Home schooling is not for the faint of heart, though I have felt like fainting these past few weeks. One would think after successfully graduating a child, the next one would be easier. Yet, each student has challenges and talents that make for a brand new set of learning styles for me, the teacher! The beauty of home schooling is that the parent, a.k.a.: the teacher, becomes the student all over again and re-learns or at least attempts to re-learn all the things that were supposed to be understood in high school!
The past few weeks have been the final stretch of semester one. Geometry has hit points of long moments of struggle and tears when a proof just isn’t proving to be understandable! Student and teacher tears mingle together and an email to the tutor helps resolve the confusion, temporarily, but the pressure mounts as a mid-term looms next week.
The term paper that took two days of My weekend, may not get an award for most persuasive, but there is certainly a sense of accomplishment and pride, and of course I am talking about my daughter, not my own feelings of finishing strong.
The book, That Hideous Strength, was read and precised on Thursday this past week. It, or should I say, my daughter, kept us awake, me as official editor, until 2:30 a.m. Thursday morning. The word count never seemed to go down substantially. With each read through and deletion of un-necessary phrases, we finally chopped the paper down enough to reach the prescribed one thousand words. The clock on the wall kept reminding me that I wanted to be in bed. I began to feel like I was the one who had read That Hideous Strength and not my daughter. And as if that was not enough, a mid-night geometry test and biology homework was also completed.
Again I say, home schooling is not for the faint at heart. I know one must be asking, why in heaven’s name, is the schooling happening in the middle of the night? Let me explain, no sum up. We are part of a wonderful program called Biola STAR Academics and Torrey Academy, that helps me help my kids, get all they need academically, so they will excel in college. My oldest, my first graduate, is indeed living up to my prayers and expectations as a student of Biola University. She is a journalism major, with plans to do a study abroad next semester in Washington D.C. She is a writer for the The Chimes, the University newspaper, and her success at Biola has shown me that this home schooling choice has indeed been the correct one. So as we struggle through tenth grade again, (and I wouldn’t use the word struggle usually, it has just been a long week), I count my blessing for the right to school my kids at home. I thank God for programs like Torrey Academy and STAR that help me, help my children get a high caliber academic education that prepares them for life and college.
I will be completing high school two more times and I am sure I will be much smarter when I graduate my last student. But I will be saddened that the days of whining and roses will be complete. I love to school my kids. I love the fact that this Country allows parents the right to school in this manner. I am grateful that I have my fingers in the mix and that I can see their accomplishments first hand and watch the struggles create in them a perseverance that will last a life time. I have always compared home schooling to watching one’s child take their first step or say their first word. There is so much joy and anticipation in those events and with home schooling, I get to see my child read his first word, figure out his first Algebra problem and most importantly, I get to be the one who trains them up in the admonition of the Lord and watch Him transform them into His image. Truly a most enviable task in life. And by the way, I get to re-do high school four times! Isn’t that the American dream: to go back to high school?