Heart and Mind of a Homeschooling Mom: Jenn Punzalan

 

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I first followed her blog Some Kind of Mom-sense a few years back and have been reading her posts regularly. You can say that I am a fan so it is a privilege to be featuring Ms. Jenn Punzalan today.

Hi Jenn! Thanks for letting me feature you today. We are excited to know more about you and your homeschooling journey! Tell us more about yourself.  

I’m 42, pastor’s wife, stay at home mom. 4 kids: Nathan, 18, 1st year college in Ateneo de Manila University, Janina, 15, grade 8 homeschooled, Ryan, 10, grade 4 homeschooled, and Joaquin, 5, will homeschool this June for kindergarten. I started homeschooling when my eldest was 8 years old, about 10 years ago.

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 Why did you choose to homeschool your children?

Initially, we chose to homeschool our eldest child because we had a trip scheduled during the school year and since I didn’t want to be stressed out with all the make-up work he will have to do, we decided to homeschool him that year. Our experience in that first year was more enjoyable and profitable than we expected. Learning took on a whole new level for my son because his classroom got bigger, and he was not limited to books. He had the time to explore on the topics that he was interested it. I was able to monitor him closely and train him not only in the mind, but more so in the heart. There was so much more flexibility and we got to do more things as a family. It is for these reasons that I continue to homeschool. 

What method or curriculum do you use with your children?

Over the years I’ve homeschooled, I have used different kind of curricula. I have tried PACEs, Alpha Omega, Abeka, Apologia, Singapore Math and even local textbooks. So maybe, you can call my method eclectic. I am not a fanatic for one particular curriculum.

Are you enrolled in a DepEd accredited homeschool provider or others? Which one?

Yes, I am. Victory Christian International School.

Until when do you plan to homeschool your child?

I take it one year at a time. It really depends on the needs of our children and the season that we are in. My 8th grader, Janina, is very much into the performing arts and homeschooling allows her the time to pursue this. Next June, Ryan said he wants to go back to regular school because he misses being around kids his age. But if it were up to me, as long as my kids want to homeschool, I am willing to do it for them. I guess I still have a long way to go since my youngest is just starting Kinder this June.

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Share lessons you’ve learned over the years about homeschooling.

Don’t major on the minors. Know your primary goals. If something isn’t really that important in light of your primary goals, why stress on it? Ex. memory work is so stressful for my kids so I tend not to give them too much of it. My goal is for them to think critically, not memorize facts. Facts can be easily googled. So rather than letting them memorize the different presidents of a country, I would ask them what makes a leader good or bad.

Focus on your children’s strengths. Sometimes we spend too much time improving their weaknesses, and we neglect strengthening what they’re really good at. Have a sense of humor. Learn to laugh together. Have fun together. Discipline them for inappropriate behavior and reinforce good ones.

Thank you very much Jenn! May God bless you and your family!

Read more from Jenn by following her at her blog Some Kind of Mom-sense. If you have any questions for Jenn, please leave a comment and we will try our best to respond.

To read the rest of this series, check Heart and Mind of a Homeschooling Mom.

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