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Is Middle School too late to begin homeschooling?

Posted by on Jun. 14, 2012 at 8:43 AM
  • 17 Replies

Good morning Moms!  I am mother to three children (17 son - rising senior, 11 daughter -rising 6th grd, and 4 daughter -rising K).  My 4 yr old completed pre-k in a private school, my 11 yr old completed K-5 in the public school, and my 17 yr will graduate from the public school in our area.  Unfortunately, the value of the education offered in our public schools zoned for our area have declined to the point that it is no longer acceptable even with additional tutoring and teachings at home.  Not only is the education subpar, but also there is a high rate of pregnancy and gang activity in the middle school.

 Unfortunately, with limited income, we are not in the position to afford private school for the upcoming school year.  My daughter's teacher mentioned the cyber academy offered through the school system (GA - DekalbCo.). However, I have come across numerous reviews that state it's nearly impossible to keep up withand extremely daunting as the kids spend hours on the computer.  With my 11 yr old being recently diagnosed with adhd, I really feel the extensive time at the computer would prove to be more overwhelming than managing the changing of classes, impatient teachers and constant distractions she struggled through this year in the 5th grade.

Homeschooling has been placed on my heart and heavily considered. Surprisingly, my husband was instantly agreeable to the idea.  Because I'm not a trained educator, I researched home schools in my area and found two that seemed great. However, they charged between $150-$160 a week.  Although I have a degree in English, I question if I am adequately prepared to teach a comprehensive 6th grade curriculum.  Despite my fear, I know that home school would be beneficial as it would allow me to go back over some content I feel my 11 yr old barely mastered in 5th grade.

Are there any middle school homeschoolers that may be able to share their experience, insight, and/or curriculum choices? Also, it is common to be nervous about serving as the teacher of all subjects?  Thanks in advance! 

by on Jun. 14, 2012 at 8:43 AM
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oredeb
by debbie on Jun. 14, 2012 at 9:35 AM
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 hi delight,  you can start homeschooling at any age! go for it!

ive never been to college and have been hsing for 28 years now so if i can do it so can you! you dont need any college education to homeschool! and yes its very common to be nervous about teaching your kids!  always wondering if you are teaching enough etc! just think shes the only one you'll be teaching, so of course shes getting a good education from you! even if you did nothing shed be getting a better education with the one on one.

so you found a couple homeschool groups, great that will help a lot, be sure to talk to the moms, get ideas and help, homeschoolers love to help,

theres lots of different choice for teaching at home, are you looking for christian type curriculum or secular? 

this summer while school is out will be a good time to watch your daughter and see how she learns, that will help with teaching her, you dont have to teach the way the public school does, you dont have to keep their hours etc unless you want to. and it doesnt take all day to learn! heres a site that has a neat way to figure out how our kids learn,  and ourselves! http://www.homeschoolviews.com/quiz/quiz.html

checking your homeschool law should be your very first thing to do, and do what it says  http://www.homeschoollegaladvantage.com/resources/homeschool-laws-by-state

heres a couple sites that help you out with curriculum  http://www.homeschooldiner.com/index.html   and   http://cathyduffyreviews.com/

swim-mom72
by on Jun. 14, 2012 at 9:36 AM
1 mom liked this

Hello, and welcome!

First off, yes, it is absolutely normal to be nervous. We will soon start our 6th year of homeschooling and I still get nervous about certain things. The trick, is to not let the nerves consume you and make you feel inadaquate or "less than" equipped to teach your children. Who better to teach them than the very people to whom they were intrusted? You spend more time with your children than anyone else in the world, you know them best, and so it is YOU who could best tailor an education plan that is just the right fit for each of their individual needs.

My oldest had just finished his second semester of 6th grade in public school when we brought both of our boys home for good to homeschool them. It has worked out beautifully for us. So yes, starting in the junior high years are just fine. I know of homeschoolers that start as late as high school and do well also. It is all in how you approach it,  just like with any other challenge. Face it head on and with confidence and a willing spirit, and you will succeed.

When we first began I was urged to buy a copy of Kathy Duffy's book " 100 Top Picks for Hpomeschoolers" and it was a wonderful tool to gain knowledge of how I wanted to proceed. She now has a website called Cathy Duffy reviews that has a lot of the same info as the book.

Another great tool was HSLDA's website. That is where I found links for homeschooling groups in my area and a list of things my ____ grader might be learning. My next stop was getting plugged into a local group for help in my journey. These groups, and the ones like this online, are great resources for asking all those questions that are floating around in your mind and relieving some of the worry that is part of the territory.

Here are SOME places that might help get an idea of what kind of curricula is out there for homeschoolers: christianbooks.com, Timberdoodle, Sonlight, Teaching Textbooks(math), Math U See, currclick.com, Abeka, Rod and Staff, Alpha Omega, Oak Meadow, Time4Learning, Bob Jones, Winters Promise, and My Father's World.

Good luck! And this is a great group, you will find lots of help here.

Machelle669
by on Jun. 14, 2012 at 9:51 AM
bump


jgattis
by on Jun. 14, 2012 at 10:10 AM
2 moms liked this

I agee 150% with the replies so far.

Yes, you can start with a rising 6th grader.

Yes, it is completely normal to feel nervous.  I have a rising 6th grader and two rising 3rd graders.  I get nervous each and every year.  However, once I get the results of our yearly testing (standardized testing required by NC) and see how they all grow each year, I relax just a bit. 

You can check out the GA Department of Education's website and see if they have a standard core curriuculum listed. (NC does...I'm not sure about GA)  This will help you if you want to keep her in line with what her age peers are learning in 6th grade.  

6th grade is also a *wonderful* time to do unit studies.  Especially since you say that she was recently diagnosed ADHD....find out what she's interested in and study those subjects in depth.  Keep your eyes open in your community for opportunities...museums, zoos, etc.  I noticed you said you are in Dekalb Co.....there are lots and LOTS of things to do in your area.  Some may be a little bit of a drive but, they are out there and homeschooling will allow you the time to make the trip.

Do a google search for Dekalb County homeschool support groups and see if there are any face-to-face groups in your area.  I'm sure there will be opportunities for drama, band, choir, sports, etc.

I have a friend who lives in the upper NE corner of GA (near where TN and NC touch) and she has TONS of opportunities for her twins.

I hope you find the same in your area.  Good luck! :)

starbeck96
by Bronze Member on Jun. 14, 2012 at 10:27 AM
1 mom liked this

It is never too late to start HS.  I have twin boys that will be in 9th grade and a daughter that is 5 and will be in kindergarten.  I felt God telling me that I needed to HS my daughter.  Well, a few weeks later the boys asked if they could be HS also.  So, I talked to my husband and we prayed about it.  We are going to HS all 3 in the fall!  The boys have been in PS since they were in kindergarten.

I am more worried about science than anything else.  However, I know that many curriculums offer DVDs also.  We will probably use DVDs for Biology, Chemistry, and Physics.   

This is what we are using for my boys:

Apologia for Physical science (which I've heard is great).  They also have elementary and middle school sciences. 

Abeka for Language Arts (Spelling, English, Vocabulary), Literature, Health, and Physical Science, Algebra I, and History.

I will be making up my own curriculum for Bible.

Rosetta Stone for Spanish I.

For my daughter I am using all Abeka.

I bought half of the stuff I needed on Ebay.  I probably saved $ 300-400.  I think, by the time I finish, I will have spent around 1200.00 on 3 kids.  But that is including extra things such as flashcards, dry erase boards, cork boards, making desks, storage stuff, and anything else we may need. 

mem82
by Platinum Member on Jun. 14, 2012 at 10:43 AM

You can do it!

delightfullymom
by Member on Jun. 14, 2012 at 1:22 PM

Hello Moms!  I can't thank you all enough for the support and detailed information you provided regarding curriculum and your experiences.  I am glad to know it's not uncommon to feel nervous.  I definitely feel my daughter will benefit from one-on-one time in so many ways.  I will be sure to look into all of the information and websites you all shared. I thank God for cafemom and for your willingness to share. I look forward to learning more from you all (28 years, wow).  Thank you for taking time to respond. Blessings to you as you continue your homeschool journey.

romacox
by Silver Member on Jun. 14, 2012 at 2:49 PM
  • Never too late to learn and to educate
  • Home educated children outperform public schooled children, and that is true even when the parent has no degrees
  • nervous is a good thing...it means you care
  • Before making any decisions know your State laws.  At the following link scroll down to your State, and click on it to find your State Home School Association.  They will help with State Laws, and finding other home educators near you for support and co-operation:  Find Your State Home School Association.

  • The public school system's recommendation is designed to deter your success so that you will return your child to the public schools....its about money.
  • Next Understand  your child's learning style, because home school is not the classroom.  See this link:  How To Choose Curriculum So You Do Not Waste Money
  • Finally understand the different methods used by home educators, and choose the one that best fits your family.  See this link How To Home School
bluerooffarm
by Gold Member on Jun. 14, 2012 at 3:13 PM

 IMO there is no such thing as too late to start homeschooling, but the later you start the more deprogramming you may have to do.

Good luck!  You'll enjoy it!

KickButtMama
by Shannon on Jun. 14, 2012 at 3:38 PM
2 moms liked this
Quoting delightfullymom:

Hello Moms!  I can't thank you all enough for the support and detailed information you provided regarding curriculum and your experiences.  I am glad to know it's not uncommon to feel nervous.  I definitely feel my daughter will benefit from one-on-one time in so many ways.  I will be sure to look into all of the information and websites you all shared. I thank God for cafemom and for your willingness to share. I look forward to learning more from you all (28 years, wow).  Thank you for taking time to respond. Blessings to you as you continue your homeschool journey.




You can do it! And, you'll be amazed when you can watch your child bloom. We're all here for ya! I know several people who started HS even as late as high school. Shoot I dropped out of PS in my junior year of high school, thinking I was stupid. Home educated my last 2 years of high school then went on to get degrees in Physics and Geology.

Congrat's on having the courage to not only recognize there is a problem, but the hootzpa to look for other alternatives!!

Shannon

 Home Educators Toolbox  / Articles / Kicbuttmama's Crazy Lapbooks / Kickbuttmama's Home Education
Albert Einstein -- 
   "Everybody is a Genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing it is stupid." 

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