Resolutions…I don’t normally make them. But there are two I am hoping to keep up with this year and updating our journey here is one of them. I don’t trust myself with promises but I will try.
The other? Removing the Facebook and Messenger apps from my phone. I can’t believe how much more “awake” and “engaged” I am in real life after doing this. And how much less depressed (the constant news feed drained my energy even before I started my day!).
January is proving to be very wet here and living in drought conditions, I know we need this rain very badly. We normally love rain but the constant deluge is a little worrying and we came close to flood conditions in our city. Surrounding cities did flood so we are quite lucky that we were spared.
#1 important January milestone: Kiddo starts his first honors upper division math class. It might not be official as the class has filled up and as a concurrent enrollment high school student, he gets lower priority, but he is hopeful his name will be high on the wait list and that he will get in. He will continue to attend class until the system clearly kicks him out (or accepts him).
#2 important January milestone: Atticus (on the right) turns 1 this week! He was a rescue and we won’t know his actual birthday but a vet somewhere predicted he was born this week. I have noticed some growth in the last month, he is definitely taller and ganglier than Adrian (left). My vet thinks he is part poodle which explains his non-shedding coat and exuberant energy. He brings us so much joy but is also about 3 to 5 times the work that Adrian is.
#3 important milestone: January also marks the start of kiddo’s final homeschooling semester. I don’t know what to feel just yet. I think I don’t want to think about it if I can help it. Homeschooling defined my identity in some ways. It also really changed our lives. It dictated how our days flowed. I don’t know if I will ever stop feeling like a homeschool mom. If kiddo will start college full time in the fall, he might still commute from home and we might still do things in the car like listen to books on tape and read whatever we can. Homeschooling is a lifestyle more than an education choice for us so maybe it won’t make a big difference just because he is no longer homeschooled on paper. I will miss having it on paper though, I think.
Before I sign off, I wanted to share one more photo: The obligatory homeschool lab photo! I realized a while back that we don’t have many of those on this blog. Here, kiddo works on a solubility lab for AP Chemistry (with PA Homeschoolers).
Till next time!
After that last update about 8th grade in May, we went ahead and made it official.
- Started planning college admissions more actively with Barbara, our fantastic college counselor.
- Prepared kiddo to be sent off to a summer math program at HCSSiM in Amherst, MA.
- And while kiddo was away, started writing my counselor documents – counselor letter, course descriptions and school profile. Then, polished and updated the transcript I had started way back when (kiddo was chronologically in 6th but finishing up 9th grade level work at the time).
- When August came along, I told myself to be brave and skipped the kid to 12th grade for the 2016/17 school year.
- Kiddo is checking the very last “requirement” boxes now…the ones we happily ignored while following a very pointy math journey.
- Yes, in the end, things did turn out to be okay. All the worrying I did when kiddo was in 4th-5th-6th about looking like there will only be loads of math credits on the transcript and nothing else turned out to be just worries. The kid will have more than 10 math credits and also more than 4 each in english and science. History and foreign language at 4 and 5 respectively. A bunch more for electives.
This November, kiddo wrote and submitted all applications. Essays! Yes, they were actually written and polished! We had to brainstorm together but I think that’s something many families do. Still 14 after all, right? Oh my goodness, to think I used to be so nervous about writing ability. It caught up too. We celebrated with M&Ms and ice cream.
Now, we wait. If all goes well, I will have a 14-year-old college freshman in the 2017/18 academic year.
Proud of this kid and even more proud of how hard he works. (Shhh…and still worried for health, safety and everything else but hey, isn’t that what parents do? Worry all the time?)
We are still very pragmatic folks and if things don’t go well, we’ll just pick up where we left off and move forward. Homeschooling definitely seems to be wrapping up here but that’s a post for another day.
After years of being mistaken for a high schooler (due to height), kiddo is now officially done with middle school. Continue reading “8th Grade Ends”
With kiddo jumping into more active self learning now, I find myself vacillating between being so proud of him and hyperventilating about validation. This is a timely read: Don’t Worry About College: A Letter to my Granddaughter by John Taylor Gatto.
Kiddo wrote his last finals paper (Physics) today! It was three down one to go and he is relieved that this last one went well.
And with that his spring semester of community college, and what would have been his Year 7, is finally over! He is now looking forward so much to unwinding over the next three weeks until his summer session film history class begins.
I am now on the threshold of my eighth year of homeschooling (and sixth year of blogging at funschooling). The direction of our homeschooling, if I can still call it homeschooling, has changed quite drastically this year. From being his primary teacher at the beginning to outsourcing a lot of the learning via online classes at home in the past years, we are now pursuing brick and mortar classes, for his favorite subjects, at a local community college.
Continue reading “A New Chapter Begins”
How do I sum up our seventh year of homeschooling? So much has happened this year. Kiddo has grown tremendously in maturity and ability. And I feel like I am passing the reins on to him now. He is able to do much more than he ever has been executive function-wise, and I often find myself missing the little boy who was so dependent on me.
Continue reading “And So, Grade 6 Ends!”
Kiddo won second place for his recital of Pyramus and Thisbe. It was such a fun experience for him and I am hoping to include memorizing passages/ poetry as a yearly elocution exercise somehow since he enjoys it so much. Continue reading “Randomly Recent”
Continued from Part III.
As mentioned before, I am using outsourced classes to help him become a more independent learner so this final part focuses on some of the questions we ask ourselves before we sign up for these classes. I have also listed some skills I teach to help him become more adept and careful about handing in his best work. My goal is for him to start doing as many of these things automatically as he can. Continue reading “Transitioning to Independence Part IV”
Continued from Part II.
In Part I, I wrote about using outsourced classes in Year 2 (when kiddo was seven) as a first step towards independent learning. In Part II, I described a math class in Year 3 (eight years old) as the crucial bridge between hand-holding and more independence. Before I get to Part III, where I describe kiddo’s self-learning attempts at ages nine and ten, I want to define what I see as independence, and self-learning and why I bother trying this with an elementary-aged child. Continue reading “Transitioning to Independence Part III”
First, I wanted to thank everyone who weighed in on my last post about blogging. I feel very honored. Very inspired. Very grateful that there are others out there who think what I write has helped them in some way. That’s what this blog was meant to be when I first started it…not only a think-aloud and memory-keeping space, but also a helpful tool for others. You guys have made my heart beat a little faster with your kind words. 🙂 Thank you! So onward with a record-keeping post! 😀 Continue reading “Year 6 Record-Keeping”