Sunday, October 7, 2012

Inappropriate Schooling

The last almost two months of our lives have been a whirlwind of ‘unusual’ circumstances.  First, my daughter auditioned for her very first authentic community theatre production, ‘The Aristocats’.  There was a month of preparation that went into that audition that included voice lessons, voice practice, acting practice, etc.  Then there was the two-day wait for the call to find out if she was cast.  She was!  Next were five weeks of rehearsals that were every night of the week starting at 4:30pm until 7:30pm and expanding to 9pm or 10pm at night.  Then there were two weeks of performing the show, almost nightly.  The community theatre is 25 miles of interstate driving away from our home.  So, in a nutshell she was out of the house every day from about 3:30pm until 10pm or later.  I really understand now why theatre people are night owls. By the time we actually got home, prepared for bed, and ‘wound down’ from the evening it was midnight or even later.  This did not make for an ‘early rising’ the next day.

 Apparently that was not enough chaos in our schedule, because my husband and I contracted to have some fairly extensive renovation projects completed on the house.  They said the work would be completed in a week (I know) and a little less than three weeks later they were done.  I won’t even bother to go into all the ‘snafus’ that took place with the work during that time.  So, we had workers in the house from as early as 7am until as late as 5pm on various days for that time period.  This did not make for the most ideal setting in which to school.

What is the point of this post, you may be asking?

My point is that schooling became something of a ‘back burner’ issue for us.  We did participate in educational activities during this period.  Punky attended the weekly Speech & Debate/Drama class at the library as well as the weekly Writing class.  She took a two day class at a local historic museum on the Civil War and attended what we call ‘Mom School’ ever week for science, art, and geography.  She went to the weekly Health & P.E. class offered to homeschoolers on the Air Force base and attend 4H.  Our field trip to the School for the Blind took place during this time, as well as Home School Book Club.

Clearly none of that falls under ‘classroom instruction’ or ‘traditional lessons’.  Math is not Punky’s strong suit (and a huge MUST HAVE in hubby’s mind) so I made every effort to practice math with her daily.  This was usually in the form of a Math Word Problem workbook I bought (and like).  I feel that this workbook not only has her performing basic operations practice, but requires her to use critical thinking skills as well.
I fret over this a little.  "A little" is better than how I used to fret.  I use to fret "A LOT."
The last two months of our home schooling lives did not resemble anything remotely ‘school like’.  Do I get to count them as ‘school days’ when I report to the State?  Is what we did do during this time appropriate enough to be considered ‘school’?  It is only with a minor twitch of my right eye that I say “Yes!  It was more than appropriate, for my daughter.  It was learning.  It was REAL!  It does count!”  The value of Punky’s experiences these last two months is immeasurable.  And I am so thankful that I now feel that way.  I’m relieved that I can say, with more confidence than I ever could before, “That’s how we schooled for eight weeks!”  And it’s a good thing too, because we just returned from auditions for ‘Meet Me in St. Louis’ and now we are waiting for that call………

~Mari B.

1 comment:

  1. Which math workbook do you like so much? ;) Critical thinking is a must for our schooling


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