Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Since September I've been home-schooling Juden for Kindergarten. I thought it would feel like a natural transition since we already have a home where learning and living and playing coincide. Some days have gone like my overly idealistic self imagined. We snuggle in the morning sun immersed in our reading while the girls have tea parties nearby. Other days I wonder what I got myself into and I feel like a total failure. On these days Juden has his mind made up not to do anything school related, the girls make concentration impossible and I'm trying to trudge through to make sure everything on my curriculum list is checked off. Some days Juden and I are frustrated and I end my day with little to show for it.
I'm using Sonlight which is very literature based, which I like. Every child's temperament is different and Juden was struggling with the extreme structure suddenly placed on his days at home. I realized that perhaps I was a tad over-zealous and that I really don't want to fight with my son or squelch his love for learning. A few days ago I was so discouraged I considered throwing the towel in and called my mother-to-almost-six, home schooling guru, best friend. I don't know what I would do without my girlfriends. She listened patiently to all of my recent struggles. She listened to my home-schooling frustrations. She talked about the importance of nurturing his curiosity and love for learning. She recommended books and gave amazing advice and helpful tips. Most of all she spoke confidence in me that I had lost in myself. She affirmed me as mom and a teacher.It is amazing the power of a little encouragement to a broken spirit. What did I do to deserve such precious women in my life? All of this to say, it has not always been an easy transition but we are learning how to find a good rhythm of learning and play and structure and freedom. I feel a sense of renewal that I know is from God and how He has used my friends to uphold me.
Some of the highlights are that I get to be with all my children all day long.
I get to watch their wonder over little miracles like this...
we feed our very hungry "calapidder" as Ella calls it, lots of milkweed,
we watch it form a pale green and gold beaded chrysalis,
we watch it bulge and become translucent with tiny wings forming underneath,
we watch it break free and unfurl it's wings for the very first time,
and just like that... a butterfly is born.
I get to teach and nurture and drink in each day the wonder and curiosity and creativity that comes with being five, and thirty-one.