Welcome to my blog!
This is a relaxed homeschooling blog, an eclectic homeschooling blog, an Oak Meadow homeschooling blog, and a secular homeschooling blog in one. It's full of homeschool curriculum reviews, hands on project and activity ideas, homeschool outing, field trip and educational tour ideas and photos, occasional recipes, articles I've written, helpful and informative links, useful forms and information particularly for Pennsylvania homeschoolers, and fun extras, such as a thorough and detailed list of books featuring homeschooled characters and educational quotes (just start exploring the sidebar over to the left to see most of these things).
But mostly, with each daily entry consisting of text and photos, it chronicles our day to day lives as relaxed, secular homeschoolers as we go about our business of living and learning using the Oak Meadow curriculum.
If you've been looking for secular homeschooling blogs, I hope that you find this one enjoyable, informative, and encouraging. And I hope that if you are new to the world of homeschooling, you find yourself able to relax.
This is supposed to be fun. :)
Who I Am...and Who I Am Not
I'm probably not the kind of mom who comes to mind when someone first thinks "homeschooler." First of all, I'm a secular homeschooler. I'm not particularly religious, and I don't homeschool for religious reasons. I'm 38 years old and pretty liberal, my husband is a tattoo artist, I live in jeans, we listen to hip-hop music in the car, we watch lots of TV, we play computer games, we joke around a lot, we socialize... we're regular people. ;)
I'm a pretty relaxed homeschooler. I don't "unschool," nor do I replicate public school at home. I picked a reasonably fun curriculum which incorporates hands-on activities, living books, interesting discussion and doesn't consist of dry, boring textbooks and a thousand worksheets, I supplement it with interesting things as desired, and we revolve it around our lives, rather than revolving our lives around school. So when interesting things come up, we go out and experience them, dropping "school" for the day when need be, because I understand that there are lots of ways to learn aside from what happens while sitting around our kitchen table with a pile of books in front of us. (See "Oak Meadow" under the "My Reviews" section at the sidebar to the left to get an idea of what our main curriculum is all about).
I love our style of learning. I love that we're doing it together, I love that we're having fun with it, I love the freedom we have to do it our way.
I haven't always homeschooled. My oldest daughter, Melissa, has special needs and attended school her whole life (currently as a 20 year old in a special needs school/life skills class). My younger daughter, Alexa, went to preschool followed by public school for Kindergarten and 1st through most of 3rd grade. Back then, homeschooling wasn't even on my radar. But there were just so many things about the school system I couldn't stand while she was there that I finally had enough and started looking into homeschooling. I ended up pulling her out toward the end of her 3rd grade year (in March of 2009) and never looked back. We've been happily homeschooling her ever since, and my only regret is that I didn't think of it sooner. My son, Ben, is 6 years old, and he's the only one who's never been to any sort of preschool or public school...he gets to be home with me from the beginning and has made it very clear that he wants to be homeschooled his "whole life."
We've been at this just about three years now and it's going well. I don't have any specific plan for the future. I don't know if we'll do it all the way through or if the kids will end up back in school at some point. We're playing it by ear. Right now we're enjoying it, the kids are thriving, and we're all happy.
For more of my philosophies on the dynamics of homeschooling, life, and education, you can check out some of the articles I've written over on the sidebar to the left. I'd especially recommend "What Does A Homeschooler Do Every Day?" for my outlook on "typical" homeschooling days, "What About Socialization?" for those still worried about the "S word," and "A Kindergarten Dropout" if you tend to worry about whether your four or five year old is "doing enough" by way of school.
For more of what our day to day lives as homeschoolers is like, just start taking a peek at my recent entries by clicking on where it says "Home's Cool" up near the top left of this page, just above the picture of the books. :)
Thanks for stopping by!