Monday, August 6, 2012

Thoughts From a Homeschooling Mother

I can learn a lot about my teaching techniques by watching my children play school (a favorite past-time around here, by the way).  Apparently I am very organized and offer my students a variety of subjects and lots of read alouds, but I also expect my students to catch on very quickly.  It is extremely mortifying to hear your 10 year old tell your 4 year old to "think!" when he doesn't catch on to the exercise after the first hurried explanation.  Yes, slow down, Amber, slow down.

To that end, learning a language with completely different alphabet is a fantastic way to gain empathy for the learning to read process.  Having my 10 year old teach me Greek is good not only for her knowledge and practice of the language, but it also helps me reflect on just how difficult it is to remember all the sounds those pesky letters make.  (Not to mention the letter names...  and why oh why do they have to look different in upper case and lower case?)

I also wonder if all the stories my children hear about virtuous children cheerfully helping their families is somewhat akin to the scene in Mother Carey's Chickens where the newly poor oldest daughter gives a servant a book to read in which the servant decides to stay with the family despite the family's change in financial circumstances...  only to have the servant in Mother Carey's Chickens return the book saying it was the best book she's ever read and by the way she found a great new job that pays even better than her current position.

And with that ridiculously long sentence, I think I'll stop.

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