Meet The Parents Part 2: Mum’s Not Always The Word

Often, homeschooling events are geared toward mothers and their children. Terminology at these events tends to assume that only mothers will be in attendance, leaving other guardians who homeschool the little ones in their lives. However, the fact of the matter is that there are actually plenty of dads, grandparents, aunts, uncles, siblings, and friends out there who homeschool, and they need just as much support and encouragement as the mothers.

For today’s post I’ve taken the time to speak with a grandmother and a step father. Both are homeschooling a young student, and both enjoy the time they spend with their pupil. Take a peek!

Sharon – Grandmother

How long have you been homeschooling?
We started homeschooling for preschool. She is now in second grade.

How old is your grandchild?

Why did you decide to homeschool?

I decided to homeschool for her safety. After two kidnapping attempts from her other family, safety is imperative. I was subbing in the local school district and I know their security is a joke. Anyone could take a child from school with very little forethought.

While subbing at the middle school in Noble, I witnessed more violence in the halls than I ever did as a child attending a Miami/Dade Junior High School. Bullying and assaults are so common in this middle school, the teachers seldom notice.

Noble High School does not encourage higher level schooling. Votech yes, college? No. I know this from having 6 kids graduate from this school system and having to fight for higher level Math and Science classes. One of these children was their class valedictorian and she was not encouraged nor supported to attend college.

Do you use a specific curriculum and/or approach?

We started using Epic Charter School for their leaning fund and for protection. Since we are a grandfamily, we are technically fostering our grandchild. I do not want to fight CPS over educational neglect charges so this makes it easier.

What does a typical day look like for your family?

She wakes up around 10 am, the computer is on and she typically does 30 minutes of Math, her favorite subject while eating breakfast. She breaks for awhile, usually Minecrafts around noon and then another 30 minutes or so of Reading. Then she Minecrafts again and usually goes out to jump on her trampoline, feed the chickens or checks on her pet rats. The day can be broken up with a class at the Loop in Spanish, Odyssey of the Mind, Improv or Live Foods. Today we are going to the library to Minecraft with other children and then to the Loop to cut out shoes for kids in Africa. We also take art and gymnastics at other sites. We can walk the Thunderbird dam, garden and quilt depending upon the season. She does see her Daddy and little sister several times a week. They come out to work on a project like the treehouse and the girls play together. Her little sister is also in Epic.

For your family, what are the pros of homeschooling?

The pros are an easy going lifestyle without the stress of times and dates. No riding the bus, we always work on projects the child is interested in, we do not worry about clothing or even lunch.

What are the cons?

Childcare for an older child is hard to find during the school day unless it is with another homeschooling family. My quiet time is in the morning BEFORE she wakes up.

What is the one thing your would tell a person considering homeschooling a child?

It is a lot of responsibility. No doubt about it and a lot of people think refusing to homeschool relieves them of the chore of making sure their children are educated. Remember, homeschooling means no homework but it does mean work at home. We enjoy the interaction of our days and talk about what she is learning, why she is learning it and how it is applicable to her world. It is a good thing.

Issac – Step Father

How long have you been homeschooling?
About a year

How old are your children?

Why did you decide to homeschool?

Our homeschooled child has test anxiety and the increasing reliance on standardized testing made us very uncomfortable.

Do you use a specific curriculum and/or approach?

We used Oak Meadow this year, but I don’t think we will go back to it next year.

What does a typical day look like for your family?

Over the year we have worked on her becoming more self-motivated. She spends alternating weeks with us, then with her dad, so I make weekly assignment sheets and she finishes them at her own pace. Spare time is spent on various other personal or enrichment activities.

For your family, what are the pros of homeschooling?

The freedom my child has to direct her own learning and the ability to tailor learning experiences to her interests.

What are the cons?

We sometimes have difficulty in getting over a motivational hump and we have less ‘time apart’, which could also be considered a pro.

What is the one thing your would tell a person considering homeschooling a child/ren?

“No plan ever survives first contact with implementation.” – Adam Savage