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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.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Introducing Trys

I’m not usually one to talk much about myself much, but we’ve been asked to introduce ourselves for this month’s SA Carnival of Homeschool Bloggers so here goes:

2011_0917HomeSchoolPhotoDay001_thumb1. Short Bio…

I'm Patrizia but most know me as Trys (derived from Trysie or Patrys as I was known at school) or Trixi which is the German equivalent of Trysie. I was born in Bergisch Gladbach, Germany, but immigrated to SA with my parents in 1975, when I was 5 years old. Since we moved a lot, I grew up in Vanderbijlpark, Port Elizabeth & Roodepoort resulting in an inability to make life-long friends since the postal service in those days was slow & unreliable. After school I moved to Cape Town and met my dearest hubby of almost 20 years in Sanlam’s youth hostel in Bellville, Western Cape, whilst working at Sanlam Unit trust in 1991.You can read more about my life at our personal family blog, Peace Haven.
We now live in Roodepoort with our sons Jesse (14) and Misha (9). We've been home educating Misha since August 2010 and Jesse finished grade 7 at private school, but came home last year January, so we've been home educating about 18 months now.

2. We home educate because ...

My hubby nagged me for 3 years to home educate our boys, but since homework time was always too stressful I felt I would be strangling my kids within the first 3 weeks if I had to educate myself. Honestly I lacked the confidence in myself. I started doing serious research into home education whilst recovering from my neck operation in 2010.
We finally took up home educating our very active, yet intelligent 2nd grader towards the end of grade 2 because had been struggling through private school since grade R. We discovered that his gross & fine motor skills hadn't been properly addressed at grade R level & that he is a kinaesthetic, visual-spatial & right-brained learner whose learning style was not being catered for at school. Due to the stress & frustrations he experienced, Misha hated school with a passion, was always tired, frustrated & whiney. Homework time became a major frustration for both of us. His teacher expected myself & his remedial teacher to "fix" his lacking foundation in order to get him through grade 2 so we decided we would achieve more doing it without the school pressure & fatigue, so we brought him home. You can read more about this at my blog's "About Us" page.
Home educating one child whilst still taking the other to school proved too disruptive to our schedule, so we brought Jesse home as well at the end of that year. We figured we'd take a year to get him up to date, and then let them go back to school if they chose to go back. Needless to say, they don’t want to go back & we have since decided that there's no way they would ever go back in to the system if we can prevent it. For us the benefits of home education by far outweigh those of the system & we're enjoying the freedom that it has brought. We love the way we can schedule learning around our needs instead of trying to fit our lives around schooling. We’re loving the practical, hands-on learning as well as all the informative field trips we are able to attend.
Now some may ask, what about socialisation?... That's ok, I questioned it too before we started, but honestly, my boys have a much better social life now than they have had ever before. They attend a homeschoolers' ice skating once a month just for the fun of it. We do many of field trips where they interact socially with various different age groups, not only their own. They do boy scouts & attend scouting events on weekends. They also do Junior Engineering once a week. Since they're no longer stressed & tired all the time they venture out more often than before to explore other areas of interest. This weekend they attended a homeschooler's fun day/sleepover with a group of about 20 kids ranging from 9 to 18, just to play games, interact & have fun. They got home tired as zombies because they didn't sleep all night but they loved it. Seriously, they are learning to interact with more than just their own age groups & it's amazing to see the improvements in their personalities. No more constant whining & fighting between siblings but more love, acceptance & tolerance.

3. Five Favourites! The things I most like to ...

  1. see... the excitement my little one expresses when he realises he can do something new… this week he suddenly discovered he can read the time on the clock & oh the joys of progress
  2. hear ... the sounds of my kiddos having fun & enjoying themselves whilst learning
  3. smell ... the sound & smell of the rain and also flowers, although they tend to mess with my hayfever.
  4. taste ... ice cream still remains a favourite, but unfortunately messes with the sinuses so I only do that occasional “ eat now & regret later” indulgence
  5. touch ... oh I just love my two cuddle-bums whose regular “Sit-on-Mommy” times have become the highlight of my days.
2012_0116_083313_thumb[2] Oh, I so love having the boys home with me, I treasure the moments of reading & learning with them as well as just being sat on just to spend time being together. Pretty soon they'll be all grown up & I trust they'll be safe & secure in the knowledge that they were loved & important enough for mom to sacrifice all of her time to make sure they are educated & loving learning.~Trixi's-Digi-Scraps-000-Logo[4]
I also love digital scrapbooking, but because my children need me more, I have had to place Trixi's Digi-Scraps on the back burner for the time being until we've settled into home educating to the extend that I can find time for scrapping again. I do miss my nightly scrap-therapy and am looking forward to finding time for it again in the hopefully near future.

4. This year I hope to ...

do whatever it takes to help my boys restore their love for learning. I’m also working through some personal issues & trust that this time I’ll manage to deal with my hurts, insecurities & a lifetime of rejections once & for all… Since my husband is currently my only true & trusted friend, I'm trusting God for that 1 friend that will "stick closer than a brother" & be there through all the seasons for the rest of my life no matter the distance that may bring separation...
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This post features on the South African Carnival of Homeschool Bloggers (SACH Bloggers) where South African home schoolers share experiences, ideas, philosophies and much more.  You can join the carnival too by heading to the South African Carnival of Homeschool Bloggers sign up page. We hope you enjoy the carnival as much as we have!

SACH Blog February 2012: Introductions