The time has come for us to move on from Distance Education and try another system to educate our children. It’s been 3 years since we started our journey with Distance Education. Our first year we completed ekindy and then moved over to a Distance Education primary school in NSW. But lately, I have been feeling really overwhelmed and frustrated with it and looking for something new.
What has Distance Education given us?
I need to explain this post isn’t a Distance Education bashing because it’s NOT. Our experience with Distance Education has been a really positive one. The Distance Education primary school we used has built the foundations for my children and myself in the first few years of their education. Balancing the workload with a busy travel schedule hasn’t been easy but with the support of a great school, they helped me find my rhythm.
Why are we changing to Home schooling?
Our Time has expired
Recently I found out that you can only stay with a Distance Education primary school (NSW) for a maximum of 2 years under the “travelling student” registration. It’s frustrating that there is an expiry date and I really believe that principles should be able to make this decision as they personally know the families. We would need to apply to the Education Department under a new criteria (working family) and proved to them that we are a great candidate to stay in the system. I have chosen not to do this as the chances of getting this seems really slim so I needed to find another option.
Confident in my abilities
“Why we chose Distance Education over Homeschooling” really explains that originally all my fears over Homeschooling was in my lack of ability to educate my kids. I honestly feel that Distance Education has given me the confidence to transition into Homeschooling easily. Two years ago I would not have known where to start or how to structure the learning for my children.
I want to feel passionate about my children’s education
It sounds silly but I really have felt exhausted from Distance Education for the past 2 terms. I have tried to shake the feeling but with every passing week, I feel like I am crumbling under the workload. There are areas of my children’s education that I feel that I need to spend more time with them but I can’t as we have more work to do. I feel like I have fallen into the trap of just doing the work because it’s there to be done. I have two children that are in the first stages of their education and I don’t want to be rushing them if they don’t fully understand the learning concept.
Workload burn out
My children are in Kindy and 1st grade and I found it really hard to balance the workload. I always felt like I couldn’t catch my tail and we were spending 6 hours a day at the table (on a good day). No matter how hard I tried to mix things up and try different ways of completing our day, it just didn’t work. I just felt really disconnected to the workload which has made me feel mental overwhelmed and burnt out.
Learning from our day
Over the past year, my daughters have found things they are interested in learning about and I would love to investigate these subjects further. But right now I don’t feel like we can add any more work to our schedule.
I just want to finish off by saying “it’s OK, to say your not OK!“. A lot of families hit the road and imagine what life will be this amazing nonstop holiday. Don’t get me wrong, it really is amazing and if it wasn’t then we wouldn’t be doing this. But there is a lot of work behind scenes to enjoy this lifestyle.
About 2 months ago I started to feel really stressed about travelling. I kept getting frustrated and quick to get angry over things that wouldn’t normally set me off. At the time I thought our travelling days were over.
I am lucky to have a really supportive husband to vent my frustations to. When I explained to him how I was feeling, we decided to stop everything and just enjoy being in Darwin. It gave me the chance to take and breath and realise that the school work for two children had completely mentally burnt me out. It wasn’t the travelling, it was just school.
I am excited about this change, excited to be a parent first and a teacher second. To be able to embrace all things new for my children to experience. To find the joy and hopefully spread that joy to my children about learning rather than just doing the work because it was sent to us. And if we don’t want to do Homeschooling anymore then it’s reassuring to know that Distance Education will always be there for us if we need.