Long Summer

July 2, 2011

Come as You Are

Filed under: Home School,Inspiration — by dbmamaz @ 2:07 pm

This week I saw two things which really spoke to me about homeschooling. I have not blogged much this second year of school. Some of it is due to various external issues making it harder to get around to writing. But some of it is about how things change after that first year.

The first year of homeschooling, everything is new and exciting. You are trying to pick curriculum, trying to find a style, and then you are amazed each time your child actually learns something . . . you know, without being in school! But after a while, you just get into your zone. There are fewer questions to ask, and the learning moments become less surprising.

So what did I see which was so inspirational?

First one was a post in a Homeschool group on Facebook by some one I don’t know. She said that after years of experience and networking, her standard advice to homeschoolers is this: “Look at your kids. Do what seems to make the most amount of sense at the time (easy) and if it’s not working, stop. (surprisingly hard.) It’s different for everybody, but it all works.”

The next item was a blog entry from a woman I met when she stepped on to a sudden void and became the minister of my UU church for a year.

Here is my reaction to her post: ” There is a big part of this in learning how to homeschool. I have to learn to teach AS I AM, in way which reaches my kids AS THEY ARE. What a lot of learning I had to do in the first year! Not only that, the darn buggers keep CHANGING. You know, like growing older and developing new interests? I used to complain about them no longer liking their favorite food once i got used to stocking it in the house . . .but now i have to keep changing curriculum.”

I think that, to a great extent, this year I started to really hit my stride. I started to accept that it’s ok if I work better with a schedule than without. I started to feel like I knew what my teen needed to be focussing on. I started to trust my 7 yo to know what he wanted to learn next. I learned how and when to push each of us, and when it was time to just let things slide.

I look at the kids. I accept myself and them as we are now. I do what makes sense to me. When it doesn’t work, I take a fresh look and do something different.

Really, I highly recommend it!

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7 Comments »

  1. When our kids are babies, and we’re parents for the first time, I think part of the reason we focus so much on ‘how the kids are doing’ and get so competitive is because that’s really the only way we can judge how we as parents are doing- because until you do it, you really don’t know how. (And until you’ve suffered Trail By Public Humiliation you don’t understand what mortification IS!) It’s the same with homeschooling- it’s the same sort of leap of faith you take when they put that little baloney- loaf in your arms and wheel you out the door. You just have to figure it out as you go along. It helps to have a supportive community, and it helps to have role models, and it helps a lot to hear things like “I have to teach AS I AM, in a way which reaches my kids AS THEY ARE.” :-) I LOVE that! I learned so SO SO much from raising/teaching my kids- because it forced me to really THINK about my values, and what I really believed, and to look at them, and trust THEM. And then take a deep breath, and say, “OK, I think we want to go . . . this way.”

    Comment by Marta — July 2, 2011 @ 4:39 pm |Reply

    • Note, Marta here is the person I dont know who I quoted above!! I did ASK her if I could quote her, after all.

      Comment by dbmamaz — July 2, 2011 @ 8:23 pm |Reply

  2. First of all, I’d like to say that if your UU pastor ever moves out to Wa., I will join her church.

    Second, Amen to that. And I like how you phrased it–Come as you are. My sons and I have grown so much as people over the past year, mainly because of having to do just that.

    Third: I think this is why I kinda freaked out over that blog the other day. To me, it seemed like the “House Beautiful” version of hsing, which pushed my buttons a little bit, as it seems diametrically opposed to “come as you are”. But that’s me. Doubtless, that mom took great satisfaction in organizing her home the way she did–more power to her–but I won’t be looking at it again any time soon.

    Comment by Batgirl — July 2, 2011 @ 7:57 pm |Reply

    • Batgirl, she was our minister for a year, ending 2 years ago. She isnt currently actively preaching, but she seems to be trying to feel out for SOMETHING . . . maybe a spiritual community without a formal minister or something?

      Also, i never saw that house beautiful post . . .maybe you can link it to me on fb or something. I’m sorta curious.

      Comment by dbmamaz — July 2, 2011 @ 8:20 pm |Reply

      • Yeah, I got that from her blog, but maybe she’ll change her mind…you never know…..

        You commented on my post! I meant the post about the blog where the woman had different areas set up for different hs subjects in her house– sort of like the hs version of “House Beautiful”. If you want to know the name of it, I’ll pm you. I really don’t want to hurt her feelings, strong opinions notwithstanding.

        Comment by Batgirl — July 2, 2011 @ 8:58 pm

  3. Cara,

    If you figured all this out after only two years, you are really good!

    Comment by ummtafari — July 6, 2011 @ 9:37 pm |Reply

    • Honestly, today I have my doubts . . . but its that cranky time of the month!

      Comment by dbmamaz — July 6, 2011 @ 9:40 pm |Reply


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