Monday, October 3

This Homeschooling Journey

In some ways this year doesn't seem like our first year of homeschooling.  When we were growing up my mom always said "we homeschool, you just go to public school too" and in that sense, no matter what age our children are, or what schooling choices we make, they will always be home schooled. We will always be learning together because that is what we love.

But, at the same time, this is the first year where I feel a greater responsibility to Jonah's education.  There are certain skills, like handwriting, that I need to make sure he acquires.  And this is where we are learning and growing together.  There have been so many surprises along the way, like discovering that skill time works a lot better in the lounge or kitchen (where there aren't oodles of toys and resources) than in the school room.  When we moved to this home I was so excited to put together a school room  and in reality, that still is where most of the boys learning takes place, just not in a formal sense.  The more we watch Jonah learn and work at home schooling the more convinced I am that un-schooling really works to a large extent, at least with this boy.  That said, as I mentioned above we are also committed to certain skill work and he begs for classical history lessons, so that is given time too.  And this has been the learning curve for me - figuring out what works and what doesn't, being willing to let go of long-scripted curriculums and just teach the skills, being able to give up our 'circle time' as I envisioned it and learning that ten minutes here and another five there sometimes works better than a long period of sitting and doing work.  I originally pictured doing school three mornings a week, but that limited the play groups, play dates and other outings we could do, so we are currently doing four or five days of skill time, but shorter and in the afternoon.  It still doesn't feel perfect and there are days when we shift and turn what we are doing, but overall it keeps getting easier and better as we learn what works and what doesn't.  I keep reminding myself that flexibility is the beauty of homeschooling and allowing myself to rest in the fact that he is learning and growing every day no mater what we 'study' formally.  It really is a journey and I'm loving that in many ways it is more about the process than the outcome.  

1 comment:

Jenny said...

We are in exactly the same place. We do curriculum/worksheets for skill stuff, but do a lot of unschooling too. We had a hard start this year until I fully embraced unschooling. Now things are so much better. Good luck to you there!