Monday, August 04, 2008

The Intermittant Classroom

Our daughter does not go to school, nor is she homeschooled.

She is three years old. Well, almost four.

In a sane world, this would be considered too young for schooling, but in the hyper-parenting age in which we live, she is not considered a baby or a child, but a "preschooler." As if her purpose in life was to attend school.

It isn't. She is a child. A child who loves to sing songs and play with her dolls and hug the neighbors' chickens. A child who is learning the difference between right and wrong, is learning about how much God loves her, and is learning about the safe way to pet a dog. Along the way she has also learned to count to 29, write her name, and read a handful of "-at" and "-an" words.

She learned those things because she wanted to. And when she wanted to play with her dolls instead, that is what she did.

Which is okay with me.

Most days.

On other days I worry. Not because she is unhappy or needs to know anything in particular, but because I fear that she might be "falling behind."

Every six weeks or so, I panic and try to "teach" her things like phonics and math and handwriting. She plays her role well, mimicking my sounds and writing things on paper; she is quite an intelligent girl and she really likes to please me. Her tolerance for such activities, however, is limited to short bursts. She will work patiently for ten minutes or so before she starts whining or clinging or doing something else altogether like drawing pictures.

On good days, I will say, "Great job, Agent 004. Why don't we go play with dolls now?" On other days, however, I will get impatient and push her to do more. It sometimes takes me another five minutes before I get a reality check and cut the activity off.

So if you are wondering why you haven't seen many "homepreschool" posts on this blog recently, that's why. I am trying my hardest to let the kids be kids.

Isn't it ironic how hard it is to do less?


MerrandaVK said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog. It is always nice to make new bloggie friends :) I really like your book wiget, I may have to upgrade to yours at some point :) Funny thing... I just purchased the EB WHITE treasury of books and we are starting on them as chapter reads. I like your book picks, we have the same taste :)

Kate in NJ said...

LOL..Yes, yes it is.

SherryTex said...

I do that every once in a while...I just freeze and think...I haven't read to my kids enough...I haven't taught them...whatever it's like a ruthless imaginary ruler that tries to beat me over the head with the idea that I'm flunking mommyhood by not having my kids reading War and Peace by the time they're in first grade.

You'ld think a gal would learn, but noooooooo. I'm a very stubborn person. That's why God has given me nine. I needed the drilling of repetition to let the message sink in.