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Our Reasons for Home Education:

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Although he was achieving good results, he wasn't reaching his full potential because his love for learning had been destroyed & hence his grades were steadily declining.

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Completely failed by the system, he hated school, was always tired & homework time was a major frustration for both of us. He was severely frustrated & quickly heading to become yet another ADHD statistic.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Letting Go & Moving Forward

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We have a very active, yet highly intelligent 7 year old, who has been struggling through school for the past 2 years. It has recently come to our attention that his gross & fine motor skills foundation has not been addressed properly at a Gr. R level. He is also a visual & active learner & this learning style is not catered for in most of our schools today.

“A mother’s first duty to her children is to secure for them a quiet and growing time, a full six years of passive receptive life, the waking part of it for the most part spent out in the fresh air.” ~ Charlotte Mason

that's where the "system" failed our little one quite miserably...

The school focused too early & too much on academics & neglected the motor skills as well as visual perception. Midline crossing & skipping, being very important skills for fluent reading are just 2 of many areas that have not been addressed properly. Although he can memorise paragraphs, like a parrot, he struggles to read. He Aces his spelling tests but cannot spell when writing sentences. These are just a few of the issues we’ve been working on together with his pre-school teacher to get him through Gr. 2. Up to now he’s been able to cope with his intelligence, but the struggling has impacted his self-esteem very negatively & caused him to dislike school with a passion.

Although the school tried to address the problem with remedial (at additional cost to us as parents) & extra lessons, these showed very little success, but instead placed extra workload & repetition rather than addressing the foundation of the problem... hence we've took him back to his preschool teacher twice a week since August last year so she could do physical activities & brain gym with him in order to get the brain development going. This has shown huge improvement, but his backlog is so big that he still gets very fidgety in class when he doesn’t understand the tasks at hand.

‎"Every student can learn. Just not on the same day or in the same way." ~ George Evans

We know now that Misha’s just a normal active little boy who’s trying to cope with a situation that's way beyond his control. It breaks my heart to see such a highly intelligent child struggling at school & being so frustrated...

We've recently registered him with Le-Amen Education Centre in Ruimsig & have pulled him out of school on Friday. What I like about Le-Amen is that they are registered with the Gauteng education department and they supply the curriculum at very reasonable prices. The kids’ work books have to be handed in 3 times a year to be monitored by qualified teachers & at the end of the school year they issue school reports to the children. Both parent & kids are monitored & at matric level they write the same IEB exams as the private schools.

We’ll be using this week to let him destress & deschool Misha. In the interim he’ll be using www.time4learning.com online curriculum to put the fun back into learning. Then we'll continue his schooling, but will also have to go back as far as Gr. R in order to address his foundation. I just hope we caught it on time to repair the damage & that we will be able to help him reach his full potential in life.

‎"Mothers write on the hearts of their children what the hand of time can't erase." (Unknown)

When I look at the amount of kids in our schools that end up in remedial & extra lessons, I cannot help but wonder how many of them are highly intelligent kids, like Misha, whose foundations have been proved lacking & due to that will be struggling through school for the rest of their lives… I just cannot understand how it is possible in today’s day & age, with all the knowledge available to our teachers regarding the importance of physical activities being the foundation to develop brain functions in our little ones that they still let them sit cooped up in classrooms with academics all day at such a young age. Our little ones should be playing more & learning less… the academics will follow as soon as the body is sorted…

I must confess, I’ve spent months stressing about Misha’s situation & was fuming, when the teacher’s plan to resolve this issue was aimed at Misha’s preschool teacher & myself addressing the foundation in order to get him through Gr. 2. As far as I was concerned, we pay expensive school fees & he shouldn’t have been in this situation in the first place. Today, however, I can honestly say the burden’s lifted & I have peace in my heart that we’ve made the right decision for our boys.

"When we forgive someone, it doesn't make them right or justify what they have done. It releases them into God's hands so He can deal with them. Forgiveness is actually the best revenge because it not only sets us free from the person we forgive, but it sets us free to move into all God has for us." ~ Stormie O'Martian

The school & their staff have been forgiven… I’m letting go & we’re moving forward… I pray for wisdom to make the right decisions in order to continuously guide our sons into reaching their full potential…

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