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Carrie Finch was a former public school teacher–but homeschooling parents come from every kind of background. What is your background and how do you see it serving and helping you as a homeschooling parent? In what ways might your background be a hindrance as well?

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My background is in Communications Studies and English. My education has given me the backbone of knowledge I needed to be a confident teacher. Honestly, for many years I regretted attending college (mostly due to the monthly student loan payments!) I now appreciate the time I took because I use that knowledge and those skills daily to teach my children. 

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I was a public school teacher. I taught first grade in the US but was very blessed to do my teacher training in New Zealand. Being in NZ definitely influenced my teaching as a teacher and my dissatisfaction with education in the US. As soon as I had my first child, I just could not imagine entrusting someone else with her education.

I went to a liberal arts college and minored in English. I’m so grateful I attended a liberal arts school and took so many literature courses! I truly gained a passion for Shakespeare and a good overarching view of British Literature I had not had before, but a love for reading the classics did not come till now really. I always have loved the classics but did not prioritize reading. I think my experiences trained me to DO and not necessarily LEARN, much less ENJOY my learning. 

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I do have a bachelor's degree, but that hasn't helped me with homeschooling in any way.  What I think helps the most are my natural gifts.  I am naturally organized and structured.  These two help with planning the year, and I rarely feel overwhelmed.  I also love to learn so I read a fair amount of non-fiction books.  I do need to increase my fiction reading though.  My husband has said that I am regimented, and this shows up in the standards that I expect during our homeschooling day.  I have to admit that I tend to stay away from conferences because with all the curriculum choices I don't want it to make me feel like I am not doing enough.  

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On 5/15/2018 at 3:55 PM, Shelley said:

  I have to admit that I tend to stay away from conferences because with all the curriculum choices I don't want it to make me feel like I am not doing enough.  

I understand that feeling. My first conference twenty years ago was overwhelming, and there weren't even as many choices! But I really enjoyed the encouragement and ideas I gained from the talks. I don't really look at curriculum any more at this point because I know what I want or I already have it. I get suggestions from friends rather than peruse a catalog. But I still enjoy the conferences. I meet other moms and dads who have a wealth of experience and ideas that are helpful. I love the talks for the same reasons, plus I become re-inspired. It's a great "get-away" even though it's "work-related". Blogs, podcasts, and forums like these also help me stay encouraged and equipped throughout the year. Do you listen to any podcasts, or read any blogs you've found especially helpful rather than overwhelming? 

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