Showing posts from August, 2020

On education and setting the table.

We are about ready for #StephensAcademy 2020-2021. Even though we’ve done this for over a decade now, every year is a bit different with different ages and challenges and opportunities. This year, we will gather around our “morning time” table with a high schooler, middle schooler, elementary schooler, and preschooler. How do we do that?, people ask.
At the center of this room stands a table that NP and I bought used to furnish our first apartment. A lot of meals have been eaten around that table. It’s been a gathering place for years and years.
It seems fitting to have our old kitchen table in the schoolroom now, because education is a lot less like an assembly line and a lot more like spreading a feast. No one asks me how we possibly provide food for a family of six. The bigger the family, the more prep might be involved, it might take more time, some might need things cut up smaller or dietary needs taken into consideration. Not everyone likes the same foods to the same extent. But a…

Beware the Instagram homeschool

I picked flowers with my 3 year old today. We practiced calling them daisies. She tromped around the top of a ski mountain in Wisconsin with her cute little self and gathered a bouquet to take to Great-Grandma at the other end of the path. I picked more and wove them into a daisy-chain crown and put them on her head and it was adorable.
For one minute.
But then her bouquet was forgotten and trampled on the ground and her brothers and big cousin pulled off petals and she took off her crown and threw a fit when I tried to put it back on her.
As I gathered those sad, rejected, trampled daisies off the ground, it reminded me of homeschooling. Now this isn’t all gloom and doom so hang with me, here.
It’s a new school year and my social media feeds are full of smiling first-day pictures, and for some families, this is the first year for homeschool pictures instead of meet-the-teacher or big-backpack-getting-on-a-bus pictures. The faces are excited but also uncertain. And I know, firsthand, how …