Posted in Associate/Youth Pastor's Wife, Homeschooling, Parenting

Homeschooling Obstacles

     Ok I admit it, there’s no shame or false pride here…homeschooling is hard.  I mean, being a wife and mom are already hard, guilt ridden hats that I wear, but this really tops it all.  What’s even scarier, is I have a teaching degree!  I think teaching in the classroom may have been easier. Hmmmm, guess this fear of succeeding or failing doesn’t come as heavily when you’re dealing with other peoples’ kids. 
     One obstacle in our family is our ministry lifestyle.  I was giving 2nd man a report the other day and realized that in the first 9 weeks of school, we haven’t had one week the same as any other.  The only consistency I can find is that we can expect something unexpected every week of our life.   This could be good I suppose.  My kids will have to learn flexibility.  However, I do get uneasy when I hear things like, “kids need consistency”  and,  “Consistency is the key to being a successful student.”  Well, in our house the cheer is “flexibility is the key, to win the victory!” 
    I sound ranting here, but I really do count it an honor to teach my kids.  I also take it as one of the biggest jobs in the universe.  If I raise complete morons guess who’s gettin’ the blame, and I may not know until like 10-12 years from now.
     At dinner the other night I was trying to get our 4 year old son to report to daddy what sound the letter “U” makes.  He started, “uhhh…” to which I responded before he could say anything else “that’s right!”   Truthfully, I’m not sure if he was just stammering or actually making the sound.  The rest of the family wasn’t sold on it either, I gather, from the roaring laughter of my husband. 
     Of course this same child was, on another night, reporting to daddy about our talk on Heaven and Hell.  He was letting daddy know that hell is dark “yes” 2nd man said, “it’s also hot and there’s screaming,”  to which 2nd man responded, “that’s true son.”  Then he went on to describe some sort of worms with wings and all sorts of other creatures and sounds that, frankly, we did NOT discuss.  2nd man just looked at me, “really honey?  I’ll take over the spiritual teaching from here.”  Can you say FAILURE?   Of course this is coming from the child who doesn’t like the options God has given him.  “Why can’t we just stay here?  I like my home. I don’t want a mansion.”  Truly, the Spirit must not be calling him yet. 
    Of course, our older two girls are doing a little better.  However, I have one who seems to lack focus.  She has the sweetest spirit of almost anyone I’ve every met.  She would bend over backwards to please me. Yet, somehow, when I’m grading her papers I wonder if she knows what year this is, and who I am let alone Christopher Columbus.   She can quote an entire book of the bible, but mulitplication eludes her.  I’m constantly swept back to college courses that  went over learning styles and teaching styles, but I’ve yet to figure this child out.  Do I love her?  Does she please me?  Is she a good kid? No question!  But, I may be bald by the time she graduates. 
     My other daughter catches on very quickly.  If anything, I struggle to read anything she writes.  She’ll probably be a doctor someday, judging by her handwriting.  With her, the struggle comes mainly in stretching her character traits.  Things come fast and easy for her.  It’s diligence and slowing down to do things well she needs to work on.
     I have some days that are rewarding and others where I wonder why I’m allowed to do this at all.  I’m thankful for the right to homeschool which I may not have here in a few years.  However, I’m no magazine article candidate.  I don’t wear denim jumpers.  My kids don’t all play musical instruments and speak five languages and march behind me like ducks.  I’m too scared to expand curriculum from what I already know and am familiar with.  And I’m pretty sure this sentence started with the word “and” and I’ve ended several previous ones with prepositions.  Let’s face it, my kids may very well be doomed, educationally speaking.  But, they do love the lord, we do laugh a ton in our house, and they get along really well.  I’m gonna hang my hat on that until I can find a sturdier rack to hang it on, if one exists.

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