Once again, I’m reminded of the wonderful freedom we have in homeschooling.
The plan, all summer, was to start school today. That’s what we do: we enjoy the last long weekend of summer and then that Tuesday, we start school and begin the structured learning again. But this year, the kids were begging for “just one more week.” They wanted just one more week to relax and have fun. Even my mother said, “It is a short week, anyway.”
So I gave in. I agreed that we would instead wait until Monday to start. I felt a twinge of guilt – we had a plan. We have things to do. There’s plenty to learn, and to be honest, I was really looking forward to getting started and seeing if my new planning and organization method was really going to work.
But then I realized something. Public school makes you go to school when you don’t want to. Public school tries to make you learn when you’re in the mood to do other things. Public school is where you fit into a tiny little box that doesn’t really fit. This is homeschooling.
I want this to be fun. I want my kids to actually learn. And how much are they really going to learn if they don’t want to be doing it? And let’s be realistic: they’re asking for just one more week — not a month, or a year. A week. If I can’t be flexible enough to grant them that, then what’s the point in doing this? They get stressed, I get stressed, we all start snapping at each other, and where’s the fun in that?
I don’t feel guilty now. I feel relaxed. It’s four days. And when the four days is done, and the weekend has passed, we’ll wake up Monday morning, go for a bike ride and get busy with school. We’ll start learning, expanding our brains, thinking and exploring new ideas and old history and remembering skills already learned before building on them and adding new skills to the set.
And they’ll be much happier and more willing because they got their way, and I’ll be happier and more relaxed because I’ll know that because they got their way, I will now get mine and be able to more easily get through our days.
This is why we homeschool. This is why this life is better for us than public school ever was, or could be. This works.