Where to start...

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-21-2012
Where to start...
Wed, 03-21-2012 - 1:00pm

My son is set to start Kindergarten this fall. I am extremely nervous sending him out into the world, some days he wants to go to school but other days when we talk about it he says he doesn't want to go. He is 5 so that is what I expect. I always thought that I would send him to public school, my husband and I both attended, and got OK educations. My 2 youngest brothers were homeschooled from 6th grade on, and I have a nephew in 2nd grade that goes to a charter school once a week and then works from home. We live in Washington state and charter schools are not an option.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-09-2006
Wed, 03-21-2012 - 3:52pm
We didn't start official homeschooling until the year our son turned 7 (when school was mandatory in the state we lived in then) and we had a semi structured approach with formal lessons in math, language arts, and music, and everything else more relaxed. Later we moved into child led learning...that worked a lot better for my two younger children..."all roads lead to Trantor" as Isaac Asimov wrote...
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-22-2012
Thu, 03-22-2012 - 1:35am

When we started homeschooling, my daughter was in 1st grade. We tried out public school Kindergarten and regretted it. She was a really happy little girl, very curious, and after she started attending school she changed and became irritable and just didn't smile as much as she did before school. She resisted going each morning and as the year progressed, it got worse. So, we pulled her out, and in our case, chose to go with a private school distance learning program.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2004
Thu, 03-22-2012 - 2:55pm
Hi, charter is not an option in WA, but an ALE is. We are in one (ALE that is) that sounds like the one you nephew is in. My kids go one day a week and take some slightly academic classes but mostly fun. I do the rest at home.

If you have a doctor who sees your kids, then getting the form signed should not be an issue. And, they won't count the time against your child if there is an outbreak and he has to stay home.

I started by sending my daughter (reading also) to kinder. She left reading less than when she started because the other kids were not reading. 1st grade was better - work at her level, but the teacher told me not to expect it every year. We started using K12 the next year.

In WA you don't have to report your child to the district as home schooling until the child turns 8, if you are doing it on your own. If you are doing an ALE, you just register like regular school. If you start an ALE and drop out, or start regular school and decide to homeschool, then you have to do the form to the district.

I like K12 for grades 1-4. It is only partly online, the material is very high quality, and not everything is online. It is scripted and there is very little planning that you have to do. WAVA is the ALE in WA that does K12. If you go that route, you would probably want to register as a 1st grader. Kinder was basically a waste of time for my son last year. Your son will probably do just fine with the 1st grade phonics program, and the other classes (art, history and science) are much better than the really basic basic of kinder. But, there are also lots of other ways of homeschooling, K12 is not the end all be all. If your son takes direction from you, it should be fine. If he doesn't, well, you may want to do a more interest led learning approach, with lots of field trips, and hands on activities, less workbooks until he is interested.

Overall, with the young one, try to include as much as possible, like when reading stories, or history, and do the more one to one subjects during nap time. And make sure that nap goes on for as long as is humanly possible! (I had mine "read" in bed for rest time, which meant they usually fell asleep.)

Where to start...well, you are starting early, so that is great. Go to the library and start checking out books on homeschooling. Also check out books on how boys learn. Be prepared as you read each one - it will sound like "This is what I need to do!" until you read the next one, but as you go along you will figure out what works for you and your son.