In a homeschooling house full of 7 kids & 3 guniea pigs....there is never a dull moment! A lot of people show genuine concern for us and want to know how we are doing, as the road we've left behind was not a pleasant one. So, here I am, to tell some of our stories...share some of our days...and open up a part of our world to you! Come join us on our journey so you won't miss the moments that take our breath away!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Good things are happening!

I have been somewhat of a stranger to the blogging world lately...but I have some good excuses!  Good things are happening around here and we have so much to be excited about!  The past few months have left me overwhelmed with joy and anticipation and sometimes stress and worry and the past few weeks have been extremely stressfull...but things are finally coming together and I am finally able to take a sigh of relief...well, almost!

You see...Cardinal is going into 9th grade next year.  She has a goal of being a Veterinarian and I have tried so hard to really focus on that and to get her involved into certain programs to help enable her to reach her dreams.  I still have hopes of finding a Vet that will allow her to shadow them for a day and we will be volunteering at a local animal training facility.  We have started our breeding program and guinea pig rescue (though we are limited due to our living arrangements).  We still haven't heard from our 4-H branch but have hopes of getting her involved there as well but all-in-all we are still building an attractive resume for her.  I've always done what I feel is best for my children, especially when it comes to their education.  I am a firm believer in homeschooling, however, I have recently become aware of the fact, that my children are eligible for scholarships to attend private schools in our state.  It just so happens that we live within a few miles of a high school with the reputation of being compared to that of an "ivy league" school.  Cardinal has been begging for the past 2 years to go to a brick and mortar school.  We live in a very bad public school district and there was no way I was sending my kids to school there.  This new information made me rethink all of this.  It didn't take much thinking as far as Cardinal is concerned, as I feel that it is important to try and get Cardinal into a brick and mortar to finish out her high school career.  I want her to to work to her full potential and I just am not feeling that I am getting her to reach that at home any longer.  I often threaten her that I will not hesitate to send her to public school if she does not do what is expected of her at home.  I think she saw that as in invitation and her ticket to brick and mortar.  So, here we are.  We had a list of four schools that we were going to apply to, but come to find out all but one of them charge $100-150 for an application fee.  This is not an affordable option for us but as luck would have it, the one school we wanted to get her into was the only one that didn't charge a fee.  Although, it is probably also the hardest one to get into and come to find out the deadline to enroll was Dec. 1, 2011 and the high school entrance exam was given in November.  I called and spoke with the admissions department and with all this against us, they are still willing to look at her portfolio but things have to be done very quickly!  Today, I was able to assemble the best portfolio I can and looks pretty darn good!  I don't have everything they wanted, but I think I have "enough".  Tomorrow morning we will be off to deliver the best we've got!

With all of this, I decided to give Hawk the option of going to brick and mortar or staying home despite the fact that he excels at home and I am very satisfied with his continued progress  being at home...but in all reality, in another two years, I will be trying to get him into a high school as well, so why not give him the opportunity to adjust to a different setting beforehand.  He wants to go to brick and mortar as well.  We do have to pay a $100 enrollment fee for him, but I think he will get in the school we want for him. 

With these changes, I began to re-evaluate the curriculum I am using for Eagle.  I tried to switch him to the Calvert curriculum at the beginning of the year, but it was not an option.  The curriculum we are using for him is just no longer working for him as well, so I have decided to go ahead and switch him this year rather than feeling like I am failing him with our current curriculum choice.  He's doing ok with the curriculum we are using, but I just feel he is capable of doing better.  Our curriculum is very advanced and very fast paced and I just feel that it is a little too much for him.  I don't feel that he is retaining what I would like him to retain.  I feel that he is being rushed through a curriculum that he needs to be able to take at a slower pace and I feel like Calvert has so much more to offer him.

Macaw will continue with Calvert as she is doing much better than I could have hoped for.  Emu is beginning the Calvert K now as he is going to be quite a challenging student so I feel he needs a head start!  Duckling will be working alongside of Emu learning her letters and working on her preschool workboxes!

So, I can enjoy the rest of this school year with busy working children eager for what next year school year has to offer and striving to be their best!  I hope that we can really enjoy the last 4 months of this school year and that Cardinal and Hawk can look back with pride and know that I've done what has been best for them through all of these years and I hope they can look back at some fond memories of being homeschooled.  I feel that I have done an amazing job at preparing them for where they are headed.

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