Summer

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So while Summer heats our lives; we have been doing some stuff.  On June 10 we went on a field trip to Austin, TX.  How much kids can enjoy the road trips!  It took us a little more than 3 hours to get there.  We visited the city but the day was so hot that it was pretty hard to walk around.  We just wanted to stay in the car.

But our destination was the University of Texas in Austin.  There was going to be a presentation called: Dan & Phil’s The Amazing Tour is not on Fire or something like that.  You can imagine that it was all intended for young girls; not for old ladies like me.

But kids today enjoy their YouTube heroes.  Long were the days when we youngsters in the 80’s just wanted to go to a rock concert with our long haired guitar heroes, LOL!

I have to say that I enjoyed the show; it cracked me up a few times.  But the only bad part of the evening was the girls screaming.  Oh dear Lord!  I spent almost the whole show with my hands covering my ears.  It’s amazing how laryngitis never affects young girls when they see their favorite celebrities.

The next day my ears were still ringing from the experience.  But we did have fun and it was something our of the ordinary.

A few days after our field trip, Anna went to a Summer Camp at Lakewood Camp Center in Waxahachie, TX.  These kind of experiences help homeschoolers socialize with different kids seeking their breakthrough with God.  There she witnessed healings in the services; participated in Bible studies & games.  She experienced diversity for four days & nights.  It was good.

So now we approach July and I’m studying like crazy to take the Special Education TeXes test.  Anna continues finishing her Eighth Grade; remembering that she started a little late because of the moving and the withdrawal from the charter school.  But she’s doing good.

One of the advantages of homeschooling is that we are not restricted to school calendars. God willing, this weekend of July 4 we will enjoy the Plunge Party with fireworks at church.  Sounds like fun!  So enjoy with your kids this Independence Day weekend.  And may God Bless America and his children!

July 4

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Spring

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So we are in Spring and we have seen a lot of new flowers and the new leaves on the trees.  It’s beautiful and colorful; even besides the expressways and highways, people gather in the flower beds to take selfies or just enjoy the view.

It’s also the time to look for the next year’s homeschool curriculum.  The special prices which includes 20% off the regular prices of books are on the market now.  Also remember to schedule a homeschool trip to the zoo or a museum.  Probably most homeschoolers are finishing or in the middle of their second semester.  Not us, we are still on the first semester because the moving to TX got us a little behind.  But we’re still good.

One of the things that we like about homeschooling is the flexibility and the enjoyment of ourselves as a family.  It’s never a burden, we love what we do and how we do it.  We learn while we enjoy learning.  Time to also have a science fair or a field day.  Living in TX, we could study a little bit more of how do tornadoes form, interesting right?

Enjoy the season and keep learning with fun!

Beginning A New Semester

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Well, last year Anna and Bryan started in different schools.  Bryan is starting his semester in a private school in Puerto Rico.  Anna was going to begin her 8th grade in a charter school here in Texas.

Well, the story changed with Anna.  When she was going to start in the Charter School, she had to take a STAAR placement test to see if she could pass to the 8th grade after being homeschooled for 4 years.  Well, it was without no surprise that her scores in the test were very high and she was immediately admitted to the 8th grade.  Homeschooling works!

But in November 2015, when I lost my teaching job at the charter school, I withdrew Anna from there.  And we started homeschooling again.  This experience helped Anna appreciate more her homeschooling.  We started with the Alpha & Omega lifepacs again this past Monday and she has been working diligently.

So, Joyful Christian Homeschool is still in business.  And, God willing,  it will continue to do so for a long time.  So cheers for our new semester!

Traditional School VS. Homeschool

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Now that I started teaching again in a traditional school, I got melancholic about homeschooling.  There are so many kids with different needs.  Some kids learn fast; but there are others that take their time in the learning process.  They need individual work.  Here in Texas there is a time frame called the YAGS.  It tells how much time the lessons have to be taught.  We have to follow those standards.  But working with the YAGS time frame doesn’t work for some kids.

But I understand that many parents don’t think that they are capable of teaching their kids.  In many states, many Hispanic parents didn’t have the chance to study in their homelands.  The reality is that going to school is not obligated in many Latin American countries.  That’s why there are so many illiterate immigrants in the United States.  They come to the U.S.A. to seek opportunities for growth and education.

That’s one of the reasons why traditional school will still be an option specially for the Hispanic immigrants.  It’s not their fault; it’s their countries government’s fault.  If a government keeps the people ignorant; it’s easier to control the masses.

It’s sad but it’s true.  We can’t blame the immigrants for taking risks on trying to cross the borders seeking better lives for themselves.  I know I wouldn’t be so brave.  I’m just lucky that I was born an american citizen.  But I have known personally many immigrants that fight hard to get at least a decent education.  My fourth graders are part of them; even if some of them still don’t realize it.  Hopefully, they will soon thank their lucky starts to be where they are.

Even with these mishaps, I still believe in homeschooling the kids. We can’t treat all the kids the same way.  Each one of them is unique in their own way.  They learn different, perceive in different ways.  But I still got to use the YAGS, the TEKS and everything that the government wants.  Hopefully some of those kids will do well in the STAAR.  But life doesn’t work that way.

(Drawing by Anna Lorraine)

May Already!

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It’s a been a bittersweet semester.  These months have been a challenge.  Knowing that this is our last semester as a homeschool has made us feel sad.  One of the disadvantages of financial problems is having to take life changing decisions.  When we started homeschooling our children; it was because we planned to stay where we are and confront the situation how it was.  But when tough decisions have to be made like emigration to have a better life, then the situation changes drastically.

God willing, Anna and I will emigrate to the U.S.A. during this summer because the financial situation in Puerto Rico is intolerable.  We will prosper financially because a job as a teacher will be waiting for me in TX, God willing,  But the disadvantage will be that I won’t be able to continue homeschooling Anna and Brian.  They will be joining regular schools for next semester.  Brian will go to a private school starting in August; he is already enrolled.  And Anna will be joining another school in TX possibly Faith Family Academy or another one if we decide to change our decision at the last moment.  God knows what is going to happen.  We just let God take the last decision because many things have to happen first but He is in control.

The important thing is that we are still together; we are still family and God will keep us together in spirit even each of us are apart.  That’s one of the wonderful advantages of loving each other.  What we have taught our children will stay in their hearts forever.  The memories, the lessons, the laughs, the tears…even the bad experiences….all is a part of this amazing journey called life.

We teach our kids to love God above all and love their neighbor as they love themselves: that’s real education.  The goal is to teach our children to be grateful to God, useful to society and hopeful about their future.  God is still in control.

Do I still believe in homeschooling?  YES!!  It’s the best way of educating your kids.  If I could start homeschooling again, I would a thousand times more.  No regrets.  But sometimes life happens….AND I will keep being a part of my child’s education ALWAYS.

Obviously this will not be the last update of this blog.  I will be keep posting educational issues that may arise because: I’m still a teacher.  I’m still a parent and what may bother me could bother you too.  Thank you for keep reading and I sincerely apologize for the lack of updates.  Hopefully, that won’t happen again.  Let the journey continue and God Bless us all!