Sunday, August 17, 2008

Tardy school thoughts: My yearly battle

It's time.  It's time for Wall Walker and Orange Fang to file into school whether I like it or not.  Why do I send them when it clearly causes me such pain?  I can't seem to accept that life must go on and it is normal for children to go to school and leave their mother for seven hours every day.  I am such a homeschooler at heart, yet I can't get my brain to board the same line of thinking that my heart is on.
My mind tells me our school system is fine, safe, and plugs away day after day giving our kids the information that they'll need to keep up with their peers.  It also tells me that I COULD teach them myself, but I would probably end up boring them to tears and cause them to resent me for wanting to be a larger part of their daily lives than their friends.  Also I suspect I might not be as patient as I would like to be.  Sometimes I can't handle more than one chirpy noise in my ears at a time. I know I shouldn't even admit that.  But on those days I wonder if I could act like chirpy noises are just that, and not tiny woodpeckers rhythmically  jabbing new contours into the sides of my head, so that I could patiently go on with our lessons.
I also think that I suffer from A.D.D. and couldn't possibly focus long enough to see anything through to its finality.  That is not an option in home schooling because teaching children is not a hobby that I could walk away from in search of a new shiny object to catch my fickle eyes.  It's a way of life.  I would need to take to it with steady diligence and know when to allow myself  a break and when to knuckle down and kick in the afterburners to follow through on a challenging task. 
But my heart.  Oh, my heart!  I have grandiose plans in my head of thrilling the freckles right off my boys faces with exploratory trips to museums and historical sites after having thoroughly studied a subject and  noted their favorite parts.  I can see my blissful self sitting in a field on a blanket, book in hand, while my equally delighted offspring run about exploring the ecosystem to their hearts content.  "MA!" They would exclaim, because suddenly we're living an episode of  'Little House on the Prairie',  "We found a horney toad!"  Then of course I wouldn't run away screaming and flapping my arms, because it's my special vision of the kind of natural learning that I am all about.  Shhhhh...Let me have my moment naysayers!

But that is my problem.  I'm a little all or nothing at times.  I'm pure fun and quick thinking somedays , but I'm sludgeheaded, highly distractible and easily frightened on others.  Just now in fact I forgot where I was going with this whole thing because I stopped to eat a few corn chips.  Pitiful Shans, truly pitiful; but tasty, truly tasty.

{Reflective sigh} And so off they go, first thing in the morning, to sit and (try to) listen to some lady who looks nothing like their mother, but who can probably form complete thoughts in a roomful of activity.  I still don't like it.  They are mine, and much too young to be one of 25 tossed into old cramped rooms filled with hand sanitizer and glue sticks.  What will they possibly do with all of those dadblappity glue sticks anyway? I'm sure it would never match the corn husk crafts and prairie visions swirling around in the perfect school in my mind.  Ah well.  I guess it's time to go get myself a job or do one of those 14 other things I've been thinking about. 
Reality really bites you in the haunch sometimes doesn't it?  YOWZA!



dean r said...

guess what, they can go to school, and you can STILL take them to museums and such!! ha.
well good luck getting fall underway and the kids back in school, and hey btw, what sager creek project will you be auditioning for this year??? hmmmmmmmmm??

savannah said...

the first days of school are always the hardest, sugar, and then, somewhere around the 2nd-3rd week, you realize how deliciously lovely your home is for a few hours everyday ! relax and plan your after school enrichment programs! ;-) xox

Shan said...

Dean, I think my acting days are over. Any more I'm just trying to act normal on a daily basis. ;)

Hi Savannah :), I'm actually already feeling better having been up to the boys schools today. All the kiddies looked so cute and the teachers seemed to be in good enough sorts so..Whew! Drama contained again. heehee

Mom Keena said...

You know what I realized the other day?! This will be my first time EVER as a SAHM without any children at home. When David went to kindergarten I had the wonderful privilege of having other Mom's cuties around during the day. Then I punched a time-clock ofr four years. This fall, there will be no one but me and the dog. Hmmm, I wonder if I'll like that. Yeah, probably! :)

Tally said...

Oh Shan, I feel for you! I would be sad too. I'm so proud of Dandy heading off to big school. He's so smart! XOXO

Anonymous said...

I love the pictures of the boys.
I have been counting the days down for the last three weeks. Alyssa has been doing a dead on mother-in-law impression for the last week. I did not cry when I took her to kindergarten today. I love my kids so much but I will enjoy them more now that we are not together 24/7

Maria said...

I can't imagine anything more awful than homeschooling, Shan. I am SO not meant to teach children. Liv goes back to school tomorrow and she and I are both more than ready. If I have to hear that she is bored one more time....

dive said...

Speaking as someone who designs schools for a living, Shan, I am mightily glad we don't have the homeschooling thing over here as I would be out of a job!
Hee hee.
I'm sure they'll have a marvellous time!

Shan said...

Charlie and Maria you have both given me huge guffaws whether you meant to exactly or not! Just for the record, I think you meant to.
The "dead-on MIL impression" killed me Charlie as I remembered how you feel about your MIL. BAH!!!
I did think of you the other day when my kids weren't playing well together(though that's most of the time) and I remembered how you purposefully split them up whenever possible. It did work out pretty nicely having the Dandy in preschool all summer. Ratchet could really do his own thing and have my undivided time as well.

Maria, the problem is sometimes I feel exactly like you do. Homeschooling WOULD require me to revamp my patience and my organization skills as neither of these comes to me naturally. But, yesterday I was in a roomful of kindergartners and I thought to myself "There is NO WAY these children should even be here attempting to learn. They should let that teacher leave and put these kids into some sort of zoo enclosure!" It was like a roomful of crazy ADHD babies running all over the place. Dandy's room was much better but I still felt the teacher should have been making six figures.

Shan said...

Whoopsie, you must have been posting right as I was Dive. If my boys were eligible to attend one of YOUR schools, I'd be way too rich to worry about education. I'd send them off to their fancy school and get busy on the donation/hob-nobbing curcuit. Or, I'd still homeschool so we could travel all over the world together like Brad Pitt and Angelina J.

Terroni said...

My mom brought up the idea of homeschooling. When I was a freshman in high school. I said, I think it's a little late for that one, Mom. Nice try.

Maybe you should see if you can try it with someone else's kids. You know, as a bit of a test run. That way, if it doesn't work out, you won't have screwed up your own children.

Suzanne said...

You can do a test run on my kids. I have no feat that you could possibly mess them up greater than I.

Scout said...

Reality really does bite sometimes, Shan. If only I could home-school my kids on a college level. Fortunately for them, I can't.

OH, and when I read your description of yourself being ADD and being all or nothing while hopping from shiny thing to shiny thing, I was sure I was reading a description of myself. I know exactly how you feel.