Monday, August 27, 2012

The Start of the School Year Panic

Oh my goodness, I've taught them NOTHING for WEEKS!

I'm pretty sure every homeschooling mother feels this way occasionally, when life just gets too busy for "school". At least, I like to think they do, because otherwise I'd feel painfully alone, and very much like a failure.

We do sit down school most of the time. Okay, some of the time. Eh, well, once in awhile I go through a spurt and have them sitting down working on workbooks. Sometimes.

Unschooling scares me. I need more order and control than that. I can't be an unschooler! How will my children ever learn math, or grammar, or the history of the world, if I let life be their teacher?

And then I talk to other homeschooling mothers who are ordering a year's worth of curriculum in every subject for their children right now, and realized I have ordered nothing. We're still finishing up last year's math books. We finished The Oldest's English book, and I have no plans for what will come next.

And there isn't time! We are racing through our day, putting up veggies and cooking and handling chores and horse-shopping and stuff. Surely horse shopping is far more important than the 7's mulitplication tables. Isn't it?

I'm in a state of minor panic. How are these children going to be successful wives and mothers if I'm not sitting down for six hours a day teaching them things they need to know? How will my kindergartener succeed in life if we don't have time for construction paper crafts and finger painting? What about all these other homeschool families that are gearing up for a new school year with fresh new school books to crack open for the first time, and wonderfully organized schedules to follow? We can't compare to that. I'd love to start school at 8 o'clock every morning, but there are animals to feed and play with, and stalls to clean and veggies to pick, and some days we don't even have breakfast until 9.

Breathe. I am going to stop freaking out, rejoice in the brilliance of my children, though it may not be "standardized brilliance" and I'm going to be grateful for the lessons our lives teach us. Because while this life doesn't offer up a whole lot of long division, it offers so much learning in so many other areas, the kind of learning that only a life up here can give them. And right now, that's going to be good enough. I'm going to let them enjoy the new life we are living up here for awhile. They are little, and they are excited and happy. There will be time for other things later.

And I'll keep telling myself that every day, until I actually embrace it. 


Jill said...

They still learn, curriculum or no. Believe me, the things they will seek out on their own with your encouragement will inspire you while inducing awe. You're raising intelligent, curious young ladies.

Jill said...

They'll learn plenty whether you have "books" or not. Believe me, what they unearth on their own with a little encouragement from you is going to astound and amaze you. You're doing a fine job raising intelligent, curious young ladies. :-)