Canadas Homeschool Alberta 7.3 Spring : Page 5

EDUCATIONAL ON THE INSTITUTIONS COVER Learning Patterns HOMESCHOOL MEMORIES by Karen Van Riesen Homeschooling was a natural choice for us. I love Homeschool Alumni books, I love to learn and I’m not happy until I have shared my discoveries with someone else. However, I ran into some difficulties along the way that were unexpected and I wish I had handled differently. Hindsight is 20/20 so I thought I would share some things I learned. and even find it stimulating and invigorating. Others manage change differently and they do not want to change things unless the reason for change makes sense to them. It takes them longer to adjust. I could have respected my children’s learning preferences by remaining with the same curriculum throughout their educational experience. It would have provided more continuity and stability for all of us. I encourage you to become students of your learning as well as your children’s and find out the answers to the following areas of potential conflict that we all face daily: Initially our oldest child was in the public school system. As a male How do we solve problems -aggressively born in November or reflectively? How do we process delaying entrance new information -optimistically or into the educational realistically? How do we manage change system would not -do we like to be dynamic or stable? have harmed him. How do we assess risk -in a pioneering Katie He was almost a or structured way? year younger than many in his class and had not reached the Knowing this about us would have appropriate level of maturity. If you’ve seen helped. Taking time to simply understand Karen Van Riesen the movie, Uncle Buck, and his visit to the the interaction between teacher and Principal’s office, you have a good idea of student and respecting our different what we faced in our parent/teacher interview. He was learning styles would have reduced the number of five and could barely read a word. We transferred him battles and improved the rate of learning. Sharing to a private faith-based school in September where our experiences with each other makes us all better he was taught to read phonetically and received the homeschoolers and today’s homeschool parents are Highest Grade Average award by the end of that year. fortunate to be able to connect with each other online. We followed suit with the other four children and enrolled them in a private school as well. Living in a small town, the schools were small and sometimes appeared and disappeared, based on one person’s decision. We consequently changed schools three times although used the same curriculum. We eventually lost confidence in the system (or lack of) and decided to homeschool. One of the things I wish I understood was my own learning style. I tend to solve problems aggressively. Although in some circumstances that is exactly what is called for, more reflection upon the impact of the decision beforehand would have been helpful. Some children are able to adapt to change quite readily HomeschoolersGuide.ca How I wish that was the case when I was homeschooling! Despite our ups and downs our children did well. They are all healthy and happy with wonderful lives of their own. Recently our son Hank said: “I know you’ll laugh, Katie Hank, Bridgette and Mum, but I’m thinking of homeschooling Katie!” As you can imagine, that did my heart good! v SPRING/SUMMER 2011 7

Learning Patterns

Karen Van Riesen

Homeschooling was a natural choice for us. I love books, I love to learn and I’m not happy until I have shared my discoveries with someone else. However, I ran into some difficulties along the way that were unexpected and I wish I had handled differently. Hindsight is 20/20 so I thought I would share some things I learned.
Initially our oldest child was in the public school system. As a male born in November delaying entrance into the educational system would not have harmed him. He was almost a year younger than many in his class and had not reached the appropriate level of maturity. If you’ve seen the movie, Uncle Buck, and his visit to the Principal’s office, you have a good idea of what we faced in our parent/teacher interview. He was five and could barely read a word. We transferred him to a private faith-based school in September where he was taught to read phonetically and received the Highest Grade Average award by the end of that year.
We followed suit with the other four children and enrolled them in a private school as well. Living in a small town, the schools were small and sometimes appeared and disappeared, based on one person’s decision. We consequently changed schools three times although used the same curriculum. We eventually lost confidence in the system (or lack of) and decided to homeschool.
One of the things I wish I understood was my own learning style. I tend to solve problems aggressively. Although in some circumstances that is exactly what is called for, more reflection upon the impact of the decision beforehand would have been helpful. Some children are able to adapt to change quite readily and even find it stimulating and invigorating. Others manage change differently and they do not want to change things unless the reason for change makes sense to them. It takes them longer to adjust.
I could have respected my children’s learning preferences by remaining with the same curriculum throughout their educational experience. It would have provided more continuity and stability for all of us. I encourage you to become students of your learning as well as your children’s and find out the answers to the following areas of potential conflict that we all face daily:
How do we solve problems - aggressively or reflectively? How do we process new information - optimistically or realistically? How do we manage change - do we like to be dynamic or stable? How do we assess risk - in a pioneering or structured way?
Knowing this about us would have helped. Taking time to simply understand the interaction between teacher and student and respecting our different learning styles would have reduced the number of battles and improved the rate of learning. Sharing our experiences with each other makes us all better homeschoolers and today’s homeschool parents are fortunate to be able to connect with each other online. How I wish that was the case when I was homeschooling!
Despite our ups and downs our children did well. They are all healthy and happy with wonderful lives of their own. Recently our son Hank said: “I know you’ll laugh, Mum, but I’m thinking of homeschooling Katie!” As you can imagine, that did my heart good! v

Read the full article at http://www.mydigitalpublication.com/article/Learning+Patterns/686325/65798/article.html.

Previous Page  Next Page


Publication List
Using a screen reader? Click Here