Friday, 18 September 2009

I love our second computer

I don't think I've mentioned yet, just how much I love having our second computer, but I do! Over a month down the track and I am very, very pleased. It has to be one of the best purchases we have ever made. We have utilised each one so much that I confidently say it's not a novelty.

"Why do we have two?"

"Because we can." And I'll follow that up with, "as soon as we can afford a third, we'll have that too!!!"

Call it greed but I would have to disagree.

Since commencing our schooling journey we have relied more times than not on the internet for our daily education. For example, it was many months ... maybe even a year ... before I could even afford MUS, so the means to buy curricula was a long process. We'd never get started if I tried saving up for every textbook/curricula I was interested in.

Put another way...

Back in the beginning I had no idea that I wouldn't actually buy much in the way of textbooks and that's probably because way back then I had no idea what was available for free on the internet. One giant advantage of not buying curricula, is that I'm not disappointed. What I mean is, I don't think there's been anything I have spent money on that I've found didn't work for us. Although that could be put down to researching before getting anything is pot luck. I could easily have researched, saved, bought and then discovered it was a major flop for our family.

By getting on the internet and trying things I find out if they gel or don't gel with the kids and/or if I like it at all.

I'm very much into the 14-day or 30-day trials. That gives me the opportunity to give things a whirl and if they gel, then I might consider subscribing to it, or (as I mention above) if they don't gel, I can simply put it down to experience ... with the satisfaction that other than enjoying it for a limited length of time, I walk away having spent zip, zero, nada on it.

Don't forget, this is what works for us, and I am recording this today so that I can look back and remember for my own personal reasons, not to try and convince anyone else that they should do the same. By the same token I'm not trying to justify why we became internet homeschoolers. We are all in different positions and our financial past was the biggest overwhelming decision-maker as to why we started with a computer in the first place. I was restricted by lack of money. I couldn't even get to the local library (let alone the mobile library). If our circumstances were different, then I am quite sure our style of schooling would be different also. However, we must all work within our means, and for our family we were at home weeks on end but we had two of the best tools available ... a growing library of books and a computer. Funnily enough, we survived with a simple dial-up connection back in those days but I made the absolute most of searching for anything and everything. Luckily our laser printer was working well in those days because I printed out screeds of stuff for next to nowt.

Over time and as the children have progressed with their schooling, our finances may have improved somewhat, but we are still a far-cry from being financially-comfortable.

"Oh yeah, then how could you afford a second computer?"

We budgetted, plus whaiāipo sold a motorbike. I don't expect anyone to appreciate the length of time it took but that's hardly my bother.

It was something that evolved because the children in a lot of ways steered us in this direction, so the purchase was something that became a priority. So, no, it was not a spur of the moment decision.

With no regrets, I am more than pleased with our purchase. Actually, let me re-clarify: it's not just me who loves having two computers. Our entire family loves it. This is something we can all use.

So okay, I could've spent the money sending one of the kids to an activity but for reasons I don't need to put on the blog, this is what we spent our money on with 100% money-back satisfaction guaranteed.

We've established I like using the internet and I acknowledge there's probably a trillion things you use on the internet which I don't know about, and perhaps I use things you don't know about. That's the thing about cyberspace. We can spend forever discovering new things via the internet which is exactly why our homeschooling ticks along. There is something to be found for every subject and interest at the touch of your fingertips. Yes, I have spent a few dollars here and there at different times and when I have it's been well worth it. We spend the majority of our time at home so I feel as though I get my money's worth. More importantly, I know I'm getting our money's worth because the children enjoy themselves. Even when you're sick, you can still sit at the computer when you want, and you're not passing your bugs on to others, or missing out on things.

But yes, if I could send all the kids to lots of different activities, buy a few more textbook curricula, then I'd love to. Perhaps next year our financial position will better itself yet again and we can move into that side of school, but at the moment, we can't afford everything.

This is where we are and it's working out really well for us.

And here's the last word on the matter. By purchasing headphones the kids can be sitting next to each other but aren't distracted working on their different levels because the headphones provide the concentration they require.


Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano

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