reflections on our home learning journey weeks 7-10

Where has the time gone. Each week Friday evening would roll round and for one reason or another sitting down and reflecting was not happening. A combination of the needs of the moment and where I am in reflecting on life, the place of waiting and discernment we are in and simply why, what can i write about. Life has been a hard place not because of any specific reasons or events but that desert place of uncertainty, questions about calling, questions of belonging, stay or move, now or later, needs over wants, realities and dreams, longings. And while I do not completely wear my emotions on my sleeve, Bob picks up on any dis-ease, uncertainty in me, even my PMT and takes it on himself. Add in some non solid sleep, though overall sleep is definitely on the way up and no more night walks needed and sparks can fly all to easily and quickly and as with many things my hold on learning, lessons and life becomes ever tighter rather than the long for life giving experience I hope for our days. Also what felt like a complete undermining by a consultant in regard to my parenting has left me doubting all that I do have to offer and can give both to my family and friends.

But we now have a week off stretching a head of us and it will finish with wonderful birthday celebrations for both Zog and Kanga; where have the past two years gone? And so I find myself not with lessons to prepare but some time to sit and ponder while the boys set up their own museum having been given a box full of fossils from a friend at church. I look forward to visiting it later this afternoon.

Its been Fall/Autumn so lots of time for leaf crafts, playing in the leaves with friends and gathering leaves, including for our church’s  ‘Fallen Leaves’ service on 1st November. Nothing like a walk through stacks of leaves to bring a smile to the day.

DSCN3307  DSCN3303

As far as lessons are concerned we have been making progress with maths and multiplications and might actually be getting to grips with counting in 10s. Bob just has such a different way of seeing numbers to me that I struggle at times to know if he really has grasped something only for him to be doing something else later and totally unrelated and to say something that shows yet again yes he has grasped it and is able to use that information correctly but in ways i had not even considered yet. Writing continues to be the make or break of entire days and my confidence is rocked as to whether he will ever learn but a dear friend home schooling her children and who has had the same hand writing struggles with her daughter posted the most encouraging picture this week because her daughter who is 9 has finally had a break through with her writing and her hands and brain are now able to work at the same speed. I long for that day but I am motivated now to breathe more deeply and not to fight the battle that rises every time I mention writing. It is funny how my confidence is most shaken with the very basic skills and yet in so many ways our children have all been the same, that they will not do anything until it can be done perfectly and completely. For some reason they do not believe in public practice so to speak, any learning is done out of sight and then they will walk, talk. read, and so on.

Science and History have taken a back seat to some degree as I have had to release the pressure on me as I have wrestled with all that I mentioned earlier. I have had to be gentle on myself and I hope that in doing so the children are learning an invaluable lesson for themselves and for others, that sometimes we just cannot do it all. We live in a fast paced world but I am not carved out for it which often means I feel guilty for not being so crazy busy as so many friends are and even then saying no to things. I don’t believe life was meant to be lived at break neck speed and it seems to be one of my callings in life to live life at a very different pace which I am thankful for, but wrestle with misplaced guilt in that when I see how much others pack into their day. We cannot do everything and our children do not need to do everything either and I would rather they learn that now and learn to establish good boundaries and be aware of the lie behind crazy busy schedules and the need to push ourselves to the limit. I want to them to learn to discern and determine what matters and what they really love rather than trying to go after everything however good and noble all those things might be.

Home learning is not about simply doing the national curriculum at home but about a different way of learning. Yes there are some topics that need to be covered but because we are doing it in a very different setting learning can look very different, but sometimes it is all to easy to get caught up in thinking our days should look more like school days but the joy of learning at home means that in fact it looks very different to a school day as such and looks a lot more like this.

DSCN3309or this DSCN3300

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