Tuesday, October 30, 2007
I haven't written too much about our homeschool time. This is our third year "officially" homeschooling. Every year I have a distinct plan that I want to follow, and so far it's never gone as I planned. In 2005, I had no idea how the adoption process and fundraising was going to consume my time. Last year, I didn't plan on the transition of adding Lily to our family being so difficult. And this year, well, I've started babysitting for a four-month-old little boy, and his kindergartener brother, whom I must pick up from school, and Lily has speech therapy that takes us away from the house eight hours a week. In addition, I'm tutorting at least 2 hours, sometimes 3 hours, a week and now leading a women's prayer group on Thursday evenings.
Never is there a day that I can sit down with my kids and "do school" for several hours in a row a day.
Now some of you may be thinking that I'm doing my school-aged kids a true disservice. And daily I DO have to evaluate how I can efficiently and effectively help them to reach their fullest potential. We do a lot of reading. We work on math and science and history. We listen to classical music and identify instruments while we're doing art. They memorize Bible verses for AWANA, and set and reach goals in a timely way. They are sociable, polite, respectful, imaginative, active, reflective, curious, hopeful, eager learners.
I think they're doing great. That is the beauty of homeschooling. Not only can I arrange my schedule around their schooling, but I can arrange their schooling around, and through, our life as a family. Family life becomes part of the classroom. Society is only as strong as its family units, and not only am I strenthening our own family, but I'm raising my children to invest in their own families and to invest in others' families as well, in addition to building their worldview in a safe, nurturing environment. Don't misunderstand: I don't want my children to be sheltered in a bubble. I want to them to observe and experience and participate in life they way that God intended. Jesus came so that we could have life and HAVE IT ABUNDANTLY. That is what we want for our kids. And that is what my goal when I approach homeschooling.
So there's a little bit of my homeschooling philosphy. Only a fraction of it, and it also changes and grows and deepens and develops as I teach my children.
Here are a few pictures I have of them doing school. We are studying ancient Egypt and learning how to tell time right now. Also, Caleb is reading a book about pioneer days. Seth and Lily are mastering their ABC's and learning some phonics...all through reading and play. And maybe Sesame Street and Dora the Explorer.