Every mom worries about their kids and whether or not they are doing a good job. Homeschool moms have a special extended version of worry about doing 'enough' for their children's education and preparation for adulthood. When the job comes down to you most days, it's a lot to carry around. If you're feeling the weight of that responsibility right now, I want to remind you to remember this. As a homeschooling family, you have twice as many days to accomplish what public schools set out to do. That means you can relax a bit!
Here in Oklahoma, students are required to participate in school 180 days a year, which leaves 185 more to catch up (or forge ahead) on whatever you may have missed or not gotten to. We take a year-round schooling approach which allows us to take breaks and vacations when we want to, rather than stay attached to someone else's schedule. I know some families are attached to other homeschooling organizations (like Epic here in OK) that require certain deadlines, but specifically in the realm of "What if I missed something?" we have so much freedom and opportunity. It's easy to get caught up in what others are doing that we miss the flexibility we actually hold in our own hand.
In case you forget (because I need this reminder daily sometimes), the purpose of a child's education is to ignite abilities and desires to learn. That learning will treat them well throughout their life. The rest is just details and gravy. With COVID hitting our house around Thanksgiving, some things were certainly put off for a while and now with the end of the year facing us, I can see what's behind and what's not.. This week is a holiday week, but we'll still be trying to fit in some school to do our best to keep a steady pace, but wherever they are in any particular subject isn't nearly as important as if they are continuing to learn and grow in their skills.
At the lunch table, Mr. Butler was quizzing us on math problems he was devising from a large tub of mayo. (He's an engineer - what do you expect?) My eldest was hanging with him just fine, but after getting a little weary of it, my daughter piped up with a correct answer that was impressive, which made my son a little sulky. The girl is good at math and her older brother doesn't exactly love that fact. She's got a reasoning brain like her dad, but getting her to use utensils at the table or cleaning up after herself is a nightmare. As we all are, she is brilliant and a giant work in progress. Same as her brothers. The point is to keep working, not to fret about where we aren't.
So much has gone wrong this year that we're all expecting to complain about things before they've even happened yet. Let's not let that seep into our homeschooling expectations. Celebrate the victories and encourage the work that is left to be done. Love and be loved. We have much to be thankful for.
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