Keywords: Te Kura, School-At-Home, Teens, Structured
Children: Three – 18yrs, 17yrs, 16yrs
I have two teenagers at home studying for NCEA full time at Te Kura after being homeschooled all the way through, and a third teen who is now at university. My children get up when suits (I only rouse them if it gets to 9.30am and I still haven’t seen them!). My son typically eats a big breakfast while he does his physics or maths booklets, my daughter doesn’t like breakfast and will go straight into some work. With Te Kura the parent is the supervisor – I make sure the children are progressing with their work and I liaise with the teachers on the children’s behalf. On Mondays we go over their goals from the previous week and we set some realistic goals for the current week for each subject (eg. to finish chapter 7 by Friday, or send in the Digital Tech assignment to the teacher by Friday). I also check my records of their schoolwork to see if their work has been marked and returned (sometimes the Te Kura teachers are very slow and I need to follow up with them). Most days the children and I meet together in the lounge while my son folds his community newspapers ready to deliver them or while someone folds the washing. We talk about the week, events coming up, maybe have a pep talk if there is a lack of progress! I will read something to them that I think is useful that they might not read themselves. We will revise memory work and because we are Christians we also pray together at this time. The actual work takes place anywhere in the house. Now that they are older they are often in their rooms but they will also work on the desk in the corner of the lounge, on the couch or lying on the floor. If it’s something they need help with then they work at the kitchen table so I can help out. We have lunch together and also dinner (when my husband can be home too). The rest of the day we are more separate. Sometimes the children will do some study after dinner and spend a few hours studying on a Saturday. Having said this, there is no such thing as a typical day. Every day there are interruptions, horse riding, Spanish lessons, piano lessons, tennis, or whatever activities are planned for the term.