What does homeschooling look like?

Boo with Blocks

As I’ve mentioned, I am an accidental homeschooling mom. While it isn’t my first go in the home education rodeo, it is still somewhat a new thing this time around. It takes some time to completely switch gears, rework your schedule and your life, and get some of the “now what!?!?!” out of your head and replace it with “here’s how…”

Boo is a math and spacial genius with a massive vocabulary, a love of reading, and an affinity for all-things electronic. He is not a writer in the sense that it is almost impossible for him to take spoken or thought language and put it into any written form. Keyboards don’t help. It’s as if his brain decided to use those circuits for something else.

So, if he can’t write, how can he be a genius? Let me first say that I don’t use this word lightly. Genius is as genius does, my grandmother would say. Yes, he tests off the charts in every academic and achievement assessment thrown at him. His IQ scores — as little faith as I place in those — are consistently through the roof. So, he has the paper cred. But without any of that, the reality is that we knew this kid was smart before he ever spoke his first word. It’s something just innate. The sad truth is that no one got to experience any of this brilliance as he was being bodily removed from classrooms because boredom turned into unsanctioned creativity.

I wish I could say that the minute I brought him home everything turned into a series of wonderful brain-stimulating activities interspersed with museum visits and park dates. Well, we have done each of those things, but the reality is that I’ve been in a denial-induced shock and only sort of half-committing to this thing. We have and use a core curriculum. I’ve bought a dozen magazine subscriptions that he reads cover to cover the day each issue arrives. I can’t keep him in books –he reads them faster than we get them from the library. He has robotics and electronic circuitry kits, craft supplies, and manipulatives of every type at his reach. He’s learning, but I haven’t really been in it with him.

We’ve been fighting some recently. I want him to do his educational stuff and he wants to do something else. I want him to clean his room and he wants to do something else. I want him to come to dinner and he wants to do something else. I’ve never had this kind of relationship with this child and I don’t believe it’s just a bunch of changing hormones.

The good news is that I think I’m finally coming back around. Yes, me. I think I needed an attitude adjustment.

Boo didn’t choose to be home with me any more than he chose to have autism or be brilliant or be a boy or be at all. He’s a kid who likes what he likes and has a pretty strong neurological excuse to be a pain in the neck. Yet, for the most part he’s a sweet child who really does want to be in relationship with folks — including and especially me — in spite of what his diagnosis might indicate.

So, this morning, after spending the week in a bit of despair about the whole thing, I relented. Instead of doing the “first work then play” mantra I’ve been harping on for weeks, I brought out an unopened block set that was stuffed into a toy bin the day after Christmas. I handed him the pieces and he had challenge #60 completed before I got the cards open. He completed 6 more in the time it took me to get my camera.

Champ the Weather Dog made his appearance and I kept my mouth shut as the two of them worked together rather than telling Boo to leave the dog alone and get back to work. We did hit the online curriculum pretty hard this afternoon, but it wasn’t a fight this time. It was a treat to spend the day with my amazing kiddo.

Even if it took me a while to get with the program.

Boo Petting ChampBoo and ChampChamp Helping Boo

Block Challenge 5

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
About Gina Lynette

I have been called a, "PollyAnna, sugar-coated idealist." I like to think of myself as more optimistic than that.

Speak Your Mind


Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.