After two weeks on the road, my kids are actually begging to go ahead and start school. Here. At home. In this place that’s still filled with sandy suitcases and old food. They want to sit down at the dining room table that’s covered with two weeks of mail, pull out that paper I haven’t purchased, sharpen those nonexistent pencils, and get to work.
Part of me thinks this is awesome and a clear indication that I’ve made the right choice. The other part thinks that they are really just after the first day of school waffle bar and schultutes. Meanwhile, I’m
absolutely sure slightly concerned that I’m not ready.
I ordered my main curriculum and (all the 50+ books that go with it) before the end of May. I’ve decided (momentarily) what we’re doing about math. I’m sure my school supply deficit can be addressed by a quick trip to Target. So, what’s the problem?
The problem is that I’m suddenly overcome by the urge to add sentence diagramming, supplemental math, Latin, Spanish, Mandarin, additional vocabulary, art history, spelling, handwriting, finance, poetry, underwater basket weaving, etc. etc. etc. In short, I want to make sure I’ve covered all bases and crammed my kids’ heads full of absolutely EVERYTHING they could ever possibly need to be successful ten years from now when they go out into the real world. And I feel like I need to cram it all in NOW.
Let this be a cautionary tale, people. Going down this rabbit hole is EXACTLY how to make homeschooling a stressful disaster. I know this in the same way that I know staying up until 1 watching another episode of Leverage is not in my best interest, and yet…
It’s about now that I have to sit my butt down on the couch with a cup of coffee and try to remember why I decided to homeschool in the first place. My memory is shot, but thankfully, I write a blog, so I can just scroll through my archives, looking for an old post from back when the idea of spending ALL DAY with my kids seemed like a dream instead of
a nightmare a lot of hard work.
Oh, yes, there it is: How an Essay Contest and a Fairy Box Convinced me to Homeschool. There was this guy:
He kept reminding me to consider the “other hand”. Well, I looked, and there wasn’t a single hand that was holding sentence diagraming. No, I was all like, “My kids should grow up playing together. I want to build memories. I want to be all happy, cozy, family-like.” Never once did Tevya say, “On the other hand, you could be a tiger mom.”
As I reread those old posts this morning, I found this little gem:
I may not be able to cement the difference between the pluperfect tense and the past perfect continuous tense into the minds of my children. It doesn’t really matter. They will have plenty of time to relearn these things later. What they will never again have is the opportunity to grow up together; the opportunity to be something more to their younger siblings than simply that much older brother and sister who moved out and freed up an extra bedroom. And I’ll never again have the opportunity to watch them do it.”
I said that? Really? Well, then.
So, I’m going to go to Target today and get some supplies, and a waffle maker. And wine. Wait, I live in Tennessee, scratch the wine. I’m going to tell my kids that the sooner they help me unpack, the sooner we can start school, and I’m going to call cleaning this dump a Family Activity. I’m going to quit the endless internet searches for the perfect curriculum. I’m going to trust that less really is more until I’m proven wrong.
I’ll keep you (and me) posted.