Tuesday Topic: Homeschooling and Furloughs

From Andrea: I would like to know how home schooling missionary mothers adjust their home schooling to accommodate furloughs? What type of yearly schedule do they follow ie. Year round, matching the school schedule of the country they serve in, traditional “American” schedule? Do you do any “extra” school work in preparation for upcoming furloughs? Do you keep a “normal” schedule while on furlough.? Our first traditional furlough is coming up in 16 months and I am trying to work out if I should work through the next two summers in order to take somewhat of a break while we are on our six month furlough I would appreciate any opinions. Thank you.

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3 Responses to “Tuesday Topic: Homeschooling and Furloughs”

  1. 1 Erin May 25, 2010 at 3:23 pm

    We are in a similar situation. My daughter has been attending a local bilingual school here in Honduras. We will be on furlough starting in September and ending in April. I homeschooled her prior to going on the field, so will obviously homeschool her while on furlough. I definitely plan on sticking to the same school year that is in Honduras for a few reasons. First, when we return in April, I will finish up her homeschool year, but will then re-enroll her in the same bilingual school when the new school year starts. We do, however, have additional classes she will need to take – some requirements of the school here in Honduras. If she does not do these classes as well, she will not graduate from the school. So, that is the “extra” school work we will be doing.

  2. 2 Ana May 25, 2010 at 3:46 pm

    Tuesday Topics have been so helpful, thank you for the ladies who ask and the ones that respond, just reading has helped me so much 🙂

  3. 3 Ellie May 26, 2010 at 3:08 am

    This would really depend on what ages your kids are and what you are doing for homeschool. Some homeschoolers are very regimented and others are more relaxed.

    There is no law as to what you should do. If I had younger kids, I would eliminate all but the core subjects such as reading, writing, and math. History, bible, social studies, and science can be dropped for furlough. You can pick them up later, or if you travel a lot, your kids can be learning about the things around them. They can be more educated that way than keeping their nose in a book and staying on schedule. We’ve pulled over at an exit because we saw a sign for a president’s birthplace or other historical site and spend an hour or so learning.

    The core subjects are more the ones I would carry with me to work on. If we were going for a shorter trip, I used to rip out the pages of their workbooks and staple them together (or use a binder) to put them into daily assignments. Other times, I did not insist that they get anything done on a regular schedule, but saved their schoolwork for those boring meetings where they were shown an empty room to play in.

    We did work ahead a little before we left and we picked up some things when we got back, but we were able to homeschool the core subjects on furlough in the early years.

    The older school years would be a bigger challenge. We have done short trips 1-2 months with those, but it is different then.

    But the one thing I would not do is work through the summers for two years. That is just too much, and then to have six months off – it is also too much. Think in terms of what absolutely has to be learned in a year for them to progress. Really, most science, history, Bible, and memory work will be reviewed again later. Then we also keep our kid’s minds sharp by doing oral math problems for fun in the van. Or spelling bees. Or trying to make up and memorize a president’s fast facts list. My daughter used to be able to recite the first 20 presidents and one important or trivial fact about them before she entered kindergarten – just from games we played in the car!

    Stick with what you have to teach, have fun, enjoy furlough, and realize your kids will be learning as you travel and you have the freedom to skip what you can and catch them up later on what they need to know. What they need to know being the key, and not what the curriculum lists to be taught!

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