my usually suppressed thoughts on schoolhahahahahah. y'all know way more than me and i've been unschooling all this time.
in the end, it does always depend on the "institution" - the person running it, the children and parents involved.
i'm homeschooling because the options here are pitiful in combination with my three intense kids and the firstborn being impossible to put in any kind of school situation until recently without severe labeling. of course i don't want to let them go...but i would be much more okay with it now that clay and reed have certain self-sufficiency and integrity. my main problem with having them home is that they are seeking a structure that points towards schooling. and i don't mean lessons. i mean the experience of having to get up and go somewhere and follow a bunch of someone else's rules and be around other people so that they can figure out more who they are.
the hardest part about homeschooing is mostly about me, being a mamma alone. i am no substitute for a bunch of kids in the right environment to interact with .....(here they aren't allowed to even talk during lunch so there isn't much comparison - this is the state where it is illegal to not say yes maam)
it is also difficult for me to claim so many kinds of authority. my kids deserve to have more and different adult contact and role models, and would learn basics of civility from the herd mentality. i have to be the ultimate when everything is wrong comfort to the absolute dictator: this is the way the world is, and the ten different steps in between. i would love for different adults and natural social situations to take on some of this responsibility. any friend of mine that my kids respect that says to them, "hey, that is not okay" is the hugest benefical influence. i need more of that so i can be the nurturer, the giver, the chef, the fixer.
i'm working really hard to get this newish social homeschool group going but it is still not the same as an enforced habit that i feel my kids need.
i find homeschooling for little ones is not the most healthy situation since i don't have a village of equals in which we can meander. maybe it will be better as i fully realize myself. i still hold in my head the basic idea that i will model being the adult i want them to be, and they will follow what they want. i do worry a little, yes me virgo, that the world they grow into will be ruled by schooled people. they will have never learned the skill of doing something that they really didn't want to do. idealistically that sounds great, but i am finding that it is hard to teach or show or prepare them for such realities in this particular world. i'm looking for balance.
me and friends have considered - why don't we just put our ruby age kids in school for a year or so, and then take them out. but like i said, the schools here are scary to me. scary in that i am astonished at the results, the schoolkids i see and know. they are completely flattenned. so i choose my crazy life. but many diehard committed homeschooling friends who have moved out of state to greener school situations are now thrilled with school and all seem happy. sooo...i'm gonna have to run a school or move away?
and after having said all that, ruby does write some letters. she has been writing r's and b's legibly and easily for awhile - the others are almost there.
in two years she will probably be making everyone's schedules. i had no idea that there could be something worse than reed kicking me in the head to wake up every morning. ruby starts my day with incessant itineraries like today's: "wake up! get up mom! i need to feed geen and you can unlock the door. i don't know where your keys are (thank goodness) there's no more tea. i like sweet tea. get up and make some, i'm thirsty. i want to paint the birdhouse and put birdseed in it! (pulls on the blankets) come on mom, get up! i don't know where the paint is. can you get the paint for me now? i want to help you cook something i'm hungry! please mom. clay needs help on the computer. get up! i want a ponytail in the back here's the comb. (pushes comb in my hand)