For those of you who missed last week, over the next month I will be publishing my most sought after blog series—Diary of a Single Mom and her Homeschooled daughter. Here’s part two.
In part one we ended with me about to take on a full-time contract. Now I must confess that the job was a coaching job, so I took Jess with me (until they asked that she not come, but that’s an entirely different article. Lol). I point out the kind of contract because I appreciate that not everyone can take their kids to work, so the reality is, babysitting should always be a consideration when making the leap. Let’s face it, having your children leave the house to go off to school is a break for many parents.
If, however, you are blessed or bold enough to work from home or have a support system that will care for them during the day, it is very possible to do school purely at nights.
When I coached full time, Jess did school from 7 pm to 9 pm. There was no need for an earlier bedtime because she was able to take a midday power nap, which kept her fresh. In addition, my first class started at 10 am, so she went to bed at 10 pm and woke up at 8 am. A child her age needs roughly 11 hours a day, so she was getting enough sleep, even with night school.
During the day, she did what children should do most, SHE PLAYED. I know too many of you that sound ludicrous and even delinquent, but I assure you that any expert would agree that children learn most through play. Their creative juices flow and they learn critical problem-solving techniques. Her screen time was limited during the day as well, which forced the play to be productive.
Now to tackle the “ONLY TWO HOURS A DAY ON SCHOOLWORK.” I know it’s burning through your brain. If you really think about how long it takes a teacher to settle everyone in, get their books out, explain it several times and several ways to ensure each child gets it, break time, lunch time, random projects like Mother’s Day cards time. These things all add up. When Jess sat down to do a math lesson, she got four pages of work done in 15 minutes. She spent ten minutes reading every day, ten on language arts, ten on handwriting and each lesson probably took me ten minutes each to explain. So, if you do the calculations, you’d notice that she was even afforded two breaks in between school. And let me blow your brain, even more, most home school curricula do not schedule school on Fridays.
The beauty of homeschooling really shuns through when my public speaking gigs started to take off and time for school became more and more difficult. The way her curriculum is set up means that she has a checklist of things to complete each week, so we moved away from two hours, four days a week to one hour, 5 days a week and extra on weekends. We basically did school on the go and fit it in wherever we could. Once we checked everything off by Sunday we were good. The curriculum guided our assessments, so I knew that even though we seemed to be doing it on the fly, she was meeting her targets and she was retaining everything.
Gosh, I can’t believe I’ve gone over my word limit already. Keep the emails coming, I promise I will compile them all and do a special Q&A at the end of the series. In the meantime, have a great week and I look forward to telling you more about our journey as a single mom and a homeschooled daughter.
PS. We live in Trinidad, many of the emails assumed we lived in the States. This crazy stuff is so possible even right here in our beautiful Island.