“Wh-wh-wh wh-wh-wh wh-when does…” My sweet five year old sometimes stutters when he is trying to explain something he has built up in his head. I failed to hear the second part of the sentence, because while I sat staring patiently at him I was also scratching records in time with his stutter in my imaginary DJ booth.
“Sorry, I don’t understand the question.”
“Wh-wh-when does the street sweeper dump the stuff it picks up?”
“Street sweepers pick up things?” I sat for a few seconds thinking about some of the disgusting things that a street sweeper could pick up. Once I finished staring off into space I said, “I have no idea.”
The boy immediately began whistling a tune, as this was a run-of-the-mill answer he could expect. Silly mama, doesn’t know something again. And here we are, a homeschooling family. I don’t know lots of things. But, I have the internet, and lots of texts.
Homeschooling has been a heavy topic on my mind lately. Earlier in the month I finally got around to facing my fears, and filing our Notice of Intent to Homeschool. For years I’ve been building it up in my head. We are safe until we file. Then there would be no hiding it from the greater powers—we could be put on that list of alternative-lifestyle families that are considered troublemakers. I was pleasantly surprised, when I finally faced my fears.
I anticipated finding the state’s websites on homeschooling to be evasive. I thought they would provide a bare minimum of information with lots of caveats. In actuality they were very clear-cut, and not bullying. I had a specific question for my local county office, and I received a prompt answer from the director, who was almost…friendly. It was an enormous relief. I don’t mean to suggest I have my guard down. I still think there is a chance the school board is out to get me. Government officials that seem to do their job efficiently and are pleasant—very suspicious.
Public school starts here in early August. We will be considering that our official date as well, although we’ve been doing “school” for a while now. That means I have about a week to put together exactly what our plans are for the upcoming year. This is an exciting time. I have bookcases full of materials that I have been collecting from yard sales and thrifts stores for years and finally—FINALLY—I get to start using them! My moment of glory as a profoundly cheap homeschooling mother has come. I love to run my hands across the spines of those books, like I am absorbing their knowledge through my skin. I can’t wait for my son to start absorbing it too.
I’ve got my big calendar out. I’ve got illegible scribbles on a piece of notebook paper, breaking down which lessons will take x number of weeks. And a glass of water, because I am not an exciting person. Stacks of books are around me. Two digit subtraction. Endorphin release. Art projects. I’ve got chills.
I’ve got to go. I’m a little drunk on education.