Home's Cool

Growing up, if anyone would have told me that I would one day be a homeschool mom, I probably would have replied with the oh-so-cliché, "NOT!" After all, I had my life figured out. I was going to be a highly successful computer programmer. My children would never step foot into a public school—they were to attend a private Christian school. But homeschooling … I'd never really heard of that.

When my eldest child was four, he was enrolled in a transitory kindergarten program at his daycare (which just happened to be on-site at my place of employment). He was learning to read and write; I couldn't have been more pleased. That's when the problems started. Although he was a highly intelligent child, he had major behavioral problems.

I soon began to be called down from work several times per week to deal with his misbehaving. He was hitting his teachers, ripping the posters off of the walls, rough-housing the other kids, and being very defiant. I tried everything I knew to try to correct his behavioral problems, but nothing worked. That's when the director of the daycare suggested we have Child Care Management Serves (CCMS) come out and monitor him.

Long story short … CCMS came out and determined that he probably had Sensory Integration Disorder. The outward symptoms are a lot like those of ADHD, and basically there isn't much I could have done to help him. He simply couldn't control himself.

That's when the idea of homeschooling first crossed my mind. If he was experiencing this many problems in T-K, just image what would have happened if he were in school. Here in daycare, all his teachers had to do is call me at my desk and I could be downstairs in less than 5 minutes. I could be back at work just as quickly. But if he were in a private school on the other side of town, I'd have to take the rest of the day off from work to go get him.

Also, did I really want to risk allowing my child to be labeled as the "bad kid" and treated as such by his teachers and classmates? Did I want him to possibly end up in the special ed. classroom simply because his behavior was completely out of control and his teachers didn't know what else to do with him? And for what that's worth, I had two other children to consider. My middle child was three, and although his daycare teachers attempted to teach him letters and numbers, he simply wasn't grasping the concept.

It suddenly dawned on me that my three-year-old was a very popular kid in his class, but he wasn't learning a thing. I then tried a little experiment. I decided to try to teach him some letters, myself, and guess what, he learned them! He not only learned them, he mastered them. What was I doing that his teacher couldn't do? I was giving him one-on-one attention. I was teaching him according to his learning style, something that a teacher in a classroom full of kids couldn't do.

It was then that I knew what I must do. I had to homeschool my kids, albeit for completely different reasons. For Junior, it was because he simply could not function in a school environment. The over-stimulation drove him to lose control of his behavior. For Leland, it was to give him the specialized attention he needed in order to pick up on things.

Well, here I am 3 years later and I am relishing in my decision to homeschool. My eldest is now beginning his third grade curriculum, my middle child is in second grade, and my youngest is doing preschool work.

To this day, I believe that my decision to homeschool is the best decision I have ever made.

"Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it." —Proverbs 22:6

May God bless you and give you joy!

Sister Clay's House

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