Being a homeschooling mom has its challenges. Aside from making sure you have lessons to teach, teaching in a way your child will understand and making time to complete everything, the unknown factor, is of course, the child. Just like any school day, there are good and bad days. There are days that I question, “what am doing?”. Yet, I know, this is the right decision for my child and my family.
Last night, were about half-way through the lessons I have prepared. We get to math. She doesn’t like math on most days. Depending on how she is learning the work, I may supplement with worksheets or we just do practice problems on the white board. Unlike the public school system, I think it’s important to understand certain concepts instead of pushing through to the next lesson. Slowing down is an “ok” thing to do if it ends in my daughter knowing her work and feeling good about the work she is doing. Nothing better than when she does her “happy dance” because she’s finally grasped a difficult concept.
Back to the math book. Last night she wasn’t having it. Some days, I’ll divert and we’ll double-back on a lesson or two. Last night wasn’t one of those nights. I just wanted to go through the simple lesson of calculating elapsed time. She was trying to exert her independence and throw attitude. HA! Has she met her NY-born mother. She doesn’t stand a chance!
I tell her to knock it off and pay attention. I rarely need to go this route. She’s a good kid who is a great independent thinker. Well, now her nose is out of joint, so to speak. She no longer wants to speak to me here comes the “silent treatment”. That makes it more interesting when I ask her a question. She still has to answer, one way or the other.
My daughter has some knowledge of ASL (American Sign Language). I used to work in a Deaf program and even though I am not fluent, ASL is part of her language studies. She still can’t have full-on signing conversations, but she knows the basics. She was signing her answers to me. She used her facial expressions (big in ASL to convey meaning). Am I upset she’s quiet? Heaven’s no! She has discovered girls speak 20,000 words a day and she doesn’t think that’s enough on most days. To get a bit of peace from persistent talking is always welcome.
Why was I ok with this? She was still learning. She was practicing her ASL skills outside a lesson. She has done this before when have been out and about. Her ability to just slip into signing something shows me, more than a test ever could, her knowledge on what she’s been taught. I actually see the knowledge. I see what I taught her and I see her using it on her own. This is how I am rewarded by being a homeschool mom.
It only took moving to art and starting to set up the materials for her to begin speaking again. I knew she would. She’s an artist at heart. It’s ok. Together we have a journey in front of us. Together we will navigate that journey and see where it takes us.