It is now March 2014, I officially became a veteran homeschooler back in May 2013, when I
graduated my second, and last child, from homeschooling. I am still processing all of my thoughts and feelings about the last 10 years, because homeschooling is serious business, and just as you need to be mentally prepared to start and to make it through homeschooling, you need to put the same effort (at least in my case) into coming out the other side, and finding a new you, when you have been released from your homeschooling duties.
Just as I found blogging to be a great way to prepare myself and to keep motivated during the homeschool process, I am finding blogging to be a great way to process myself into my next phase in life-post homeschooling. As much as inward blogging has helped me, I still need to spend just as much time reading the blogs of others, for sanity reasons, to let me know that I am OK... as in Not Crazy, as in other people are having the same feelings and experiences that I have either had, or am having right now. For this I am thankful, so with that I say, Just keep blogging through and even after homeschooling. I will keep you sane, and it will also help those who come after you.
Let's look at this blog of an unschooling mother. Redheadmom of There's No Place Like Home wrote this post, Is Unschooling Just Lazy Homeschooling? after reading several comments about unschoolers being too lazy to do more structured work. Through this blog, she is hoping to dispel a myth and give a glimpse into what unschooling-at least in her home- is all about.
Not only does technology make connecting with other homeschoolers through blogs a Godsend, but though these blogs, we find more and more ways technology can help us in educating our children. Leah at As We Walk Along the Road shares some of the ways they use technology in their homeschooling with Using Technology in our Homeschool.
We also get to commiserate when things don't go according to plan and/or when technology fails us. Henry at Why Homeschool shares a recent challenge his family had in A problem with homeschooling.
And even after using the internet for all that caring and sharing through our homeschool years, we still question ourselves over and over gain. Have I done a great job? Are their lives reflecting the quality of work I feel I have done? Are they struggling? Does this mean I have messed them up. In this post, So, How are they doing?, at Notes from a Homeschooled Mom, you can see how I come to terms with this often asked question.
I am not alone in this stage of looking back, evaluating, reflecting, and assessing the past performance of myself and my kids. ChristineMM of the Thinking Mother blog gains some insight about homeschooling teens who are struggling to do everything at once in High Performance Due to Intensity.
So, I am asking all you homeschoolers out there to just keep blogging. And don't forget to promote your blog though the Carnival of Homeschooling, and to read and comment on each other's blogs. I have found the best homeschooling support over the last 10 years online, and consider some of my favorite people to be bloggers have have "met" through this very carnival. I ask that we continue to encourage and remind each other that homeschooling is to be enjoyed and cherished, and in doing so, we will come out of it much happier, if we that time to have some adventures, which for me is the homeschooling version of smelling the roses.
In the meantime, enjoy this post from Pamela at Zesty Mom as he she shares Aquarium Adventures and explains how her FunSchooling Family takes a much needed field trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium for their incredible homeschool Days. And even if you are a bit of a homebody, like me, and prefer to stay inside, or if the long winter days are getting longer and longer, you can check out how David at Bruggie Tales makes time to enjoy homeschooling with I'm Cooking- Not doing schoolwork. He reminds us that "Schoolwork" is such a limiting phrase, and that there are many opportunities for learning that do not come in the official curriculum.
Because at the end of the day, isn't it really all about life's lessons, imparting knowledge to young minds (and each other) and enjoying the way they interpret information and give it back to you? Sarah at SmallWorld at home shares with us such a project from her World Literature class at her homeschooling co-op that she did as part of their unit on The Book Thief, with Teaching The Book Thief: Repurposed Pages.