Homeschooling Family Interview: Lynette

Lynette enjoys homeschooling her family but sometimes the art projects get a bit out of hand. She told me she will pass on more stories if she gets a chance and I don't know about you, but I certainly hope she does.

1. How long have you been homeschooling (or if finished, how long did you homeschool)?

I'm halfway through year 8.

2. One of the main benefits of homeschooling is the freedom and flexibility it allows. Can you give us a few examples of how this freedom and flexibility benefited you (your family)?

My husband works a retail job. His hours are inconsistent and vary from day to day. His one day off a week is on a weekday. Sometimes he works a 1-11 shift. If my kids were in a traditional school environment, they would only see their dad a few days a week. With homeschooling, we can make their day off coincide with his.
Also, there is freedom to find just the right curriculum materials for each child. One size never fits all, so most home schoolers spend several years in experimenting before they find the right resources. Just when they find it though, the child's needs change and they are off on the hunt for a good fit again. With a traditional school, someone who has never met your kid chooses what they feel might work for the majority of the kids. Then the school is stuck with that choice - good or bad - for up to 7 years.

Homeschoolers take more field trips that relate to the educational subject at hand. We hit almost every museum and see opportunity for learning around every corner.

3. Another benefit of homeschooling is the fun factor. Can you give us a few examples of some especially fun times you had as a result of homeschooling?

We have many fun times. Whether it is time spent building tesselations on the floor for hours or painting each family member's feet and walking across a huge rolled out piece of paper for "F" week.

We've mummified a chicken and buried it complete with sarcoghagus.

We've eaten food from around the globe and across the ages. I mean, you can't learn about sailor explorers without baking a batch of hard tack, making your own jerky and drinking some lime juice. What good is a study about Australia without some Lamingtons? Canada without poutine?(French fries with brown gravy and cheese.)

My kids have discovered why blubber keeps a polar bear warm by wearing a blubber mitten.

We created our own plaid patterns for our Quinn clan with paint and fabric. You can still see the evidence of our plaid painting on our driveway.

We've hosted bubble festivals and played with dry ice.

We raised tadpoles until they were mature enough to hop away.

We've played games and spent time together. I've hosted other families with my yard filled with giant boxes and duct tape.

My kids have been allowed to be kids longer than public schooled kids. My son is 14 years old and is way into LEGOs. Homeschooled kids don't put down other homeschooled kids for being childlike, wearing their pants too short, not wearing designer clothes or having bed head in the mid-afternoon.

4. We all have funny experiences while homeschooling. Can you share one of yours with us?

I have more funny mom experiences and observations. They aren't so homeschool related, but I will share one for now....

My daughter has appointed herself as her little brother's preschool teacher. It's just that some of the things she teaches him are different than you would find in any curriculum. My daughter is by her nature from birth a messy, artsy, ball of gusto for life - kind of a cross between a Jack Russel Terrier and a mud pie. As a toddler if you gave her ketchup, it was paint. A strawberry on her high chair tray just begged to be squished within her fist - just for the experience of squishing it. No one has taught me to smile while gritting my teeth and counting to 20 better than this child. So, when bonus child number 3 came along and she announced she was going to be his preschool teacher, I smiled and said, "What a good big sister you are..." as a shiver ran up my spine.

One day bonus child #3 decided he wanted to paint. So I got him some paint and a paper and a brush. Well, it just wouldn't do for dear daughter not to paint as well, so she joined him as I smiled my gritted teeth smile and counted to 100.

Everything was fine until my son wiped his nose with a paint encrusted finger. It resulted in a little purple paint mustache. Dear daughter thought that was funny and added to his body paint with some decor of her own. Then he retaliated and soon his shirt was off and they were chasing each other around the room, paint in hair, on hands, splashed on the carpet - everywhere. All I could do was continue that labor and delivery breathing I had learned earlier in life while I searched for my camera and the carpet cleaning machine.

No comments: