Wombat Girl's birthday (and associated get-together's with friends because I said "no party!") falls in the holidays too:
|My gorgeous 12 year old with her lovely friends|
|Father and daughter|
In this middle of all this 'busy' is also when we had our follow-up inspection from the NSW Board of Studies Authorised Person. I can't believe it's been two years since we first got our approval to homeschool! I've found our "AP" to be a nice guy - especially given he seems to under the impression I'm super-organised!
I have a theory about getting registered for homeschooling (if you have to in your state - we do) - over-prepare.
First up, I cleaned the house to within an inch of its life. It will never be home beautiful, but we don't need to have the guy thinking "geez, she needs to clean". First impressions count!
I did a summary of all the outcomes we have achieved in the last two years (through a variety of means, both bookwork and natural learning) accompanied by a bunch of photos (mostly pulled from this blog!). He was very impressed - going so far as to say that it was the best summary of outcomes he'd ever viewed!!! Over-prepare, people.
He also had a look at some of the work we'd done - the kids ran up and down the stairs fetching various workbooks, project, lapbooks and pieces of art. He sat for while playing chess with them and generally chatted about homeschooling life. He certainly didn't go through everything with a fine-tooth comb (which was, quite frankly, a relief! Because I was freaking out that he would notice everything we haven't done!)
Last time around I drew up a year-long plan of unit studies with which outcomes I would cover in each term. Needless to say, we didn't really end up following it. This year's "plan" was a list of potential areas we might cover from the syllabus and some resources we might use to do it. He was happy with that.
The trick is to basically be super-confident in your ability to deliver a great program that suits your kids. Give them no reason to doubt you or your ability to provide education for your kids. Play the game. Over-prepare.
I forgot to ask him if I could take pics so I could blog about him! But after an hour or so, he said that it made him very happy to see a family for which their homeschooling program was obviously working so well. He said the kids were very polite (they had better be!!!) and well-spoken. He is going to approve another 2 years for us (the maximum time he can). Yay!
In other "yay" news, a few weeks back, Wombat Girl got the trophy at chess for the Best Player (for mentoring other students) and mission accomplished for Video Boy as he got the Highest Score medal!
In other results, we have our 2012 NAPLAN back - I'm very proud of both my kids, and as our AP said - "you can't argue with those results!". The kids both scored at the very top in Reading, Grammar/Punctuation and Numeracy, a little under the top with Spelling and whilst Wombat Girl scored in the second top Band for Writing, Video Boy is treading water with no real improvement in his Writing. Such is the struggle for the ADHD student trying to conquer executive functioning. We shall persist! But really proud of both them, for even giving the dreaded things a go.
|Well done Wombat Girl! (who is really only in Yr 6 and so has done especially well)|
|And well done Video Boy! (who has the added hassle of ADHD/executive functioning|
issues and did this with no special provisions, except a nice quiet room)
And we also have all our other ICAS exam results!!
- English - both got Distinctions (84th percentile)
- Spelling - both got Credits (VB 65% and WG 75%)
- Writing - Wombat Girl got a credit (77%) in her first attempt at this one
- Mathematics - VB got a Credit (84%) and WG got a Distinction (93%)
We chose to do those external/standardised testing - not everyone feels the same way or wants to. Fair enough. But given that we did, I think we can hold our heads up high and say HOME SCHOOLING ROCKS BABY!!!