5 ways your academic shortcomings are your homeschooling superpower.
Updated: Nov 19, 2022
1. You know your WHY of homeschooling
Many of us are concerned with the new normal surrounding public schools this fall. The social distancing, mask wearing, practically no playing, and more has almost every parent who has homeschooling available to them knowing full well what they are running from. It is clear what we do not want. Knowing your WHY for what you do want is so important, I would personally say far more important than knowing what you do not want. On the days where you feel like nothing is in your control (and those days will come) having a why to hold onto is like a lighthouse in a sea. This also aids in relating to other families making this transition to home based education catered to a child rather than virtual public school or any virtual schooling option.
2. You likely understand more about the schooling system and how it can effect each individual. Those of us subjected to the public schooling system and its many hoops understand that there is more to success than a grade. While striving for the grade as one earned that cannot be set aside, learning and getting the grade are two vastly different things. If you have come to understand this, you homeschool will be all the more enriched by you having a stronger center than what academics can provide. Your center will be in gratitude for learning itself, learning for the sake of learning. Adapting a growth mindset for the sake of becoming more than you thought you could ever be. This idea is infectious and will travel from teacher to student light lightening strikes.
3. You recognize you are your child’s first teacher, always.
most of us start of on our whole parenting journey with massive doubt. That is common, possibly even a little healthy. It shows you don’t want to ‘fail’. One thing we know for sure, we can teach the ABC’s and 123s. Without a village? No. With a village and in our homes well? Absolutely. There is however, a growing acceptance that you are more than qualified to teach a recognition of not only onomatopoeic writing but various qualities inherent to each and every soon to be adult human. Again I will ask, alone without a village? No. With a village online, in co ops, through museum classes and more? Absolutely. Who is to say you cannot? Only those who equate intelligence with academic success in only one lane of academics. As Albert Einstein said, “Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its entire life believing it is stupid.”
4. Individual creativity is something you prize Now before you come at me with the ‘not all people’, hear me out. The grade does not reflect the individual capability of the student, but in order to get the grade some students must sacrifice massive ammounts of personal and creative time to get it all done and turned in on time. This is without mentioning how hard a student must work in later stages of education for the papers, midterm exams, and state tests. If you struggled academically you may have made more time for writing or other activities considered leisurely by the adolescents or early twenty somethings who were vastly more emotionally intelligent than you at the time. This gives you an ’edge’ when it comes to really seeing a child. In many ways a child will ask you throughout the day, ”Do you see me?” and, ”Am I REALLY being heard?” Their behavior will be your first indicator as to how these questions are being answered. As you can imagine, it at times will take a creative mind willing to push its perceived limits to meet the child in a healthy way.
5. you may have more respect for many different learning styles.
There are many different way a child will absorb new information, whether by spatial, musical, logical, linguistic or other means. It is a well known fact that wherever a child is they will not only learn but they will be eager to absorb nearly everything from that given situation. The only questions are, what are they learning anyway and are they learning in a way that facilitates growth into a healthy adult? Some would say the classroom is the only way, many others who have had the classroom experience themselves disagree. I think personally it is a bit of both, and we humans have likely always had moments where one or two adults facilitate a group of children learning a task or craft to aid them in their adulthood. Regardless, the ability to discern a child’s needs academically through learning styles is at the very crossroads of healthy growth. If you were willing to embrace perceived failure (even through struggle) as a younger version of yourself that may have shaped you into a far more open minded and bold adult.
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