Monday, January 19, 2009

Home schooling and me........hmmm

So this year, amidst the madness of "Back to School" sales, I am sitting about rather smugly thinking "not me baby". And then I realise what it is that I am actually taking on and I begin to feel a mild sensation of panic.
I have always (rather romantically) pictured home schooling in such a way where everybody is getting along fabulously - the girls (wearing their long frocks and aprons) are baking in the kitchen - after first collecting eggs from the many chickens foraging around the house - and the boys are out in the shed making tables from rough hewn timber or something. Everyone is humming or singing and the birds are perching on their shoulders etc.

And as for the mother in this particular scenario - well, she is the perfect woman - long hair swept up into a bun, a rather healthy glow about her with a trim little figure, oodles of patience just dripping from her and a word of encouragement for all.

(sound of record needle being ripped off - you know the sound - halfway between a screech and a scream!!) REALITY CHECK!!!

I am not, and never will be anything like that woman and my life will never resemble something from Little House on the Prairie crossed with Ann of Green Gables or even anything vaguely similar. And I must keep reminding myself of this or I will go completely mad. I need to figure out how I need to make home schooling look for my family. I need to be able to sustain this kind of lifestyle over a long period rather than blowing myself away in the first six months!

So I have a plan. I'm not sure if it is a very good one, or even if it will work, but I am going to give it a go anyway. This is my plan (are you ready?):

  • Have fun

  • Do things together

  • Talk about all sorts of stuff

  • Play a lot

  • Do some craft

  • See other people and play with them

  • If it begins to suck, go to the park

  • If it is too hot for the park, go to the pool

  • If all else fails, have a nanna nap

Hmmm. Sounds alright! Will just have to wait and see. And pray a lot.

My Mum,(bless her little cotton socks) who really wants to encourage me with home schooling, (onya Mumsy!!) sent me a poem all about home schooling written by a blind man from their church. They have five children (must be mad eh Applebys!) who are all home schooled. It's a bit long, but I found it a good read.

Home Schooling by Joseph Steven

Folding the washing, preparing the food, reciting times tables, discussing God's Word,

Caring for baby, sweeping the floor, whatever we're learning, this is home schooling.

Working together, older and younger, building character, discipling as mentor,

Line upon line, gradually growing, relationships strengthened, this is home schooling.

Education is more than just learning facts, it's submitting to authority and learning respect,

It's teaching life skills, to be persevering, it's leading by example, this is home schooling.

Patiently practicing, piano, violin, diligently drawing or colouring in,

Science experiments, very intriguing, comprehension or spelling, this is home schooling.

Weeding or planting, hoeing or digging, painting or sanding, nailing or drilling,

Sewing a button, practical learning, whatever is useful, this is home schooling.

Reading or writing, work is exciting, there's purpose to learning, for future preparing,

From the moment of waking, till just before sleeping, whatever we're doing, this is home schooling.

Maybe after I've put as many years in as he has (or even if I survive the first two weeks), I will be able to say confidently that my children are getting a great education at home with me. At the moment, I'm not sure if I can do it, but am willing (even a little bit excited) to give it a go. I know I'm going to need to be constantly asking God for patience and a real sense of adventure (and perhaps the odd bottle of wine - tee hee). Maybe we could grow our own grapes and include wine making as part of our curriculum! Now there's a truly practical skill!!!


Saminda said...

I'm so excited for you Helen, and know this is going to be a great adventure! I love that poem.

Copland said...

Home schooling and me/you/anyone....hmmm?

I must agree with you Helen, "hmmm" pretty much sums it all up. But I wish you all the best in your coming educational adventure. And hey, if it doesn't work out, its only one year that the kids are behind and you can always enroll them in a real school next year and hopefully the damage can be repaired!


Exhlyc - a cream made from mushed up eucalyptus leaves. It smells like eucalyptus but it doesn't actually do anything. Apparently it was invented by someone who was home schooled!

Copland said...

Hello, hello.. is this thing on???


*Blediers - the ancient art of using leeches to cleanse the body, was known as Bleding, and those who practice the art, known as 'Blediers'.

Theresa said...

I guess home-schooling is taking up your blogging time. Where is your commitment?