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View Full Version : Weekly Poll: What's the #1 piece of advice you wish you'd been given your first year?



pandahoneybee
10-26-2011, 06:51 AM
So whether you have been doing this since the beginning or just pulled your kids out of the system, was is the #1 piece of advice you wish someone had told you that first year??

Mine would be more than one but I guess the one I would pick that could have saved my sanity is... not every child is a work book kinda of kid!! Months of trying to get my visual learner to "do" his homework.. results in finding about 50 pages of sheets hidden in his room!

What is your piece of advice to all the newbies out there?

SueEllen Grieves-Curl
10-26-2011, 07:05 AM
I chose: DON'T buy everything at once or everything you see!

Reason is this is what we did and found out later on that all those books were never going to get used. We fell into and stayed at the smaller books, games, computer, art, science, and mostly imagination for our girls. Now I have spent the last month cleaning out the closet of books and trying to sell them back to the store that I bought them from and even though they were never used they want to give me 1/2 price for them since they are considered used because they left the store.
But oh well I am glad to just have the space back.

JinxieFox
10-26-2011, 07:29 AM
I went with "Other", and the piece of advice that I wished I'd received?

"Relax." ;)

inmom
10-26-2011, 08:21 AM
I chose "Other"

My advice: Realize that, regarding hsing, things will change day to day, year to year.

bcnlvr
10-26-2011, 09:38 AM
"Don't be afraid to follow your gut." "You CAN do it!!"

Fear kept me from doing what my gut told me. If I could have that first year back, I would do it totally differently now.

zcat
10-26-2011, 10:17 AM
Other.
Don't stress about defending your decision to other people no matter what they say.
Relax and focus on the positives.

farrarwilliams
10-26-2011, 10:29 AM
I didn't really explore that many options for kindergarten for us and now I kind of wish I had know about a few more things. But I'm not full of regrets or anything.

dottieanna29
10-26-2011, 10:48 AM
"Don't buy everything". I wasn't as bad as what I see some people do but I have my fair share of stuff that will never be used. I avoided boxed curriculum so that kept the costs down. Nobody was more surprised than me when my son ended up LOVING workbooks.

Riceball_Mommy
10-26-2011, 10:53 AM
I chose "Other"
I wish someone would have said relax... well they might have I just tend not to listen to that advice. I'm still trying to take it.
Also I'd like to have heard, "It doesn't matter how much or how little you spend as long as you are comfortable with the amount" and "If she's behind in something it's fine because that's why you are doing this."

MrsLOLcat
10-26-2011, 10:57 AM
Other/relax for me, too. I made a point of learning DS' learning style, and that curbed my spending... and I'm anal retentive enough that planning ahead and being organized are musts anyway... but someone should have sat me down, told me to take a deep breath and LET IT GO.

Shoe
10-26-2011, 10:58 AM
I jumped into homeschooling at the last minute when public school wasn't working well for my son. I didn't know anything about it, and didn't even really realized there were different learning styles-I just assumed all homeschooling was essentially "school at home", using a traditional public school based curriculum and methods. While I've come a long way, I wish I had researched a bit more at the start.

Teri
10-26-2011, 11:45 AM
Relax and don't worry about what the peers are doing in school. Taking some time off is a good thing.

farrarwilliams
10-26-2011, 11:49 AM
Not exactly an answer to the question ,but one thing I *did* hear before we officially got our Kindy start is the advice "homeschooling is a marathon, not a sprint," and that's one phrase that I'm glad I have to keep in mind.

Jilly
10-26-2011, 12:44 PM
I chose "other". I wish someone had told me to enjoy the kids more and not worry about the academics.

coloradoalice
10-26-2011, 07:34 PM
I said find out your childs learning style because I think that plays a huge part in what you will choose to do and how you will choose to do it.

However, if there had been a choice for "chill out and enjoy the ride" I probably would have chosen that instead.

Pefa
10-26-2011, 08:39 PM
(This advice only applies to parents of neurotypicals.) It doesn't matter what you do. Your kids are going to grow up. They'll always find something to complain about about the way you raised them. Teach them to read and the rest is gravy.

lakshmi
10-27-2011, 03:19 AM
The piece of advice that I wish I'd been given my first year of homeschooling would be to .....

....nothing. I got exactly what I needed.

I've never been shy about asking questions, and I am not one to do too much. At three my youngest got cancer and she had treatments until she was 5 and 1/2. So we basically just learned stuff. Whatever came up. I used MBTP sort of, and we did a lot of cooking. So much so that when someone in co-op was asking a leading question about small chocolate drops (hersey's kisses) my daughter said, "A truffle!" She was sure that she had the answer.

Okay, sorry, I digress.

When I started homeschooling, my attitude was atypical of the uptight parents here (lol,said totally in jest) I told people two things when they asked, Do you think you can do it?

1) There are lots of students who graduate from high school that can barely read. So if can get them that far then I ain't worried.
2) When I was in college I made fun of the education majors (once again sorry to all those teachers but a lot of them were working on their m r s. degree)

So really how hard could it be to teach a kid something. Not hard at all if they're interested. So I followed my instincts and we did projects.

OrganicFrmGrl
10-27-2011, 09:51 AM
I jumped into homeschooling at the last minute when public school wasn't working well for my son. I didn't know anything about it, and didn't even really realized there were different learning styles-I just assumed all homeschooling was essentially "school at home", using a traditional public school based curriculum and methods. While I've come a long way, I wish I had researched a bit more at the start.

....what Shoe said!

PetVet
10-27-2011, 11:31 AM
I went with "Other", and the piece of advice that I wished I'd received?

"Relax." ;)

Exactly :)

dragonfly
10-27-2011, 08:43 PM
"Other" for me, too.

Mine's a variation on "relax." I wish someone had told me that, if something isn't working, don't force it. Skip it, try again later, or do it differently. Make the curriculum work for you, not the other way around.

One of my biggest regrets/fears is that I probably had a little kid who loved and looked forward to school, but by forcing things managed to turn that around, and made him dread it. I think over the years I brought him back to (at least) not minding school, and sometimes liking it, but I really wish that I had taken it easier on him in the early years.

bibiche
10-28-2011, 01:49 AM
I went with "Other", and the piece of advice that I wished I'd received?

"Relax." ;)

Well, this is my first year and this is the advice I'm already giving to myself and others. ;)

Jeni
10-28-2011, 11:33 AM
I've been told all that stuff in one form or another. I picked other thought I can't think of something off the top of my head.

Maybe know your limits? For example it took several years to figure out I am a boxed curriculum, online instruction, tell me what to do kind of girl.

FairyMom
10-30-2011, 08:29 PM
I agree with Wendy, especially for Type A personalities. Relax and enjoy. :)

Ayem
10-31-2011, 06:55 AM
Yes, I definitely agree with the advice to relax. And a certain amount of reflection is probably not a bad thing, but trust your decision. I don't think anyone makes it lightly.

leav97
10-31-2011, 05:40 PM
This is year 2 for us. I'm not sure what advise I would have for last year. I'm a little worried that I'm going to wish we had relaxed more but, I really don't think we're doing anything too out of the norm.

Most of the problems in our schedule come from outside activities not academics. My DD would love to add more activities. I'd love to be doing less but, really like what we're doing.

allisonsracquet
11-01-2011, 12:22 PM
I totally agree! I wish I would have realized earlier, that schooling is not a competition. As an athlete, I am ashamed to admit my first inclination was to compare my child with others (both in performance and what we were working on). Now, I have realized that learning is an individual endeavor. The goal is raising a life long learner- and to celebrate what he is good at and enjoys. That is what I wish I had realized at the beginning of homeschooling.

WindSong
11-01-2011, 06:29 PM
I wish someone had told me about this site when I first started looking into homeschooling!:)

I wish I had been advised to spend time looking into the many different styles and methods of homeschooling. If I had done that, I would have hs'ed differently our first year and I would have saved a lot of money. Instead, I read one classical book and used all of their suggestions for curriculum. It turned out to be a poor fit for all of us. This year I know better.

Marmalade
11-01-2011, 06:50 PM
I put "other"...kind of along the lines of "relax"...

I wish that someone would have mentioned that school standards are bubkus and that there's no magic equation for when children should learn what.

LovingMyChildren
11-01-2011, 09:35 PM
I voted Other as well. I was given the advice on here but it was hard to follow so now I'm kind of backtracking a bit. The advice: take time to de-school (if you were in a school or preschool) and get to know your child. Learn how to be a family and enjoy each other. Then, add the homeschool thing in.

Vashti
11-03-2011, 12:49 PM
I definitely agree with everyone who said relax! However, for me personally, I wish someone had said to me that if I knew homeschooling was right, and I was let to do it, just DO IT. When my daughter was in 4th & 5th grades, she had a really hard time in school and was really bullied and even sexually harassed. Every day she'd come home crying, and beg to be homeschooled. Because I was going through a divorce and my husband was continually threatening to sue me for custody, I chickened out and didn't homeschool her. It turned out to be one of the biggest mistakes ever. In 7th grade I pulled her out and homeschooled her for 1/2 the year, but by then she had resigned herself to going to public, and was angry and resentful that I didn't help her when she needed me. She's back in public and our relationship is forever hurt by my lack of action.

I have three younger children that I am homeschooling, and I know I'm doing the best for them. But man, I really wish I'd had the guts to do it back then...when I really had that feeling that it would be the right thing for my daughter, exactly what she needed, and was literally begging me for. As it turns out, the ex is a big coward and doesn't even want custody...he just likes to threaten a lot to make me scared, the bugger!

theWeedyRoad
11-06-2011, 03:57 PM
I wish someone had told me to trust myself.

I know these kids. I birthed them, potty trained them, have taught them with or without ps. Homeschooling wasn't nearly as much of a drop off the deep end as I thought it would be.


I wish someone had told me that idiots and anti-homeschooling people are IN MY OWN family of birth, and that the research doesn't matter to these people. I wish someone would have told me that some days homeschooling will be ridiculously easy and I will wonder if I am doing it right... and some days it will be ridiculously hard and I will wonder if I am doing it right. I wish I would have known I can stretch my own knowledge and talents to really teach something to the kids- even when I didn't realize I could.


I did get lots of great advice, too, though. I knew people would make lots of odd comments to me (glad I was prepared.. wow the stories I could tell LOl). As a pp stated, knowing this is a marathon helps too.

Lou
11-11-2011, 01:33 AM
I went with "other" because I think advice on how many homeschoolers are faith based would of been a nice bit of info to know...walking into that blindly was a bit of a shocker...

Lou
11-11-2011, 01:36 AM
I wish someone would have told me that some days homeschooling will be ridiculously easy and I will wonder if I am doing it right... It's those ridiculously easy days that make me wonder if I'm doing it right and then I quickly wonder...can I take this ridiculously easy road all the way thru and will they still go on to college...is that really possible???