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  • 1 Post By MamaSkunk
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  #1  
September 8th, 2013, 10:38 PM
MamaSkunk's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Minneapolis
Posts: 3,064
I've recently made the decision to home school my kids mainly due to the fact that the local schools in our area have awful test scores. And I don't want them to experience bullying etc like I did as a child. Since my oldest was born I have looked into many different schooling options. Charter/private/catholic and nothing seemed to just feel right. Since we made the decision I feel so at peace with our choice and I am so excited. My DD is almost 3( yeah I know I am jumping the gun a bit) and DS is 2 months. So anyway now that we have made the decision to home school. Where do we go from here? Has anyone used those online courses?
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  #2  
September 9th, 2013, 06:08 PM
Spider123's Avatar Veteran
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 353
I haven't heard anything good about the K12 corporation, but I don't think three is too early to start learning about homeschooling. I'd suggest that you find a local group through Ann Zeiss' site (A-Z Home's Cool) and attend a few Park Days. Once a month was plenty for me when I had three year olds.

I know it's hard to keep your credit card in your pocket and not stress too much over curriculum, but I'm going to say it anyway.
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  #3  
September 9th, 2013, 06:55 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Hampton Roads, VA, USA
Posts: 3,737
There are some good pretty much free online options, including AmblesideOnline.org (we are using that one) and Easy Peasy All In One Curriculum. In the preschool years there is Letter of the Week, ABC Jesus Loves Me, Hubbard's Cupboard.

We've used the ABeka nursery program, the Horizons Preschool program, and are now doing a loosely AO Kindergarten year and using Horizons Math, Adventures in Phonics by Christian Liberty Press, and a few other odds and ends... I guess I've ended up pretty eclectic in my selections and Charlotte Masonish in my practice?!

Oh, and from here you would read the laws in your state so that you know what you do/don't have to do.

Last edited by hiskid1324; September 9th, 2013 at 07:03 PM.
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  #4  
September 9th, 2013, 07:29 PM
KMH KMH is offline
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Yeah, I was going to say to start by researching the laws in your state so you know what is required of you.

Home - Minnesota Homeschoolers' Alliance - Minnesota Homeschoolers' Alliance
School and Enrollment Choices

If you don't already know what "style" of schooling you'd like to provide, start researching that as well (Classical, Unschooling, Charlotte Mason, Unit Studies, Eclectic, Traditional, Umbrella Program, Independent Study, etc.). Grab some homeschooling books from the library and just explore what appeals to you and what does not. There are SO many options out there; it takes time to narrow it down.
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  #5  
September 9th, 2013, 11:54 PM
MamaSkunk's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Oct 2012
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Yes I did look into the laws here in Minnesota as well as joined MSA. I did request info from a few different online courses..K12 included. I guess I will have to research the style of schooling next
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  #6  
September 10th, 2013, 04:04 AM
Frackel's Avatar DOh!
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: In my house :p
Posts: 1,286
Hello, and welcome
I'm Michelle and I have three kiddos.
We've actually had experience with K12 and really loved their curriculum. It was the umbrella "home" school we had some serious issues with. The K12 curriculum however, is very good.
We used it as our base, and built up off it. But not everyone does, it really is a good curriculum. I don't believe they have a pre-k one, but they do have kindergarten. I didn't start using it until first grade so I can't give advice on kindergarten as far as K12 goes, lol.

K12 is often not a good fit for some because it is pretty structured. You do have to report "attendance" and it isn't a curriculum you can always do at your own pace. Depending on which route you go with it(if you buy, or go through a free virtual school) you will have a "teacher" you report to. He or she will check in on you, will require a phone interview here and there, and that sort of thing. If you need to take time off, while they do allow it, they don't necessarily promote taking too much time off, the same way any public school would. This can also be a problem for some families. Attendance is still very important when you go via a virtual school-and that goes for ALL of the virtual schools. As most of them are still actually public schools.

We decided to go our own route for quite a few reasons, but the curriculum itself, and K12 itself, didn't really come into play with our decision.

As for what to do at that age, I am a firm believer in hands on learning. I don't believe structured learning for most-not all of course-children that age is always a good thing. Some do need it, please don't get me wrong. Some also thrive on it and do amazingly well. However, most don't, at that age. At least not the structure you'd see in say kindergarten or first grade. Hands on learning is vital at any age but these early years are when you want ti instill the desire to learn, not hinder. Now is a great time to start figuring out what sort of style would work best for your child.
Even if you go with something more structured, I would still limit it to no more than 1-2 hours per day of actual sit down structured work. They do still have very short attention spans, lol. Although they are itty bitty sponges and can soak up an enormous amount of knowledge, we do still somewhat need to limit how much we dish out.

As for good places to start with a preschool aged child, I have a huge bunch of links I can share. I posted them in a couple of other threads too, but I'll add them in here for you. Not all are necessarily preschool and not all of the sites have only preschool. So some could be a valuable tool for you in determining exactly where your child stands on some subjects.
I won't share apps, as I don't have any and I honestly don't like them, lol. I do have a lot of other links though. I'll edit my post after I go grab the list.

Ok these are mostly Language Arts, but there are other subjects on a lot of them as well. I'll find my list of preschool sites in a minute here. If I double post some of them I apologize in advance, it's entirely possible I may, lol.

Alphabet Overview
(ftr, that site is actually the most widely used by schools and even other programs around the world as well, it has printables)
Teaching alphabet letters?
LearningPlanet.com - Alphabet Action
Learn ABCs Game – Free, Online ABC Game – Fisher Price
Alphabet Games - learning alphabet and letters online - Welcome to Play Kids Games.com
Letter and Alphabet Activities at EnchantedLearning.com
Vocabulary, Spelling and Alphabet Learning Games For Kids | Learning Games For Kids
Learn Letters - Free software to learn the letters of the alphabet
Alphabet Learning Game
http://www.progressivephonics.com/
http://jollylearning.co.uk/gallery/
http://www.phonicsplay.co.uk/freeIndex.htm
http://www.softschools.com/language_arts/phonics/
http://www.familylearning.org.uk/phonics_games.html
http://www.jumpstart.com/parents/games/free-games
http://www.primarygames.com/reading.php
http://pbskids.org/read/
http://www.knowledgeadventure.com/su...ing-games.aspx
http://www.coolmath-games.com/1-read...-games-01.html
https://www.kabongo.com/learn-more/
http://www.smartygames.com/

Various topics, I am pretty sure they are all free, but I might be wrong on a couple of them. Also, there may be a couple that are not secular. I tend to stick with secular but some of the links might contain religious materials as well.
I can't find the list I was looking for, lol. So I'll give you this other list instead. Again, there may be a link repeated, I didn't pay very close attention as I have a ton of lists, lol.

funschool.kaboose.com
http://www.jumpstart.com/parents/games/preschool-games
http://www.ezschool.com/Games/PreK-G2.html
http://www.fungooms.com/
http://online-preschool.cullensabcs.com/
http://www.learn4good.com/kids/index.htm
http://www.turtlediary.com/preschool-games.html
http://www.happyclicks.net/
http://www.familylearning.org.uk/preschool-games.html
http://www.cookie.com/preschool.html
http://www.e-learningforkids.org/
http://www.preschoolcorner.com/onlinelearning.html
http://www.primarygames.com/math/learnnumbers/
http://www.coolmath-games.com/1-game...garten-01.html
http://www.thekidzpage.com/learninggames/
http://www.zoodles.com/free-online-kids-games/preschool
http://www.letteroftheweek.com/preschool_age_3.html
http://www.teachersnotebook.com/prod...reschool-packs
http://allinonehomeschool.com/
http://www.amblesideonline.org/curriculum.shtml
http://curry.virginia.edu/go/wil/rimes_and_rhymes.htm
http://www.littlegiraffes.com/
http://www.preschooleducation.com/recipe.shtml
http://www.lessonpathways.com/
http://preschool.earlyknowledgeforkids.org/
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Last edited by Frackel; September 10th, 2013 at 04:30 AM. Reason: adding more links
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  #7  
September 10th, 2013, 10:18 AM
MamaSkunk's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Awesome thank you
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  #8  
September 10th, 2013, 03:25 PM
KMH KMH is offline
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Thanks for all the links, Michelle! Some of those are new to me...can't wait until the kids are in bed so I can explore
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  #9  
September 10th, 2013, 06:33 PM
2pinks&ablue's Avatar Chantelle
Join Date: May 2007
Location: NB, Canada
Posts: 36,142
I think the other ladies have got you covered, I just wanted to say welcome!
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  #10  
September 11th, 2013, 04:32 AM
Frackel's Avatar DOh!
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: In my house :p
Posts: 1,286
You're both very welcome

I have way more links than I know what to do with, hehe.
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  #11  
September 11th, 2013, 08:54 AM
Countrymom4's Avatar Chrystal
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Saskatchewan, Canada
Posts: 3,539
Just wanted to say welcome . I homes school in Canada so not sure how things work for you guys.
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  #12  
September 11th, 2013, 03:31 PM
Boos Moo's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 3,959
I'm new to the homeschooling part of this board (though we've been homeschooling for some time). And just wanted to say that not all charter schools are the same. We use one that gives parents the options of doing everything at home and bringing in work (they take care of all the paperwork and such) once a month. Or going to classes (like art, music, and science) one day a week. Or taking classes 2 days a week. So just wanted to say there are so many options with homeschooling these days make sure to research what will work best for you. And the nice thing is, if one thing doesn't work, try another
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  #13  
September 12th, 2013, 10:18 AM
broxi3781's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: belfast, northern ireland
Posts: 1,563
This site is brilliant for ages 3+ and has quite a lot of free content:
Starfall's Learn to Read with phonics
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  #14  
October 22nd, 2013, 01:35 PM
Newbie
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 9
In my opinion, homeschooling programs need to be quite structured and followed strictly so your child can learn to read to the best of their capabilities. Besides, one has to follow a regimented and conscious effort to allow them to make social contact with other children of their age, which they miss out on while homeschooling.
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Supporting Kids Learning by Helping Kids To Read and Online Learning To Read Programs
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  #15  
October 25th, 2013, 04:12 PM
TreeTog's Avatar Love is in the Air!
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: La Porte, TX
Posts: 2,323
Hello! I homeschool my 3yo son Liam and supplement my 6yo education during school breaks or in time of sickness.

Leslie
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