Where our homeschooling journey began:

I promised myself to write one blog post a month at least. Knowing I would be delving into our decision to homeschool had me seriously procrastinating. The last couple years haven’t been exactly easy. When I reflect back, the build up to homeschooling ranks right up there with one of the most painful parts.

Lily, my oldest, has always been an exemplary student. She has loved books since infancy. Teachers love her. She’s intelligent, kind hearted, and well behaved.

Colin, my middle, started school at three for speech. He is possibly the funniest kid I’ve ever had the privilege of knowing. Very charming and loving towards everyone. He’s a hard worker IF he likes you. Boy did he like his speech pathologist. I’m so happy she was brought into his life. His speech quickly progressed and he formed bonds with every teacher he had in preschool and kindergarten. To this day he talks about his old school and how much he misses his teachers.

Then we moved to Colorado Springs (there’s much more to that story, but that’s for another blog post on another day.) I toyed with the idea of homeschooling initially in Colorado because I didn’t want to put them in a school just to pull them out once we finally bought a home in a good school district. Our rental wasnt in the greatest school district, but it wasn’t the worst either. I was met with a stern ‘you’ll regret that’ by some teacher friends and figured they knew best.

Lily was not excited to start at her new school but Colin was thrilled. I have to admit, I wasn’t feeling really great about the school myself. Colin had an IEP & they were not ready for him. His teacher was confused and not even slightly helpful about this. It didn’t take long for Colin to dread going. He would cry and tell me how he was getting his recesses taken away every day because he’s “stupid” & “his brain doesn’t work right.”

My day consisted of me begging him to go in the mornings, dropping him off, crying and worrying the entire day until I got to pick him back up. Heading home and pulling out all his school work and doing it with him for 10-20mins each evening. I asked the school to get him a classroom aid on multiple occasions but they said it wasn’t needed.

He was unable to write quickly & efficiently. Because of this independent learning was extremely difficult. Because of that difficulty his recesses were taken away to continue having a hard time doing that work independently. That work would be sent home uncompleted for me to do with him. I felt like I was going insane.

Day after day Colin would share his terrible experiences with me. It was wearing on him. It was wearing on all of us. He lost his love for learning at the age of 6. Cause of death: a failing system with one size fits some education. We couldn’t continue sending our kid somewhere that took his happiness away.

I pulled him from school just after Thanksgiving break 2016. Once we decided to move back home (again, a blog post for another day) it made sense to pull Lily to homeschool as well, at least until we find a home in a great school district.

I want to make it clear that I am a lover of public schools and a huge supporter of public school teachers. Up until Colins first grade teacher, I have had truly excellent relationships with every single one of my kids teachers & their school. I’ve trusted them and felt I was putting my kids in the best hands.

My family is the single most important thing to me in this world. To be very frank, the opinions of people living outside of this home do not matter when it comes to what’s best for us. Whether you’re for or against homeschooling or public schooling, this is what’s best right now. Later things may change because public school isn’t going anywhere.

You never know what the month might bring…

✌🏼Michaela Tighe

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