“Should I homeschool my child?” That’s the question that brought parents to last week’s homeschool sharing session. It was an intimate sharing between homeschoolers and those thinking of homeschooling their children.
Sitting there brought back memories for me. I remember being one of the “newbies” hoping to find out the various curriculum, how a day of homeschooling would look like and, of course, how to balance home and school.
Nearly 3 years on, I’m on the other side of the spectrum. Sharing my experiences, the uncertainty I felt at the start, and the all the mishmash thoughts and feelings.
As of now, the family’s plan is to homeschool the children through their preschool years. We continue to pray and see where God leads us on this journey.
If you’re considering of homeschooling your children through the preschool years in Singapore, you might like to know that:
1. There’s NO perfect or top 10 best homeschool curriculum.
What may work for others, may not necessarily work for your family. Some families may rave about a curriculum but another may find it boring. And paid curriculum doesn’t mean it’s better than free curriculum.
2. Know your child’s learning style and your teaching style.
To make a curriculum work within your family, it’s important to know your child’s learning style and your teaching style. If you can’t foresee spending a lot of time reading to your children, getting a literature-based homeschooling might probably kill you. Work within both you and your children’s comfort zone.
3. Be flexible.
At the start of homeschooling, I was so enthusiastic about doing everything that I started to have panic attacks and then a meltdown when I couldn’t achieve all that I wanted to do. There will be times when you might need to slow things down. And that’s perfectly alright! I’ve learned that when we stop enjoying ourselves, it somehow rubs on our children and they stop enjoying themselves too.
4. Surround yourself with like-minded people
Homeschooling in Singapore isn’t a norm. It can get pretty lonely and difficult, especially when concerned friends and relatives start to ask if your child is “socialising” enough, or can they keep up when they start primary school. Surround yourself with fellow homeschoolers and know that you’re not alone. It gets even more fun when we start co-ops together!
5. Know why you’re homeschooling your child.
To me, this is the most important factor that keeps you going. When everything goes awry, you need to know why you’re doing what you’re doing. It is your compass to staying on course.
Of course, every season in life is different. When I had only Hannah, I spend a lot of time preparing the materials and crafts for her. As the family expanded, I find this a struggle. I had to tweak our school schedule, the materials used and the activities we have for school.
I felt guilty not being as involved as I was. But I’ve come to accept that I cannot do everything on my own. We had to slow down, adjust and move on.
While preparing for the new school year, I constantly remind myself to keep it real. Instead of trying to do ALOT at once, we’ll focus on the basics (i.e. Bible, Math, Language) before stepping up a notch.
For now, we girls are enjoying our time with the baby. He’s growing all so fast. I know very soon, he’ll join in with his sister too. 🙂
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