Like many other parents around the world, this pandemic forced me to take on a number of different jobs all at once. Chef, maid, teacher, accountant, playmate, therapist, and the list goes on. After five months of being at home during this pandemic, I have to say that being a teacher was the job that frustrated me the most. Day after day, I grew more and more frustrated with myself and my daughter, though neither of us were to blame. There was only so much I could teach her, before I accepted that, educationally, I simply couldn’t give her what she needed.
One night, I asked God to show me a sign. I knew in my heart that my daughter needed a formal schooling experience, but I just wasn’t comfortable sending her back into a public setting with COVID-19 still in full swing. She also wasn’t eligible to start PreK in Georgia because her birthday falls after the cutoff date, and sending her back to daycare seemed like a huge disservice. Literally the next day, my neighbor approached me about hiring a teacher and doing a shared homeschool with two other families in our neighborhood. All of the families sat down to discuss, we fell in love with the idea, and the rest is history.
Since there are 4 families, we alternate houses and each family is responsible for hosting one week out of the month. Before the school started, we did an open house at each of the four homes to see the living quarters and the area that the classroom would be set up. We hired an amazing teacher from a great Christian academy in the area, and she will travel to our homes to teach the kids. She has over 30 years of experience and even home schooled her daughter through 3rd grade. She was the perfect fit.
Class is in session from 8:30am-3:30pm, which gives the parents 7 hours of kid- free time every day. I’ve been so much more productive in these past 3 weeks than I’ve been in months. We opted for them to wear uniforms to really play up the school environment, and they look so cohesive and polished. In honor of the late great John Lewis, we chose the school name Good Trouble Academy, and it’s so fitting. Our hope is that our children grow up to be fearless leaders and stand up for what they believe in.
While the teacher is responsible for the curriculum, each host family is responsible for providing meals for lunch and afternoon snacks. Take a look at my menu from when we hosted at our home. Let’s just say, the kids are eating good! We use Abeka curriculum, which inspires learning and also teaches Christian values. They get homework daily and a detailed bi-weekly progress report. In addition to the standard curriculum, the kids will get some extracurricular gardening and home economics. I bought each of them their own vegetable, and they’ll be responsible for watering it and watching it grow. Sanai promised to take care of the garden while the kids are at the other homes. When their vegetables harvest, they’ll be able to take them home to their families and enjoy them. Learning through play is such a great method for toddlers.
We are almost a month in, and I couldn’t be happier with our decision. Sanai is tracing her full name, narrating stories based on pictures, recognizing some sight words, coloring in the lines, counting to 30, and so much more. I work with her at home for about 20 mins a day and I know that helps. Here is a shoppable list of some of my essentials for practicing with her at home. I’m so proud of the progress she’s made thus far, and I can’t wait to see how she continues to thrive.
Have you decided on a schooling situation for your little one(s)? Let me know below if you want me to keep you posted on this journey and make sure you follow on my Homeschool highlight over @cupofconsuella.
Good Trouble Academy is officially in session! Pin this post below so you can come back to it for future reference.
Xo, Consuella ♥