Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and founder of Steady Mom
Seasons come and seasons go. I don’t know what the weather’s like in your neck of the woods, but we’re smack in the midst of a freak New England snowstorm. Snow–in October!
Am I the only one who finds the change of seasons uncomfortable? Summer, which we’d grown to wear so perfectly, no longer fits. There’s work involved with the change–piles of clothes to remove from drawers and purchases to make in new sizes.
It’s impossible to ignore what happens outdoors, yet somehow we’re not always as tuned in to the seasons that come and go in the midst of our homeschooling and parenting.
We wish we could find that magic schedule, that one routine, that we could use from now until the kids graduate. Wouldn’t that make life easier?
In spite of all our best-laid efforts and plans, sometimes we try on something that isn’t the right “size.” I remember when I first read A Charlotte Mason Companion by Karen Andreola. She mentioned writing a poem or message to her children each morning–they read it on a chalkboard before starting their day. It helped develop their reading ability in an informal, fun way.
What a great idea! At the time, my little ones were 5, 4, and 3. That night I wrote Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star on a dry erase board, and hung it in the dining room to read before breakfast.
The next morning, eager kids raced down the stairs to breakfast, saw the board and said, “What’s this?”
I could already envision the special educational moment that was coming. But instead, in a display of typical preschool eagerness, one of the boys reached up with his hand and erased the whole message.
Turns out they were more interested in how dry erase boards work than in reading.
Discouragement came knocking–my subconscious failure mom program kicked in, convincing me that the kids would probably never learn to read, and all because I was such a horrible teacher.
But no, that wasn’t true at all.
It just wasn’t the right season.
Now, three years later, guess what? My 8-, 7-, and 6-year-olds race down the stairs each morning. They gather in front of our easel, which sports our visual schedule on the back, and excitedly read out the message I’ve put there. My oldest two are both confident, passionate readers. My youngest is on his way.
It all worked out perfectly.
Look at your kids–watch for their cues. Wait for the right season.
It makes life, and homeschooling, so much easier.
Do you have a story about waiting for the right season in your homeschool?