Life, education

“Measure his education, not solely by his progress in the ‘three R’s,’ but by the number of living and growing things he knows by look, name, and habitat.” –Charlotte Mason

The sun is out nearly every afternoon now, warm and inviting. There have already been a few trips to check in on the creek, and a good number of plans made for a whole village of “mouses’ houses.” The back field has been plowed. Birds are flitting in and out of the houses that dot our property.

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…we wait

We haven’t had a ton of snow, or bad weather, or even really cold weather. Yet the cycle of sickness has made this seem like an especially long winter, and our family is ready to shake off all the cozy of the season and trade it for freedom and, just maybe, a few weeks without germs.

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You can’t explain what you don’t know

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I’ve shared our approach to high school many times (a podcast summary is right here), and I probably will continue to do so. Homeschooling, after all, isn’t a one-size-fits-all order, no matter what the entrenched institutions try to sell you. A good— no, a great— high school education can’t fit in a box, or even a classroom. That kind of learning comes from following rabbit trails into unkempt, sometimes even messy places where young adults grab the spade that is the foundational years you’ve given them and start digging in to the dirt that is everything.

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To our new pediatrician

Hi. My name is Heather. I know you’re probably going to call me, “Mom,” throughout most of this first meeting, and that’s o.k. I can take it, though I admit you’ll score bonus points if you take the time to remember me as something beyond my role today. But again, if you don’t, I’m not going to hold it against you. It’s not me that I want you to invest in, anyhow.

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The Circle Time season

When we started homeschooling, I had three children ages 4 and under. We bought a boxed curriculum that year, one of those terribly stuffy, all-in-one deals that delivered a classroom kindergarten experience right to our front door, pencils and all. We all hated it— even my husband, who had been its biggest proponent when we had started researching our options. The fact is, a home isn’t a classroom and therefore, classroom management just isn’t a skill a homeschooling mother needs. Oh, she needs plenty of other skills. (Like delicately balancing the personalities of a whole family full of people who live and work together all the time.) But homes and brick and mortar schools are totally different beasts, and what works in one really doesn’t work well in others.

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