Monday, August 22, 2011
I can't believe I am actually doing this.
Really. Am I am crazy, or what?
Wait...don't answer that question. I am not sure I want to know the answer!!!
Today, the Professor and I set off on a new adventure - home school.
First, let me be honest and say how much I hate the term "home school." It conjures up images of strange, backward children who can't put three sentences together in an intelligent manner to anyone NOT in their immediate family, girls who wear dresses made of calico print fabric their mom picked up for $1 a yard at Goodwill, and whole wheat everything.
Any of you know me at all realize I am so not that type of mother.
Sure, I wear skirts almost every day of my life, not because I think God told me to but because I find them ridiculously comfortable (and definitely NOT made of calico). Sure, I make whole wheat stuff quite frequently, but I also make a lot of stuff with good old fashioned unbleached Gold Medal flour as well. But me, a home schooler?
Not in a million years.
I much prefer the term "home educator" and that we are "home educating" the Professor.
Maybe it is because I have know to much about the school systems here in the U.S. that I really don't want to "school" my wee ones because it smacks too much of...well, the school system. Our schools are currently set up to teach people how to follow orders, respond to the bell, and then move along little darling, move along. This is fantastic if you are hoping to produce workers who follow orders, respond to the bell, and then move along on their merry way.
However, if you want something more for your child, you are outta luck. The vast majority of our current schools are not set up to teach children how to love learning, how to think like an entrepreneur, and how to be responsible for their own lifelong education.
For parents who want more of love of learning and less order following, what choice to we have but to step outside the system and provide this for our children on our own? (That is, unless we are fortunate enough to live somewhere with a thriving charter school that subscribes to our educational philosophy).
Which brings me to my second "let me be honest" moment: Did I mention I just spent the last five years of my life earning a PhD with an emphasis in ADULT education and my dissertation is about GRADUATE education? Did I mention I have ZERO experience teaching at an elementary-aged level?
Did I mention I am scared silly to home educate my son?
I mean, what if I break something? What if I don't do it right? Which leads me to my third and final "let me be honest" moment which is my biggest fear of all: What if this grand experiment simply proves I will never be a good enough mother and my children will be irreparably harmed simply because I am their mother?
I know, I know, I know. I should let it go after all these years and most of the time, I do a pretty darn good job of putting that crappy thinking in it's place. But still...there are moments, like now, where those old doubts and fears creep out of the closet.
So if you are reading this, say a little prayer for me (and the Professor!). I could certainly use all the extra help I can get at this point. This home education adventure feels like a huge test of my ability to parent just as much as it is a test of my ability to teach. The teaching part I have down, no worries. It's the other stuff I am worried about.