Monday, July 2, 2007

Our Family's Brochure

After visiting a new homeschool group, Jessica from Trivium Academy said, "What's worse is that as soon as you say, "Hi, I'm Jessica and I have two children..." the questions are, "what curriculum do you use?" Why don't we all create a little brochure for ourselves? Tell a little about our lives, our children, and our homeschools? That way we can focus on subjects that we really want to talk about instead of figuring each other out." You can read the brochure Jessica created for her family here. Also, in her comments section you can link to all the fun brochures other girls have made, too.

Here's what our brochure would say:

Our Family: Dh (36), Jennefer (34), Thatcher (6), Haddon (2 1/2), Beckett (13 mo). My husband is the Teaching Pastor of our church which we adore. All five of us are native Texans. My husband grew up near Lubbock in West Texas, and Dallas is home for me. I was a public school teacher for seven years before we had children and taught 1st, 2nd and 3rd grades. I am an avid runner and always training for some race. Right now I am hoping to run my second, and maybe even third, marathon this winter.

Thatcher: Thatcher is a bundle of hugs, kisses and boundless energy. I cannot tell you how many times complete strangers say to me, "If you could just bottle that energy up." He is excited about everything and happy almost all the time. He has a kind heart and mommy is his best friend. He has ADHD, sensory processing disorder and many autistic tendencies. He is extremely bright but struggles socially. His favorite things in the world are matchbox cars and all things Star Wars run a distant second.

Haddon: Haddon's finally coming out of the terrible two's and we are getting to see what a sweet boy he is. He is tough but incredibly tender-hearted at the same time. He loves to make people laugh and adores his big brother (whom he calls "Ya-ya"). He has the darkest brown eyes you have ever seen; my nickname for him is "Chocolate Eyes".

Beckett: What to say about my sweet Beckett? Of our three boys, he is the happiest baby by far and the only one without medical issues! He is sweet and loves to watch his big brothers as he tries really hard to keep up with them. He is a mamma's boy though, and will dive out of Daddy's arms if I walk anywhere near. He already loves cars and would spend every single moment outside if we didn't live in Houston and have mosquitos so large they could carry him away!

Our homeschool: If someone told me 10 years ago I would be homeschooling, I would have said they were crazy. I loved my job as a public school teacher and fully intended to send my children there when the time came. God had different plans and I am so thankful I followed His calling. I have fallen in love with homeschooling and am so grateful He has placed us on this journey.

We are classical homeschoolers following The Well Trained Mind. It is a perfect fit for Thatcher's strengths and my linear-thinking, organized self! I have also been reading a lot about Charlotte Mason's theories and am learning to incorporate many of her ideals as well.

Curriculum: This year we will be using Horizons Math 2, ETC books 6 1/2, 7 and 8 (then move on to formal spelling-probably Spelling Workout), Story of the World 1, First Language Lessons, and biology using Trivium Academy's Life Science plans as our starting place. We are also starting Spanish, using either the lessons on United Streaming or ones I will create myself. We will incorporate fine arts through having an "Artist of the Month" as well as a "Composer of the Month". Character training is one of my biggest goals for his year and will be embedded in almost every single thing we do-from read-a-louds to handwriting to Spanish.

Schedule: We school four days a week because dh is off on Friday. It's our Family Day but many weeks I wish that we had Friday to use as "Catch-Up Day". Thatcher is so easily distracted that we seem to always struggle to finish everything each week.

Outside activities: Thatcher plays 2 sports a year. This year he will play soccer in the fall and basketball in the winter. He also participates in AWANA's at a local church. Haddon will play t-ball this spring. We meet with our church small group every Friday night and Thursday night is always "Mommy's Night Out".

My Interests: I already mentioned running. I also love to cook, bake and scrapbook. I volunteer at church in the elementary area as well. Reading is one of my biggest passions although I get so little time to do it.

Interesting Factoids:
1. I once bungee jumped (very surprising for my non-risk-taking self!).
2. I once (teasingly) told my husband I would follow him anywhere but Houston, Texas!
3. We are not sure if we will have more children. I adore my boys more than life but also long to raise a daughter. I would love to adopt from somewhere in Eastern Europe but God would have to change my husband's heart and provide the finances.

Regarding homeschooling: When we started we thought we would only homeschool through 2nd or 3rd grade or until Thatcher had developed enough maturity to thrive in public schools. We said we would take one year at a time and evaluate before deciding placement for the next year. Now my prayer is that I will have the privilege of schooling my boys all the way through high school graduation.

Can't wait to see your brochure!


Kathy D. said...

I found your blog thru Trivium Academy. Our middle boy has Sensory Integration Disorder too! I can't imagine having more things than that to deal with in one person. God must have recognized you as an immensely special person to be able to handle all that! I posted a brochure too. You can find it here.

Kristiana said...

I saw this post of Jessica's, but haven't written my own brochure yet. I love yours though! We have a lot in common. We have 3 boys also ages 6.5, 4, and 2.5. My husband is our lay minister along with his day job, but I'm definitely not a runner! I'm a cellist. I never thought I'd homeschool either, but we love WTM and look forward to using it for, hopefully, the next 12 years at least.
Anyway, love your blog!

Heidi said...

Hi, Jennefer. I finished my brochure and it's up on my blog. It ended up being mostly about the boys, and less about homeschooling, but here is the link:

Thanks for the fun diversion. Who needs to clean house? LOL.

Kiley said...

I came to your blog through LWM3B and loved reading your family brochure. After seeing several I may create my own. We have 3 boys, too (ages 6, 4, 2)! I'll look forward to following along with your school year.

Congratulations on your newest addition, too!

The Butterfly Catcher said...

What a sweet surprise to find your blog today!! In my former life, I, too, was a public school teacher, and never dreamed, at the time, that I would be homeschooling my precious brood. But it's been almost nine or so years now, and I'm not lookin' back!! Blessings to you and your family!

Kelli said...

Thanks for this wonderful blog. I'm a pastor's wife in Austin and homeschooling too. Many times you find one or the other, and it's so encouraging to hear about your journey serving your church and your family. And running! I feel better just having read your thoughts. Thanks:)