Mr. Ferrero Rocher and I are pretty lucky. We were both homeschooled for high school, so when we fell in love, married, and started having our children it was an easy decision for us to homeschool them. We’ve both experienced public school and homeschool, knew the benefits and the cons of each, and were on the same page with regard to how we wanted to educate our children. It’s a good thing – especially now that we live on a farm half an hour away from the nearest small town where frankly the educational options are rather bleak at best.
We thought we knew what to expect as we started this journey together. After all we’d been homeschooled ourselves! Let’s just say our naivete was made evident quite a few times, especially in our earlier years of homeschooling. As our children grow and mature we are still learning new things which is good sign that we are doing things right. I would be suspicious of anyone who said they had it all figured out and never had to change their approach to homeschooling.
The biggest lesson I’ve learned is how different each child’s learning style is. Bon Bon learns so much like I do it is easy to teach her. We think alike, have similar thought processes, enjoy most of the same subjects. Then Semisweet came along. My arrogant assumption that I knew exactly what to do, how to teach, was thrown out the window onto the pavement and flattened by a passing semi-truck loaded down with hay. Poor adorable Semisweet was in tears most of the school day. I was frustrated to no end and feeling ashamed that I did not know how to help her learn. As I discussed my frustrations with Mr. FR he mentioned he knew exactly how Semisweet felt. He had hated school, not just disliked but hated school with a passion. He’d had a hard time reading, couldn’t understand the textbooks and always felt stupid. A light bulb went on. Mr. FR is mostly a kinesthetic learner, I’m more of a verbal-linguistic learner. And there was the problem. My teaching had been catering to my and Bon Bon’s style of learning leaving Semisweet out in the dark. Once I changed my teaching to encompass both of their learning styles Semisweet blossomed. It is a challenge to adjust lesson plans and teaching techniques but it is so worth the extra effort. I shudder to image what kind of experience Semisweet would be having in a public school. And so thankful that we can give each of our children an education that is personalized to them.
It has been a joy to watch my children learn, discover, and grow. Seeing the lights “turn on” when learning a new concept or discussing in detail a just finished book or listening to an older child help a younger one with schoolwork brings such a feeling of satisfaction, of happiness. My children truly love to learn.