“You know, if it doesn’t work out, it’s okay. You can just enroll them in school midway through the year.” (said friends and family)
“We have some good schools here, you know. You can always enroll them.” (said new friends on the island)
Maybe it’s too much to think this plan will actually work, I don’t know. Maybe this rookie teacher-mom has no idea what she is doing.
Here is the general outline of the plan:
– 1 year
– 1 island
– 3 students
– 1 mom with no formal teaching experience
– 1 backyard
– a curriculum heavy on reading and exploring, very short on worksheets and seatwork.
Maybe it is unrealistic to think that we can move to a new place, leave our friends and our school and routines behind and thrive while learning at home. But I don’t think so.
See, we have tried this before and I know what doesn’t work for us. Large, overcrowded, noisy cities where simple tasks like grocery shopping and doing the laundry take over our daily routines. Living in teensy tiny apartments where there is no outdoor space to go and where we make each other crazy. Having to change currency, AND diet, AND clothing, and then navigate our way around town in another language. That was too hard for us.
Not having a good internet connection, no public library, no vehicle (or one that kept getting ticketed and/or towed, aHEM New York City…). Those changes were overwhelming enough even without the homeschooling dimension.
The plan here is to keep the days simple. Do our lessons in the mornings and use the tidal pools and jungle flora as our inspiration in the afternoons.
Read, discuss, photograph. Write a little. Learn a little Ancient Greek and Phoenician (ha, just kidding about that last part.)
Daddy will help with the experimentation side of things, if the scientists in the group feel so inclined as to try any of those (they will). The CNMI school superintendent will be checking in regularly for evidence of progress (a post on that will be coming shortly). A portion of the rest of the summer will be spent preparing (more on that later, too).
In the meantime, we are settling into our new home, learning our way around and poking around at the library to see what is available there. Getting some household routines established and clear responsibilities for daily chores laid out. Setting down some priorities for the year and keeping a journal in order to remember for later. (more about that later. maybe)
And what if it does all go wrong? The worst case scenario still means that if the kids end up going to a classroom of some kind, I still get to hang out on the beach with my own books.
I could probably learn to live with that kind of failure.