I was so nervous as I started to put together my application form to get an exemption certificate for Charlotte (my eldest) so that I could home school her. When I received the form it seemed terrifying, so many questions to answer, so many things they wanted to know. It felt like I was back at school and my knowledge was being tested but then if you think about it I suppose it was and with good reason.
I have always known I wanted to keep my kids home with me. Before I was even a Mum I knew it's what I wanted. It seems so natural to me to have them close by and to teach them myself. I know them better than any teacher every could, their moods, their strengths, their not so strengths(!) and what makes them tick. I am so excited to be teaching them, it is such an adventure for all of us. I also know it's not for everyone and I have no disrespect for anyone who chooses that their kids are better off in mainstream school, I just knew this is what we wanted.
I sent in my forms with a DVD which I will attempt to load here (might be too much for my technical expertise!!) and just one week later the exemption certificate landed on my doorstep with a lovely note attached saying 'Congratulations, I can tell from your application how much you want to do this P.s loved the video' I can't tell you how happy I was, I burst into tears ( I wasn't expecting that!) I felt totally overwhelmed, relieved and so so happy. Charlotte and I danced around the room so excited knowing we finally had the all important official green light.
I know many home schoolers don't like to do the forms and some even object to the questions asked. I found it a really useful experience, it made me question my motives, my curriculum, my teaching practices and most of all what I wanted to achieve and it has been a really positive experience. If I had advice for anyone filling in their forms it would be....be honest, speak from your heart and answer all their questions openly and honestly. After all they just want to know that we have our children's best interests at heart and that we have the ability to offer our kids a good education from home.
Tomorrow will be such a celebration of home school. I think I will dedicate the day to all of Charlotte's favourite subjects! Today has been the best day in ages, it feels like a huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders!
Have an awesome night folks! Happy Valentines Day!
P.s Any prospective home schoolers out there I am always happy to share thoughts and ideas you can get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org