It’s weekly wrap-up time! If you want to join in, we’d love to see what is going on with you, so please visit Mary.
From where I sat this past week,
As an individual, I…
mentioned that some serious rambling would follow all of the rich word that I’ve received over the past few weeks. I’ve added some more “to dos” from my post on last week:
1) Show much love, grace, and mercy. The grace and mercy are key for me here. It amazes me how, if you embrace that type of insight, homeschooling teaches you so much about yourself—perhaps even more than it teaches you about your children. Over the years, I’ve had to reconcile with my own anxieties and experiences with learning, and move on past my successes and failures in order to home educate with a pure heart and a clear head. To be sure, a clear head is required to discern what is really a problem with the children versus what are my fears if and when they are not quite “getting it,” or manifesting it in the way that I deem appropriate. Is that crazy enough? Yet if we’re honest, it happens to us all.
2) Keep the main thing the main thing. One of Sally Clarkson’s messages to those fortunate enough to hear her at the HOTM conference was to be careful who you follow. This resonated with me, and not just in terms of the authors I enjoy. I never thought about it before, but homeschooling has “hot” new methods and trends just like any other facet of life. Based upon my own blog hopping, this is the year of the workbox system. This is not in any way to crush an idea or to poke at the people who find this method beneficial; I am instead realizing my own propensity to check out what’s new (especially if it looks colorful and fun for the youngest) and to then try and incorporate somehow into what we do. The problem is, I don’t always do this well, and the fun of it (and the good intent) gets lost in the confusion of the implementation, and the mental clutter it creates as I feebly attempt to mold it into what we do. There are wonderful new ways to help children learn, but I’m led to continuously streamline down to what works for us, and to stick with it. I want to allow the children the freedom, the “masterly inactivity,” as Miss Mason calls it, to digest on what they’re learning. This has been missing in our busy household for years, and I am seeing where I can add exercises, rather than adding more formal subjects, to our current studies in order to afford more time away from the tables and from formal learning. I want to return to our bare bones necessities, inspired by a quote that I repeat regularly: all you need to educate your children is a Bible, a math book, and a library card.
As a wife and homemaker, I…
am supporting my husband in the midst of a job and semi-career change. I’ve had many chances to, yet again, get in touch with self and with the ministry we have as wives. He is moving forward in the blessing that chased him, but his steps are cautious, and as the extrovert, he thinks through each one—out loud. It’s such a different approach from the way I process, inwardly (and on this blog, hence the rambling), only speaking at the point that I’m close to a decision. I think the Lord creates in us an innate desire to find someone who is our opposite; this is a point of growth, and a chance to embrace Him through embracing someone who isn’t like us. Besides, two of me would be too quiet and way too boring!
As a mom and homeschooling parent, I…
am realizing the disadvantage of stopping and starting a science course mid-way at the end of the year. Our son’s studies are such that he started Apologia’s general science last January, so we stopped around chapter 8. The long and short of it is, he’s been an experimenting monster since we began! I’ll save the pictures for this week’s not-back-to-school blog hop, featuring class pictures.
The oldest quoted “3 weeks into school and it’s been good” on her live e-mail, so I really hated to fuss about her moving slowly. So much for that grace and mercy, huh? She’s been completing her work each day, at a decent hour, even, but only after me stopping her, prompting her to move forward, checking in more than I want, etc. My fear, whether or not it proves true, is that the habits that are forming now while it’s still summer from a dance center perspective will spill over into the dance season. That would mean late nights of returning to school after hours of dance classes (and subsequent hours of what my husband lovingly calls “the debriefing session,” where the older two have to discuss each minute detail of what happened in class). Did my fear—False Evidence Appearing Real—get the best of me, or was I warding off a bad habit before it could become a matter of course? Like I said, if you embrace it, you learn more about self than you learn about the little ones that God placed under your care.
One of the many blessings of schooling at home is that our children are rarely ill. Yet, the youngest has battled a cold for the last week, I think largely because of the extreme and sudden changes to her body in being outdoors with the puppy (100 degrees plus as a heat index) and then coming into a house where the air conditioning has run almost non-stop. Again, grace and mercy is needed as she moves slower and is a bit foggy in making what is normally a breeze get completed in a somewhat timely fashion. I find myself getting increasingly excited about the upcoming field trips with her in mind. Maybe I’m just getting cabin fever.
As a business owner, I…
am loving how the Lord is fleshing out the idea for the long-awaited high school level curriculum. Also, my husband is writing a book based upon our incorporation of science projects into our Sunday school classes. I’ve a vision for this as well. For time to do it all, Lord, pleeeeeaaaaaassssssseeeeee!
May the Lord bless your week as well.