Met the sweetest lady today at our monthly homeschool mom’s discussion group. Her only son, 8 years old, has struggled through public then private schooling. They’ve even tried homeschooling once before. The troubles have persisted. Now they are trying homeschooling again and she came to our group for the first time looking for encouragement and insight.
As her story unfolded it became clear that the problem her son was having was that the school method did not work with her son’s learning style. He struggled to learn under the group techniques. The reason homeschooling wasn’t working? She was using the same methods or techniques at home. She was doing school at home instead of homeschooling. It’s a snare many of us fall into mainly because it’s the way we were taught and it’s the conventional wisdom of our time. Questioning it and branching out is often met with disapproval and even rejection from friends and family.
Learning at home is by definition different from learning in the classroom setting or the conventional teaching environment. In additional this so called conventional wisdom is more aptly named modern education. When reading biographies of Benjamin Franklin, George Washington and so many others, we see they weren’t educated this modern way at all.
They enjoyed learning throughout their lives, rather than being in the mode of get educated and set that task aside as if it’s a necessary evil.
My best advice when at this frustrating crossroads or when first starting out, is to read biographies of great people from at least 100+ years ago,then tailor your educational environment more along theses examples instead of today’s four walls confined educational model.
You’ll find reading good books including biographies and books about topics of interest rather than textbooks and doing or experiencing your interest will not only educate your children beyond your wildest hopes, but also excite them to love learning for a lifetime.
Follow your instincts of what works for your child. When they are having fun learning, learning will be a way of life.