D. It is also a good time to talk and to share. We live in the countryside so the beauty feeds our souls and we can take our two dogs and cat with us. Yes, I have a cat who loves to go on walks!
One of the things I have missed not knowing enough about in life purely for my own interest is art appreciation. So I try to ask the children to consider a painting every day and to share their thoughts and feelings.
On the other side of things, I cannot quite abandon the idea that they do need to have good English and Maths abilities. I use Edplace and other resources online to help with this. My son in particular enjoys doing worksheets whereas my daughter is more reluctant but will do them in amongst her self-directed learning.
We do worksheets on science too and the occasional experiment but I plan for that to be part of our standard home education day moving forwards. There are so many fun things you can do in the kitchen or outdoors teaching you lots about physics, chemistry and biology.
I love history as did my parents. I want my children to share that passion ideally. We watch documentaries about history a lot and will be doing more visits to enhance our history studies.
I did not study geography myself for long but I can use online resources to help with this. I certainly want them to have an awareness of diverse countries, their cultures and foods. I know there is more to geography than that so need to do further research as to how best to teach this.
I was always impressed how my brothers could always find work in cookery jobs as Mum had ensured that they could cook from an early age. She was a trained cook so they have very good skills or should I say had remembering that my oldest brother passed away last year.
Languages wise, we will focus on French for now and again there are so many resources online and I have my French A-Level to help me a bit.
As I write this I realise I need to build in money management and also music. My parents never taught me about money and I want my children to be equipped for the financial side of life. Music was a big part of my life growing up with so much singing in the house and on stage too. My youngest son has a real feeling for music so I want to encourage that. Music, like a good story, can ensure you realise you are not the only one to feel a certain way. As my late Mum said to me “With a good book you are never truly lonely”
What do you think of my home education plan? Have I forgotten something? What would you add?