Days of our School Lives…

Thank God for Public School. Yes, I said it.

As much as I denigrate public schooling at times for the burgeoning, bloated bueracracy that it is, I must admit no one was happier than me to see the first day of school come for my oldest, now a junior in high school. Tropical Storm Fay came along and gave all of Miami what we want most out of a storm – days off with no rain, wind, or roofs caving in. Well, maybe just a little wind and rain, and only the kids got the days off. So while Mom and Dad covered computers at work with trash bags, the kids watched more TV and stuffed themselves with more microwave pizza.

Needless to say, I was extremely conflicted. I was content to let Marcus and Naomi rest Monday and Tuesday and celebrate the fact that they weren’t bound by the tyrannical school schedule. But when there was no school schedule to base our celebration around, and no standard times for me to measure our work against – I usually try to have the kids assignments done in time for after school tutoring, which was cancelled – I was hit with the realization that the school schedule does provide a basis in which I as a homeschooler have a structure set up for me. Even our summer vacations are simply an extension of the normal public school vacations, and most of the time I simply use the school calendar holidays as holidays for my kids as well. It just makes it easier to track when I don’t have two calendars to keep up with.

So am I a hypocrite? No, probably just lazy. I know if I had more administrative skill I could have my own highly personalized schedule for our family learning. But it makes more sense for our blended educational family to use the standard timelines of the school, so we always have continuity in our day to day planning. I don’t know if this works for others, but it works for us.

As for this year, I’m not yet settled on Naomi’s language arts program. I’m somewhere between adopting a total curriculum and simply buying a subject area concentration from Alpha Omega or Sonlight. The beginning of school yesterday seemed to underscore the need for me to hurry up and choose, but the sight of Naomi doing her own practice through internet games was enough to comfort me that that tyrannical schedule doesn’t have to take away our ability to move at our own pace.

Looking unto the hills,

homeschooldaddy

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One thought on “Days of our School Lives…

  1. Yay! You’re back! I missed your thoughtful and contemplative posts. Looks like you guys had a great time in Atlanta. I love the Coca Cola place.

    It’s hard to have school when Savannah’s out of public school. It’s too distracting to the other kids to have her home, so unless I relegate her to her room, which she’s usually happy with, we have a very difficult time getting through our schooling. So, usually I end up just cancelling school when she’s home. I don’t really like this, but it’s how it has to happen right now. Oh well.

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