My name is Theresa, and I am a teacher, a traveler, a dancer, a hiker, and a home-maker. For the last 10 years, I have run a home-school cooperative for middle school students. It is called The Chicken Coop at The Farm School. When I was hired, I was given four students and a partially renovated Chicken Coop. My boss said, “Go!” and I made a school, complete with an organized curriculum, engaged students, traditions, and ceremonies. We have a great reputation in Western MA, and regularly send kids to fancy-pants prep schools.
Then, I got myself a real live baby! She has cheeks like the moon and a smile that is my whole world. I simply could not keep working so many hours, so I started working part-time. Which was great, until financial reality laughed its terrible laugh, and I found myself researching government assistance programs.
I had to draw upon my resources and figure out a way to fund our life. Ideally, I wanted to find something that I believe in and care about. I wanted to find work that matters, and I will always firmly clutch the belief that I can create something both beautiful and profitable.
My solution was to start an online, low-residency middle school for home-schooled students. You can read about it at www.s-h-i-n-e.org. The kids will get weekly curriculum and we will all do something together every month. That way, the kids will have a peer group, but most of the work will be done with their families. When I started this whole project in April, I barely had a Facebook page. In fact, I actively disliked it. But now I am going to be learning about how to use the WizIQ Virtual Classroom, social media, and technology, particularly with the home-schooled students with whom I work, and then I will share my adventures with you. Looking forward to bringing you along on this journey!