Homeschooling With Heart
For two years leading up to our decision to homeschool, I felt that God wanted us to homeschool, but I was afraid of many things. I was afraid of what others would say. I was afraid of not doing a good job educating my children. I started getting a catalog in the mail from CBD. It was their homeschool catalog. I read it a lot in those two years. I read about curriculum. I looked at the prices of the books. But in the fall of 2000, we sent our oldest child to 4th grade, and we sent our next oldest child to kindergarten. Within two weeks, we decided to homeschool our kindergartener. He was in a terrible classroom situation, and he was diagnosed with ADHD. I could not let his self-esteem suffer because he had a terrible classroom situation. So we took him out of school. I ordered Five in a Row and a couple of other workbooks from CBD, and we started homeschooling. In less than 6 weeks our daughter was failing in 4th grade. She had not advanced her math skills in 3rd grade due to spending the year learning to take a standardized test. She was failing math after being on the A honor roll in 3rd grade. She was also on a semester system schedule for science and history. She was taking 2 science tests a week in order to be done by Christmas, so they could move on and do the same with NC history after Christmas. She was failing science. After meeting with the teachers and principal, we decided to take her out of school as well. And while we were waiting on the paperwork from our state, I ordered materials from CBD. If it weren't for the CBD catalog, I would not have known about the many choices of curriculum that are available.
As I looked at the next school year, I was overwhelmed at the thought of grading two sets of workbooks for two children. I spent the spring of 2001 reading every book on homeschooling that my library had. And I went to my state homeschool convention (NCHE) in May of that year. The first night I walked around and was so amazed to see all these books in person. These were books that I had looked at in the CBD catalog, but I had never been able to hold one in my hand and look through it. I walked the convention hall and made a list of what I liked and how much it was. That night in my hotel room I added up how much it would cost for 2 children to use the workbook curriculum, and then I started looking at other materials that appealed to me and their style of learning. I had one workbook-type of child, and I had one hands-on kind of child who hated to hold a pencil in his hand. I knew the second child would be miserable using workbooks. He also could not read well on his own, so I knew I would be reading them to him.
I started looking at curriculum that I could use with both of them at the same time, and I was led to KONOS. I had read about it, but I thought it was too expensive. But when I compared the price for two children, it was comparable to buy the KONOS for science, history, Bible, art, etc. And then I just had to buy a math program and language arts (mainly spelling and phonics). So I changed gears, and we became a unit study family.
In the years that have passed since we decided to homeschool, I have spent a lot of time networking with homeschoolers. I am active in local and state support groups. I am active in the online homeschool community. And in July of 2005, I was given the opportunity to minister to homeschool families through an online homeschool business. I have walked in the shoes of a homeschool mom, and I have used many of the products I offer on my website, and I use products that I am not able to carry on my website, and I am not ashamed to mention their names even though there is no monetary gain for me, because I realize that each homeschool family is different with different needs, and their children may have needs that differ from sibling to sibling. And I try to inform homeschoolers about the products that are available on the market today.
If you would like to get to know us on a more about our homeschool, you are welcome to visit Tami's Blog at www.tamifox.com.
You are welcome to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a blessed day! Jonathan and Tami Fox and children!