This is our first post on our new blog! I will be using this for two purposes.
First and foremost is as a journal about our Home education journey.
Secondly will be to help share fun activities, links, events and other educational based information for others.
Hello world and welcome from the Browns!
Hello world and welcome from the Browns! We are a family of 5.
Thomas 7 years old
Jessica 5 years old
and our newest family member Emily 1 year old
We have as you will learn some complex needs in our family. Thomas is ADHD with IBS, and ligament and muscle tone issues*. The ADHD wasn’t really a surprise as I have known my diagnosis of ADD/Asperger’s would have meant it was a possibility.
Why did we chose to home educate?
We decided to home school in the beginning of 2010. I say we decided but we didn’t really have a choice. After the school our children attended started to fail we started to look at other options. Then one day I picked my children up to find these failings had come about with very serious consequences. We and my son’s paediatrician felt sending them to school was no longer a safe idea.
They had experienced different problems within the school which I am not willing to put on here for my children’s sake. Despite this the school in question have been through special measures since so it is all now history.
A new start
I honesty have to admit that bad event actually forced us to take matters into our own hands. Therefore led us down this path a year ago. Our children are now receiving a tailored education. Today they were finally offered the different place setting we were waiting for. I turned it down so today is really the day we chose to Home educate.
Things we have learned so far
We have learned that Home education is a way of life. You can’t treat it like a job, you can’t keep it separate it is a way of life.
We are loving Home Education. We have made amazing friends. The children have all flourished and it is a lifestyle that suits us.
We have been doing it long enough to be into a routine and although like anyone’s routine it changes seasonally it is pretty constant.
We start with a dance about to burn off some energy. Then core subjects of English, Maths and reading in the morning. The afternoons are there for activities and fun.
So What’s different?
The children don’t do Maths, English and reading lessons like school children. They do a little focused subject work but most of it is incorporated into projects. We pick several subjects a big one which will last a few months as long as the children want it to. in between this they have smaller projects. The smaller projects could be a day, week or month long it is lead by them.
They will also have on going subjects within their Home ed groups.
All of their core learning is done through projects of interest. They have learn to read books which we do each morning but then this is enforced with reading about the chosen topic.
Their maths, writing practice etc is all tailored to their chosen subject.
We achieve this by doing:
Little booklets about the subject
Filling in quiz sheets or activity sheets
Writing fact cards and playing games.
Maths is incorporated in a similar way:
How much food a dinosaur may eat
Ox it would take to move one of the stones used in Stonehenge,
The distance from the sun to other planets in the solar system.
How many statues there is on a church.
Working out how many babies an animal could have in it’s life time on the farm. (using set parameters such as how many per pregnancy, how often they breed etc).
Both are also incorporated in our normal day to day life. For instance how much the shopping would be, Reading packets to look at nutritional information, giving them their own shopping lists, helping count the powdered milk when Emily has a bottle.
I also teach them their times Tables using three methods repetition, Timez Attack* and also by having a tape playing which sings the times tables while they are doing their crafts or independent play time.
By no means is it an easy option but it is worth every moment. so we officially say Hello world and welcome from the Browns as they become officially a Home educating family!
* 2021 update:
(With the children’s permissions)
Thomas: was diagnosed for an EHCP ready for college at 13 and was given ADHD/ASD diagnosis and then during this also found to be Dyspraxic which was what was causing a lot of his movement issues.
Jessica: We finally accessed and saved up to pay for a Dyslexia assessment for her in 2020. The result showed she is severely dyslexic. It also raised concerns about her being on the ASD spectrum, so we are now awaiting this assessment. We also started the process or an EHCP to support her Dyslexic needs at college. The ASD isn’t something we are too concerned about. Despite us also thinking she could have been Asperger’s, she’s a masker and copes amazingly well. After a talk about it she agreed to assessment so that should she start to struggle in the future the diagnosis is there.
Emily: She is also ASD/ADHD with sensory issues and Dyslexia. Her education is now supported with an EHCP too.
Timez Attack: click here for any computers on a newer operating system than XP we still use this on Windows 10!