Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Real Life Homeschooling -- Older Children

I never saw this day coming.  This young lady  pictured above is my 13 yr old daughter.  Yes, 13.  And she's headed out on a special date with her Daddy.   I'm still in shock -n- awe.  Seems like a few days ago I was teaching her to read...that was  just after having nursed her to sleep last week.   I was in the midst of potty training, changing diapers, piles of laundry, phonics flashcards and all the like when suddenly, POOF!  They all got away from me. (the laundry did not, however) 

So, here I stand among young adults and not-as-young children, wondering.  What do I do with them?  Who is this creature?  They look (and act) more like mini adults every day and yet they still need so much guidance.

Change....transition...whatever it is the name of this new game.  Of course this comes just when I'm feeling confident in my ability to shuffle and juggle all that goes with life with (whatever number) children in all of their individual uniqueness.  With bodies morphing, minds expanding and attitudes sometimes flaring; the rules are changing.  I find I am having technical difficulties.

Studies are not  the issue.  At all.  I  am.  I don't like giving up control, no matter how much hassle it was with all the little ones depending on me.  I don't want to deal with hormonal attitudes, since of course, they reflect some of my own.  I just want them to either be grown or not.  Which is  a recent whispering call from I working at growing or not?  Some days yes, many days, I feel quite short of the mark.  Growing pains ache.  Please, can we just hit the FF button and skip this song?

If you thought you were coming to read how it really happens with homeschooling when they get older, you won't find that in this post.  Yes, homeschool groups thin out greatly by this age.  Yes, it's harder to find social outlets that are up to standard for them.  Studies get harder.  Expectations are higher.  All these are true for us.This has nothing to do with real-life schooling.

It's here, during this song, I know that if I will accept the invitation to dance I will bow with pride at the end.  Will they all turn out how I trained and expected?  Have no idea.  Each is special in his own ways and will choose his own paths in life.  But for now, I'm trying to dance to the song that's playing, obey Him,  make memories and leave the rest to the One who knows the plans He has for their lives.

This seems more like a vent, I guess.  So I'll appease the other logistics:

*We use a DVD tutor for upper level math for my sanity (but I'm proud to say I can still teach at a pre-algebra level).
*The olders do help the youngers, sometimes, when needed. And we work together.  We work around the house, in the garden, yard, whatever.  I want them to be able to hold their own when they leave my home.  I am not as concerned with numeric evaluations of their abilities.
*I get them independant as quickly as possible. 
*I don't sweat the small test scores.  After having done almost nothing in pre algebra this past year b/c she hit a brick wall, my oldest still managed to score "far above grade level" on a standardized test in math.  But that's of no concern to me. 
*No, I don't stick to a meticulous schedule.  Life happens regularly in our home.
*Boys don't seem to be naturally drawn to academics on the whole.  But I have issues with spelling errors.
*I wish I could say that everyone does his own character training each and every day or that we have memorized all the books of the Bible at any given time or an index card box full of Scriptures.  Not true.  I do the best I can in my own fallen state.
*I'm learning to apologize regularly and learn from my children.

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