New year’s resolution: “Formal” Homeschooling 2012

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I have been informally homeschooling my two daughters from 3rd trimester on my tummy up to now — my first born at 2.9yo and my youngest at barely seven months. The problem, however, with not having a curriculum to follow is that anything goes, anytime, and anywhere. Although I didn’t call it “homeschooling”, I think the kind of developmental milestones that I am seeing on my daughters (esp. my 1st born) will fall into the category of homeschooling. My toddler sings, dances, watches movies, talks in English, sometimes Spanish, and Arabic, plays with her toys, solves puzzles, plays the piano, and guitar, watches youtube, plays with the iPad, iPhone apps, and now, the laptop (although occasionally).

For over a year now, I’ve been looking for the pre-school or nursery to enroll my 1st born. She’s now 2.9, and has been “pretending” to read. She recognizes the letters, the alphabets, and knows some phonics, but when it comes to teaching her how to read, she does it on her own. She doesn’t want to be taught! She’s so independent (a trait that I can also see in my 6months old), you know, almost in all aspects of her life. The only thing that she doesn’t know at this stage of her life is to bath herself, but she knows how to brush her teeth, wash her hands and face, change her clothes, remove her soiled diaper (she still uses diaper especially when she sleeps), prepare her milk (I saw that when she prepared her milk, and I got too excited and maybe she got too nervous that she threw the milk from the bottle). She also knows the word “exercise”, and what it means, and she does find time to exercise by following Leslie Sansone’s DVDs. Recently, I bought her a VCD containing Jazz steps for kids. She’s not much into it yet, but I think she’ll love it, too, soon.

I thought that by enrolling my 1st born to a nursery or playschool will make her learn more. But I think that I’ll just continue and upgrade what she’s learning at home (from me, if her mood is right), and mostly from herself, and other DVDs/VCDs. Why? I don’t think it would be a good idea to let her start formal education outside home. We’re living overseas, and majority of the playgroups, nurseries that I found (online) were far from where we are residing. I really don’t want to stress out my child in commuting everyday or every other day.

So for 2012, I resolve to “really” focus on her “homeschooling”. I’ll create a curriculum (Overseas Homeschooling Curriculum) for her that we’ll follow for a year, and let’s see about the developments. I’ll also check if there’s an online homeschooling curriculum that my toddler can follow.

Why the sudden focus on formally homeschooling my toddler and baby (not much formal homeschooling though since the youngest is just 6months old)?

I’m a firm believer of lifelong learning, and early learning. But this quote has enlightened me more than ever.

Now is the only early childhood you will ever be able to share with your child.  These are golden years. It might be worthwhile to once again thoughtfully consider how you really want to spend your time.  What could you put off until later in order to maximize and preserve these few precious years with your child?  Your sacrifice today will mean a stronger academic and emotional future tomorrow.  Your love, time and attention mean so much.  In a child’s world, there is simply no substitute for you!

~ Jane Claire Lambert

After all, it’s just a matter of proper allocation of time. Now, it’s time to put into good use the 8 triple rule I read long ago but haven’t practiced yet: 8-8-8 (8 hours for my work & personal development); 8 hours for my sleep and home obligations); 8 hours for my family (recreation, bonding, homeschooling, catching up).

How about you moms? How do you divide your time? What’s your take about homeschooling?

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