About Us… Homeschool Before & After

Homeschooling my first 6 years … the before

I quickly became worn out, discouraged, and frustrated with homeschooling. I felt like a constant slave to my curriculum and lesson plans. Some days, I pushed my kids through the lessons not knowing how I would do it again the next day. And on the days when we didn’t make it through all of the lessons, I wound up feeling like a complete failure, worried that I was causing my kids to fall behind.

  • I wanted time for fun learning.
  • I wanted the flexibility to follow my kids’ interests.
  • I wanted to dig deeper into topics that really interested us.
  • I wanted time to take a day off for a field trip or other projects.

We were too busy with our daily lessons to fit these things into the schedule!

In my meltdown moments (cycles is probably a better word),

  • I researched new curricula and new methods.
  • I abandoned curricula mid-year.
  • I redid our schedule.
  • Bought new resources.
  • Tried a new method.
  • And started the cycle again when things didn’t work out.

After 6 years of this cycling, I was ready to give up.

Homeschooling since those first 6 years … the after

In 2006, I found a way to end this cycle and everything changed.

Now I have these freedoms...

  • I am no longer tied down by curricula, methods, schedules, or lesson plans.
  • I freely plan my year around my family’s needs and desires.
  • We have time for fun learning.
  • We have complete flexibility.
  • We dig deeper when we want.
  • We can follow kids’ interests.

I have found my joy in homeschooling!

Finding joy and freedom in your homeschool does not need to take years of experience, struggles, trial-and-error like it did for me.

About Our Family

We have a blended family of ten children. I have four adopted, four biological, and two step children (some adults, some in public school, and the rest homeschooling somewhere K-12). My husband and I both work full-time from home. 

What we do each year is different according to what the season holds for each child, our marriage, and our jobs.  We face unique challenges and logistics with such a diversely blended family, but there are also tremendous blessings. :)  The opportunity to homeschool is just one of those blessings.  We homeschool using a blend of methods that lend themselves well to notebooking.  Notebooking isn't ALL we do, but notebooking is what gives us the freedom we enjoy in our homeschooling.

We have learned valuable lessons through trial-and-error and many struggles. It is our sincere PLEASURE to share these experiences and lessons with you. 

— Blessings,

Debra
& Brian Reed

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