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Home school fantasy

Almost as soon as my kids started school this year (daughter in kindergarten and twin sons in pre-k), I started thinking about home school. Despite my bliss at having mornings to myself, my house actually being clean, and having lunch dates without a playground, I found myself thinking about and researching home school.

There are so many things that draw me to the world of home school.

I think I would love the routine. I would enjoy the exploration I would be able to do along with my children. I would love to take vacations at off peak times and avoid the crowds. I think I would like having them around more. I think that home school offers more opportunity to explore, delve into interesting subjects, and allows them to develop at their own individual pace rather than trying to mold themselves into a "normal" pattern of development.

There are things about home school that frighten me.

What if they don't listen to me? They seem to be much more obedient when other adults tell them things than when I tell them. I don't want to be locked in an endless power struggle day after day. When will I ever be able to grocery shop alone again? How will I find time for doctor appointments and running errands? How will I ever keep my house clean? I worry that I won't have enough ideas to keep them interested. When my daughter tells me something she learns in school, I don't know if I would have thought to teach it. Obviously there are curriculum helps, but I worry that mine will be the only perspective they will be taught from, and I don't think that is a good thing. I worry that they will do nothing but fight and argue all day long (let's face it- we all get along better when we have a little time apart). I don't look forward to all the work on my part of finding and preparing and teaching them all the things there are to learn. I do enough work as it is!

When my twin sons started struggling in their pre-k class this year, I didn't hesitate to take them out and keep them home with me. It has been a wonderful decision. They have made amazing progress on learning their letters (except for the letter "E" of course), and we only spend about 20 minutes a day on structured learning. The rest of their day is spent in imaginative play, which is what I believe will benefit them most at age 4. We explore museums, and zoos, aquariums, and the local parks. I love the lifestyle, for the most part. I don't worry too much about the learning aspect, because it is only pre-k, and I feel pretty qualified to teach them letters and numbers.

I'm not ready at this point to make a decision one way or the other. After all, the perfect solution isn't really available to me. You see, I want my kids to be home schooled, I just don't want to be the teacher.

This is an original post from the Deep South Moms Blog (www.deepsouthmoms.com). Shanna blogs about family life and whatever else pops into her head at 3 Cute Kids. © Shanna. Dist. by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.