Their Color is not in the Crayon Box: Amy's Interview

Amy is known as MamaTea in the blogosphere and she blogs about her family's exploits at Wake Up. Start Learning. .

She lives with her husband and two sons in Minnesota "among woods, water and a zooful of animals."

You can tell by just looking at these two little guys that they are full of curiosity and a love of learning. Mom never knows what the day will bring and the daily questions number in the thousands and they never stop and their energy lasts forever and it's constant chaos and...

She loves every minute of it.

I think MamaTea is right that there's not a crayon color that matches them very well, but of course that's exactly what makes life fun...

1. How long have you been homeschooling (or if finished, how long did you homeschool)?

I still love that question, because it means we’re actually doing it. I had always wanted to homeschool, but was pretty sure my husband wouldn’t be on board. Turns out he was. There's just something undeniably sexy about a husband who says “Ok, sure. Let’s homeschool”.

Our boys are 5 and 6. They have been homeschooled since "the beginning", whatever you consider that to be. :)

2. One of the main benefits of homeschooling is the freedom and flexibility it allows. Can you give us a few examples of how this freedom and flexibility benefited you (your family)?

Freedom and flexibility are the main reasons we were drawn to homeschooling, and later, unschooling. My husband works in law enforcement, so his schedule is chaotic, at best. He knows what days he has off…until they change. And they always do. I often wonder how many drop-of-the-hat days with Dad would have been lost if the boys were in public school. Being able to spend time as a family whenever is the coolest.

If I didn’t have the benefit of immense freedom and flexibility with my kids, I think I’d need a padded room.

Simply put, their color is not in the crayon box.

They pop out of the toaster as something different every day.

Their energy is not unlike the Energizer Bunny…on cocaine.

Their questions are constant. They don’t stop asking until they understand.

And perhaps I'm just a whackjob, but I don't think any of those things need to be taken as negative :) Thus, the choice to be home.

3. Another benefit of homeschooling is the fun factor. Can you give us a few examples of some especially fun times you had as a result of homeschooling?

Unschooling is life. Our life is fun.

There’s an odd comfort in chaos - knowing we can switch from archery to musical theater to fishing to painting to computers to construction to snuggling to hiking to baking bread to whatever else.

It's knowing that whatever we do matters, and if it doesn’t work…it doesn’t really matter.

The world is our playground. It's all fun.

4. We all have funny experiences while homeschooling. Can you share one of yours with us?

Announcing the decision to homeschool to my in-laws felt very much like something out of a comedy flick. It was Easter, and since we’d recently moved, someone asked my oldest what he thought about starting kindergarten the following September in a new town.

He promptly announced he was not going to school.

There was a sort of “Awww, isn’t that cute” giggle among everyone.

My oldest then explained he was going to be homeschooled. Everything got quiet. I mean, really quiet. It was like one of those, “Um...gee…isn’t this ham delicious?” kind of moments.

But my oldest was so proud of himself. He got to drop the big news. It was perfect.

Some of the funniest times are just the conversations we have and the looks we get from people who happen to be in the general area. For instance, a recent conversation between my youngest and I while visiting a nursing home:

Him: What does that sign say?

Me: It says this place “bans guns on its premises."

Him: What about cops?

Me: Well, I guess they could have them.

Him: So who are they talking about?

Me: Well, adults can go take a class and get a piece of paper that tells everyone they have a license to carry a gun with them.

Him: And?

Me: So that sign is saying even if you have that piece of paper, you can't bring a gun into this place.

Him: Why?

Me: Well, some places just don't want people bringing guns in. You know, accidents and all.

Him: But mom, the bad guys wouldn't pay attention to that sign anyway. Because they are bad guys. So the guns would still be in there anyway.

Me: Well, um...yes. You're probably right. Good point.

It's all gorgeous, delicious fun, isn't it? :)


Stephanie said...

AMT is one of my favorites!
Big hugs to hers and The Way Of It.

Jacey said...

Hi! Very interesting vantage point, having raised your kids and home schooled. I would love to hear more about it. Please check out my blog and the Mothering Contexts Study.