I could probably impress a few people with the things I accomplished today – especially since I’m a crazy-tired hypothyroid homeschooling mom. Throwing out words like Bible, logic, Latin, Algebra, strained Kefir, Suzuki Violin, etc. might make you think we rocked this homeschool thing today. And yeah, we accomplished a few things. (though some of you did all that by 9am)
But you would also be just as impressed (or freaked out) by the things we didn’t get done. Only half of Latin and Math, none of the three paragraphs he was to write, forgot items I was supposed to take to someone, couldn’t do phonics since we left the cards at a friends house yesterday, play dough everywhere instead of cleaned up, barely got teeth brushed, no showers, etc.
Now – you may think that doesn’t sound bad, but all this occurred (or didn’t) with my mother being here for about five hours today in which she emptied my dishwasher, cleaned the bathroom, and cleaned my kitchen. She played with my other three children too. Then my mother-in-law took the three younger ones after violin so I could work with the oldest (only one who is fully started in the school year), and she fixed dinner for the family.
So, while I look like I might have accomplished a bit, and still had plenty undone, all that was with quite a bit of assistance in areas that easily derail us homeschool moms day after day.
And let’s face it. We all know the sweet words that say spending time together is enough, and as long as they grow to love God, that is all that matters. And I believe that it what ultimately matters – but I’ve yet to find a family that spends all day every day teaching their kids to love God but not teaching them about the order in His universe, which reflects itself in math, and the nature and laws He created, and the language He gave, and so many other things. Learning to love God comes partially from learning all of these things that come from Him and reflect Him. So education matters. It’s part of the equation.
And if you’re in a program where getting behind snowballs, the old “it’s ok if you didn’t get things done” doesn’t make you feel one bit better anyway – especially not week one.
So what do I do? I could stay up all night lamenting and stressing, but my plan is to jot down these thoughts, make sure my coffee is ready to be made in the morning, and head off to bed for at least seven hours of sleep – maybe eight. Tomorrow is another day, and we will see what we get done then.
Homeschooling is what the Lord called me to do with my children, and it is a challenge. I don’t have the self-motivated students who do their work without a complaint. I don’t have the siblings who always get along without a murmur. There is plenty of “motivating” and disciplining that occurs in these walls every day that distract and derail from the educational pursuits. And while they aren’t all that matter, the fact remains that they do matter.
What will happen when I am working more with three of the four? Only God knows, but the good thing is that God does know.
For now, we ask for grace and mercy from God. And we pray for better days and more motivation. And I pray to be a better teacher, with more patience and love than frustration and irritation. And I drink coffee.
And we take it one bite at a time.
Because THAT IS HOW YOU EAT AN ELEPHANT.
And let’s face it – homeschool can be an elephant.
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