For the last *don’t think about it, don’t think about it* million days, I mean 100 and something days, I have taken on the role of home educator. In many ways I am more fortunate than others, I was furloughed so didn’t have the conflicting attentions of work responsibilities. Trying to even think of doing anything else when sitting at the dining room table is a recipe for arguments and stress. A bad morning has a higher probability of turning the whole day rotten.
I am hoping my kids have at least maintained a level of knowledge that will help them reacclimatise when they go back to school in September…fingers crossed, all of them. Loads of people have written about homeschooling over the lockdown, men and women, I think mostly women. The patience you have to find is monumentous, and this comes from someone who considers herself pretty damn patient.
There have been glimpses of real learning but much is monotonous. When we burnt leaves in the garden with a magnifying glass and looked at the combustion triangle, that was a good day. Slime making ended up in discussions of polymers, crosslinks and non-Newtonian fluids, an excellent day. Repeatedly running around the table (the body) collecting oxygen (pens) from the lungs (me) and carrying four at a time in their ‘haemoglobin’ pockets was PE and biology! I was proud of that one.
It has really made me think about how sit down school learning can only ever be part of their education. Especially with a dyslexic daughter, action definitely speaks louder than words. Her ways of learning are incredibly similar to my own and together we have found the joys of dictation and play doh spellings. Plus I’ve realised how often I get things wrong. Thank god for my PhD, I really did only get it to act as a reminder for the times I feel stupid, as they happen so often.
Summer holidays on the horizon mean we all have a break, but I know given half a chance I’ll pounce on learning to pass the time more than anything. Not sitting at a table with the books, but out in the real world when we are allowed to roam free. Investigating and feeling, using real life as my teaching vehicle. Turns out I’m going to continue to be a home educator for the foreseeable, even after they go back to school.
Better make my peace with it all.