Monday, December 15, 2014

the art of being

Whenever we get to the end of a period of time without structured school, we find ourselves having deep conversations about who we are and how we want to be. We talk about what was and what might come next. 

We spend a few days with a notebook and a handful of pens at hand. We fill the pages with ideas, lists, and plans. We talk about the past and the future. We talk about other faiths and families,about what has worked for us and what hasn't, and why. We talk, and talk, and listen, feeling our way around.

This time I can feel her age. I offered afternoons at the pool and I got told it makes her too tired for gym. I offered a return to dressing up to go out to places like the museum, and theater, or the aquarium and it is met with huge smiles and a list of must have dress-up items to acquire.

She asked for time alone to read and clean.
She asked for math games and more art.
She asked for the late start option, 10 am instead of 8 am.

I asked for sit down hot lunches.      
I asked for more time with less to do.
I asked for school time to mix into daily life, for science and math to mingle with the making of cornmeal cakes and trips to the library... 

Together we planed our subject lists, collaborate on ideas of character, reinforce family traditions, set goals, talked shop, and look forward. 
As a homeschooling mom, I can argue the case for structured school as well as I can for unschooling. That is why we do both. But even more than either of those it is the transitions between them that seem to sprout the most important lessons.

I am a very lucky mom to be admitted into my child's head and heart so freely. It won't always be this way but for now I have the best seat in the house- a front row view of her in the making.

We started back to the books today with more of a mood in mind than an academic plan. And with that I would say it brings us back to where we started when first became real homeschoolers- it brings us back HOME.   

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