My top tips for new homeschoolers are:
1. Look up your state laws. Make sure you are in compliance. I like this site rather than HSLDA
2. Decide what your mutual goals for the future of your student are, high school degree, GED, college and so on.
3. Find out your teen's best learning styles. I'd use POC4U to aide this.
4. Research ways to do an education along with your teen. I recommend The Teenage Liberation Handbook.
5. Pick out curriculum (if any) WITH your teen. I do not recommend buying a full curriculum the first year. It tends to lead to frustration and a waste of money.
6. Be flexible, expect change.
7. Locate local groups and resources.
8. Don't forget to make it fun, relax now and then, just enjoy each other.
9. Be sure to keep your student in touch with any friends they really want to spend time with and which you do not feel are a really bad influence.
And finally, relax, relax, relax. The very best thing you can do is de-school. Let your students find what their are passions and pursue them.
I have one that has won a four year academic scholarship and one that has won a renewable athletic scholarship. That's only my student athlete's first college visit and offer. There are more offers to come.
Stressing over making your child learn or doing what the public or private schools are doing or doing enough won't help you or them. I wish someone had told me that when I began and that I could have wrapped my head around it and believed it.
Love them. Like them. Trust them. Support their dreams even when you don't like or understand what they are. This is the best gift you can give anyone. It's also a gift that will allow them to do things that will impress you over the years.
Welcome, I am in Texas too. The Texas Homeschool Coalition is a great place to learn all you need to know about the legalside of homeschooling. Please consider deschooling your daughter as well as yourself because homeschooling is very differentthen public school. Learn her learning style, because all children are unique & learn in their own way. Make things she likes part of the learning & find ways to have it be fun. Children that are enjoying what they learn retain what they learn better then children that don't.
I pulled mine from PS, and I found that the first year or even two are basically trial and error. I learned that I need to go easy on myself AND my kids sometimes. We don't have to be locomotives... we just have to keep learning and growing. In-depth academics can come later, as they get older. Building the character traits and a love of learning are much more important. That doesn't mean I don't stress sometimes or try to build a challenging (but fun) academic plan for them. It just means, I have to learn to reach them first and establish good habits. I was more worried about academics at first, and we have some bad habits that I have to reset. It's easier the first time around.
Familiarize yourself with your laws. Research learning styles and homeschool styles. Decide what you think MIGHT fit you two the best. I say MIGHT because that goes back to being flexible and the first year or two being trial and error.
I think that goes double for kids with any type of learning or behavior challenges. There is a lot of information on the web. Search "Homeschooling with dyslexia" and see what comes up. Take the time to browse those suggested websites.
Also, it never hurts to be seen by an educational therapist to verify the issue. The school is required to give you access to what they have available even if you are homeschooling, you just have to ask politely (and be firm and consistant). If you don't want to go through the school's resources, you could talk to your pediatrician.
My favorite math right now is Math-U-See...
My favorite science is Apologia (although it's very Christian if you aren't religious or have a different one)...
For language arts, I have settled on hard-core english through the mennonite schools (Rod & Staff Publishing)... it works, but we do so much extra that I don't push for all the work to be done, either.
History, I haven't found ONE program I completely like, but we really enjoyed the first year of My Father's World cycle. The second year flopped, but we had a hard year for other personal reasons. Again, My Father's World is very heavily Christian. We are currently just using Rod & Staff's 5th grade level for history because it's about homelands of North America and it's what we wanted to study this year. It's also smack dab in the middle of my older two (6th and 4th grades)...
that adversarial attitude among school officials and teachers is exactly why I am homeschooling. I hear so many friends and people on forums say similar things. Something is reallly wrong with our nation's schools' culture! I've referred many people to this article, I suspect you'll find it hits your situtaion nail-on-the-head too:
But other than that, I don't think the son I'm homeschooling has dyslexia. Maybe a tiny touch of it specifically in the area of math.
If you have an actual learning disability and outside evaluation can be helpful even if you homeschool. You'll really need to do your research on programs for a good fit. Finding an Orton-Gillingham or WIson trained tutor for reading might be well worth you money.
I am so sorry about your experience. I am a homeschool convert as well. I have been hsing my 10 yo son since January. I think you just need to know that you CAN DO IT! It is so much better than fighting with schools and "experts". Just know that you can be as flexible or as structured as you and your child needs. Its truly YOUR OWN ACADEMY. Have fun!