Monday, January 25, 2010


We've done one lesson.  ONE!  And already he's in his room because I'm angry at him for his stinky attitude.  Mondays suck in many worlds, but none more than homeschooling.  For me, anyway.

My method of coping with the bad attitude is to send him away from me or go away from him myself.  I tell him that I'm not going to sit here and fight his bad attitude when I have plenty of things that need doing in my world.  (laundry, dishes, showering, nesting, etc...)  So, here we are... he, in his room, and I, blogging about it all.

It's amazing the difference attitude can make.  I watch him when his attitude is good and he's amazing!  He picks up concepts quickly.  He laughs and has fun.  He answers his school-questions with quick repsonses, making it clear that the concept is absorbing right into his brain.


When his attitude is poor, like it has been this morning, his brain is like oil and school is like water.  They just repel eachother.  Concepts do not penetrate.  Even concepts that he already knows that we're reviewing... they must not be able to get out through the barrier he's put up.  His only focus is on being grumpy, not on learning anything or even just speaking something he already knows.


As his "teacher" it's infuriating.  As his mother, it's even worse.  You know that your kids don't do this to their teachers at public school.  (Maybe some kids do, but I know from reports that Mac was nice, respectful and hard working at school, if a little rambunctious.)  Because I'm his mother, he "acts up" if he doesn't feel like doing what I tell him.  And I, being his mother, deal with these flare-ups with varying degrees of self-control.  Like I said, mostly I just send him away.  Other times I yell at him a little.  Other times, A LOT.  I have refrained from yelling for the most part today. 

Even when we have days like this, I'm so glad that he's home with me.  Is it a sacrifice?  Yes.  I am rather tied down during the day and my schedule is rather dictated by his school.  I don't get so much "me" time as I used to, perhaps.  But, whenever I think of the alternative, of sending him back to school, I am so grateful that he is here with me where it is safe to have some volatile feelings now and then.  I still love him at the end of the day, no matter what.  I can't explain it well, but I know that this is an important thing in his life right now.  To have him home with me, his mother, who loves him more than anyone, who will support him through these sassy, stinky-attitude times.  Even if it means taking a few deep breaths and steeling myself for another Monday homeschooling morning. 


Ginny said...

can't tell you how much i love this post. my ever-present and calm justin is just entering into this sometimes-volatile world of tweendom, and i am not sure i am ready for it. so, even though i am not homeschooling, i get it. and i love you for it. thanks.

Brecca said...

I look up to you for homeschooling him and understand the sacrifices. Each day brings new beginnings! Hope tomorrow is better. (Or later today)

Kristin said...

I LOVE this post! It's so real! The one ever-present thought I had as I read it was this (I hope I can express it right):

How wonderful that you are at home and can choose the best times to teach and learn! You may or may not know about my neighbor Charlie. He had meningitis at a young age and is severely brain damaged. His parents are trying a new therapy with him. I researched it a little and one of the things they do with teaching kids is to maximize the teaching moments and subjects. Teach what they're interested in because they'll soak up the information and to stop when they're "done". Essentially to not push information on them. It sounds fabulous, albeit difficult to implement in the traditional systems. By teaching from home I'm sure you still have a curriculum to follow, however, you do have the advantage of being able to teach during those optimal moments and, when necessary, take a much needed break. I applaud all that you are doing.

triplej said...

Ahhhhh....finally a post about real life and real attitudes!

Minetta said...