Domestic Bliss Report

Motherhood is hard work. If we don't stick together, we'll all fall apart.

Friday, August 24, 2007

All parents start out homeschooling.

I've been told that before and it just kind of washed over me. I remember the conversation but it's tugging at me for a post now.
And yes, I'll be honest and admit I'm trying to get your attention.

If you think about it, it's really true. The "experts" will tell you that a human being grows and changes the most in the first five years. Second is the five years (or so) of puberty. No other five-year bloc of time nearly compares.

Who is in charge during that time? I know there are working parents but they do have some say in the day care environment, right? So let's leave that issue aside.

What do kids learn in those first five years? Oh, whatever. Nothing really academic, so it can't be much.
*choke* *snort*
Pardon. I just had to recover myself at that thought.

Let's try that again. What do kids learn in the first five years? To crawl, walk, and run. They learn colors, numbers, object permanence, holding a crayon, how to relate to others...
They learn to talk. To communicate with others. The rudiments of letters, grammar, language, conversation. While they might not say much, their receptive language is staggering. Some--I was one of them--even learn to read.
They learn how to use the toilet, how to dress themselves, how to feed themselves, bathe themselves.

Oh, nothing much.

So, all parents start out homeschooling. It's just some (most) quit after five years or so. That seems silly to me, now. I mean, I was competent for the first five years. Did something magical happen where I am now clueless about how my child learns, what he or she likes, how much frustration is counterproductive and when it's close to breakthrough? When it's time for a break to run around the house for ten minutes and resume, and when to just scrap the plans for the day and get out the paintbrushes or sidewalk chalk?

Yeah. That's what's going through my mind at this moment.



At 12:41 PM, Blogger Catherine said...

When we were "deciding" whether to homeschool, my sister was grappling with the same issue. She works, and her husband stayed home with the kids for a long time, until he obtained a full-time gig that had hours opposite hers, when they started tandem parenting.

While she was deciding, she was also toying with the idea of trying to live off of her husband's income and stay home. She even went so far as to change careers temporarily in an attempt to do just that. When she started to see that it wasn't financially viable, she talked to her priest, who told her, "all parents homeschool. Some of them just have more help than others." I thought that was interesting. She's starting to see that now with her daughter that is Madeleine's age. She helps with homework and is as involved as a working mother can be with the school. She's also lucky to have a top-notch Catholic school that keeps tuition low (it's the tithe) and is within a reasonable distance.

I agree with your post. Sometimes it isn't about confidence and capability though.

At 6:58 PM, Blogger Gombojav Tribe said...

Excellent point! Guilt Free Homeschooling blogged about that not too long ago. I appreciate it and am going to tell a friend who is considering homeschooling to read your blog!

At 2:50 PM, Blogger HISchild said...

Amen! Just because you have a degree that says you are competent doesn't necessarily mean that you are!

;) ;)



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