My husband and I have four children, currently ages 8 - 17, and they've always been homeschooled. My oldest is currently working on her Associates Degree from a community college, and wants to continue her education by pursuing a BA in Business/Film. My second oldest is high school age, and hopes to begin dual enrollment classes this fall. My youngest are both elementary ages.
Homeschooling On A Budget
When I first started homeschooling, I bought a single, expensive curriculum that I knew nothing about other than the fact that most of the families in our church were already using it to homeschool their children. With the development of the Internet, and access to so many good, free resources, I, years ago, ceased using that same tired curriculum for all my children just because I had to get my money's worth. (I'd so rather spend that money on outside classes or co-ops that can supplement and enhance my kids' learning).
This site began as a way for me to catalog all the great sites out there that can be used by people that can't afford, or don't necessarily want to "lock-in" to any particular curriculum or teaching method. After all, one of the great benefits of home education is the ability to mix and match resources to tailor to each of your children's learning styles and needs. The accessibility of free educational resources through the Internet makes that possible more today than ever. I hope that by putting some of my "finds" online, others can also benefit.
Our Roadschooling Experience
In September 2007, after 15 years of “building equity” through gradual improvements to our “fixer-upper” home, we sold it to set out on what would become a 20-month adventure, traveling across the USA while living in an RV. Not only was it a lot of fun, (not to mention a great tool for teaching about “living with less in much less space” – yes, it can be done!) but it was an invaluable educational experience for our children. We hope to repeat the experience in the not too distant future. You can read about some of what that trip was like here.
The "Socialization" Thing
The idea some people have that children educated at home are "unsocialized" (i.e. isolated, mal-adjusted religious freaks who grow up to be bad citizens) because they don't sit in a classroom six hours a day is an ignorant, ridiculous notion. It's a stereotype that persists despite the fact that homeschooled children are involved in all kinds of extracurricular activities, just like their publicly- and privately- schooled peers. In addition, through technology, the learning experience is no longer confined to a particular place. Online classes and mobile devices allow students to learn from anywhere, and this is becoming more common to all types of learners. Learning is also becoming a more flexible, customized experience for everyone. No one brings up socialization when a kid is enrolled in an online charter school; so why is it still an issue for homeschoolers even when we make use of the same kinds of resources?
I chose to call the site unSocialized to indicate that we have chosen not to have our children "socialized" by the state system. We do not believe that the school system is the best place for our children to be socialized. Rather, we chose an environment that we felt was more conducive to learning, and where we would be free to impart our values. I am not against all public and private education. I do not think all teachers are evil. And I do not think home education is something that would work well for every family. I do believe, however, that we all have the right to make whatever decision we think would be best for our children, and I am grateful to live in a country that allows that.
My husband and I feel blessed that we have been able to homeschool our children. There have been some rough patches along the way, and there have been times of doubt, but I have never regretted the decision. Whatever kind of homeschooler you call yourself, whatever curriculum and methods you employ, I hope this site will offer you something useful. Let's celebrate home education -- in all its myriad forms.
It’s all about the journey…. But as Christians, we know it’s also about the destination. Hebrews 11:13 – 16.
- Bob, Tracey, Leah, Sarah, James, and Anna Kmosko (Maiden, NC)