I am expecting a baby in January and my mother-in-law came over and gave my husband a big lecture about how impossible it will be to homeschool when there is a new baby, and can’t we at least send our 4 year old to preschool and our older two to school so that I only have to homeschool one child; And do we realize that we cannot start at 10:30–We have to start at 8:30, and that we have to do it 180 days? I am not having doubts. I’m just feeling frustrated that after nearly 2 years of homeschooling, there are still the lectures. Is there a cure for the after-effects of such lecturing? I need one.
I found these articles online:
They were very helpful. Also, I have read much about unschooling and, although I do not always use that, there are days when I think that, due to a pregnancy & morning sickness, today is unschooling. I am always surprised how much they do and learn on those days.
I had planned to school year round, but before this summer, my plan was not to unschool all summer. But so it has gone. I have unschooled all summer, and to my happy surprise, they have learned a ton this way. My kids recently became really into the game on the computer, “Times Attack,” by BigBrainz. It’s great because I knew my son really needs to learn to multiply. I did not even suggest it to him. In the middle of the school year, I remember him saying he was sick of multiplication, and wanted to do other math. I taught him probability by playing a fun game, which the kids then wanted to play at every second for a while.
Just today, I was thinking about my mother-in-law’s opinion, and about the baby coming. The articles helped, but I also realized that, just like the unschooling philosophy says, life IS the lesson. When I have morning sickness, that is life. Keeping care of mom and helping her feel better is sometimes the lesson. Housework is sometimes the lesson. Making sure mom does not forget to eat and learning childcare are sometimes the lesson. Making your own meals and entertaining yourselves is sometimes the lesson.
It’s crazy how great it is just to know the unschooling philosophy, so that when my mother in law, or anyone else, reminds me about how “you have to do it 180 days- It’s the LAW!” I can remember how 365 days a year, my kids are constantly learning, so it is laughable to think that for the majority of the world, thinking that learning 180 days is all that kids need, is normal and acceptable. For me, it’s 365 days a year. They are always learning. It is not always formal, and is never “like public school,” as they’d wish it to be, but for me, it is just great.
Over the summer, I have seen many children, families and women who do public school during the school year, and I have noticed things which have reminded me why I like my decision to home educate the way I do. Here are some of my mental notes for you. These are just things I have noticed from the SUMMER months!
“I can’t believe (that child) is (that old) and mom is still doing that for (the child)! i am glad my children, by that age and much younger, learn to do that for themselves.”
“These public-schooled kids are so pressured all the time! It is unhealthy and insane that the world treats kids this way!”
“Those kids have to be entertained. Those poor moms think it is their job to entertain the kids, and those kids think it is mom’s job to entertain them. How crazy is that? My kids entertain themselves. That is not my job!”
“I cannot believe how many moms don’t look for a solution to a problem with a child, or do not address a child’s needs, because, oh, well, thank goodness, he/she is only here a few months, and school starts again soon, and then he/ she will be back in school. Does she honestly think that is O.K.? Is that not just a way to ignore her child and said child’s needs or problem, because in the school year, mom won’t have to “deal with it” anymore? That is horrible. So many moms feel that way. They just don’t care to deal with it, and are just glad they won’t have to anymore, once the school year starts. That is so sad for the child and for their relationship. Child needs mom. Why has she abandoned the child in this way? The child will still have the same needs and hurts when school starts. Mom will just not have to “see” the needs anymore, and, therefore, will be in the ignorant bliss in which she likes to be. How sad! That child is crying out for help. Why is she not desiring to help?”
“I cannot believe how, during the summer, these moms think they have to soak up their child and enjoy it all really fast by going on trips and to events constantly, because they know that once the public school year starts, their child will no longer be with them. They have to “speed date” their child, almost, during the summer. How sad. They could keep the child year round, and enjoy the child slowly, day by day, all year round! If only they knew that!”
In conclusion, I’d like to say that I don’t think these things just to judge others, but to confirm MY reasons for home educating my kids, in my mind. I need this, because the barrage of insults, lectures and observations about what I do WILL come and will always be coming, from relatives and many others, and I need these observations to help me to stay strong in my decision to home educate my kids.
It is like the tree that became stronger because it constantly fought the wind. I have to constantly strengthen myself mentally & emotionally in these ways, in order to stay strong in my decision, despite extreme opposition from other people around me.