When I first started reading (obsessively) about home schooling, i read here and there about deschooling. I read that kids often need time to ‘recover’ from school. I read that, the longer kids have been in school, the longer they need to deschool. But do I believe everything I read? hah! They had the summer to deschool! Truthfully, my 13 yo LOVES doing school work, he just didnt like school. So getting him right on schedule was good.
But today, something reminded me of an old friend. An old friend with lots of opinions. He used to tell me that the reason so many people seemed stupid was that their brains were just too busy with their baggage. People spend so much energy trying to hide old memories, cope with ongoing hurts, or pretend they don’t really feel the way they feel, they can’t see what’s in front of them. It occurred to me that this might explain the magic re-birth, the awakening, that I’ve read about, that comes over our children after they’ve been home schooling for a while.
I am starting to see this in my six-year-old. All year at school, his little brain was exhausted just trying to make sense of . . . school. Some kids want to play with me, but some don’t. If i try to play during class, i get in trouble. some kids play fun games but wont let me join. But if i do really silly things during class, then they laugh at me. But then I get in trouble. Is this good, or bad? On the bus I’m not allowed to sit with my best friend. This makes no sense! Why am I the worst reader? Cant I just go home when I’m tired?
No wonder he wanted nothing to do with anything school-related.
But i feel like I’m just starting to see inquisitiveness come back again. Sure, he still struggles at times with how to be appropriate socially, but he’s doing pretty well at park days finding kids he CAN get along with . . .and there’s no confusion about what is and what isnt social time.
Instead, I see him exploring what floats and sinks in the puddle in the park, picking up the inflatable globe and asking questions, reading things on the computer when there is no pressure to do so. He’s so much more self-confident and happy! His brain can focus again on living and learning instead of trying to figure out things that just made no sense to him.
Now, i’m not seeing as much of this in my 13 yo, and of course I attribute it to his special needs. However, since books say that you’ll need to spend more time deschooling kids who have been in school longer .. . who knows, maybe he will also begin to take a more active role in his education. We’ll just have to wait and see. Its not like i’m in a hurry to put them back in school . . . we LIKE home schooling!