Going Public

Even though our decision to HS had been made over Christmas break, we were not ready to tell everyone.  None of our friends nor family members HSed.  We didn’t have all the answers to all the possibly questions that would be asked.  We didn’t know which curriculum we would use or if we would use one at all.  And I wasn’t ready to face any possible skepticism or negative reactions just yet.

The hubs really wants B to finish out the school year, so we decided not to tell Ben about HSing until this Summer.  B does love going to school to be with his friends.  He loves Math, PE, Music and Art.  The hubs was worried B would not be happy about HSing when we told him b/c he would not be with his school friends all day.  We also did not want B to tell everyone at school that he would be HSed in the Fall.  Our decision was not made b/c we feel the school is doing a poor job and do not want any teachers feeling slighted.  We figured the news would go over much better during the Summer, especially when everyone else went back to the school building in the Fall and B got to stay home.

As excited about HSing as I was from all my research, the hubs still had his doubts – another reason to not go public with our decision.  We had joined The Organization of Virginia Homeschoolers at the beginning of January and registered for their annual conference that took place March 12-13.  There were so many interesting session subjects that the hubs and I split up in order to capture it all.  It was a great weekend for us as a couple, just to get away w/o B.  Plus, the hubs now got so much information that I had been getting for the past few months.  The more he learned the more convinced he was that we had made the right decision.  He gained confidence that he could and would teach B just as much as me.  On the way home from the conference he said we were ready to “come out” and could handle any and all reactions.  It’s been great to see the hubs turning so many everyday activities into learning opportunities w/o B even realizing it.  ;o)

One day while B was doing his homework he said to the hubs, “I wish I had a say in what my homework was.”  The hubs told me that night that he almost let it slip to B that he would soon have a say in everything he learned!  He saw then that B would not be completely bummed about our decision.  Last week B came into my room to get me up and I was not happy.

Me: I can not WAIT until this school year is over. (I mumbled as I got out of bed. B evidently heard me)
B: Me, too!  I wish I never had to go back to school after this year ended.
Me: (Blink.  Blink, blink.) You don’t.
B: (whole face lit up and big grin) I DON’T?!?!?!
Me: Nope!  Daddy and I are going to teach you at home!
B: (face fell fast and he looked at the ground) Oh.
Me: It’s going to be great, B.  You are in school for 6.5 hours a day and we’ll only need an hour or two at home.  And it won’t have to be all at once.  We’ll learn everywhere, not just at the kitchen table.  We’ll go on field trips and you’ll get to make decisions on what we learn about.  It’s called “homeschooling”.
B: Hey, I’ve seen books all over the house with that word on it!
Me: Yup.  I’ve been learning, too.  
B: But Mama?  What about Music class?  ‘Cuz at school, sometimes we play instruments in Music class.
Me: Well, we can see about that.  Plus our music class could involve going to concerts and listening to music and reading about composers.  So, do you think we can do it?
\: YEAH!  (pauses)  So, can we start now instead of in the Fall?
Me: I feel the same way, buddy.  I’m still workin’ on your daddy…

Before B headed off to school, I told him in no uncertain terms is he to tell ANYONE about HSing.  I don’t know why I expected him to do something that I myself was unable to do, but I hoped for the best.  A friend of mine said to me, “You just told him he doesn’t have to go back to school in the Fall, he will only be learning for an hour or two a day and will have field trips.  Suuuure he’s gonna keep that jackpot to himself at school!”  But he did.  He actually forgot all about HSing when I asked him if he had told anyone else yet.  :o)

This week I am administering the 1st grade California Achievement Test (CAT) to B.  It is an approved form of Evidence of Progress that the school division requires each year to show that your child is learning at home.  The hubs has promised that if B passes the CAT then we can talk about pulling him for the rest of the year.  He has completed all language arts sections so far and will complete the math sections today and tomorrow.  I know his results will not be back before Spring Break is over, but it should not be too long to get them.  I have complete confidence that B will pass.  He is bright and has a great 1st grade teacher!  Will let you know the results as soon as I get them!

1 Comment

  1. Melissa says:

    I think this is going to be great. You all are going to grow so much more as a family & the experience will be beneficial for all of you. I am impressed Ben hasn't told anyone at school yet!


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