Still seeking the middle.

About a month ago I did a Day in the Life post. As most homeschoolers do, I ended with the usual disclaimer about there being no true “typical” days, blah, blah, blah. Ironically, in the month since then we’ve had many less days like that “typical” day than usual.

As I mentioned in the day in the life post, we have more of a routine to our weeks than a typical daily schedule. I work two half days a week so those days end up being lighter school days. We do a co-op half a day another day and usually take the rest of that day off of formal school. That leaves us with two full days for school. In the past few weeks those full days of school have found us in various places: a science class at the Naval Museum, the Natural History Museum for a class in their Forensic Anthropology lab, and the kids in different directions at different theater performances one day. Throw in a semi-snow day, a day roller-skating with friends, an afternoon playing Settlers of Catan and all the usual activities and sometimes it feels like any kind of formal school is a rare thing.

I know all the things to tell myself. Learning happens all the time. Learning doesn’t have to be in one place during certain times of the day. They are young, this is the time to go on field trips and take days off to play. I know that overall they are doing well. They are learning. They are happy. They are loved and they know it. 

All those things are true. The other truth is that (as I’ve said before) I’m a checklist making, schedule keeping kind of girl. I know that all will be ok if we don’t finish every chapter of Story of the World by the end of the year. But there is a part of me that gets all twitchy just thinking about leaving it unfinished. I know that going to see a play with his aunt is a better life experience than whatever piece of the math workbook that my first grader didn’t get to that day. But  there is a part of me that worries about math not “getting done”.

I’m getting better though. Last year I wrote a lot about finding the middle ground between structure and relaxation. In some ways I’m still seeking that middle ground. I think I’ve realized that’s always going to be a struggle for me. But every year it gets a little easier and a little more comfortable.

3 thoughts on “Still seeking the middle.

  1. Good for you! I’m not there yet, but like you, I feel better (most of the time) about it than ever before. Of course, all we’re really doing now is the basics, and then I’m crashing on the sofa every afternoon. . . 🙂

  2. This is a VERY good post for me to read today, after being talked into my first-ever suspension of classes in favor of a snow day! I have never done that… but the girls started the day making a fabulous snowman and working well together, and we’ve had kind of the opposite problem to yours in this post: too many days of following our same school routine. It has empowered my inner checklist-maker. You remind me to take a deep breath and say, “BALANCE.”

    (Trying not to be jealous of your apparent proximity to the educational richness of DC…)

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