A month of homeschooling on FIMBY

It's been a long time since I've written anything substantial about homeschooling and I'd like to do something about that.

Since I've been quiet on the subject it could be inferred I've lost some of my passion for homeschooling or that it's not going well. (My kids are teenagers after all.) Thankfully, neither is true.

These are some of our best homeschool years yet. I still LOVE homeschooling my kids. And our kids (mostly) still want to be schooled at home. The energy and tenacity of older students, when they are working toward their own goals is a real beauty to behold. (I just gave you a real big hint as to why homeschooling is still working in our home.)

A significant area of contention in our homeschool life is that we have limited community resources at our disposal to support our anglophone childrens' growth, development, and interests. (We live in rural Quebec.)

For two years we went without good library service. We finally solved that problem by joining the library system in New Brunswick, which is the province next to us. Thankfully, our nearest library is only one hour away.

The most difficult thing though, is that we've gone nearly four years without a homeschool support group or homeschool community. We have two teenagers and a social, extroverted twelve year old who want to connect with kids like them and so the situation has to change. And it will, very soon. (That's code-speak for "we're moving" but I'll get to that announcement soon enough.)

Although I haven't written much about homeschooling on the blog, homeschooling is as near and dear to my heart as ever it was. To be sure, my long term sights are on what comes after this first vocation of mine (what kind of career do I want after my kids aren't the center of my universe?) but finishing well is where my focus is right now and for the next three to five years.

I spend a lot more time now, than I did when the kids were little, investing my energies into the "homeschool" part of my job description. When the kids were young I invested a lot of energy into establishing our homemaking systems and teaching the kids likewise. I was banking on the belief that if I laid that foundation well I would have more physical and mental energy to help guide their studies in the intense middle to high school years. At that point I could only hope that my efforts would yield the fruit I see today. I have not been disappointed.

I have a lot to say about homeschooling in these years and I want to spend some time in March, all of March actually, writing about homeschooling, and I want to do it as openly as possible.

I've got a little side project going on called The Kitchen Table, many of you have joined me there. I am blown away but what's happening around the table. And I'm getting glimpses of the work I want to do post-homeschooling but mostly I am simply hanging out and sharing my heart, as you share yours.

I have been given so much already in the short time I've been facilitating that group, but what strikes me the most is seeing FIMBY readers, who I've always considered friends, for who they are: real people.

You are a real person and it's likely you're a real homeschooler. You have real kids in a real home. Real-ness means we are beautiful but at times feel wretched. It means we love our kids to death (and we would die for them) but God help us if they don't drive us to drinking some days. Real-ness means we have our spectacular homeschooling days but also days, months, seasons where we wonder if we're not failing our children, crippling them for life.

I want to write about homeschooling in our home with all this in mind. I try to be honest in my writing but when I don't hear the voices of who I'm writing to it's hard to be open. Not because I don't want to, but because without knowing who you are (dear reader and friend) I'm writing into a void. And in that emptiness I wonder, who the heck cares about these particular details, this triumph or this struggle.

As it turns out, you care and you want to know. You may not contribute to comments, nor do I expect you to, but you're reading and you want to know what it really looks like to homeschool older kids. And I want to share that with you.

I started this blog eleven years ago. Brienne, our youngest, was a toddler. You can read my first homeschooling-related post here. It's about hiking, what else?

You might also like this blast from the past post about our early school days, published ten years ago, almost to the day.

I didn't start to post regularly to this blog, which wasn't even called FIMBY at the time, till Brienne was five.

Our kids are now 12, 14 and 15. What does it look like to homeschool kids these ages? Does it look how I thought it would as a starry-eyed, interest-led, newbie homeschooler?

Do our kids still want to be homeschooled? Are they still eager to learn (like they were as adorable eight year olds)?

Will they go to highschool? (If you've been reading my blog for a long time you'll already have a clue to the answer.)

What are we doing to prepare for university? Will our kids go to university?

How do we (attempt to) meet the needs of three diverse kids? Are our kids weird homeschooled teenagers? (My oldest daughter and her friends like to be weird so this is a tricky question to answer.)

I've got a good chunk of these posts already written. I've been plugging away on a "homeschooling through high school" series since last fall. That should answer all the high school related questions. But I'm guessing you may have other questions. (Or maybe you have a very specific high school question you'd like to see answered in the high school series.)

I'd love to hear your homeschooling questions. Feel free to post them in comments below or email them to me.

I can't promise to get to each one, but as much as possible I want to try to work my answers into the posts I have planned for the month of March.

I'm not a homeschool guru but after ten years at this vocation I'm still happily doing it and the kids haven't mutinied yet. In truth, we all really enjoy each other, there's a flow of learning through our days and excited plans for the future, so I probably have something of value to add to the conversation.

A civil discourse disclaimer and why I write our story, in spite of the risk.

A dear blogging friend of mine was recently attacked on a blog post she wrote about her daughter's homeschooled high school experience. The comment was offensive and mean-spirited (I didn't read it) and my friend felt compelled to un-publish the post as well as change her plans to publish follow-up posts related to high school, record keeping, transcripts and the like.

In all my years of blogging I have received one spiteful comment on a homeschool post. I deleted it and I updated my comments policy, which I'm certain no one reads. I've had less than a handful of mean comments at FIMBY and only one that was about my kids.

I have a zero tolerance policy for attacks on my kids on the blog, or mean stuff in general, regardless of who it's directed at. I don't mind honest discourse, thoughtful questions and questioning, but kindness is the rule, just as it is in our home.

(We've had very few "rules" for our kids. I'm sometimes inconsistent with the ones we do have. All those parenting books that stress consistency make me feel like a failure, so I don't read them. And the kids, Brienne especially, know they can negotiate their way around most "rules". But kindness is non-negotiable, it is the rule we enforce.)

All of this to say, homeschoolers and people who blog about parenting and family life in general go out on a limb sometimes in sharing their experiences. And so you might wonder why I share publicly at all?

In my case I do it because it's what I want to read.

I want to read about healthy, vibrant, loving, and real family life. I want to know how to homeschool my kids through high school. I want to know how to have close relationship with them through their growing years and into adulthood.

I want to read about families who live with hope and kindness, joy and vitality. I want to know how to raise amazing kids who will bring the light of Christ into the world and affect positive change in their own circles of influence.


talk about breaking the rules, or in this case the law: there is a great (scary at the time) story behind this not-so-stealth campsite in Harriman State Park, NY

I want to know how to hold on and then let go. I want to know how I can build community with my children so we might live communally as adults and experience third, and fourth (with my parents) generation family life. I want all of this in a culture and society that seems to tear families apart and isolate us from one another.

I want nothing short of an amazing family life and it's sometimes hard to find models for this, in the context of our current culture. I don't identify as much with books written by parents who's kids are grown and gone, raised before the internet and iPads.

Also, most of the current books available (and a lot of healthy family life blogs) seem to be about farming, homesteading families, and we are definitely not that.

We are a technology family who's members love gaming, sci-fi movies, design, fashion, and computer programming, as well as having fun in the outdoors together (and we can be pretty hard core about that.) I am the natural-living inspired mom and spouse to this tech savvy crew. I figure my earthiness keeps us grounded whereas Damien's geeky engineering bent keeps us technologically "in-the-game". Something I especially appreciate with teenagers in the house. I may be clueless about the latest and greatest, but their dad isn't!

I love to read blogs about families (homeschooling families since that's what I identify with) finding their way into into healthy, fulfilling, and vibrant lives.

Our family is not the model. But we're doing stuff that works for us (and sometimes trying stuff that doesn't), and I want my voice, our story, to be part of the collective "this is how families do it" narrative that is being written on the web. Not because we're perfect parents, perfect spouses, or perfect kids. But because we love each other, and we love life, and we love Jesus, and we love our neighbors and the world needs love, period.

It's a love story, and you may question and ask "what about...?" but hurtful comments directed to our family, or each other will not be tolerated. It's a house rule.


(A note about the photos in this post. I don't take many photos of us "doing school" so I don't have a lot "visuals to illustrate" this post, or the posts coming this month. This seems like a perfect opportunity to start publishing trail photos. Already, the kids have grown so much since these were taken last spring and summer on the Appalachian Trail.)

Renee Tougas participates in affiliate marketing, including the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. Whenever you buy something on Amazon from a link you clicked here, I get a (very) small percentage of that sale. See disclosure for further explanation.

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(teen) Kids in the Kitchen »
  • Jon

    Jon on Feb. 28, 2015, 5:43 p.m.

    I usually just look at the pictures on this site and might read some posts. I came here from your backpacking site (greatly inspirational!). I appreciate all the work you put in these posts. I'll have to go back and read some of your early days of home schooling. My wife does the brunt of the work for home schooling. Our oldest is seven now.

    I'm an atheist and my wife is religious (after finding out that the church I belonged to was a fraud I have a hard time believing any of that anymore, but respect those who do). Just thought you might want to know who your readers are!

    So, you put the picture of camping in the park illegally but no back story! Is that a future post?

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    • renee

      renee on Feb. 28, 2015, 5:51 p.m.

      Jon, I do appreciate knowing who my readers are, especially hearing men's voices. 

      I know, it's kind of teasing to share a snippet of our not-so-stealth camping story, and leave you hanging. It's a good story and I want to do it justice, and truthfully, I'm just not ready to tell it yet (which is the way I feel about most of our hike, not ready to go there).

      But I will say this... there were armed park rangers/state police (who can tell in the middle of the night?) involved. And my responsible, follow-the-rules ESTJ self felt very vulnerable in this situation (and my thru-hiker self was just very, very tired...) That's all for now... 

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      • Nina

        Nina on March 1, 2015, 2 p.m.

        That's my neck of the woods (Harriman area) and I know there has been a search for a fugitive in there for a while. I hope your story had nothing to do with that and I'm glad you were okay!

        As a full time working woman, wife and mother, I too love my life - my job (mostly), my husband, my daughter, the connections we have - and work to keep that in the forefront of our family life in this culture. As always, your honesty is refreshing to read.

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  • Heather A

    Heather A on Feb. 28, 2015, 6:02 p.m.

    So looking forward to this series!  Your honest homeschool stories have been an enourmmous encouragment to our family.  Thank you.  Can't wait for more.   

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  • Emily

    Emily on Feb. 28, 2015, 6:41 p.m.

    I just wanted to say I love your blog and especially the homeschooling posts. We are closer to the beginning of it all, but your family's experiences and lessons give me a lot of hope and direction. I'm pretty quiet in terms of commenting, but I wanted you to know how much I appreciate what you do. I wanted to join the table group to learn but don't feel I would have much to add--again, the observing quietly thing :)  In any case, thank you. 

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  • Lori

    Lori on Feb. 28, 2015, 8:52 p.m.

    I am so excited to see the direction you will be taking with your writing as the topic, and style, is also very near and dear to my heart.  However, I was disheartened to hear about your friend.  I know who she is and I noticed the post had disappeared when I went to search for more comments (I had also commented on that post).  I sincerely hope she will reconsider as I have learned so much and have been SO inspired by her writing on this topic, as I have been from you, Renee.  My kids are 13, 10 and 10 and there are only a handful of great bloggers that I follow on homeschooling for this age and above.  I see you all as kindrid spirits.  So I hope no one is mean on your blog, and H, if you're reading, please reconsider. I understand and respect any writer and mom's decision for what's best for her family, but I also hate to see mean people win at such a loss to the rest of us.  The internet is tricky sometimes, but we're ALL real people.  Let's play nice, and always do right.  Best, Lori

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  • Christi {Jealous Hands}

    Christi {Jealous Hands} on Feb. 28, 2015, 10:47 p.m.

    I am thrilled you'll be writing more on homeschooling!  I don't comment often, but read each post. 

    reply

  • Alaina

    Alaina on Feb. 28, 2015, 10:52 p.m.

    I don't comment that often lately, but I read your blog a lot. I am looking forward to hearing what you have to say about homeschooling older children.  I'd especially like to hear about how you manage "fears" with "stepping outside the box" style homeschooling that you do.  I'd love to know more about what your kids are actually doing to follow their interests and combine that with their schooling.  I'd love more specifics if you can share that.  I'm glad you're going to be writing more about homeschooling. 

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  • Roxanne

    Roxanne on Feb. 28, 2015, 11:06 p.m.

    I've been reading for years and am sure I've never left a comment. So first of all, thank you for all your stories and sharing your family's path. We live in an area of the US with few like-minded people, so I rely on blogs like yours for inspiration. We have an 8-month-old boy and continually have conversations about education. What kind, what subjects are most important, how to give him everything we had, but follow a new path which embraces out current life values, etc. Stories such as yours are imperative for us to fuel the conversation as we determine our own family's path. So many thanks! I may not comment often, but know I'm here soaking it all in.

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  • Kathleen

    Kathleen on Feb. 28, 2015, 11:39 p.m.

    We are not a homeschooling family, and don't really have any plans to be, given various parts of our life circumstances, but I'm still looking forward to these posts. I gain a lot of wisdom from them about simply supporting our children in their learning interests and curiosity and incorporating learning into all parts of our day. My oldest is only 8 years old but adolescence doesn't feel that far off and I want to do whatever I can to support him as he grows and matures. I really appreciate your perspective, and that of a few other bloggers, that we shouldn't be scared of our kids becoming teenagers (the whole idea of teenager vs. young adult) and that there are many wonderful opportunities and experiences at that stage of their life. Thanks for your honesty and I hope everyone is respectful and kind as you open yourself up and share your story this month. 

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  • Jen

    Jen on March 1, 2015, 1:04 a.m.

    Really looking forward to this month of homeschooling! My kids are younger, 9,6,3, and I love getting a glimpse of what's ahead.

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  • Samantha

    Samantha on March 1, 2015, 1:23 a.m.

    I've missed reading your homeschooling posts, as homeschooling was the reason I started reading your blog.  Thank you for taking this time to post about it.  I have 3 boys (8, 6, and 3), and I've been homeschooling since the beginning (4 years now).  I always appreciate words of wisdom from moms who've been homescholing longer than I.  Thank you. 

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  • maria cordner

    maria cordner on March 1, 2015, 1:31 a.m.

    I love to read about experiences of homeschooling. I don't homeschool my children mostly because I just couldn't handle it! I admire those parents that take on it. In my experience, homeschoolled kids seem very well-rounded, with more ownership for their education. I love that contribution to the communit. I have to say that one of my children is a severe level of Autism, so that might be a factor on my decision to not homeschool. It takes lots of commitment and bravery, I believe. I very few memories of my early learning at school in Africa but I have a strong and vivid memory of my father teaching me how to read. I think that says something about homeschooling, does not? Precious, right there!

     

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  • maria cordner

    maria cordner on March 1, 2015, 1:33 a.m.

    Sorry, just notice some typing mistakes in my comment. I typeed without glasses, which is to personify Mr. Magoo!

     

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  • Carol

    Carol on March 1, 2015, 2:10 a.m.

    I'm so glad you blog about homeschool.  Every family who has shared their homeschool / dyslexia story has been such an inspiration.  When we were in the early stages of discovering how dyslexia would impact our son I was so struck by how homeschool families were able to adjust.  The dyslexia was still there,but the kids were happy and healthy and dyslexia was only a part of their story.  I have really enjoyed seeing your kids growing in their individual personalities and pursuits.

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  • Amanda

    Amanda on March 1, 2015, 2:23 a.m.

    I'm so glad you are writing more about homeschooling again.  My boys are 12 and almost 14.  We have always homeschooled, but I have very few friends that are continuing with their older children.  We follow a very loose structure and I am always interested in hearing from others that homeschool in a similar way.

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  • Mystie Winckler

    Mystie Winckler on March 1, 2015, 4:33 a.m.

    Oh yay! I look forward to this series and am glad you are adding your voice to the sparse "homeschooling teens" collection. We're nearing that phase - my oldest is 11 - and I'm always grateful for those who are ahead of me in the journey sharing was has and hasn't worked for their families. 

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  • Sara

    Sara on March 1, 2015, 8:53 a.m.

    I am very excited to read your posts about homeschooling. Your past posts talking about how you encourage your kids to pursue their interest and giftings, and how you weave it into school has been so inspirational to me. We live overseas and our children have been going to an International school. God has been preparing my heart more and more towards taking them out and homeschooling them. I want them to have time to pursue and cultivate their interests and skills. My kids are a lot younger than your kids, but your posts have still been very inspiring to me. I'm drawn to posts about homeschooling older kids to get an idea have how different moms do it and to encourage me that it's possible even at that age. We'll be swimming upstream for this journey (all the kids in our community go to a brick and mortar school), and I really appreciate the inspiration I receive through your blog.

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  • Susan

    Susan on March 1, 2015, 11:34 a.m.

    I am a reader of both your blog and your friends blog. I was wondering what happened to her homeschool post. It was a beautiful post . My husband and I were talking at the dinner table the other night how people can be so hateful to people they do not know on the Internet. 

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  • Brenda Frank

    Brenda Frank on March 1, 2015, 1:05 p.m.

    I am not consistent in reading your blog, but always enjoy it when I do. We homeschool in Alberta, where there is more legislation, but homeschooling is quite prevalent. How is it now in Quebec? Just know that some of us have prayed for you guys in Quebec!  Wish we could meet in person! I have a 28 yr. old, 25 yr. old, 22 yr. old, and still at home an 18, 15, 12 and 8 yr. old!

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  • claire

    claire on March 1, 2015, 3:04 p.m.

    Hi Renee, I've read your writings for years and appreciate how reflective and intentional you are.  You remind me that my role of caring for a home and young children is very important.  My children are just 1 and 3, but we are setting the stage for homeschooling and even some decisions like not sending my 3 year old to preschool feel different. 

    I'd love to hear you expand more on the idea of generations living together even as your children age and in some ways the culture expectes them to leave home.  How do you balance the idea of strong communities and families when things like university, graduate school, a specific job in a new town, marriage, might pull your children away?

    -Claire

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  • Carol

    Carol on March 1, 2015, 3:10 p.m.

    I love reading your blog.  I decided to start homeschooling my daughter 3 years ago.  She has Asperger's and was in a special school.  But was was not learning anything and kept running out of the school and the teachers didn't even notice.  She is 15 now, has learned so much, and her behavior is so much better.  I think since we know our children best...who better to homeschool them than us.  She is a self directed learner (with a little help from mom) but now loves learning.  Enjoy your honest posts and look forward to more on homeschooling.  Thanks, Carol.

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  • Angela

    Angela on March 1, 2015, 9:21 p.m.

    Really looking forward to this series.  My oldest is 10 and we're deep in thought about what comes next.  Thank you for showing us a way that it can be done.  

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  • Amber

    Amber on March 1, 2015, 9:22 p.m.

    I'm looking forward to reading more about your family's homeschooling life.  I have found your posts - especially your kitchen table emails - very thought provoking, but I'm not sure I'm going to be able to participate in the online conversation much, if at all.  I'm in a somewhat similiar situation in that I feel like I need to recharge and reinvigorate for what is ahead...  but different in that I still have a very long way to go.  My five children range in age from 13 to 1 year old, and we're in our 8th year of homeschooling.  I'm starting to blearly look around after four very difficult years - an extremely difficult post-partum experience followed almost immediately by my most difficult pregnancy and then another challenging (but not quite so difficult) post-partum period.  I feel wrung out and I'm trying to reconnect with myself, my interests, and rekindle my enthusiasm and joy because I want to give my best not only to my brand-new teenager, but also to the four more children I have coming along behind!  While I'm only a year younger than you, I still have 17 years or so of this intensive parenting gig, and I need to take care of myself enough so that I can see it through.  

    I really wish I could participate more in the online world, but my computer time is so limited!  But I do think about what you were saying in regards to writing what you want to read...  I too love to read blogs where people are talking about educating older children at home, and who have been doing it for years and plan to keep on with the long haul.  Perhaps when I can be getting a little more regular sleep (the one year old is still up multiple times a night!) I'll be able to start getting up early again for a little more writing and computer time.  

    But even if I'm not very vocal, I'm here and your words are encouraging me and helping me to process and heal.  So thank you, Renee!

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  • Mary

    Mary on March 2, 2015, 12:48 a.m.

    Really happy to hear you will write more about homeschooling. My oldest is 10 and we're trying to figure out the best way forward for him, a super social little guy. Always enjoyed your blog but never posted. So here's my encouragement to please write lots and lots about how homeschooling works in your house. I'll be eager to read it all!

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  • Wendy

    Wendy on March 2, 2015, 1:28 p.m.

    I'm really looking forward to your homeschooling posts. I found you from your 'dear friend's' blog. She also writes beautifully about home schooling (amongst other things) and I so sorry she has had this experience. (I also did not see the comment and have no desire to read such mean, negative comments). I come to blogs like these because they are beautiful and inspiring and I really appreciate the time and effort it takes to maintain them. I homeschool my 13 year old daughter in the UK, where homeschooling is less popular (although numbers are increasing) than it is in the US and Canada. I have gained so much knowledge, inspiration and support from blogs so Thank you for posting about home schooling. 

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  • Stephanie

    Stephanie on March 2, 2015, 2:20 p.m.

    Thanks so much for this beautiful post. Yes, those are all the things I would love to read about too! Can't wait to read the series. I have a 3 yr old boy, 5 yr old girl, and 9 yr old son (also dyslexic). Thanks so much for sharing about your family!!!

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  • Leonardo

    Leonardo on March 3, 2015, 12:55 a.m.

    Your blog with  your posts are a blessing! Thanks for sharing quality content . (Greetings from Brazil! yes you have fans here!)

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  • Jordan Eliza

    Jordan Eliza on March 3, 2015, 2:10 a.m.

    I have enjoyed reading your posts for a while now, and I look forward to this highschool homeschooling series. I am an Elementary Montessori school teacher, and I don't yet have a family of my own. However, I plan to start one sometime in the future, and I imagine myself homeschooling children during the middle school years and plossibly longer. I love reading what works for other families and what doesn't. Thank you for sharing!

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  • Krista

    Krista on March 4, 2015, 2:49 a.m.

    I look forward to your series of posts! My current experience homeschooling my youngest looks and feels a fair bit different than the earlier years with my big kids. Not better or worse, just different. I still love the freedom we have to learn and grow together, and tailor each person's education to their learning styles, giftings, personal passions, and so forth. This year my youngest has largely been improving her French and studying about Paris in preparation for a summer vacation, exercising plenty and increasing in flexibility with her eating, writing (which she LOVES and does on her own regularly) and rehearsing for community theatre (she will play Mary in The Secret Garden). She couldn't have handled this role if she was not homeschooled (over 400 lines at 9 years old). I do find homeschooling harder with just one at home; it was nice when they had eachother to chat with and bounce ideas around.

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  • Mama Rachael

    Mama Rachael on March 4, 2015, 3:55 a.m.

    I LOVE ALL THE PATHFINDER PICTURES!!!! Yes, all caps on purpose. We love pathfinder, don't get to play that much, and I love hearing/seeing of upcoming players. I've got my 3 1/2 year old playing "Gibbly Gobblins" (a 3 year old translation of "We be gobblins" a one-off module), where there is Ook and Gibbly, two gobblin kids, going on adventures. And now bedtime stories involve him and his cousins on treasure seeking adventures with their swords and bows with gobblins chasing them for the map. :::sigh:::

    I'm so excited about the homeschool posts. I'm at the beginning of our journey in schooling (or unschooling as it may be), and reading your story so reminds me of our family. We are a technophilic, game playing, sci-fi loving, backpacking in the back country kind of family. We just happen to live in the far south (central Texas).

    I got this post saved in pocket, and will go back to some of those links in the post... soon... my boy keeps me quite busy.

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    • renee

      renee on March 4, 2015, 2:36 p.m.

      Delighted laughter... kindred Pathfinder spirits. RPG's are not my thing but my kids adore them, Pathfinder especially. Brienne and Laurent are really into it right now, doing bash demos but also doing short missions with Laurent game mastering. I've taken so many photos of Pathfinder lately I love that you identify with them!

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  • NebraskaCate

    NebraskaCate on March 4, 2015, 5:11 a.m.

    Hi, Renee! I am a long-time reader of your blog coming out of the shadows to say hi and thanks for years of encouraging, thoughtful words. We, too, are a home schooling family. We follow a much more rigorous academic schedule, but have also managed to leave room for individual pursuits and creativity. Our interests are in creative writing, music and the fiber arts. It has been fun watching the creative growth of your kids over the years as well.

    We followed your family thru your hike via the videos. My kids feel like they know your family now. My 13 yo daughter has connected with your youngest on social media. Even hundreds of miles away, we feel the kinship of creative interests, a passion for home schooling, and a love for our Savior. I'm excited to read what you have to share over the next few weeks!

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  • Laura

    Laura on March 4, 2015, 5:31 p.m.

    Renee, I am delighted that you will be sharing about homeschooling. I thought I would post a question or two, but life is busy right now (partly due to me re-learning algebra!) and my mind is in a whirl. If I think of anything, when things calm down, I'll be back to post. Otherwise, know that I will be reading along. As a mama of older children, I really appreciate it!

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  • Nicola

    Nicola on March 7, 2015, 1:23 a.m.

    I cannot wait to read more about this, Renee, although there are pieces I feel like I know, so it is lovely to see the changes and watch you all grow. I am so curious to read how you blend it all together without feeling a self-imposed pressure (or external pressure) to teach your children in any specific way. I am not sure that makes sense, but I feel like I am on this steep learning curve for homeschooling (when really, I just need to let go and let flow) because of the bumpy road to get here and how late in the game we came to homeschooling. (In reality, I know we haven't really arrived and I know we weren't late.) A bit of blather, but it is fun to know I am on the homeschool path with you, when I most certainly wasn't when I began reading your blog so many years ago!

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    • renee

      renee on March 7, 2015, 1:27 p.m.

      Nicola,

      I do follow an internal pressure to teach my children a certain way - according to our educational philosophy and with methods that work for who we are - that is a self-imposed pressure of sorts.

      I don't think feeling pressure, in and of itself, is bad. I feel an internal pressure to make sure my children are prepared for life, that's a good pressure, but we raise and educate our kids according to our rules for living, not someone else's, perhaps that's what you mean? I don't "track" with the school system, a charter system, etc. and so there isn't those external pressures either. 

      And I don't think you've arrived late. You arrive when you arrive. And that's part of your journey :)

      reply

  • Jaclyn B

    Jaclyn B on March 9, 2015, 4:36 p.m.

    I'm late to catch up on my blog reading, but I very much look forward to this series.  We are just new to homeschooling (my son is in kindergarten) and I still waffle on if this is the best choice for him.  I love to hear stories about how other families make a go of things!  The way you keep your family life centrally focused in all that you do is also something I love to read about.  Thank you for sharing!!

    reply

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