We are still in Houston at the SETHSA Conference, but it is over! Whew! No one mentions how tiring it is. I heard all about how it can be life changing and refrshing, but not about the exhausting part.
I have to say that I did enjoy it in the end, but it started out as kind of a let down to me. OOOOhhhh... did I say that?! I am being totally honest here, so I hope I do not step on anyone's toes. The first two workshops I went in were just not worth my time and it is sad to say, but it seems that much like the public school system we are so desperate to gain knowledge and encouragement that we will take anything we can get. I have never mentioned on my blog that I used to work for Region 5 Education Service Center in Texas in the Special Education & Pre-School department. I used to put together Conferences and Workshops for the public school system. Ok....Ok... yeah... my husband and I are a strange pair for homeschooling.... a public school teacher and an ex-ESC employee. Given my experience I know good speakers are few and far between. I think I thought that it would be different and better in the homeschooling world! And much to my suprise there were actually Presenters that were public school teachers who had never homeschooled. On day two for the first workshop I chose I got one of those.... Do I have to tell you how fast I walked out of that workshop! And after some thought I realized why the Presenters name was so familiar to me... I think the ESC had used her for workshops. Her information was good and useful and I will keep the handout, but I didn't come here for something I can get in a handout. I am way to informed for that. I want to hear from someone that can speak about the experiences I am going through! I am not writing this to focus on the negative side, but I think it has to be said that as homeschoolers we need to expect more! Make sure that when you got to Conference this summer or in the future that you GET what YOU go for! Keep your focus on what you want to attain and search it out... and don't be afraid to POLITELY walk out and look elsewhere. And on that note... I do not want this to turn into a rant so off of that and on with other things.
When I walked out of that workshop I meet two amazing ladies in the hallway. I did not initially realize that they had also walked out of the same workshop. We began talking and I got more from talking to them than they will ever realize. We exchanged names and email addresses and I so look forward to contacting them in the future! I also met another lady that just moved to Houston from Oklahoma and immediately noticed some common ground. I only wish I was nearby to offer her some support.... maybe through email will be enough. I can't imagine being a newbie homeschooler and new to the area, also. I think I can put her in touch with some people or just be a friend and that is all great. We exchanged email, also. My husband met some guys, but of course God will have to work a miracle because men do not exchange contact info. ;) It did my husband good to talk with some guys involved in homeschooling. Of course, now my husband is more aware of the nerdiness factor for male homeschoolers and we will be on a mission to make sure my son who is surrounded by girls will not be a "weirdo" (husband's qoute). Uh-hem.... I am totally on board with that, too. It is a great thing to be a Jesus Freak, homeschooling, individually different, and kind young man, but you can do it and look good at the same time.... ya know! My goal is not to raise a total "momma's boy", but rather to raise a man that can lead his home when the time comes. I challenge you as mothers to do the same. They are with us so much that this will need extra emphasis and even so much that I am going to have Man School for my Caden. Watch for coming blogisodes of Man School coming soon! LOL! ;)
What was good at the conference? Seeing other homeschoolers, being able to look through the materials on display, and the freedom to drag your kids along through it all without concern for what they SEE or that they are a bother to others. What I mean by that is that is nice to be around people that enjoy being around kids! The speakers that I saw that were good were Charlene Notgrass and Rosie Watson. And I will go into that more in a future post, but for now I "should be" packing, so I have to keep it short. The speaker that I saw that was GREAT was David Hazell. He is the co-founder and co-writer of the My Father's World Curriculum. Once I skeptically wandered into "a guy's perspective" workshop I went to all his workshops from then out! I did not expect it!!! I totally got more out of one hour with him that I got out of the entire conference. Awesome! I will blog about it all later.... gotta run before they kick us out of this place!! Hehehehe!!