From the moment I had my first child, a deep longing inside me quietly whispered, “ you’re gonna be a stay at home mom”. And life kept laughing at me for wanting to birth this vision. I mean, truth be told, I never couples with any of my partners to create a sustainable pathways to make it happen. My oldest child was two years old when I proclaimed we’d be moving forward with his father in a co-parenting capacity, that. is.all. I longed to create the perfect family for myself and him but I really didn’t even know what I wanted at the time, but I encouraged education from the start. I was fortunate with my first pregnancy to stay home until my Son was 6 months old. And during my time at home I was immersed in every educational tool a toddler could grasp at that stage of development.
Fast forward 5 years and in the midst of juggling my life, co-parenting with an undercover Narcissistic personality, I walked into a Non- Relationship that would give me the benefits of being with someone without any of the acknowledgement. It shifted my perspective within 7 months, whenI learned that Iwas expecting twins. Again, I heard that voice say, “No matter what happens these kids are ALL going to be homeschooled”! Foolish right?! How could I set such a Rainbow picture of perfection for my children when we lacked stability at the onset of their entrance in the world and in my life. We pushed through it all! I asked my family for help because it seemed at the time to be the right thing to do. But for all the best intentions, it pushed us a little further from my Homeschooling Fantasy. We found our Bearings during the time my oldest was finding himself as a 10 year old and the twins were 5. My oldest Child, up until this time was indoctrinated in all the trappings of public school and he excelled there, no surprise to me. But the twins, who were labeled at birth as Austistic with developmental delays, didn’t help with with the educational system as it stood. They went through VPK, no problem, with OT/ST (Occupational & Speech Therapies). First, Second and Third grade, I felt my Mama Bear being born in Militancy for Homeschool Advocacy. But an incident at school with the twins forced my hand. It truly was a blessing in disguise for real. Not to be anymore long winded than I have been, The teacher did not handle a disciplinary issue with my Twin Son in a supportive way and that was my Sign that I had to make Homeschooling work and fit into our lives. Working for my family’s business did give me some flexibility to set a foundation for their studies initially but getting the support of my extended family proved difficult. So we homeschooled while I work, on my days off and it became an escape from the life and instability that surrounded us.
By now it’s 2014, the twins are 7 and my oldest now 12 , had transitioned to living with his father through his own growing pains of our relationship. I had married and Divorced and left my stable to job by now to embark into the unknown of our lives, still swinging the Homeschooling Flag, unapologetically. It was a healing time for us all though. We learned what was working for us and what certainly brought us in the direction of institutionalized education again, no thank you! The twins were hard to release at first from their daily programming but over time, they relaxed enough to allow themselves to be themselves. We’ve Homeschooled, Unschooled and Deschooled in these 5 years and Have a flow that works for everyone. We are all together and they are nurturing themselves with the tools I am sharing with you. My oldest, chose the GED route, when High school didn’t embrace him as he expected. The twins now use several structured platforms, Therapy and free learning techniques that allow them to expand their minds and lives at a pace that works for them. I hope these tools and this post sparks a fire in your life to manifest your hearts desires that are for yours and your families highest and greatest transformation.
khan academy (free and supported through Donations) Khan Academy gives me the structured protocol for keeping the twins at the pace that they should be academically. It’s a platform that provides a BROAD scope of knowledge from 3rd grade to 12th grade.
Herbal academy– The Herbarium. (A fee based site) Nature is our thing. Learning about plants, herbs and their healing essence never gets old. This website offers herbal knowledge resources as a collection of dried plants used as reference, to share herbal knowledge, discoveries, lessons, and beautiful visuals.
Kamali academy (Fee based, with some free resources) Kamali Academy offers Educational for Liberation. For me as a Caribbean Descendant woman, it was Paramount that the twins and my oldest learned as much as possible about the history of Africans throughout the diaspora. They offer a curriculum and learning platform to support Academia from an African Perspective.
my local library Our Library brings a new creative space instead of being home all the time. I’ve limited computer time so this is an outlet for them to be social online while maintaining healthy parameters and they can Read all the books they want for FREE lol, I love that part.
Teachers Pay Teachers (A fee based site) This site offers printables for different learning lessons, from phonics to language arts and science. They also offer some African centered modules as well.
YouTube YouTube has A-LOT of homeschooling support Videos, playlists and resources. You have to use it in a way that best meets your children’s needs.
Flvs (A free statewide learning portal that can be used Internationally) Florida Virtual School started out problematic. That’s because I was still trying to program my children’s learning experience. Once I let go and asked what my children’s interest were not just academically, flvs was and is the main area that tracks their progress and supports their expansion in other areas of study and adds hobbies and career insights to the mix.
Now I know this list is short, but as I stated earlier, we’ve learned what works and what doesn’t. These tools don’t overload my life so I am present in supporting their independent expansion. So if you decide that you want to Homeschool, Deschool or Unschool, Begin where you are. What will work for your family? What will support your children’s full potential whatever that may be? But most importantly, what type of adventure do you want it to be? Happy Homeschooling to us all and to all a good life!