Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, March 19, 2009

How do you...

...tell that your children you are home schooling are making "progress"? It is difficult sometimes. The thing is, they learn things ALL THE TIME. Things, even as very involved parents, we often miss. They have control over what they let you see. Pony Gal loves the computer. I had gotten really tired of the internet games not loading like I wanted them to, and she wasn't too fond of some of the disc games we had, so we bought a new one yesterday while visiting her uncle at work (Wellspring). She picked a game called Charlie Church mouse. It was rated for 4-6 year olds-kindergarten age, and I thought it was mainly a game on biblical topics. We got it home and found it does a pretty good job of integrating standard educational topics as well. Pony Gal sat down with her grandma and played one game, on Esther, all night. Like hours. I normally try to restrict technology type activities a bit-just for eye strain reasons, but she loved it. And she was letting some of the hidden knowledge show, so I was trying to sneakily spy on her game. The kid was bored with counting. This is an important note, as, if you asked her to count something, many times she gives you this look, and counts in Pony Gal-ease, which makes very little sense, number-wise, to anyone but Pony Gal. But the kid had scores in the thousands last night. Then there was problem solving, following directions, just things that she had shown very little interest or skill in previously, but was excelling at last night. It is an excellent example of how home schooling works toward the benefit of the child. If I had tried to sit her down and go over those subjects with book and paper methods, or standard school methods, she would have balked the whole time, and I would have thought she didn't understand or, as so many children are labeled at schools, just didn't care. But that was hardly the case. She has her own learning style. As an home schooling parent, I get to embrace this style. It took a little while to find something that really caught for her, but once it was found, no problem! She flew through that game. There are three or four other stories that we will move on to, and may be able to go ahead and get the first grade version soon. She had very little trouble with any of the obstacles. We have other kindergarten games. The difference was putting things into a context which she cared about, something the average school is not able to do due to money and time constraints. Pony Gal liked being on the computer with the other games, but not really the games so much themselves. This game, though,she picked out. She knew it had to do with what she calls "God stuff" which she loves and respects. I think that made the big difference. Play a game simply for a game, or play a game with what is to our family, an eternal significance. I love it. And I loved seeing that our educational methods are working. I look at the little girl we were doing daycare for the last couple weeks and compare her preschool knowledge thus far to Pony Gal's situation, and know that we are heads and tails above where she would be in a standard schooling situation, and knowing Pony Gal, she would have already been labeled as an issue-she daydreams, she is independent, and strong-willed. All good characteristics in my book, but hardly what passes in grid-like school systems today.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I welcome hospitable, intelligent discussion. I do not welcome mean-spirited comments. Though they are "moderated" I post pretty much everything, with a very, very small exception-that being spam and those who aim to hurts others intentionally. I'd love hear what you have to say, otherwise!