Welcome to Meet em' Mondays.
This week we have the Ahlgrims family from Oklahoma with us.
Family Name: The Ahlgrims
Ages of your children:
Vesper is 3, and Grey is 2.
How long have you been homeschooling?
What state do you live in and is it a homeschool friendly state?
Oklahoma, and yes, it is a fantastic place to homeschool!
What is homeschool to you?
Creating an environment that promotes learning in all situations for our children. It also means the freedom to tailor lessons to the learning styles for my children in order to set them up for success in the future.
What made you initially decide to start homeschooling?
I was an education major in college and my husband and I always knew it was something we wanted to try. When we realized our oldest was advanced, it only reaffirmed our decision to do so!
How do you choose your curriculum?
When I first began doing research, I thought that I would need to choose a style and a curriculum right away. But because we're only doing PreK/ K, that hasn't been the case. Instead of using an out-of-the-box curriculum, we chose to create our own Unit Studies with a theme for each week. We cover reading and writing every day, and then down either Math, Science, or Art. We're using the few couple of years as a trial period to figure out what type of curriculum we'd actually like to use in the future!
Do you stay with a schedule or are you more flexible?
We stick pretty closely to a schedule, as my kids tend to respond better to having a predictable routine. But our school only takes about two hours each day, so we're flexible within our schedule as well!
How do you handle the family schedule?
I keep a paper calendar and one large family calendar in the kitchen so everyone knows what's going on and when.
How do you make sure your child has regular interaction with peers?
We are very active in our church and attend there about three times a week for various activities. We also do one of our schooling days at a local Early Learning Center- a "Mother's Day Out" of sorts- where they have a regular teacher and classmates and attend music and PE classes as well as work on things like letters and colors. Additionally, our daughter is enrolled in Tap and Ballet classes at a dance studio.
What resources are available if you do not understand how to teach the material you are supposed to teach?
Luckily, we haven't run into this yet! But I take comfort in knowing that our area has plenty of local co-ops to attend, and I have lots of online groups of other homeschooling moms and teachers that are more than willing to lend a helping hand. The homeschool community really is one of the most generous I've ever seen! Sharing knowledge is a really awesome thing!
What has been the most surprising part of homeschooling?
We originally started homeschooling because our oldest was already beginning to read at 3 years old. She craves school work and I knew she would really excel- and she has, but the most surprising part is the benefit her little brother has received from our homeschooling! He is only 2.5 and has had little interest in learning traditional things so far (letters, colors, shapes, etc) but lately, just being included in our daily school time, he has really started to open up and spout off answers when he knows them! You can tell he's so proud of himself, and it really makes my heart happy as his momma!
You can follow The Ahlgrims family on their blog at: Everyday Light
Thank you so much Chelsea for sharing your beautiful family with us!