What Makes a Great Education?

If you had been a fly on the wall of our kitchen this week, you would have seen me hovering over my five year old son practicing writing his letters and numbers every day.

He would start from a random spot on the page, write the tail of the y first and then the short piece.  Right to left, Backwards!  He was so proud of his backwards 3s and 5s.

On the third day, within minutes I was getting tense and discouraged and my husband walked in just as I was hoarsely shouting a sing-songy mnemonic device through gritted teeth in a high-pitched voice to hide my frustration: "Always start your letters from the top!  Dah, duh dah!"

He approached me slowly like I was an explosive device at a crime scene and offered to take over. 

After I realized how impatient and embarrassing my behavior had become, I decided to be the fly on the wall.  My husband had helped my little one for a while, but soon after I could hear my 7 year old son giggling and cheering his little brother on as they wrote words together.

                        This was the perfect time for me to
            go back and read my own post on
        lessons coming back to slap me in the face. 

While I have been desperately trying to cram this sweet five-year-old into the box that all Kindergartners must inhabit, he just wants to play like his big brother and sister.  He thinks it's fun to write!  I was in the process of methodically killing that fun.

When I examined the fears beneath my desperation, I recognized my desire to prove to myself that I could continue to homeschool, and be absolutely sure that it's the best thing for each of my kids.

I have never appreciated the expression, "Just relax!"   So instead of telling myself to "just relax" I'm going to say, "for the love of peace and fun and intellectual pursuits, stop letting your fears limit what you do as a mother."

                                 Sometimes the best thing I can do
                  for my kids is get out of their way.

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