Home of the Dragons!!
Welcome Parents, Students, Friends and Family! This is the first blog post for Coventry Academy. Some of you may have gotten here from “Off the Hook”, my other blog. If you did, then thanks for reading there! I appreciate each and every person that reads any post!
A few days ago when thinking about my poor neglected blog, I thought, geeze, I should separate them. Off the Hook was intended for crafting, which has been pushed aside by my garden, which is nearly finished with all of it’s wonder. With school in session I could just see OtH being taken over by schooling once I got back into blogging, and I didn’t want that to happen. SO! Here we are!
This year our family took on the adventure, or challenge of homeschooling our oldest child. Jack is a very excitable and distract-able child…but is he also very smart. He attended public school for 2 years, where he learned successfully to read and comprehend, to write and to do some mathematics. Which is fantastic! He did well academically, almost as if it came perfectly natural to him. Of course we were pleased and proud of his progress through learning, and he ate it up! He loved reading so much that by the end of Kindergarten he was reading at a mid-year first grade level. By the start of first grade, he was reading near the end of first grade, almost 2nd grade level, and it goes on from there. In the first grade his (very small) reading group actually read The Wizard of Oz. I still haven’t read that!!
While he is very smart, and motivated to learn, he just can’t quite sit still. He is nearly incapable of sitting still for 20 minutes, much less the entire day. So, it was to be expected that he had ‘behavior’ problems. Well, we, like many other parents, just hoped he would ‘get used to’ school and learn how to follow the flock and sit quietly during learning times. But by the end of first grade it was clear this was not the case with Jack. He just would not do it. Which I can understand, who really WANTS to do nothing but sit in a desk all day and learn. Follow the whole class around in a line. Well, you remember school.
About half way through the year while Jack was home with the flu, I was looking into what our options were for schooling. I mean, if he were home schooling, maybe I could get him to do a small work sheet or something each day he was sick. Maybe? If not at least I wouldn’t have a HUGE PILE of make up work, and trying to teach two lessons a day to catch up. It was amazing the amount of work he brough home with him. It did take us all week to catch up, and then some. It was during this time that I learned of K-12 (www.k12.com) and their Virtual Academies. I got a call from a representative of K-12 who told me all about Georgia Virtual Academy (GVA) (www.k12.com/gva) and how it was still a public school through the state of Georgia, but with the flexibility of schooling AT HOME! I was hooked! And, it just got better from there. IT’s FREE. Yes, that’s right, all our text books and other supplies were completely free.
I tried to learn as much as I could, and presented it to my husband and told him that I really thought it was the way to go. No more putting Jack on restriction because of a ‘bad’ behavior report, and no more stressing if he was going to mess up big! (One day he was running in the classroom and knocked over a bookshelf (that was not standing against a wall, instead being used kind of like a ‘room seperator’ to make the entrance to the classroom a little like a foyer…which was a bad idea if you ask me…an unsecured bookshelf in a 1st grade classroom??? Maybe something a 5th grader can handle.) And we talked about it until just before school ended for the year, when we finally decided we were going to pull him out of the Brick and Mortar school and teach him at home.
School officially started on August 17th, we have had his books and materials since early July, and access to the online school since August 3rd, which is when we started. We built up, one lesson a day for the first week, then 2 for the 2nd week, to 3 during official week 1. Now we are starting week 3 officially, and are up to 4 hours of schooling a day. It sounds like a lot, and it IS, but it’s set up very nicely. It didn’t take long for me to find my way around the OLS (OnLine School), and figure out how to go about our day. We start each day with Math, then Language Arts. Then Science and History alternate. If we aren’t teaching a lesson of Science, we review the previous lesson, same goes for History.
I want to use this blog to talk about our days, and maybe share some of the neat things we do. I’m sure there are plenty of eclectic homeschoolers who have more fun than we do, but we hope to reach that level some day. That’s all for now, I hope you enjoy what I hope this blog becomes 🙂