We’ll probably have a bit of a girlie day seeking our treasures in charity shops, or maybe explore the galleries and museums. Once a home educator always a home educator – or maybe that’s just being a parent.
Doing this sort of thing with my youngest was not always a pleasure!
She was such a lively little thing, full of the need to investigate and explore as all kids are if they’re allowed and not told ‘Don’t’ all the time. I hate to think what would have happened to her in school where this was considered of no value. Although finding the balance between investigation and what was appropriate was definitely a challenge.
She was the one who investigated the deep end – before she could swim. Nearly gave her dad and me a heart attack – we had to be vigilant. She was the one who liked to investigate whether it was possible to climb up something not meant for climbing. She was the one who found investigating the world’s things and their properties, (melted candle wax springs to mind), was far more worth doing than tedious stuff like writing, reading or maths.
And, of course, just like you no doubt will be doing with your littlies especially if your home educating, I wondered how it would all end.
But, with gentle practise occasionally among all those investigations, she bloomed into a young person who can read and study, write her essays and work out her student budget admirably.
And I think she has come to that as much due to that investigative nature as anything academic. Because what all those investigations did were build an intelligence and interest in the world to a far greater degree than tedious written exercises day after day which children can see no point to.
For, the truth is, once they are interested in the world, in living their lives within it, that’s all the motivation they need to practise and gain the skills needed to do so, academic or otherwise. As mine did.
So, whilst I go and spend a day with this once wilful and challenging child – now an intelligent and beautiful young adult – maybe this story will help you worry a little less!
(You can read more of those antics in A FUNNY KIND OF EDUCATION. See the Books page for an extract)