Superman laughed at my title,but I thought that I surely couldn’t be the only kid who had to write “summer vacation” essays the couple of years I went to regular school. The title seemed to fit, so there it is. Laugh away, Superman!
Things I Learned on Vacation:
1. I do not “relax” well. It felt so strange to have nothing that *had* to be done and it took most of the trip to get used to that. There was no cleaning of bathrooms or doing of laundry- I didn’t even make the bed! While it was nice to have the break it made me realize how much I like the routines of those things and how they give structure and rhythm to my day. . . . well, I won’t include doing laundry. I loathe laundry and don’t think I will ever be convinced of thinking that there is some kind of peace in folding laundry.
2. I really rely on specific routines during my days. I’m so used to packing my shoulder bag with the snacks, drinks, books, favorite airplane, favorite black doggie, etc. that I didn’t realized how streamlined the system had become until I had to pack my little bag for a few hours at the beach and I started looking around for the sippy cups. Packing was as easy as sunscreen, towel and a book and that felt really odd!
3. I have a serious information acquirement problem. We had no internet access and using our phones cost quite a bit per minute so we had to plan our calls accordingly. I didn’t realize how often I google things! I was also surprised to discover that it actually felt wrong to not be able to look that information up right away.
I generally keep up on a collection of homeschooling blogs and a message board, sewing and knitting blogs, and a message board for mothers- I missed keeping up on it all, but the time without them made them feel less needful and I know that is for the better. I’ve struggled with this feeling that if I don’t keep up on new ideas and activities that I will miss something that might be important for my kids to learn. What I really need to do for a time is step back, and follow up on the next point without a ton of outside influence.
4. I’m a lot more stressed out about starting “real school” with Ender next year than I thought. That was the primary topic on my mind while we were gone, and I was having a bit of a serious panic. I have a general idea of how I want kindergarten to look, but then I’m having a panic that maybe I’m not including enough, tempered by the educator in me saying- this is Kindergarten. He will be five. You don’t have to do everything right now. But then my Mama heart starts worrying that I might be missing something really important- what if he really does need history or more science than I plan to provide or something like that?
The other factor in this is Superman, who has no idea what the possibilities for homeschool include and has a rosy picture of “school at home” where we all happily sit at the table for 3 hours a day doing paper after paper. So, since our ideals are slightly opposite, we’re both trying to meet in the middle on this. I need to make some final decisions about whether or not to continue with Montessori math, to buy a text, to make our own plan . . . too many choices! Do we include history yet or wait until he’s older? Should I include science? How much?
I’m working on it, and the time without distractions over vacation was tremendously useful, but it was only a start.
Points 3 and 4 are directly related. I just have to figure out how to balance the two parts of my brain, make a plan for Kindergarten and not second-guess it. I’m open to suggestions.