Sometimes change is hard. Sometimes change is hard for me. This whole homeschool thing is more than just a little change, it is a flip the world upside down, inside out, backwards and paint it chartreuse change. I am a traditional teacher. I know what works for a class of thirty normal students sitting in a classroom for six hours a day. We are not on that planet any more. I have been really stressing the last few weeks that we are not where we need to be with the end of the school year creeping up on us like a runaway train. We are going to continue through the summer, so I know we have a bit of time. But, what if the “getting through it” isn’t what it is all about?
Last Friday I taught Zippy how to use the lawn mower. She has been begging for a while now to learn how. Now that she is of a height I thought why not? Excitement almost vibrated off her, she was so excited to use the mower. I only allowed her to mow a little section. It was not perfect, but she learned a couple of lessons. First how to use the lawn mower; turns, straight sections, and making sure that all of the grass was cut. Second she learned that mowing the lawn is a lot harder than it looks. When she was finished, I asked in jest, “So are you ready to mow the whole thing?” She thought for a minute and answered in all seriousness, “No, I think I will just mow this little section.”
I felt the oddest sense of satisfaction at her answer. She learned a life skill and she thought about work in a meaningful way. Perhaps this is what homeschooling is all about. It is not the fractions, nouns, and dates in history, but the character building and teachable moments born out of the time afforded us by being at home. I am still a little worried about getting through the material, but, with perseverance and discipline we will make it through.
What does homeschooling mean to you?