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Our Homeschooling Journey - From ABC to our first Award

Published: 10/01/2013 by Fiona MacColl

» Testimonials & Experience

Our homeschooling journey began when our son, Connal, was bullied at school. He'd been slow in developing his speech and communication skills, and was struggling with his learning. I guess that made him an easy target for bullies. We tried to help with extra tutoring at home but we were getting nowhere. Throughout his primary school, he had problems with bullies and eventually we had no choice but to remove him from school and start down the homeschooling path. It felt as though we'd failed but now I realise that it was the start of a journey that would take us all to a lifestyle, a business and a dream that we never could have imagined.

In order to homeschool Connal, I had to learn to teach. I was good at English, the arts, history and geography but poor at math, and physics was an alien concept to me.  Whatever I didn't know, I had to teach myself first. Even physics gradually became easier and what I learned, I shared with Connal. We were learning together as a family - and that's the best way to learn.

We were making good progress when disaster suddenly struck.  Aged 15, Connal developed epilepsy - right before his major school exams. There was no way his academic journey could continue. Instead, our lives revolved around hospital visits and medication. It took 7 years for his medication to even start to stabilize his seizures.  The original medication made his hands shake and his speech slow down.

I watched as my son seemed to simply fade away right in front of my eyes. It was horrible. We continued homeschooling but had to change our methods as the medication affected Con's short-term memory. Lessons needed to be gone over several times but that would have bored him silly. Instead, we looked at the topics from many different angles - we used worksheets,  games, activities...even songs to teach. It was fun.

Then, this year, everything changed again but this time, it was change for the good. The doctors changed Connal's medication, his seizures reduced, his speech speeded up and Connal began to come back to us.

Now he's started college doing an Access course that will lead to a degree in Cognitive Science. Connal wants to give back to society; this degree will let him learn how to develop technology to help give other people with disabilities the opportunity to live independently.

But there is another side to this story...

Over the years that I've homeschooled Connal, I've written a lot of lessons and resources - over 7000, in fact. So my husband, Derek, built  a website - www.lesson-library.com - where I put all my learning resources. For less than $2/year, members get access to all our resources, and I write more learning resources and lessons every week. I can't help it.  I guess I've become a compulsive homeschooler!

Now, we've won an award for the Top Homeschooling Curriculum 2013 from Homeschool.com.  We're thrilled. All our hard work has paid off.  We want to continue helping families so we've set up a monthly free e-book for anyone to pick up.

Simply go to www.lesson-library.com/e-book-giveaway. The password is freebook.