Friday, May 30, 2008

Heart of the Matter Meme: Favorite Homeschooling Moments

May 30, 2008

This week's meme at Heart of the Matter asks us to share our favorite homeschooling moments. I've had a lot of favorite moments that are like snapshots in this journey: reading around the sandbox, nature journaling in the Smokies in late October, reading with a newborn baby on my shoulder during our first year, playing kickball together for PE, oh, I could go on and on with these precious snapshots.

But I can also be more concrete. The moment that reading clicked with both Duncan and Laurel. I'd always inwardly scoffed at those who said, "It's so wonderful to be with your children when they learn to read!" See, Jesse had learned to read at public school, and I didn't feel as if I'd missed out on anything. But when Laurel truly began grasping reading, and then when Duncan did a few years later, I thought: "Now I get it!" And I still get those moments of pure joy when I see her reading and realize that we did that -- together.

One of my favorite moments most recently was getting Jesse's ACT scores in the mail. I have to say that this was a big one for me. We have never had our kids do standardized testing. I've always felt that we could appropriately measure their learning levels ourselves. I felt intuitively that at 15 Jesse was ready to take the ACTs. In order to take dual credit enrollment classes at our local community college (he'll get both high school credit and college credit at the same time), students have to have a composite score of 19 on the ACT. That was really our only goal: that he would score a 19. Well, let's just say that he way, way surpassed that goal.

That was a favorite moment.

But here's the thing: it's not me. God has blessed us so richly in so many ways, and having children with sharp minds is, indeed, a blessing. I don't take that for granted, and we initially felt led to homeschool largely because Jesse was such an eager learner. I saw a glimpse of his future in the public school system when, midway through first grade, he began scribbling on his math sheets out of sheer boredom with the repetition. He was seeing already what it means to "teach to the middle" of the class.

I guess, then, that those favorite moments include (but certainly aren't limited to!) the loveliness of life with our children at home--the prolonging of their childhood and our parenthood--, and those moments when we see educational successes.

Do you have a favorite moment you'd like to share? Click on the Heart of the Matter link above to share your blog post, or just post here in the comments!

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