Our Last Year of Public School

Just typing that title gave me lots of emotions.

I am crazy excited to get started.  I really feel like this is the best thing for our family.  I’m still nervous, which I think is healthy.

Four of our kids are in the process of taking the NYS Assessments right now.  The amount of pressure put on them is incredible.  They are pushed to make sure that they have enough sleep, and eat a good breakfast.   They have been getting big lectures about the importance of the assessments for months.  They are told that these results will follow them through life.  We all know that that last part is just ludicrous.

I have told them all, do your best like you always do, and don’t worry about it.  Future employers are not going to be standing there with the answer sheet to the third grade ELA assessment in their hands, asking why you answered c instead of b.  They wont have to include copies of their results on college applications someday either.  Our eight year old was so stressed about doing well, that he made himself nauseous.

I will not miss these tests one bit!

The kids are still confused about what home school will look like.  They’ve had lots of questions;  Can we still call you mom?  Will we need a pass for the bathroom?  Who grades our papers?  Will we still get recess?  If you’re the teacher, who will be the room mother?  What about school clothes?  Will we just keep our old clothes?  Do we have to wear uniforms?  If you’re the teacher, who’s the principal?  Where do we go if we get sent to the office? (that one was from my boys)

I have explained it, but I still think that they don’t believe me.  I said, we will have a plan about the things we will learn.  We will have books, papers and projects to help us learn what we planned on.  We may do that at the table, or at a desk.  We may learn thing on the road, while we are taking a trip.  We will figure it out together, and we will have fun learning and exploring the world.  That is how it works.  With raised eyebrows, my 13 year olds says, “whats the catch?”  I think that it will take some time before it really sinks in for them.

Finishing Up

I chose to finish up the regular school year with their public school so that they have a sense of closure in some way.  I also think that starting out fresh with a new academic year just makes more sense.  This way, I hope, it doesn’t seem like they are losing anything, or missing out.  They will simply see it as starting something new.  That is the hope anyway.

For now, I continue putting things together, setting up some sort of plan, and making 8 billion photocopies.


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