Okay, so far I have gone from total excitement about the new curriculum to a nose-diving depression of gloom pervading every corner of my life! K12 is torture! K12 is hell!
So why am I doing this?
Because I want my children to be at grade level when they re-enter public school.
And I want them to re-enter public school because they want to re-enter public school. Two of them do, anyway. One of them may be content to stay home. That’s fine with me—whatever works.
But speaking of “working,” having at least two of the kids in school would free up more time for me to work again! I’d still be home working, but I’d have more time to do it in.
So far test results confirm what I already know about my oldest: he’s “at risk.” I’ve decided to restructure my day (which wasn’t really working, anyway) and start my days off focusing on his school, and only his school, until a certain point in the day. He needs one-on-one instruction. I don’t know if he’s “Special Ed,” but he IS a special kid. He always has been.
And now that you mention it, what’s so wrong about being “special needs” in the first place? I started to say “Well, no one in my family has ever been,” but that’s NOT true. I’m pretty sure one of my brothers should have been in special ed. I am certain I had an uncle who was brain-damaged.
No, there are worse things in life than being in Special Ed or being held back a years in school if necessary.
It’s hard for me because I always excelled at school. I went to college on multiple academic scholarships. I was identified young for Northwestern’s genius kid program. I am SMART.
And that’s the thing. No matter how smart I am, it doesn’t make 6th grade algebra easier for my sweet boy. He’s been very game to take it on, and I feel awful for being so hard on him—he must feel like he can never please me. I need to turn that around. A week & a half of it is far more than enough. Done done done.
Then, for my other special needs kid. No test scores back from him, yet, but what I observe is pretty much unchanged: he is gifted. Like me, so of course his special academic need doesn’t damage my pride or bring ego into the issue. (I’m just being honest here—I would love him regardless, but there is definitely an expectation on my part that all my kids be smart, realistic or not.)
But emotionally, he is not like me, because he has no overwhelming desire to be first place in everything. He would rather just do his own thing independent of any stinking curriculum, thank you very much. So far he has drawn cartoons on nearly every page he’s touched, in each textbook or workbook. I have to set timers to keep him on task. I have to offer rewards, and he can’t always leave at the normal time for visits with his dad, which I think it sad—but if this were a public school, same rule would apply.
The thing about this kid is that when he applies himself, he whips through most stuff with ease. I am teaching him how to print properly from his brother’s 2nd grade hand-writing workbook, but other than that, he’s a natural.
Youngest boy is doing great. He’s right on level with 2nd grade everything, and improving every day. He’ll likely begin to pull ahead of the curve now that he’s got a curriculum. This child loves to learn and has an easy-going temperament. I have still lost my temper with him and I regret that. When the boys fight, it used to not alarm me so much. NOW, I’m trying to teach algebra to a special needs kid while an ODD kid provokes a 2nd grader into a fist-fight, and I’m LOSING it!
So there we are, back at Hell’s gate.
But I never lose sight of why I’m doing this.
So…I’m going to try it a different way:
- Sam first
- Seamus next (with timers & incentives)
- Sean last (his work takes less time & he’ll soon be caught up even though we started a week behind.
I’ll also be doing Saturday lessons until we’re all caught up with the rest of the school.
And, you know…there’s one other student I haven’t even covered.
What does my toddler learn when she sees Mommy and Bubbers fighting over school? She cries. That is not a good thing.
Yes, K12 has wrecked my home, but I’m not going to let it stay wrecked. I’m GOING to make this work so that our lives are peaceful again.
Or else what?
Or else we’ll quit K12. Simple as that.