Monthly Archives: August 2014

Saying goodbye…and hello

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It has been six months since God lead us to the Barton system website. John and I prayed and sought The Lord about if he wanted us to hire a tutor or if I should learn how to teach him myself. We made the decision to go with The Barton System and for me to train to tutor him myself. I was excited and ready to do whatever I had to do for my son!
From time to time, doubt would creep in. I didn’t know anyone one else who had used this system personally. All I knew was that it was based on the most common curriculum used in this country by schools and tutors for dyslexia. I realized that going out on a limb, and stepping out in faith feel the same. Except when you go out on no limb you don’t have an all powerful God to hold your hand. I refused to give up. I committed myself to following The Lord.
One day we were driving around town and I saw a car with a sign on it that said “dyslexia tutoring” and a website. When I went home I looked it up. It was a tutor in our area using the Barton system to tutor! I felt like God was saying “I know you are following me, I just wanted to give you a little nugget of encouragement. See, even the professionals are using this system, you are not alone you can do this!” My heart soared! It was validation!

A few weeks later I received an email from a fellow homeschooler. She uses the Barton system and was selling the first two levels! Two nuggets!!! A provision to buy the program, and a fellow homeschooler who has used it for her child! We made arrangements with her to meet and purchase it from her. While we were there, I ran Into a teacher friend of mine who had quit her job and began homeschooling that year. She said ” I wanted you to know, I found out you were getting the Barton system, I have been using it too! You will love it. It’s great!” Yet another nugget!!!! A friend, who is a teacher, using it and loving it. I could ask her for help if I needed it and have support!! And yet the story is not done yet!!!

Just about two months ago, I joined a creation science co-op. At the first meeting, I walked in to find out that both of the ladies (the one I bought the curriculum from, and my friend using the curriculum) are in the same co op!! I will be hanging out with them and their families on a weekly basis!

Listen friends: our God is faithful, and loving, he will lead us and lead us well!

We have said goodbye to our back porch school house and hello to schooling in the living room. Johnny and Kait are doing their school work in separate sessions with me. I will have time with each of them alone! We are doing our work out of a large wicker trunk I have turned into our school trunk. You will see pics in the next post I will publish on our first day of school. I am so excited and grateful, and I cannot wait to see what God has in store for us!!!

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Saying goodbye part 2

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No wonder he has struggled so much if that is what he has to sort through in order to do his work!
I worried that I made a mistake. That I should have never taken him out of school. Did I make things worse for him by having him home for three years? There is a chance they could have seen this sooner then I did and helped him sooner. I had blamed myself and felt guilt over this. I had lost sleep over what I could have done differently. Then God used John to teach me something. The reason Johnny wasn’t in school all this time wasn’t because I wanted to teach him and didn’t want to put him in. He was home because God had lead us to homeschool and we followed him and did our absolute best to do it right. Therefore, regardless of what might have happened in school, what we have to deal with is what is. And what is? God has led us to homeschool.

I began a google search. “How to teach spelling to someone with dyslexia” the first link that came up was for the Barton System. I spent the rest of the day exploring the site. I read that forth grade was the most common time for kids to be diagnosed with dyslexia, because it’s the first time where they are putting into practice what they have learned, and are beginning to build on what should be a solid foundation. So, chances are if he would have been in school, they probably would have caught it the same time I did. And he would have gone through all his struggles in a time crunch with an audience. My heart filled with joy and confidence as I slowly realized that I could keep my Johnny boy with me and teach him or find a tutor. There were options that were good for him that didn’t require him to go to traditional school. In reality, putting him back into traditional school would not help him at all. There is nothing like the relief you feel when you see your child suffering and God shows you something you can do to help!

That was the beginning of the change. The beginning of a long process and discovery and grace. God is leading us. He has taken us through the fire and is healing the wounds and showing us the comfort only he can provide. The story gets better and better….to be continued

Saying goodbye

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It has been a while, and many things have happened. Our school year turned out to be the roughest ever for my Johnny Boy. After much prayer, research, hard work, tears, hugging, changing, and adapting, changes have come. Those changes include our saying good bye to our back porch school room, and hello to a new journey, new year, and new way of schooling.

One of my favorite things about homeschooling is the flexibility and freedom. When things are not going well, the options seem to multiply. Narrowing it down can be a tricky business, and as always you worry about doing it wrong. How will your freedom affect your kids?

This past year Kaitlyn excelled in school and was the easiest student ever! She devours knowledge faster than I can provide it for her and most things come easy to her. This is a wonderful gift and I want to honor it, especially since it comes with it’s own unique set of complications. I don’t get to spend as much time with her because most of my energy was focused on getting Johnny through the day. Also, her ability to answer things that he struggles with discourages him even more. As as result, Kaitlyn spends a lot of time alone. It’s just wasn’t working.

Johnny was able to stop hating Math this year with the addition of Math u see! The other subjects, however, became a huge mountain he was trying to climb without oxygen. Every day was filled with frustration and failure and heartbreak. I knew half way through the year that this would be our last. There was no way to continue.

I began to research. Prayerfully, I scoured every available resource for information and fought for a glimmer of hope. It was scary to think that putting him in school wasn’t going to help him, and keeping him home wasn’t working either. There had to be something wrong! My son is very intelligent. I knew he was capable of doing the work. His attitude was atrocious and he complained and dragged his feat. In reading it seemed like he was going backwards. In spelling he hit a wall, Language made no sense to him at all. Yet the books were there and had to get done. Even things I knew he knew seemed lost. It was heart breaking. I watched my boy sink lower and lower. I kept encouraging him, he is so smart he could do it, he just needed to get his anger and attitude out of the way and he could succeed. Except I saw him conquer the attitude and he still couldn’t do his work.
Finally I came across a website that had a check list that described him almost perfectly. Finally it began to make sense. I began to believe that Johnny is dyslexic. I cried ALOT. Not because I hated that he is dyslexic, but because it was all making sense! There was the hope! There was relief! There was an explanation!

I began to do diagnostic testing with him. One day I sat down with him and asked him questions about words. What did he see with his eyes, how did it look to him in his head, how did he read, how did he remember? I gave him one of his spelling words. SECRET. He said he saw the word as s.e.c.r.e.t, but when he pictured it in his mind to remember it was CRESET. Then I wrote each letter on a piece of paper and shuffled them. I handed him the papers and told him to put them in the right order to spell secret. He put them in order perfectly backwards and one of the “e” upside down . I immediately realized two things: 1 it didn’t matter what order I gave him the letters in, as far as he was concerned it was all the same. And 2. I was in WAY over my head!
To be continued….