Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Two Snaps and a Circle!

Second week of homeschool is a breeze! We got this thing down! Ain't nothing to it! Easy Breezy!

Formulas? We know'em!

Schedule? Set your watch by'em!

Obedience? Respect? All kinds of love and sugary kindness???

AB-SO-LOOT-LY!

Er.

Ahem.

Cough.

....

NOT!

Last week really did go off with very few glitches and I have to tell ya'll that I might have even been a teensy weensy bit puffed up when this week started.

-Pop-

My kids, with all their fleshly wants and needs popped that bubble right quick on Monday morning. I had no sooner taken a deep breath of pride and admiration for my great and fabulous self, when Samuel started in with a sing-song chorus of:

I don't waaaaant to doooooo this! I can't dooooooo this! This is toooooooo hard!

At which point I said:

Come on Sam. They are Froot Loops. Eat them.

And I realized that if he was diggin' his heels in at breakfast we were in for a bumpy ride. The boy cried on Saturday because we did not have school and was limp and cross-eyed on Monday because we did.

Well, I quickly informed him that we had two kinds of wisdom being taught here at the Casa De La School and one of them involved the alphabet and the other involved....well.....his bottom.

So he said, "BRING ON LETTER B!" and from there, the fun ensued.

These two weeks have actually been really good. The start of this week kind of threw me because we added in all the extra evening activities. I have never embraced this part of our schedule and it always takes me several weeks to figure out what needs to be purged from our day in order to be ready for the afternoon and nighttime mayhem.

The schedule has been working well, minus the whole "running" and "taking a shower" part. If we take a break in the morning then we move Latin to the afternoon. If not, we can almost finish around lunch. Writing takes a bit longer and I give the girls a week to complete those assignments. They choose what day to spend the most time on that.

I love Drawing To Learn and our circle time is most definitely the highlight of our day. I am working in the Easy Grammar this week and I will probably order the Daily Grams as well.

We have only done this for one year, but already I have learned so many valuable lessons. I had heard people say that I should be fostering a "love for learning" but I didn't really understand exactly what that meant until now.

School shouldn't be *hard*.

Challenging? Yes.

Overwhelming, laborious, burdensome? No.

Watching Samuel begin each day with an eagerness to learn and then master his lesson is an absolutely beautiful thing.
mas·ter·y - expert skill or knowledge
I am not the least bit interested in how much he accomplishes each day, in terms of papers piled high on his little desk. What thrills me as his mother and teacher is when I see his desire and determination to do well.

It has been harder to break the girls of old habits. The "score" is still very important to them.

Even so, there have been great moments of clarity when something finally makes sense and it feels good.

Really good.

And just so you know (and if you homeschool, then you know).....it ain't all roses.

The remark that I have heard most often from people is how they could *never* do it. That I (sinful Kim) must be full of patience and goodness and all kinds of smarts to be able to pull this off.

They wonder (out loud) how I can stand to be with my kids all day and they say (out loud) that their kids would never listen to them or respect them as the teacher.

They even say (again...out loud...with their mouth) that I must be a "better" person.

So here is my answer to all the peeps who might have thought or even spoke some of the above verbage.

I am *not* full of patience and goodness or even a few kinds of smarts.

I am not a better person. I am actually the worst. 1 Timothy 1:15

There are times when my kids are not listening to me and I am not enjoying their presence anymore than they are enjoying mine.

The sacrifice is huge. Monumental.

God fills in all the gaps.

There are a lot of gaps.

Yelling, crying, apathy, exhaustion, stress, self-pity, loneliness, fear.....it's all there.

Remember? The gaps?

I don't write a lot about the hard stuff. For one, I don't know that it's fair to expose the shady behavior of my children without exposing my own.

We hit the bumps every. single. day.

What I know is this. And I know it as sure as the day that I rose up from the pew with clinched fists and a knotted stomach. As I made my way to the front of a church where I had worn the same dress for three weeks in a row. There was not one good thing about me, my life, or my heart.....except that God had been gracious enough to gingerly plant a faith in Him there.

From that beautiful act of deliverance I was able to have salvation....My black heart was saved from sin which should have cost me my life. I was never worthy nor am I now. I did not win favor with Him because of my value.

And so I teach my children, because he was gracious enough to place them here... a beautiful act of restoration in my life of which I am not worthy. I have no choice but to be accountable for their teaching (Matthew 18:6, Ephesians 6:4).

It requires a daily death to self and a hard lean on God.

I can only boast in Him.

Quiet time....got real quiet

8 comments:

Christina said...

Death to self, and a hard lean on God. That's a beautiful combination. Thanks for sharing your week.

Mine has looked pretty ugly, only I can't seem to muster up the energy to blog about it! BTW, were you really up at 3am blogging?!

Wendy said...

thanks, kim! i had a similar experience last week and needed to read this.

Lori Raches said...

Oh Kim...you don't know how much I needed to read this post today. My eyes have tears in them. With homeschooling two boys (one VERY strong-willed) and a newborn (9 weeks) baby girl. The last several weeks have been hard to say the least. I was ready to throw in the towel today but God used your small post to help spark the will to keep going. Thank you for being so real. I wished you live in TN. Maybe you do?

Anonymous said...

Wow Kim...you inspire me to keep on keeping on! Your sweet babies are so lucky to have a real. fun. down to earth momma and teacher like you! I'm so proud of you and pray for you daily every morning as I ready for our school day!

I love you sis!

-Tiff

Kim said...

Christina...no way was I up at 3 am! I fixed my posting options :)

kittyhox said...

I love reading about the details of your home school experience. Including the imperfect moments.

It sort of reminds me of being a SAHM, in general. (My little one is two.) There are some frustrating moments, definitely. But the rest of the moments (whether good, great, or amazing) MORE than outweigh them and I wouldn't trade them for anything. I can't even begin to imagine voluntarily missing all this - challenging moments and all. I imagine that's why I'll end up homeschooling someday soon.

Also, I hope you'll let us know how you're liking the Sonlight package once you've gotten into it. I'm thinking of the P3/4 for next year for us.

gypsy@Hebrews11:13 said...

Thank you for being so real and reminding us other sinful, not patient, not better than anyone else, homeschooling mommas that we are not alone. Oh...and way to throw the gospel message in there:)

Jill said...

Your home school sounds a lot like ours. A friend of mine uses the saying 'some days shells, some days nuts.' I love that! Some days it does feel like all we have is shells around here. Hard, crunchy, empty attitudes. But then their are the days that we see fruit, or nuts in this case ;o) Oh, and do we have nuts! ;o)