Freedom From Expectations

raggedy Ann booksI had something to prove. I homeschooled when  it wasn’t cool to homeschool.  My kid couldn’t fall behind; in fact he should be smarter than everyone else his age. I played the one upmanship – like every other mom – my kid could sing his ABCs and count to 20 before most other kids, read fairly early, and memorized  bible verses faster than his friends.

23 years later …

I have nothing to prove. If you haven’t heard, homeschooling works. I’ve graduated 4, and 3 have gotten into college, they are productive citizens of this great country – they even vote … unlike most of their peers.

Raggedy Ann thrown

As I start fresh, with a new child, I commit

  1. Not to worship my child, but worship God, her creator
  2. Not to play the one upmanship game, but encourage other moms to be true to themselves and their children
  3. Not to use my child to define myself
  4. To listen patiently and kindly to other people’ s advise, then ignore what doesn’t work for us
  5. Not to compare my child to other children, but record her individual progress
  6. To enjoy my child where she is now, rather than wishing or pushing her forward
  7. To realize I have 13 years to teach her before college, and she doesn’t need it all now
  8. To listen more than lecture
  9. To give time to “do it myself” vs doing it for her because we’re in a hurry to get somewhere or do something
  10. To observe and respond, rather than fabricate lessons
  11. To include her in my adult activities (like cleaning) instead of arranging my life around activities I design for her
  12. raggedy Ann fairiesTo sing together
  13. To look for fairies under leaves together
  14. To play together
  15. To memorize Bible verses together
  16. To paint together
  17. To lay and watch the clouds together
  18. To tell fairy tales together
  19. To use all of our senses to experience the world, not just read about how it works
  20. To stop and smell the roses we planted together
  21. To dance under the stars together
  22. To sit and be quiet together

After looking at me like I am a relic from the past when I state I don’t believe in early academics, the shock wears off,  and I’m often asked  “Why?”  I like to answer the question with a question, “Why do you believe in early academics?” Although it is the socially acceptable thing to believe in, most can’t give a good reason. I can defend my position scientifically and logically, but more importantly I can defend my position from experience and heartfelt emotion. My daughter has years of academics ahead … I want to enjoy her childlike wonder as long as I can.

raggedy ann outside

Read more about it:

One of the first articles I read – that started changing my mind – on early academics:

Teach our Children to Write, Read, and Spell by Susan R. Johnson, MD

Other awesome reports:

Lively Minds: Distinctions between academic versus intellectual goals for young children by Lilian Gonshaw Katz, PhD

Crisis in the Kindergarten Why Children Need to Play in School

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