Monday, March 05, 2012

Reinventing the wheel

Next year will be our 14th year of homeschooling. By this time, I feel like I know what I'm doing. My oldest daughter will soon "graduate" and continue her studies at our local community college. Her sisters will in rapid succession follow.

Next year, I will be starting all over again with a kindergartener. Not only that, he's a boy. Most (if not all) my homeschool friends have daughters. If they do have boys, they are older.

Our son has some challenges that manifest is some very unusually ways. For example, we have to substantially limit screen time because it aggravates his tic. If he gets too much screen time his head will involuntarily jerk to one side.

In the past, we've used quite a lot of online resources as part of our homeschooling, like ALEKS and STARFALL.COM, not to mention PBS or NOVA. We also have used online classes. None of these things are going to work for him.

Honestly, I briefly considered sending him to the local parent participation school. However, I don't believe that he would do well in a school environment (no matter how good) because of the state emphasis on testing. He's on his own track and can't be pushed along to meet arbitrary benchmarks. I believe he will do well over time, but he's going to get there at his own pace.

So, I need to reinvent the wheel. In many ways, next year will be like homeschooling for the first time. I will need to make new friends (who have little boys), use new methods, and different materials.

Wish me luck.

6 comments:

Fatcat said...

Janine,

You might want to join this yahoo group homeschoolingcreatively.yahoogroups.com

We talk a lot about active boys, learning issues, etc. Lots of great advice there.

Karen said...

I DO wish you luck.
I find it so hard to go back and start again with the next child. I admit it!

Luke said...

May you have wisdom as you consider your options and look for the materials that will be just right for this homeschool reboot [smile].

~Luke

Melissa said...

Do you mind me asking what his special needs entail? I have a son with Autism which has brought many obstacles to learning.

Janine Cate said...

Baby Bop has apraxia of speech. He didn't begin voluntary vocalization until he was about 4 years old. This is also linked to auditory processing struggles. For example, he can't distinguish between a "p" and a "b" sound and articulation is a problem.

He also has some sensory processing delays which led to an eating issue in addition to food sensitivity problems. So, he was extraordinarily small for his age.
(We've made a great deal of progress in this area and his body and head size, while small, are at least on the chart now.

We've worked with a neuro learning specialist (Donna at Parents With Purpose) since he was about 18 months old. Baby Bop has made a great deal of progress, but things like the visually stimulated tic disorder pop up when we least expect it.

jugglingpaynes said...

Every child is a new adventure. It will be different homeschooling him, but it's always different, don't you think? I'm sure you are up to the challenge. Good luck!

Peace and Laughter,
Cristina