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My older children are in public school up at their dad's house (long story, don't ask), so I'm researching homeschooling for the next baby. I love to research everything to death! Seriously! Drives DH crazy! LOL
WELCOME! I'm also one of those people who likes to research things to death.
Yeah, Iowa seems pretty easy from what I've seen. I'm in TX where there are no real regulations, so even IA seems bad to me. LOL! But really, in comparison to some other states, IA is easy. Looks like you just have to send a letter with name, curriculum, etc. (as shown in the link), and then either work with a certified teacher or choose to do an assessment at the end of the year. Otherwise, it's up to you, and even that stuff doesn't start until age 6.
You can start homeschooling right away. There are others here who are also doing preschool at home. Some choose to use learning through play, and some are a little more structured. Whatever works best for you is fine. Some kids like structure that early and some don't.
Finding curriculum choices is a little overwhelming at first because you have no idea what's out there, but it's also very fun... especially for those of us who like researching things to death! I find something new every day, it seems! Start by figuring out if you want religious or secular materials, because the majority of homeschool stuff will be Christian-based, especially in areas like science and history. Some are subtle enough to be used/modified by secular homeschools and some are very in-your-face, so if you want to go secular, you'd want to avoid those.
If you want to teach a particular topic or teach in a particular style, you can google reviews or you can ask for more direction here, and we can help guide you.
Feel free to stick around here even though you're not homeschooling just yet. You can't learn if you don't jump in and get your feet wet!
Hey i know what you mean....Untill i feel like i KNOW EVERYTHING i wont stop learning about it
We personally use Time4learning & love it.!
my ds been using it since age 2 and dd since age 6...they offer alot of resources...
Good luck with your investigating
Oh thank you so much! I had no clue it could be that easy! If I had known that, I would have done it with my older children.
Now I just have to discuss it more with DH. I think I would rather do the yearly assessment but DH would more than likely go for the check in type.
If your DH is more likely to want to do a 'check in' type of assessment, then I would go with the yearly assessment by way of a portfolio, in which case you find a teacher to review the portfolio and have them write a letter stating that in their opinion it meets the annual progress requirements. It would allow that 'teacher contact' without forcing the child to write a standard test in social studies, science, etc in the later years. In the early years it really isn't an issue, as they only require math and language arts stuff to be evaluated, and that is stuff everyone will know by certain grade levels no matter what. The times a child learns things in the other subject areas largely depends on curriculum choices rather than grade level.
Rebecca is too young for formal learning, so we do a lot of learning through play. It's self-initiated and self-guided, and she has a great time. We also do lots and lots of reading.
Time4Learning - Iowa board is a good place to go to ask questions specifically about Iowa. Somewhere on that board there is also an example of what one person sends in to the state with her CPI form - outlining her curriculum.
A good place to read a lot of conversation about curriculum choices is at The Well-Trained Mind Forums. I could list a VERY long list for you here, but I'd end up forgetting some, and if you ask at the well trained mind boards you can get answers from people about the products they have actually used, not just a list of everything one might use.
For preschool age (since that'll come first) some things I have used and recommend are
The Letter Factory DVD starfall
Handwriting Without Tears pre-k materials
There are a lot of other great things out there that I would love to try, but haven't, so again the well trained mind boards are full of people so you can get lots of other great recommendations there.
Last edited by crstarlette; March 6th, 2010 at 12:31 PM.
Welcome!!! There are SO many choices out there as far as curriculum goes and it can be VERY overwhelming too!! Picking your curriculum will be the hardest thing you go through when you HS. I gave time4learning a shot not too long ago and I think it was good, but I did drop it. I couldn't see what she was actually learning. I seen that she would get to a topic that she either thought was boring or too hard and she would click out of it and move to something else. I think it was too easy for them to do that instead of that is what you clicked that is what you do.