“We homeschool; so we are flexible.”
I say that when I want a doctor’s appointment quickly; when people wonder why B is doing his PE at the park, “during school hours,” when we are “still,” doing kitchen table school in Summer; when we aren’t doing kitchen table school in other times; and sometimes when I don’t really have time to talk about homeschooling and want a gracious escape from a conversation.
But we can’t seem to flex our way out of other institution’s schedules completely. This year I have to get my kids’ assessments into the principals quickly, since my town is holding shorter school office hours this Summer. If I want the principals to get my kids’ paperwork over to the Superintendent’s office in time for her to check that box before she approves our plan for next year – I have to get it all done by next Friday. The photos haven’t come yet from snapfish, neither have the special page protectors I was going to play with, (no, you don’t have to get fancy to report in Massachusetts, but I am a scrapbooker, and summarizing is hard for me!) I haven’t written all of it yet – we haven’t done all of the rest of this year’s school yet.
Not only is the office for M not available as much as other years, but the principal will be busy this time of year herself. I have never worked with her before, but I tend to think she will appreciate brevity, so I’m going to try for it: a one page wrap up, gleaned from the entries in the actual portfolio. DH told me this morning that he thinks in bullet points and it’s easy for him; fleshing out is hard. I have the opposite difficulty.
I also sort of don’t know what questions I need to answer. When I used to turn in the very complete portfolios, I just showed what we did, described how we taught and left it at that. A one page narration should tell what M knows. AHEM has a sample page up for a 6 year old, I’ll be using that model this year.
B’s evaluation will be the standardized test, which may not get here before the office closes.
OH this assessment process: Have I ever gotten useful info out of It? Even the standardized test?
B might have disgraphia… his reading skill is (was) asynchronous…. what a creative boy…
Tell me something I don’t know! But they were always nice about it. OH Wait – I did get two things useful out of it; a deadline for making the portfolio, and being forced to think through how things are really going. Oh third, a feeling of closure and relief.
As homeschoolers, we are flexible; but we are also affected by budget cuts in the schools, budget cuts in the library and while we don’t have to get up when the times changes for day light savings, Daddy does, so we do too. We don’t (in Massachusetts) have to homeschool during the American traditional time for school hours and months, but we get fewer weird looks if we do, and the offices we interface with are more available if we are on their time frame.
So, we aren’t in the mainstream, but we do feel the current.